New to the slow cooker (or cooking in general)? Don’t be scared! I’m going to share with you 10 easy slow cooker recipes that will make you feel confident in the kitchen.
Yesterday I shared with you 10 recipes for Instant Pot beginners. Today I’ll be sharing with you 10 recipes for slow cooker beginners!
I’ve been using my slow cooker regularly for 9 years now. When I first started I didn’t really know the “rules” that went along with the slow cooker and I had a few recipe fails. And a lot of mediocre food. Luckily the guidelines that go along with using your crockpot are pretty easy to learn. The slow cooker is a great tool for a beginner cook, a college student or a busy parent that doesn’t want a lot of fuss.
Some of the main rules of slow cooking are:
1. Don’t lift the lid. Although it might be tempting to lift the lid and fuss with the food, resist the temptation. The steam is cooking the food inside that crock and everytime you remove the lid you’re removing the steam and interrupting the cooking process.
2. Reduce the liquid. There is no evaporation that occurs in the slow cooker. Foods get runny and watery. Reduce liquid by half. (Dried beans and rice are the exception to this rule). Plus you’ll probably want to add some sort of thickener (like flour or tapioca) at the beginning of the cooking process or perhaps a cornstarch slurry (smooth mixture of cornstarch and water) at the end of the cooking process.
3. Season liberally. Because of #2, food gets watered down. Make sure to always season to taste at the end of the cooking process.
4. Dairy. Don’t add dairy until the end of the cooking process or else you’ll end up with a curdled mess. For example, in this white chicken chili I add the milk and sour cream at the end.
Slow Cooker Recipes for Beginners
Here are some EASY recipes that you can make in the slow cooker. You’ll have success with these recipes and then feel confident that you can conquer your crockpot.
1. Slow Cooker Mississippi Roast–this is super easy and tastes amazing. The key to making a good slow cooker roast is using the right cut of meat. Make sure to buy a chuck roast and give it plenty of time to cook all day on low. I like to cook my roasts on low for up to 12 hours.
2. Slow Cooker Chicken Enchilada Soup–this requires you to dump a bunch of stuff in the slow cooker and walk away. Easy enough! I like how this recipe uses a can of refried beans to thicken up the soup.
3. Slow Cooker Salsa Lime Chicken–so you have frozen chicken breasts in the freezer and need to make dinner? Throw them in the slow cooker with some salsa, lime juice and some seasonings and you’ll get perfectly shreddable chicken that you can serve in burritos, enchiladas, tacos, salads or quesadillas.
4. Slow Cooker 4-Ingredient Cherry Dump Cake–all you need to make this recipe is a cake mix, cherry pie filling and butter. Dump all the ingredients in your slow cooker and turn it on. This recipe is so easy and hands off but tastes amazing especially when served with vanilla ice cream.
5. Slow Cooker Taco Dip–I love this taco dip because it’s one of those recipes where you can pretty much throw everything into the slow cooker and be done. No browning required beforehand. It’s the perfect appetizer or a great game day snack. Kids and adults both love this cheesy taco dip.
6. Slow Cooker Beef and Cheddar Sandwiches–the easiest recipe to make ever. With only 4 ingredients total (beef, onion soup mix, cheddar and sandwich buns) you may be thinking that this recipe is just too easy to taste good. Well, you’re wrong! The flavor is amazing and your family will be asking for seconds.
7. Slow Cooker Yellow Chicken Curry–a thai-style coconut curry with moist bites of chicken, tender bites of yellow potatoes, vibrant turmeric and curry powder all made easily at home in your slow cooker.
8. Slow Cooker Chicken and Gravy–an almost embarrassingly easy recipe for a good old fashioned dinner. Serve the chicken and gravy over mashed potatoes, rice, noodles, toast or biscuits.
9. Slow Cooker Sweet and Sour Country Style Ribs–country style pork ribs are cooked low and slow in your slow cooker until fork tender and then served with a sweet and sour sauce.
10. Slow Cooker Cream Cheese Chicken Sandwiches–these have only 4 ingredients. Serve the chicken up on some toasted buns and you’re set!
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