44 Slow-Cooker Recipes That Make Cooking Dinner Suspiciously Easy

Crockpot vegetable soup

 Food Faith Fitness

Slow cookers and pressure cookers aren't going out of style anytime soon. The once-clichéd wedding offering is now trendier than ever, and it's easy to see why. With the help of this smart kitchen technology, you can have a warm, filling meal on the table with minimal time spent in the kitchen—but surely you already know that. The real treat is the variety of seriously easy (and delicious) meals that you can whip up with this kitchen gadget.

If you're a fan of slow cooking, you know that the possibilities of what these nifty machines can do are seemingly endless. Perhaps you grew up watching your parents prepare basics like pulled pork in the strange device, but now home chefs are using crockpots to create whatever their hearts' desire. Creamy soup? Of course. Pork carnitas? Absolutely. Spaghetti and meatballs? Why not? It seems as though anything you could ever want to eat for dinner can be prepared and cooked in a crockpot, freeing up your time to be spent however you like. 

Instead of manning multiple pans over a hot stove while the main course bakes in the oven, toss your ingredients in the slow cooker and relax. Pick up a book, take a bath, or go about your daily errands while dinner all but cooks itself. To get you started, here are 44 slow cooker dinners that make cooking almost too easy.

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Creamy Wild Rice Soup with Butter Roasted Mushrooms

Creamy Wild Rice Soup with Butter Roasted Mushrooms

Half Baked Harvest

 

Half Baked Harvest's recipe for slow cooker creamy wild rice soup is so much more satisfying than your typical premade fare. Toss rice, broth, white wine, and veggies in the slow cooker along with seasoning, then add parmesan cheese and milk to the mixture during the last 30 minutes of cooking. Top your dish with roasted mushrooms from the oven, and dinner is served.

Pro Tip: If you reheat this soup the following day, you might need to add some broth—this soup thickens as it sits.

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 6 hours

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Tuscan White Bean and Sausage Soup

Slow Cooker Tuscan White Bean and Sausage Soup

FoodieCrush

 

This slow cooker Tuscan white bean and sausage soup from Foodie Crush promises easy cleanup and prep (in other words, it's the perfect weeknight dinner). The Italian dish calls for Great Northern beans, chicken broth, carrots, celery, Italian sausage, baby kale leaves, tomato paste, and more veggies and seasoning. Just toss the fresh ingredients in a slow cooker and wait, adding the sausage meatballs just before the soup is finished cooking.

Pro Tip: Ground beef, ground turkey, or chicken can be substituted for the sausage.

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 8 hours 20 minutes

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Chorizo Kale Soup

Slow Cooker Chorizo Kale Soup

 Boulder Locavore

For the uninitiated, chorizo is type of spicy sausage—and it imparts a serious kick to the Boulder Locavore's recipe for slow cooker chorizo kale soup. Ground chorizo is browned in a skillet, then added to a slow cooker with ham hocks (or bones), hominy, chopped celery and carrots, diced tomatoes, curly leafed kale, and a few other savory ingredients. The result is a hearty, flavorful stew that practically begs to be crowned with a sprinkle of freshly grated parmesan.

Pro Tip: You can buy ham hocks or bones at grocery stores and butcher shops year-round.

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 7 hours

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Korean Beef Stew

Korean Beef Stew

Food Faith Fitness

 

Mix things up with Food Faith Fitness's gluten- and sugar-free slow cooker Korean beef stew (oh, and it's also Whole30- and Paleo-friendly). Traditional Asian flavors like ginger, garlic, and sesame oil combine in this dish to create a seriously yummy slow cooker dinner. Aside from browning the beef and preparing hard-boiled eggs, the entire meal is made right in your slow cooker.

Pro Tip: Use tapioca starch or cornstarch to thicken the stew.

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 8 hours

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Vegan Crockpot Chili

Vegan crockpot chili

 A Couple Cooks

With its earthy portabella mushrooms and zesty chili powder, this protein-packed slow cooker vegan chili recipe from A Couple Cooks has an appeal that transcends dietary restrictions. Served as is, the chili is vegan and gluten free, but it can be easily customized for other diners through the addition of garnishes like sour cream, beef crumbles, shredded cheese, or all of the above. Better yet, the recipe calls for a limited list of ingredients, all of which are readily found—think dried black beans, crushed tomatoes, baby portabella mushrooms, veggie broth, onions, and chili powder.

