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I know many of you are going to have your eyes glued to the screen watching the newest president being sworn. Happy Inauguration Day! This is not a political post though. Whether you’re in favor of the new guy or not, let this post help you make the rest of your day go smoothly. This post will make the age old question “what’s for dinner?” something you don’t have to worry about.
What magic can you weave today to make that happen?
Two words for you:
Slow cookers are one of the best cooking inventions on the earth. Forms of slow cooking have been around for years, probably longer than you’d imagine. The modern-day appliance that we know as crock-pot, with a base that plugs in and has a class top on it, was brought to the public in the 1970’s. Not surprisingly, it has stayed apart of our cooking culture ever since.
So what is a slow cooker?
You know how you call a strip that goes over a wound a band-aid even though many versions of that item aren’t really the Band-Aid brand? Same thing with slow cooking. Most people call their slow cookers a crock-pot even if the brand might be another company’s version of it.
According to CNET Magazine, an inventor by the name of Irving Naxon applied for a patent for a food heating device in 1936. His device consisted of an insert, held up by a case that held a heating device, which facilitated even heating of food inside the insert. The device was also portable.
Today they look usually something like this:
Are you new to slow cooking?
Don’t worry. Slow cooking is pretty much a fool proof way to cook a variety of meals. Ready to learn how to slow cook? Get a pen and paper. No wait. Don’t run away. I’m kidding.
Literally, the secret to slow cooking with a crock pot is that it’s so simple. You dump everything into the machine then let it cook. Magic, right? You don’t really have to worry about much more!
We’ll get to the recipes in a minute. Let me tell you a few things about slow cooking first, in case you’re still on the fence about this voodoo that I call cooking.
Hands down, the best part of slow cooking is the smell. I’m sure that someone out there might object to their house smelling like a cooking meal all day. I don’t happen to know those people, but I bet there is someone reading this thinking of it. I get it, you like a fruity smell or a woodsy smell. You don’t want to cheat on your Scentsy person. I get it. For me the worries of that fade away the moment the smell of a cooking pot roast or soup simmering hits the second floor of our house. I associate cooking food with a house being homey.
So what if this is already something that you know? What are you reading ahead for? If you’ve mastered the art of slow cooking and use your crock-pot regularly, you too can benefit from this recipes you need to know post. No where in the world does it say that we can’t all use some good recipes. There are a million of them out there, but how many of them do you actually trust and like enough to pass onto a friend?
Here are my #fridayfive list of recipes you need to know:
Each one of the listed recipes covers a different type of meal. With the base of these recipes, I’m sure you can feed your family with delicious food that you didn’t spend the entire day working on!
- To Die For Pot Roast – Everyone needs a pot roast recipe. I swear when you get married they should hand you a marriage licence and a pot roast recipe! I’ve done versions of this but the basics remain: Meat. Veggies. Seasonings. A great leftover meal from this, if you happen to have them is having sandwiches the next day. Hubby isn’t the biggest fan of leftovers, but he loves a good pot roast sandwich!
- Crock Pot Million Dollar Spaghetti – I actually haven’t tried the slow cooker version of this recipe, but the regular oven one is so amazing that I figure it can only get better by taking all the work out of making it.
- Easy 5 Ingredient Chicken & Dumplings – Any recipe that has 5 ingredients or less and that I can dump and forget is great in my book. I tend to think of this classic meal as being perfect for a cold winter day!
- Crock Pot French Toast – This might not normally be the way you’d make French Toast, but the bonus of this recipe is that you you can make a whole batch all at once! Think about this luxury in your busy life…you won’t have to be cooking your meal while you’re family is already eating. Why wouldn’t you make it?!
- Cake Mix Apple Cobbler in the CrockPot Easy – Cake at our house, no matter how it’s cooked never stays around long. In a crock-pot? Sure! Why not? Try it today…you’ll be surprised at how good it is!
- Onion Soup – I’m a sucker for a good soup. Our local sandwich shop is going to get a run for it’s money with this recipe in my recipe box!
Tips & Tricks:
- Be careful with the timing of your crock pot recipes. Even if the recipe says to cook it on high, I normally put it on the low setting for the shorter amount of time and check on it. Usually it’s cooked when I come back a few hours later and if not I turn it to the higher setting and let it cook a little bit longer.
- Be aware of how much extra liquid you add to your recipe. A little goes a long way, but if you don’t add enough the liquid will evaporate and the items in your recipe will end up dry.
I hope that you love these recipes and the few tips I provided. Do you have favorite recipe? If you have any other recipes that should be on my Slow Cooking Bucket List link them up in the comments section or add them to one of the #fandayfriday link parties for everyone to try!