Slow Cooker Zucchini Crisp

I was introduced to zucchini pie last summer and instantly loved it. It takes just like apple pie – you’d never know you were eating veggies! While I love pie, I always default to crisps in the summer because they’re easier than dealing with pie crust and you can make it in the slow cooker so no heating up the house! It was a summer goal to perfect a zucchini crisp and I’m so excited to share the results today!

If you have a garden overflowing with zucchini, this is such a fun way to use it up! It really does taste like an apple crisp!

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Grinders in the Slow Cooker

How’s your pandemic cooking fatigue? Yes, it’s a real thing. Chances are even if you dove into cooking projects with gusto back in March, it’s not bringing the same joy.

You know what? It’s okay. It’s okay to dial back. It’s okay to ask to share the load. It’s okay to take the easiest option.

I found myself burning out hard a little more than a month ago, so I made a conscious effort to switch up my meal planning. After I pick our meals for the week, I sit with the list and go though asking – what can I do to make this easier? In many cases, that means putting off new blog experiments for things I know will work.

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Slow Cooker Italian Sandwiches

How’s life lately? I mean really – are you hanging on?

I’m hearing from so many friends that they’re overwhelmed. There are so many balls in the air that things like dinner just get pushed to the back burner. They want to make dinner but they can’t handle more work.

This is a great meal for those nights.

Hot sandwiches make a great, easy dinner. These are individually wrapped – making them easily customizable for each family member – and warmed in the slow cooker – which makes the cook time flexible.

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Slow Cooker Cheesesteaks

Have you ever had a Philly cheesesteak? I’m not talking about something homemade or the one at the closest sandwich shop – I mean a real Philly cheesesteak from a real cheesesteak place in Philadelphia.

Slow Cooker Cheesesteaks 1

I was introduced to them during my first few weeks of college. The biggest surprise? Cheez Whiz.

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Vegan Slow Cooker Chickpea Noodle Soup

This post is sponsored in conjunction with#NationalSlowCookerMonth . I received complimentary product from sponsor companies to aid in the creation of the #NationalSlowCookerMonth recipes. All opinions are mine alone.

On busy days, my slow cooker is pretty much my best friend. I love being able to set it up, walk away for the day, and have a hot meal ready when we’re walking in the door at dinner time.

Chickpea Noodle Soup 2

And is there anything more comforting than a hot bowl of soup? And this is comfort food you can feel good about – this plant-based meal is full of veggies!

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Slow Cooker Pepperoni Pizza Soup

Happy National Soup Swap Day! It’s seriously one of my favorite days of the year.

I mean, really, what is better than getting together with your friends on a chilly January Saturday and eating lots of soup?

pepperoni pizza soup 3

This Slow Cooker Pepperoni Pizza Soup is my contribution to this year’s soup swap. Since it’s essentially pizza in a bowl, it’s a crowd pleaser – and especially a hit with the kids.

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Slow Cooker Vegetable Stew

This vegetable stew is what we made for Family Dinner Book Club last month, and it’s such a great option for Lenten Fridays. It’s a dump and go slow cooker meal – perfect for the end of the week.

I honestly wasn’t sure how this would be received by the kids since it really is just a big bowl of vegetables – but I was pleasantly surprised that they were happy with it. You could easily switch up the veggies to fit your family’s tastes – or add chicken or pasta.

Vegetable Stew

Slow Cooker Vegetable Stew
(adapted from Chef Sarah Elizabeth)
Serves 6-8

3 red potatoes, diced
3 carrots, peeled and diced
3 celery stalks, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 small yellow onion, diced
1 cup cut green beans
1 tsp. oregano
1 tsp. paprika
1 bay leaf
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
8 cups low sodium vegetable broth
2 cups water
1 lemon, for the juice

 

Add everything, except lemon, to the slow cooker and cook on low for 4-6 hours, until potatoes are easily cut with a fork. Stir in juice of the lemon and serve.

Vegetable Stew

Candied Spiced Nuts #improvcooking

Even though it’s October (and the weather is still feeling like August…), I’m starting to think about Thanksgiving. I know, I know, but I get to host this year and I’m pumped! We’re not sure if we’ll have a big crowd or just the four of us, so I’ve got several menus floating around in my head.