Pro Tip: Pop any leftover chili in the freezer for a quick meal on a busy weeknight.

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 10 hours

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Vegetable Soup

asy Homemade Crockpot Vegetable Soup

 Food Faith Fitness

The secret ingredient in Food Faith Fitness's recipe for easy homemade crock pot vegetable soup? Garlic that's roasted right in the slow cooker. According to the recipe's developer, Taylor Kiser, the garlic brings depth and complexity to a dish that's otherwise straightforward, ingredients-wise. To make the light, fragrant soup, simply combine veggie or chicken broth with veggies, spices, and a whole bulb of garlic (wrapped in foil), then allow to cook up to five hours, or until the vegetables are fork tender.

Pro Tip: If you have any garlic left over, Tiser recommends spreading it onto avocado toast.

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 5 hours

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Potato and Cauliflower Curry

slow cooker potato and cauliflower curry

Half Baked Harvest

 

If you're looking for an easy, healthy slow cooker dinner recipe, Half Baked Harvest's recipe for slow cooker potato and cauliflower curry is for you. It's a sweet and spicy vegan dish full of yummy vegetables and tasty ingredients, like potatoes, cauliflower, spinach, pomegranate molasses, cinnamon, Thai red curry, and tart pomegranate seeds. Serve the curry with fresh naan and a scoop of rice to complete the meal.

Pro tip: Kale can be used in place of the spinach.

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 5 hours

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Swimming Rama

Slow Cooker Swimming Rama

The Modern Proper

 

Why order Thai takeout when you can make The Modern Proper's slow cooker swimming rama at home? It's a dish commonly found in American Thai restaurants that includes chicken or tofu topped in a flavorful peanut sauce and served over spinach. Prepare this recipe by whipping up a coconut-peanut-red-curry sauce and combining it with chicken in a slow cooker, then cook on low for up to four hours. Either add spinach to the mixture when it's almost done cooking, or serve the dish with raw leaves for a contrast in texture.

Pro Tip: If you're using peanut butter with added sugar in its ingredients list, skip the brown sugar when making the curry sauce.

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 3 hours

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Easy Three-Ingredient Pork Carnitas

easy dinner slow cooker recipes

I Am a Food Blog

While many recipes claim to be simple and straightforward, they don't always turn out that way. This recipe for three-ingredient slow cooker pork carnitas by I Am a Food Blog, however, follows through on the promise. Requiring only pork, pork fat, and salt, the recipe is as simple as tossing the trio of ingredients into a slow cooker, cooking until the meat is tender, then browning the pork in a skillet. Stuff the meat into burritos and tacos, or use it as a topping for nachos.

Pro Tip: You can typically buy pork fat at a butcher shop.

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 4 hours 15 minutes

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Spaghetti and Meatballs

Slow Cooker Spaghetti and Meatballs

 Creme de la Crumb

While Nonna may not approve of making such a traditional dish in the crock pot, this slow cooker spaghetti and meatball recipe by Creme de la Crumb makes preparing dinner so much easier. Simply spend a few minutes forming the meatballs, then combine with marinara sauce and seasonings in the slow cooker. When the meatballs are cooked to perfection, add in the noodles and cook until they're perfectly al dente. 

Pro Tip: Add your noodles to the slow cooker 15–20 minutes before you're ready to eat, then cook on high until they're soft (but not too soft).

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 4 hours

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Four Cheese Macaroni

Slow Cooker Four Cheese Macaroni and Cheese

 Creme de la Crumb

No easy-dinner repertoire would be complete without a recipe for comfort food. This slow cooker macaroni and cheese recipe by Creme de la Crumb calls for four different kinds of cheese (cheddar, Havarti, gruyere, and cream cheese), plus two different kinds of milk (standard and evaporated) to create a seriously rich and decadent dish. Ground mustard, garlic powder, and salt help cut the creaminess and give the finished product a little zip.

