Getting the most out of the slow cooker

Getting the most out of the slow cooker

I’m a big fan of cooking with our slow cooker. There are so many benefits to slow cooking and there are loads of fantastic recipes around now that it’s becoming more common to use slow cookers.

The benefits of using a slow cooker

There are lots of benefits to using a slow cooker. Perhaps the big draw for lots of people is that the food slowly cooks away all day long and it’s ready when they get in from work. Of course, this does mean that you have to get the preparation done in the morning, but this can suit a lot of people. I know that when I went out from work, I’d get in at 6:30 and everyone would be STARVING. It was very tempting to just order a takeaway before leaving work so that food would be there not long after we got home. Using the slow cooker means you’re less likely to give into the temptation of ordering a takeaway. It’s much more economical, and much healthier too!

Slow cooker meals

I’m always on the lookout for new slow cooker meal ideas. For us, we use it to make bolognaise sauce, chicken casserole, beef casserole and then I’m pretty much stumped. I know I’m missing out on lots of really simple meal ideas and so I asked some fellow bloggers for their favourite slow cooker meal ideas.

Claire from Big Family, Big Fun shares her Slow Cooker Minted Lamb Stew recipe. This sounds so simple to make, that’s the great thing about slow cookers, just throw it all in and let it bubble away. I love Claire’s idea about using frozen lamb chops to make this really cost-effective too!

Lucie from Our World and Autism shares her Slow Cooked Gammon in Apple Juice. Gammon is always a winner in our house, especially when it’s cooked slowly and just melts in your mouth. I’d never thought to cook it with apple juice, but this does sound AMAZING! With only two ingredients, it’s my kind of cooking too! I’m definitely going to give this one a go, I bet it leaves the house smelling wonderful too.

Clare from Emmy’s Mummy and Harry’s Too has a fab fakeaway recipe that works really well in the slow cooker. This looks so simple yet really tasty. The way Clare’s served it up in a warm pitta with chips suits me down to the ground too!

Claire from Life, Love and Dirty Dishes shares her Slow Cooker Jambalaya recipe. Claire says that this slow cooker recipe is perfect for her as she eats late with her husband once the kids have gone to bed. Having the meal all prepared and ready to go means she’s not slaving over the cooker late at night. I’m a lover of spicy food (well, spicy-ish) and this looks so tasty. Again, it’s a simple yet delicious meal.

You can also check out some of my own recipes with my hearty slow cooker beef casserole & dumplings, warming chilli con carne and delicious chicken curry!

Slow Cooker Beef Casserole

Choosing a Slow Cooker

If you’re a family of five like us, then you’ll need a big slow cooker. We need a bigger one to be honest, but as Little Man still only eats a bit we’re managing for now. If you’re only cooking for two then a smaller one would probably suffice, unless you’re into batch cooking then you will need a big one regardless!

I found these great deals over on Amazon:

Crockpot

This is a 2.4 litre slow cooker and would probably suit you if you’re just cooking for yourself and one other person.

On the other end of the scale, this HUGE 8 litre slow cooker provides around 20-25 average-sized portions. If you’re anything like my husband then an average-sized portion isn’t going to cut it! I’d say this would easily serve 10 people though if you filled it. This one would be perfect for using to batch cook and freeze portions.

8 Litre Slow Cooker

I’ve got a few recipes to try out thanks to the lovely ladies above, but I’m always on the look out for more. As the weather turns colder in the Autumn & Winter, that’s when I tend to really get into slow cooking.

Please share your recipes in the comments below!

1 Comment

  1. Sam Furniss
    August 23, 2017 / 8:47 pm

    I’ve recently bought a slow cooker, thanks for the tips!

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