I love my crock pot. My only complaint is that I don’t have enough recipes to make in it. I know, I know, there are a ton of books out there with JUST crock pot recipes, but a lot of them only contain 8,000 variations of chili or con queso dip, or use enough condensed soup to fulfill your salt intake for the year. There is a really great blog, however, called A Year of Slow Cooking, which a lot of you probably already know about. With the hundreds of recipes on this great resource, I’m beginning to think my criteria for a good crock pot recipe are too limiting, but nevertheless…I try to stick to ’em. Here’s why: a crock pot is supposed to free me from cooking, right? Therefore my number one crock pot credo is:
A good crock pot recipe must only require chopping and dumping.
This number one rule is closely followed by these:
- Browning of the meat first is not desired
- The fewer the ingredients, the better
- More than one can of condensed soup is just kinda gross, and
- Side dishes need not apply. I’m looking for a one-pot-wonder.
So here you go. Seven of my favorite crock pot recipes to date.
Chicken and Dumplings
Toss 4 carrots (cut in lengths), 2 stalks celery (chopped), 1 small onion (chopped) and ¼ c. flour in crock pot. Place 1.5 pounds of boneless chicken thighs on top, sprinkled with ½ tsp. poultry seasoning, kosher salt and pepper to taste.
Add ½ c. white wine and ½ c. low-sodium broth.
Cook on low 5-6 hours.
Ten minutes before serving, add 1 c. peas and ½ c. heavy cream.
Top with biscuits (you could make these from scratch, use Bisquick to pull them together quickly, or even faster…use Pillsbury)
Black Bean Soup
Place 4 cans black beans (rinsed) in crock pot with 1 c. salsa and (2) 14.5 ounce cans of low-sodium chicken broth.
Cook on high 2-4 hours.
Puree with immersion blender; season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve with Monterey Jack cheese on top.
Place 2 pounds of boneless, skinless chicken thighs (cut up) in crock pot.
Top with mixture of:
1 jar salsa verde
1 c. corn
1 can cannellini beans (rinsed)
2 cubanelle peppers (chopped)
1 onion (chopped)
1 T. fresh garlic (minced)
2 tsp. cumin
½ tsp. salt.
Cook on low 8-9 hours. Stir in cilantro and serve with lime and sour cream.
Place 2 – 2 ½ pounds of boneless, skinless chicken thighs in crock pot.
Cover with mixture of:
1 jar pasta sauce (I like Paul Newman’s marinara)
1 c. white wine (I’ve omitted this before when I didn’t have wine–I know, shocker!–and it still tasted great)
1 can tomato paste
2 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. basil
8 oz. quartered mushrooms
1 red bell pepper, sliced
Cook 7-9 hours and serve over penne.
Beef Stroganoff (not free of fat, this one, but very tasty)
Place 2 pounds of beef stew meat in crock pot.
1 sliced onion
1 can cream of mushroom soup (use low-sodium if possible)
1 8-ounce can sliced mushrooms
1/4 tsp. pepper
Cook on low for 8-10 hours.
Stir in 1 package of cream cheese (softened) and 8 ounces sour cream.
Serve over egg noodles.
Smoked Sausage Jambalaya
I’m breaking one of my rules here, but the rest is easy enough to make up for it.
Slice 1 pound smoked sausage and brown. Place in crock pot.
Add (2) 10-ounce cans of tomatoes with green chiles
1 1/2 c. converted rice (Uncle Ben’s has this kind of rice)
3 1/2 c. low-fat/low-sodium chicken broth
2 tsp. Creole seasoning
Cook on low for 3 1/2 hours.
Stir in 1 can of kidney beans and cook on high for another 30 minutes.
Breaking my one-pot-wonder rule here because you kinda need a baked potato or something with this. But how hard is that?
Cut a 2 pound round steak into 5 or 6 portions and place in crock pot.
1 sliced onion
1 sliced red pepper
1 sliced green pepper. (If using a smaller steak, just use half of each color pepper)
Mix 1 can of cream of mushroom soup with 1 c. salsa, 2 T. flour and 1 tsp. dry mustard. Pour over top of steak.
Cook on low for 9-10 hours.
Sorry for the lack of pictures. I don’t usually trust a recipe I can’t see for some reason, but I had the idea for this post, so I went with it. Hope you trust my judgment…Bon apetit!