Pro Tip: Before serving, sprinkle the mac and cheese with bread crumbs, then place it under the broiler for a delicious contrast in texture.

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour 45 minutes

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Vegetable Lasagna

Crockpot Vegetable Lasagna

 The Modern Proper

Alternating layers of fresh veggies, ricotta cheese, mozzarella, and noodles take center stage in The Modern Proper's recipe for crock pot vegetable lasagna. Each bite is packed with just-like-Mom-used-to-make flavors, but this lasagna doesn't require that you spend all day in the kitchen. No-boil lasagna noodles are tossed right into the slow cooker, and you can even use pre-shredded mozzarella and pre-cut vegetables to cut down even further on cooking time.

Pro Tip: Before cooking the lasagna, wrap the lid of your slow cooker in a towel. "The towel will help wick away moisture as the lasagna cooks and your cheese won’t get soggy," notes the recipe's developers, Holly Erickson and Natalie Mortimer.

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 3 hours

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Pineapple Pulled Pork Sandwich

Slow Cooker Pineapple Pulled Pork Sandwich

 The Modern Proper

This slow cooker pineapple pulled pork sandwich recipe by The Modern Proper will quickly become a weeknight go-to. It's a super-easy dish that's bursting with flavors. Prepare the pork, pineapple, and seasonings in the slow cooker, then shred the meat when it becomes tender. Whip up some caramelized pineapples on the stove to top the meat and serve on a sweet Hawaiian bun.

Pro Tip: Use canned, crushed pineapple instead of fresh for the pulled pork mixture. The acid in the pineapple helps tenderize the pork as it simmers in the slow cooker.

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 4 hours 

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Carne Asada With Oven Baked Fries

Carne Asada With Oven Baked Fries

 Boulder Locavore

What could make French fries even better? Topping them with piping-hot carne asada, of course. That's the gist of Boulder Locavore's recipe for slow cooker carne asada with oven-baked fries. Here, made-from-scratch fries (cut thick, just the way we like them) are baked fresh, then piled high with slow-cooker carne asada (a.k.a. shredded flank steak), salsa, and fresh cilantro leaves.

Pro Tip: This recipe is suitable for gluten-free diners.

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 8 hours

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Balsamic Chicken

Slow Cooker Balsamic Chicken

 FoodieCrush

This slow cooker balsamic chicken by Foodie Crush makes for a weeknight dinner treat, but it's also gourmet enough to serve for a special occasion. Start by lightly pan-frying chicken thighs on the stove before layering them in the bowl of a slow cooker with onions, mushrooms, seasonings, and ingredients for the balsamic sauce. Serve with rice or a side of your choice to finish the meal.

Pro Tip: After the chicken is done cooking, remove the chicken and the veggies from the slow cooker, and create an intensely flavorful reduction from the remaining balsamic sauce.

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 3 hours

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Asian Lettuce Wraps

Asian crockpot lettuce cups

 Food Faith Fitness

Not only are Food Faith Fitness's slow cooker Asian chicken lettuce wraps low in carbs and high in protein, they only take two hours to make, including prep time. One pound of ground chicken is sauteed in a frying pan, then added to a slow cooker along with riced cauliflower, diced red peppers, creamy peanut butter, minced fresh ginger, and a few other ingredients. After 1.5–2 hours, the mixture should be fully cooked and ready to be spooned into lettuce leaves for a plate- and utensil-free meal.

Pro Tip: Use butter lettuce or iceberg lettuce for serving.

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 2 hours

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Chicken Cacciatore

Chicken Cacciatore

FoodieCrush

Adapted from the cookbook Skinnytaste: Fast and Slow, this recipe for slow-cooker chicken cacciatore by Foodie Crush relies on bone-in chicken thighs to infuse the tomato-y sauce with added savoriness while ensuring the chicken meat is extra juicy. Amplifying the dish's flavors even further, the chicken, onion, and garlic are browned in a skillet before joining the rest of the ingredients (tomatoes, bell peppers, mushrooms, thyme, and bay leaves) in the slow cooker.

