WELCOME

Welcome to this slow cooker/crockpot blog. I believe slow cookers are the best thing to happen to modern day cooks. I used mine often when I worked outside the home and continue to do so even in retirement. It is so nice to put food on and forget about it. Slow cookers also allow us to cook many things we would normally have to use the oven for; what a relief in hot Texas weather! Some of these recipes are mine, many are ones I have collected over the years.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

SPARERIBS & SAUERKRAUT

3 - 4 lbs lean pork spareribs, cut into serving-size pieces
salt to your taste
pepper to your taste
2 cans sauerkraut
1 onion, thinly sliced
1 apple, quartered, cored, sliced
1 tsp caraway seeds
1 cup water
1 tsp salt, optional

Sprinkle the salt and pepper to taste on the spareribs and brown ribs in a heavy skillet or the broiler.  Layer half of each of the following; ribs, sauerkraut, onion, and apple.  Repeat with the remaining half.
Add the caraway seeds to the water with additional salt, if using, and pour over the layers.  Cover and cook on low setting for 6 to 8 hours or on high for about 4 hours.


Tuesday, November 29, 2011

SIMPLE RUMP ROAST

3 TO 4 lb rump roast
2 large or 3 medium russet potatoes
3 carrots
1 large onion
1/2 cup water or beef broth
salt to taste
pepper to taste

Cut potatoes and onions into large chunks.  Quarter the onion.  Place the vegetables on the bottom of the crockpot or slow cooker.  Salt and pepper the beef and place atop the vegetables.  Pour the water or broth over all.  Place lid on cooker and cook on low setting for 10 to 12 hours or on high for 5 to 6 hours until meat is tender.

Monday, November 28, 2011

BAKED APPLES WITH RAISINS

6-8 medium baking apples, washed and cored
2 to 3 tablespoons raisins
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon
2 tbsp butter
1/2 cup water

Mix the raisins (decide amount by the size of the apples) and sugar together; use to fill the center of the apples.  Sprinkle with the cinnamon and dot with the butter.  Place in crockpot or slow cooker; add the water.  Add lid to cooker and cook on low for 8 hours or overnight.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

CHILI-CHEESE DIP

1 lb lean ground beef, browned and drained
1 lb processed American cheese, cut into small pieces
1 can (approx. 10-oz) tomatoes with green chilies
2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp chili powder

Place all the ingredients into the crockpot or slow cooker and stir well.  Place lid on cooker and cook on high for 1 hour, stirring at end of cooking time to be sure all the cheese has completely melted.  May be served immediately or kept on low for up to six hours.

Serve with tortilla or corn chips.

Friday, November 25, 2011

EASY BAKED SWEET POTATOES

Scrub  approximately 12 (or enough to fill your cooker) sweet potatoes.
Place potatoes in the slow cooker or crockpot.  Add 1/4 cup water to pot.
Place lid on cooker and cook on high setting for 1 hour.  Turn heat to low setting and cook for another 6 to 8 hours.  Potatoes should be very tender.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

ROUND STEAK BAKE

2 lbs round steak
4 large potatoes, peeled & quartered
2 cans (6-oz each) mushroom (do not drain)
1 pkg dry onion soup mix

Cut the steak into large pieces to fit into the crockpot or slow cooker; place in cooker.  Sprinkle the dry soup mix over the steak.

Place the quartered potatoes evenly over the steak and pour the mushrooms with liquid over the potatoes and steak. 

Place lid on cooker and cook on high 3 to 4 hours or on low 6 to 8 hours until the meat is tender and the potatoes are cooked through.

Yield: 4 to 6 serving

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

BREAD DRESSING

1 cup butter
2 cups chopped onion
2 cups chopped celery
1/4 cup coarsely chopped parsley
2 cans (8-oz) mushrooms, drained
12 to 13 cups dry bread cubes
1 tsp poultry seasoning*
2 well-beaten eggs
1 1/2 tsp salt*
1 1/2 tsp sage*
1 tsp dried thyme*
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp marjoram, optional*
3 to 5 cups chicken or turkey broth

Melt the butter in a skillet; saute the onion, celery, parsley, and mushrooms. 

