Set it and forget it
Slow cookers are not new, but it may have been awhile since you used yours.
Slow cookers are quite versatile and come in a variety of sizes that can accommodate any size family. You can prepare anything from appetizers to main dishes to desserts in a slow cooker. They are also budget friendly, as you can use less expensive cuts of meat and they will tenderize during the cooking process. Dried beans cook nicely as a less expensive protein source.
Slow cookers are great tools for prepping healthy dinners as you can literally throw all the ingredients in the pot, set it, and your meal is ready at the end of the day. They are also great during the hot summer months when you don't want to heat up the house with the oven or stove.
The following tips can help you to dust off your crock pot and start slow cooking again!
- One hour on high equals about two to two and a half hours on low.
- Filling your slow cooker more than half full will give the best result.
- To get the best flavor you may want to brown meat before placing it in the cooker.
- Leave the lid on. It can take up to 15-20 minutes for the cooker to regain lost steam and get back to temperature.
- When cooking meats and vegetables together, place the vegetables on the bottom to retain moisture.
- If your recipe calls for cooked noodles, cook them until just slightly tender before adding to the cooker.
- Always defrost meat before placing in the slow cooker. Using frozen meats adds to the cooking time.
- Trim off visible fat from the meat to avoid greasy gravy.
- Be careful not to add too much liquid as liquids don't boil down.
- Cut up vegetable and meats in uniform pieces for the best result.