If you read my Summer Favorites post, you’ll have seen that I included my Crock-Pot. If you haven’t seen it, you can read it here.
It’s been way cooler here since I used it for those two weeks straight, but I still like to whip it out when I need some easy, mostly hands-off meals. After having used it for new recipes so much lately, I’ve managed to accrue quite a few favorite slow cooker meals.
I found this recipe from The Country Cook via Pinterest, and wasn’t too sure what to expect. By the time I’d gotten around to cooking this, my hits were about even with my misses, so it could have gone either way. Ultimately, it was a massive win. The flavor was definitely there thanks to ingredients like beef broth, onion soup mix, and steak sauce, and because it calls for frozen meatballs, you can make it slightly healthier by using turkey meatballs instead of beef.
Shane and I like to eat this over rice (he loves pouring juice/sauce/gravy on his rice) and I picked up a jar of lingonberry jam from Ikea a few weeks ago and love the flavor combo. I won’t make Swedish meatballs any other way, now.
This one is another Pinterest find, that lead me to Well Plated by Erin’s website. It’s a little more hands-on the the last, but it’s so worth it. There are also quite a few ingredients, when you look at the recipe, but it’s mostly stuff that you already have in your pantry and fridge.
It can easily be made vegetarian by swapping out the turkey for more beans and quinoa (there’s certainly plenty of protein without it) and even vegan by going with a dairy-free cheese. It also makes a lot of food which means plenty of delicious leftovers.
If you like chili and cornbread, this kind of has a similar feel to it; it’s warm and hearty and really sticks to you.
These next three are ones that Kristin tried and suggested (and that I’ve actually eaten over at her house) and they’ve both been huge hits over here.
Family Fresh Meals (via Pinterest) is the one to thank for this masterpiece. When they say it’s the easiest BBQ chicken, they’re not kidding.
To add more depth of flavor, theres not just BBQ sauce in this chicken: there’s zesty Italian dressing, Worcestershire sauce (any ideas how to pronounce that?), and brown sugar, too! And all you do is mix it up and throw it in the slow cooker with the chicken. You can shred it if you want, or just eat it whole.
I made this for Mother’s Day and it was a massive hit. And not only did it feed 7 people; there were plenty of leftovers for Shane and me.
Stacy at Humorous Homemaking definitely had a hit from this one. Kristin found this one on Pinterest, and I was lucky enough to be having dinner at her house the night she made these.
This one requires a bit more work than some of the others, but if you slice the onions and peppers beforehand, you don’t have to worry about doing anything except dumping everything into the slow cooker day-of.
The meat and veggies come out so moist and flavorful and are honestly as perfect on tortillas as they are on a salad.
This is one that Kristin hand-wrote for me years ago, originally from a blog that is no longer active, and I’ve just kept it in my recipe binder ever since. It’s such a filling and hearty meal, and we love eating it during the colder months (it’s a Halloween tradition at her house).
Same with the Mexican Casserole above, you could leave out the chicken and add extra beans in this one, and then it’s yummy vegetarian tortilla soup – as long as you remember the tortilla chips. But I love plopping on a dollop of sour cream (or plain Greek yogurt, for the health-conscious) sprinkling on some cheese, and scooping it up in a tortilla chip once it’s all stirred up. If we’ve got Nightmare Before Christmas or Hocus Pocus playing while that’s all happening – even better!
Those are my top 5 favorite slow cooker recipes, friends. At least of the ones I’ve tried so far. Got any suggestions? I’d love to hear them! Leave me a comment with your favorite slow cooker recipe (or the link to it, at least), and let me know if you try any of these!