Place the bread cubes in a very large heat-proof bowl.  Pour the butter/vegetable mixture over the bread crumbs.  Add the poultry seasoning, salt, sage, thyme, pepper, and marjoram, if using; toss together well to blend in the seasonings.  Pour in enough broth to moisten to your desired amount of moisture.  Add the well-beaten eggs and mix very well.

Lightly spray the crockpot or slow cooker with nonstick cooking spray.  Pack the dressing into the cooker.  Place lid on cooker and cook on high for approximately 45 minutes.  Reduce the heat to low setting and cook for 4 to 8 hours.

*Omit if using packaged stuffing mix.


Monday, November 21, 2011

BEAN AND SALSA TURKEY CHILI

1 tbsp canola oil
1/2 lb ground turkey*
1 can (28-oz) diced tomatoes, undrained
1 jar (16-oz) chunky salsa
1 can (15-oz) black beans
1 can (15-oz) kidney beans
1 can (15-oz) chili beans
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp ground cumin
shredded cheddar cheese for topping

Heat canola oil in a medium skillet, add turkey and cook over medium-high heat until no longer pink.  This will probably take about 10 minutes.  Stir occasionally during the cooking process.

Transfer the turkey to a crockpot or slow cooker and add the tomatoes, salsa, black beans, kidney beans, chili beans, chili powder, and cumin.  Stir to blend well.

Place lid on cooker and cook on high setting 3 to 4 hours or on low setting approximately 6 hours.

To serve, ladle into individual bowls and top with cheddar cheese as desired.

*Be aware if buying the ground turkey (or chicken).  Read the label and be sure mixture does not contain skin which really ups the fat in the meat.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

EASY BEEF AND MUSHROOMS

2 lbs beef stew meat, cut into bite-size pieces
1 envelope dry onion soup mix
1 can (10 1/2-oz) cream of mushroom soup
1 can (4-oz) whole mushrooms, drained
1/2 cup red wine*, optional
*1/2 cup beef broth or water may be substituted

Combine all the ingredients in the slow cooker or crockpot.  Stir together well to mix.  Place lid on cooker and cook on low 8 to 10 hours. 

To serve; serve over hot cooked brown rice or buttered noodles.

Friday, November 18, 2011

DIABETIC SWEET POTATO CASSEROLE

This casserole uses Splenda for those who avoid sugar.  The other recipe (below this one) uses actual sugar and brown sugar.  This recipe is for diabetics or anyone who avoids sugar.

2 cans (18-oz each) sweet potatoes, drained & mashed
1/3 cup butter, melted
2 tbsp Splenda Granulated
1 tbsp Splenda Brown Sugar Blend
1 tbsp orange juice
2 large eggs, beaten
1/2 cup milk


In a large bowl, mix the sweet potatoes, butter, Splenda granulated, Splenda Brown Sugar Blend together.  Beat in the orange juice, eggs, and milk. 

Lighly spray the crock of the slow cooker or crockpot and transfer mixture to the cooker.

Topping:
2 tbsp + 2 tsp Splenda Brown Sugar Blend
1/3 cup chopped pecans
2 tbsp flour
2 tbsp butter, melted

Combine the Splenda, pecans, and flour.  Add the melted butter stirring until combined.  Spread topping over the sweet potato mixture.

Place lid on cooker and cook on high setting for 3 to 4 hours.

Serves 6

Thursday, November 17, 2011

GREAT NORTHERN BAKED BEANS

4 slices bacon, chopped
3 cans (15 to 16-oz each) Great Northern Beans
3/4 cup water
1 small onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 tbsp maple syrup
3 tbsp molasses
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp dry mustard
1/8 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 bay leaf
1/3 cup diced tomatoes

Toss the chopped bacon in a skillet and cook until almost done (do not fry to crispy), stirring occasionally. Drain bacon on paper toweling then place in slow cooker or crockpot.