I knew this month’s Improv Challenge theme, Sugar and Spice,  was perfect for trying out some of the recipes I’m considering. Sugar and spice is SO fall – apple spice, pumpkin spice – but I couldn’t get these nuts off my mind, so they won out.

This is such an easy recipe – the slow cooker makes it totally hands off. Just mix, let the slow cooker do it’s thing, then spread them out to cool. They were so good – and a perfect pre-Thanksgiving dinner snack!

CandiedSpicedNuts

Candied Spiced Nuts
(adapted from Crunchy, Creamy, Sweet)
Makes 3 1/2 cups

1 1/2 cups almonds
2 cups pecans
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup white sugar
2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 cup water
1/4 tsp. ginger
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1/8 tsp. cloves

Grease the crock of a slow cooker and add the nuts. Add the sugars and cinnamon and stir. Add the water and stir until everything is evenly combined and wet.

Cook on high for 3 hours.

Remove nuts to a parchment-lined baking sheet to cool. Sprinkle with remaining  seasonings. Once fully cooled, store in an airtight container.

You can check out the other Sugar and Spice themed recipes that bloggers made here:

Slow Cooker BBQ Chicken Sliders with Dill Pickle Slaw #Crocktober

Fall always seems like the perfect time for slow cooker recipes. It seems like we’re squeezing more and more into these shortening days, and being able to have a warm meal minutes within walking through the door is both convenient and comforting.

Today, I’m linking up with a few other bloggers for #Crocktober! You can check out their perfect-for-fall meals here:

 

BBQ chicken in the slow cooker is nothing new – but a few extra steps and this makes a really special meal. After you pull the chicken, it gets added to slider rolls, covered in glaze, and baked. A quick pickle slaw tops it off.

My pickle-loving crew loved this – a perfect little meal for a busy night or a perfect tailgate dish!

DillPickleSliders

Slow Cooker BBQ Chicken Sliders with Dill Pickle Slaw
(slightly adapted from Southern Bite)
Makes 12 sliders

2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 cup barbecue sauce
12 sweet Hawaiian rolls
6 Tbsp. butter, melted
1 tsp. barbecue seasoning
1 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 Tbsp. brown sugar
1 tsp. yellow mustard
1/2 head cabbage, thinly sliced
1/2 cup finely chopped dill pickles
1/3 cup mayonnaise
3 Tbsp. pickle juice
1 tsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. garlic powder

Add the chicken to the slow cooker and cover with barbecue sauce. Turn to coat. Cook on low for 4 hours. Remove chicken and shred.

Preheat the oven for 350 and spray a baking dish with nonstick spray.

Leaving the rolls together, cut in half. Place the bottom half in the greased pan. Top with chicken. Add the top half of the rolls.

In a small bowl, whisk together the melted butter, barbecue seasoning, Worcestershire, brown sugar, and yellow mustard. Brush evenly over all of the sliders.

Bake for 15-20 minutes.

Meanwhile, whisk together the mayonnaise, pickle juice, sugar, salt, and garlic powder.

Toss the cabbage and chopped dill pickle with enough of the dressing to coat. Refrigerate until serving.

When the sliders are done, serve with the dill pickle slaw.

Slow Cooker Cocktail Meatballs

There’s nothing new about cocktail meatballs. I’m sure you’ve had them a million times. But I wanted to share this recipe today because it’s a great, easy option for your Super Bowl party.

This version uses the slow cooker – it’s a mix-it-up-and-forget-it dish that’s always a crowd pleaser.  Use a slow cooker liner for even easier clean up!

CocktailMeatballs

Slow Cooker Cocktail Meatballs
(from Cincy Shopper)
Serves 10-12 as an appetizer

12 oz. chili sauce
1 1/2 cups ketchup
1 1/2 cups grape jelly
1 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp. Tabasco sauce
1 tsp. onion powder
1 tsp. garlic powder
3 lbs. frozen meatballs

Add all ingredients, except meatballs, to the slow cooker and whisk to combine. Stir in meatballs. Cook on low for 8 hours or on high for 4 hours.