Pro Tip: Serve the chicken atop pasta, polenta, or squash.

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 4 hours

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Cider Braised Short Ribs With Sage Butter Mashed Potatoes

Cider Braised Short Ribs with Sage Butter Mashed Potatoes

Half Baked Harvest

 

Yet to experiment with apples in savory applications? Start with Half Baked Harvest's recipe for slow cooker cider-braised short ribs with sage butter mashed potatoes. Here, two chopped Honeycrisp apples provide just enough sweetness to contrast the savory flavors of short ribs and sage-butter mashed potatoes. Apple cider has a starring role, too—it lends its brightness and acidity to the ribs as they simmer in the slow cooker alongside onions, garlic, cremini mushrooms, and thyme.

Pro Tip: For better flavor and texture, sear the ribs in a heavy-bottom skillet before adding the meat to your slow cooker.

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 6 hours

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Philly Cheesesteaks

Crockpot Philly Cheesesteaks

Half Baked Harvest

When you can't make it to the City of Brotherly Love for the real deal, keep Half Baked Harvest's recipe for crock pot Philly cheesesteaks in mind. Thinly sliced sirloin steak or skirt steak joins onions, mushrooms, bell peppers, beef broth, brown sugar, and Worcestershire sauce in a slow cooker until the meat is cooked and the flavors marry. Then comes the fun part: Loading up the hoagie rolls with the steak mixture and thick slices of provolone cheese, then popping the cheesesteak into the oven until the cheese is melted.

Pro Tip: To keep the rolls nice and soft, wrap the cheesesteaks in foil before placing them in the oven.

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 6 hours

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Beef Bourguignon

Slow Cooker Beef Bourguignon Recipe

Joyful Healthy Eats

Hailing from the Burgundy region of France (and made famous by Julia Child), beef bourguignon is a hearty stew that centers around beef that's been simmered in red wine. In Joyful Healthy Eats's slow cooker beef bourguignon recipe, the classic French dish gets a modern update as it cooks in the slow cooker instead of the oven. Still, the ingredients are more or less the same (including pearl onions, chopped carrots, and a bold red vino), leaving you with all the flavors of the original.

Pro Tip: When selecting the wine to use for the dish, opt for a bottle that you'd also enjoy by the glass.

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 8 hours

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Thai Chili Peanut Meatballs

Slow Cooker Thai Chile Peanut Meatballs

Melanie Makes

This recipe for slow cooker Thai chili peanut meatballs by Melanie Makes makes use of premade meatballs for a seriously fast and easy dinner. Empty a package of frozen turkey meatballs into the slow cooker, then add peanut butter, coconut milk, red chili paste, fish sauce, and sugar. After stirring to combine, cook on high for 2–4 hours or low for 4–6 hours. Spoon the meatballs over a bed of rice, then garnish with peanuts, fresh parsley, and red pepper flakes.

Pro Tip: Serve the meatballs with riced cauliflower to keep the meal low-carb.

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 2 hours

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Vegan Sweet Potato Soup

Healthy Vegan Sweet Potato Soup Slow Cooker

Food Faith Fitness

A warming alternative to cold salads, this recipe for slow cooker vegan sweet potato soup by Food Faith Fitness packs nutrient-rich fruits and veggies into each creamy spoonful. Start by chopping sweet potatoes and apples, then add them to a slow cooker along with veggie broth, creamy peanut butter, fresh ginger, and spices. After cooking, puree the soup in a blender with coconut milk and maple syrup, then serve with apple noodles and cumin-toasted almonds.

Pro Tip: No need to peel the apples before adding them to the slow cooker; the peels deliver added vitamins and minerals.

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 3 hours

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Lemon Chicken

Slow Cooker Lemon Chicken

 Melanie Makes

This slow cooker lemon chicken by Melanie Makes was designed with busy weeknights in mind, but the recipe has an added perk: Any leftover chicken can help make planning lunch easier, too—just add it to a salad, sandwich, or a wrap. To make the (seriously simple) recipe, nestle three skinless chicken breasts into a slow cooker, then add butter, the juice of two lemons, and the contents of one pouch of Italian salad dressing mix.