Add the beans, water, onion, garlic, maple syrup, molasses, salt, dry mustard, pepper, bay leaf, and tomatoes.  Place lid on the cooker and cook on low approximately 8 hours. 

Be sure to remove bay leaf before serving.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

BEEF WITH CARROTS AND CABBAGE

1 1/2 lbs boneless beef chuck pot roast
1/2 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 tbsp canola oil
6 medium carrots, cut into 2 to 2 1/2-inch pieces
4 garlic cloves, minced
2/3 cup low-sodium beef broth
4 cups coarse shredded cabbage

Trim the fat from the beef. Combine the oregano, cumin, paprika, pepper and half the salt in a small bowl; sprinkle over the beef and gently rub in. 

Heat the canola oil in a large skillet and brown the meat over medium heat.

While meat browns, combine the carrots and garlic in the slow cooker and pour the broth over all.  Top with the browned meat.

Cover the cooker and cook on low setting for 7 to 8 hours or 4 hours on high setting.  At the end of this cooking time, be sure to have setting on high, add cabbage and replace cover.  Cook for 30 minutes until cabbage is tender.

Note:  The carb to protein ration for this dish is good for diabetics, too. 

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

VEGGIE MEAT LOAF

1 1/2 lbs ground beef
1 egg, beaten
1/4 cup milk
1 1/2 tsp salt
2 slices bread, crumbled
1/2 small onion, chopped
2 tbsp chopped green bell pepper
2 tbsp chopped celery
4-6 medium to large potatoes, quartered
1 to 2 tbsp butter, melted (enough to coat potatoes)
ketchup
2 or 3 bell pepper rings for garnish, if desired

Mix the egg, milk, salt, and bread crumbs; allow to soften.  Thoroughly combine the mixture ground beef, bell pepper, and onion.  Shape into a loaf and place in slow cooker or crockpot.   Melt the butter and toss potatoes to coat.  Arrange the potatoes around the meatloaf.  Top the meatloaf with ketchup and two or three bell pepper rings, if desired.  Cover and cook on high from 45 minutes to an hour.  Turn heat setting to low and cook for approximately 8 hours.

Monday, November 14, 2011

EASY PORK ROAST WITH APPLES

1 (approx 2 1/2 to 3-lb) pork loin boneless roast
1/2 tsp dried sage
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp freshly grated black pepper
1 jar (12-oz) pork gravy
4 Gala (or your choice of cooking apple) apples

In a cup mix the sage, garlic, salt and pepper together to make a rub.  Rub over the surface of the roast. 

Pour the gravy over the bottom of the cooker.  Core and coarsely chop 2 of the apples but do not peel.  Stir chopped apples into the gravy.

Place the pork over the apple/gravy mixture.  Place lid on cooker and cook on the low setting 5 to 7 hours. 

Core the remaining two apples and cut each unpeeled apple into 8 wedges; add to the cooker, around the pork, for the last hour of the cooking time.

Remove the pork along with the apple wedges and let stand.  Remove the apple pieces from the gravy, using a slotted spoon, place in food processor and puree.  Add a cup of the cooking liquid to the apple puree and warm the mixture.

Slice the pork and serve with the apple wedges and gravy.

Yield: 8 servings

Sunday, November 13, 2011

GROUND BEEF-VEGGIE CASSEROLE

1 1/2 lbs lean ground beef, lightly browned and drained
2 large potatoes, sliced
3 carrots, sliced
1 pkg (10-oz) frozen peas, partially thawed
3 medium onions, sliced
2 stalks of celery sliced
1 can (approx 10-oz) tomato soup
1 soup can of water
Salt
Pepper

In the crockpot or slow cooker layer the potatoes, carrots, peas, onions and celery, in that order.  Lightly season each layer with salt and pepper as desired.  Layer the browned beef over the celery.  In a bowl, mix the soup and water together with a whisk until smooth.  Pour the soup mixture over the ground beef.  Place the lid on the cooker and cook on low setting 6 to 8 hours or on the high setting 3 to 4 hours.  Stir occasionally.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

HAM AND LIMA BEANS

1 lb dry lima beans (soaked overnight in water)
1 large onion, chopped
1 large green bell pepper, finely chopped
1 tsp dry mustard
1 tsp salt
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/2 lb cubed cooked ham
1 cup water
1 can tomato soup

Drain the beans and place in the crockpot or slowcooker.  Add the remaining ingredients and stir together to mix well.  Place lid on cooker and cook on low setting 8 to 10 hours or on high setting 4 to 5 hours.

