Beat Mealtime Crazies By Using A Slow Cooker | The Sisterhood of the Shrinking Jeans LLC


My kids go back to school on Monday.

My feelings are two- fold.

1.  Thank you Jesus, they are going back to school.

2.  Oh darn, that means being a slave to the school routine/schedule and after school activities.  Yuck!

I want to be prepared for next week and the following nine months of busyness.  What better way to handle mealtimes than by pulling out my trusty slow cooker?  I absolutely adore my slow cooker! Below you will find some of your best, and our best, back to school slow cooker recipes!

Let’s start with some facts and tips to get the best use out of the modern day slow cooker:

  • The low setting of a slow cooker is about 200 degrees.  The high setting is about 300 degrees.
  • Do not lift the lid *to take a peak* unless the recipes calls for it.  Doing so can add up to 30 more minutes of cooking time because of all the heat that escapes.
  • To make clean-up a breeze, use a slow cooker liner.
  • One hour on high is equal to two hours on low.
  • Pre-plan for a busy day by chopping up the ingredients the night before and storing in the slow cooker stoneware bowl, in the fridge.  The next morning, it’s all ready to go!
  • Slow cookers retain moisture way better than an open pot/pan.  This makes for juicy meats and dishes.  However, if you are using a non-slow cooker recipe, decrease the liquid by 1/3 to 1/2 unless you are making rice or soup.
  • Do not overfill your slow cooker or you could compromise cooking time.  1/3 to 1/2 full is optimal (although I push the limits sometimes and go 2/3 full with larger cuts of meat).
  • At the end, you can thicken the juices in your slow cooker by removing the lid and cooking on high for the last 30 minutes.
  • Never pour cold water into a hot slow cooker bowl or you run the risk of cracking it.  Instead, wait until it has cooled off or use warm water.

This list by no means the end all list of tips for slow cookers.  I am sure all you lovely folks could chime in with additional things you have learned along the way!

But what about recipes?  My favorite recipes are typically low cost meats you leave in the crock pot all day long, returning home to a house that smells fantastic and a dinner ready to go.  Pot roast tacos, BBQ chicken, pulled pork, and chicken tortilla soup top my list.

Favorite Slow Cooker Ideas from our Facebook Community:

{from Donna}:  Green beans with new potatoes & bacon

{from Christine}:   London Broil with celery soup, mushroom soup and a packet of onion soup mix. On low 8 hrs. Add sour cream when done. Serve over egg noodles. Family favorite.

{from Cressie}:  Crock pot carnitas

{from Debra}:  Pork ribs marinated overnight then cooked all day

{from Amanda}:  Chicken thighs, jar of pesto, ranch seasoning packet, 1/2 cup chicken broth. Combine, cook on high 3-4 hours or low 7-8 hours. DELICIOUS.

{from Sherry}:  Pinto beans are the best. Rapid boil first on stove for a few minutes, place in crock pot, cover with water and cook all day. Walk in door to lovely aroma of beans. Add raw chopped bacon for flavor and salt. That’s it. Too easy. My kids will choose beans over many other options.

Favorite Back to School Slow Cooker Recipes from the Shrinking Kitchen:

What about you?  What is your favorite meal to whip up in the slow cooker?

(Visited 210 times, 1 visits today)