May I suggest serving these beans with a piece of hot buttered cornbread?  Yummy!

Friday, November 11, 2011

SOUTHERN BLACK-EYED PEAS

1 lb dried black-eyed peas (soak overnight covered in water)
4 cups water
2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground black peppr
1 large yellow onion, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
2 ham hocks

Drain the soaked black-eyed peas and place in the crockpot or slow cooker.  Top the beans with the ham hocks.  Cover with the water and add the salt, pepper, onion, and celery.  Place the lid on the cooker and cook on high 1 to 2 hours then lower heat to low and cook for 8 hours. 

NOTE: Delicous served with hot (brown for health reasons) rice and cornbread!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

TASTY HOT MULLED CIDER

1/2 gallon apple cider
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp balsamic or cider vinegar
1 tsp vanilla
1 cinnamon stick
6 whole cloves

Combine all the ingredients in your crockpot or slowcooker.  Cover and set on low.  Cook 5 to 6 hours.  Discard cinnamon stick and cloves.  Serve in hot mugs.

Yield: 16 servings

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

CRANBERRY ROAST

1 rump roast (3 to 5 lbs)
1 pkg dry onion soup mix
1/3 cup water
1 can jellied cranberry sauce
2 tbsp softened butter
2 tbsp all-purpose flour

Sprinkle the onion soup mix in the bottom of crockpot or slow cooker; pour the water over the soup mix.  Stir the mixture to blend.  Place the roast in the cooker over the soup mixture.  Spoon the cranberry sauce around and over the roast. 

Place the cover on the cooker and cook on low for 10 to 12 hours.  Remove the roast from the cooker to rest.

Blend the softened butter and flour together.  Whisk the mixture into the juices in the cooker.  Replace lid and cook on high heat for 10 minutes.

Slice the roast and serve sauce over the beef.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

CHEESY CROCKPOT POTATOES

1 small carton sour cream
2 cans Cheddar cheese soup
1 tsp dried onion flakes
1 stick unsalted butter
8 medium potatoes, parboiled until just tender

Drain the potatoes and place in crockpot (or slow cooker).

Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium low heat.  Stir the sour cream and the cheese soup, undiluted, into the butter until well blended.  Pour cheese mixture over the potatoes, cover, and cook on low for at least an hour.  Yummy!

Monday, November 7, 2011

MEXICAN BEEF STEW

1 to 1 1/2 lb round steak, fat removed and cut into cubes
2 tsp canola oil
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp cumin
1 1/2 tbsp chili powder
1 1/2 cups beef broth
1 can (approx 1 lb) hominy
1 can 14.5-oz) Mexican-style diced tomatoes
2 large carrots, sliced into 1/2-inch rounds
1 large red or green bell pepper, diced
1 yellow onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup water

In a medium bowl combine the salt, cumin, and chili powder.  Add the cubed beef to the mixture and toss to coat.

Heat the canola oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat; add the beef cubes and cook, turning to cook both sides, until lightly browned.  Remove meat from the skillet to a slow cooker or crockpot.

Add the beef broth to the skillet; bring to a boil at medium heat, scraping browned bits from the skillet.  Pour the broth into the cooker over the beef.  Stir the hominy, tomatoes, bell pepper, carrots, onion, garlic, and water into the cooker.  Cover the cooker and cook 4 to 6 hours on high or 8-12 hours on low until the beef is tender. 

Saturday, November 5, 2011

SLOW COOKED CHICKEN CACCIATORE

4 - 4 1/2 lbs chicken pieces, skin removed
1/4 cup flour
1 tbsp olive oil
2 cups thinly sliced fresh mushroom
1 large green bell pepper, chopped
1 large onion,  chopped
1 carrot, peeled and chopped
2 cups Italian-style canned diced tomatoes
1 tsp Italian seasoning
2 tbsp chopped fresh basil
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/4 tsp salt

Using paper towels, pat chicken dry.  Place flour in a pie plate and coat chicken pieces shaking off the excess flour.

Heat the oil in a large frying pan and cook chicken over medium-high meat until browned, about 6 minutes on each side.  Remove the chicken from the skillet and place in the slowcooker (or crockpot).

Place the mushrooms in the skillet and cook for approximately 5 minutes.  Add the mushrooms to the chicken in the cooker.  Add the bell pepper, onion, carrot, diced tomatoes, basil, pepper, and salt. 

Place the lid on the cooker and cook on the high setting for 3 1/2 hours or the low setting for 5 to 6 hours.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

SPICY BRISKET

2 tbsp chili powder
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 1/2 lbs beef brisket, trimmed
3 tsp canola oil
2 large onions, thinly sliced
1 cup catsup
1/2 cup bottled chili sauce
1/4 cup molasses*
2 tbsp strong brewed coffee
1/2 tsp hot pepper sauce

Spray a broiler pan with nonstick cooking spray and preheat broiler.

In a cup, mix the chili powder, salt, pepper, and garlic powder.  Rub this mix onto the brisket and place brisket on the broiler rack.  Drizzle 1 tablespoon of the canola oil over the top of the brisket.  Broil 5-inches from the heat for about 5 minutes per side to brown.

While brisket is browning, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of canola oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat.  Add the onions and cook, stirring frequently, just until golden.  Stir in the catsup, chili sauce, molasses, coffee, and hot pepper sauce.

Spread half of the sauce over the bottom of the cooker; top sauce with the brisket.  Top brisket with the remaining half of the sauce.  Cover cooker and cook on low setting for around 8 hours or until meat is tender.

To serve, transfer the brisket to a cutting board and cut across the grain into about 18 slices.  Skim the fat from the sauce and serve with the brisket.

Yield: 6 servings

*You may substitute brown sugar if you do not have molasses.
This brisket makes yummy sandwiches.  May I suggest whole-wheat buns?
Note: File Photo

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

REHEATING LEFTOVERS IN A CROCKPOT OR SLOW COOKER

Slow cookers/crockpots can keep food warm up to 2 hours after turning off.  But if you are planning to reheat food that has been refrigerated, these cookers are not recommended.  This is a safety issue as it takes the cookers too long to reach a safe temperature.  Reheat on stovetop or in microwave and then transfer to the cooker to keep if desired.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

ITALIAN WEDDING SOUP

1 large egg, lightly beaten
3/4 lb lean ground beef
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
3 tbsp plain bread crumbs
3 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese
2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
3/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
8 cups low-sodium chicken broth
3 large carrots, chopped
8-oz head escarole, washed, trimmed, cut into 1/2-inch strips
1 1/2 tsp oregano
1 1/2 cups tiny pasta

In a large bowl stir together the egg, ground beef, onion, bread crumbs, 1 tablespoon of the Parmesan cheese, half the parsley, 1/4 tsp of the salt and 1/4 tsp of the pepper.  Form into about 45 1-inch meatballs and place on a baking sheet.  Refrigerate meatballs while preparing the soup.

Combine the broth, carrots, escarole, and oregano in the crockpot or slowcooker.  Gently add the meatballs; place lid on cooker.  Cook on low setting for 6 hours.  Stir in the pasta for the last 20 minutes of the cooking time.  Stir in the remaining salt and pepper.

To serve, sprinkle each bowl with a portion of the remaining parsley and Parmesan cheese.

Yield: 8 servings
Note: This is a good recipe for diabetics as it has a ratio of 12 grams of protein to 25 grams of carbohydrates per serving.