Pro Tip: Serve the chicken with couscous or over a bed of arugula.

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 4 hours

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Butter Chicken

Slow Cooker Butter Chicken

The Modern Proper

Swimming in a creamy, tomato-y curry sauce, juicy chunks of chicken pack the protein into The Modern Proper's recipe for slow cooker butter chicken. This recipe subs a slow cooker in lieu of a tandoori and calls for easily accessible ingredients such as heavy cream, butter, fresh ginger, tomato paste, and spices. The result is a plateful of delicious Indian fare best served with basmati rice and naan.

Pro Tip: Coconut milk and coconut oil can be used in place of the cream and butter to make this recipe dairy free.

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 4 hours

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Pulled Pork Banh Mi Bowls

Slow Cooker Pulled Pork Banh Mi Bowls

Root and Revel

 

Root and Revel's recipe for slow cooker pulled pork banh mi bowls has all the flavors and texture of the traditional Vietnamese sandwich—without the bread. Pork shoulder is placed in a slow cooker, then doused in a bright and tangy Asian-inspired marinade. Once cooked, the pork is shredded, then broiled in the oven for crispiness. Spoon the pork over a bowl of black rice, then top the shredded meat with pickled veggies and fresh herbs.

Pro Tip: Use brown or white rice if black is unavailable.

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 8 hours

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Easy Turkey Chili

Slow Cooker Turkey Chili

 Sugar & Cloth

Lower in fat than beef chili, Sugar and Cloth's recipe for slow cooker turkey chili satisfies a craving for comfort food without sabotaging a healthy meal plan. Ground turkey, onion, bell pepper, and corn are sauteed in a saucepan until cooked and softened, then added to a slow cooker along with the rest of the chili's ingredients: tomato sauce, canned tomatoes, kidney beans, and spices. Top the chili with shredded cheddar cheese, sour cream, and slices of avocado.

Pro Tip: This recipe can also be prepared on the stovetop or in an Instant Pot.

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 3 hours

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Bacon Cheeseburger Sloppy Joes

Slow Cooker Bacon Cheeseburger Sloppy Joes

The Cookie Rookie 

A true crowd pleaser, The Cookie Rookie's recipe for slow cooker bacon cheeseburger sloppy joes is designed to feed a large group (picky eaters included). Better yet, the recipe is a cinch to make. Simply add cooked beef to a slow cooker along with Velveeta cheese, onion, bacon crumbles, salt, and pepper. Once the mixture is cooked through (between two and six hours, depending on your heat setting), spoon the beef onto hamburger buns and top with your favorite condiments.

Pro Tip: Further proof that this recipe is the perfect game-day food? You can set your slow cooker to "warm," and have your guests serve themselves straight from the pot.

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 2 hours

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Jambalaya

Slow Cooker Jambalaya

Creme de la Crumb

In the mood for a meal that's hearty, comforting, and has a little kick? Creme de la Crumb's recipe for slow cooker jambalaya fits the bill. Here, the classic New Orleans dish is reinvented for the slow cooker while retaining all of the savory flavors that jambalaya's known for. From the andouille sausage and chopped chicken to the Cajun seasoning and jalapeno peppers, the entire line-up of ingredients (with the exception of the shrimp and rice) is added to the slow cooker at the same time—cutting down on minutes spent in the kitchen.

Pro Tip: For jambalaya that really brings the heat, throw in an extra jalapeno.

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 6 hours

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Shrimp Boil

Slow Cooker Shrimp Boil

Damn Delicious 

Craving that Southern shrimp boil experience? Spread out some newspaper, crack open a few beers, and plug in your six- or eight-quart slow cooker to make Damn Delicious's slow cooker shrimp boil recipe. Small red potatoes, onion wedges, and garlic simmer in a homemade broth made from Old Bay seasoning, hot sauce, lemon juice, and water. After four hours, andouille sausage, fresh corn, and shrimp are added to the mix, then cooked until the shrimp is opaque. Don't forget the fresh butter and lemon wedges for serving.

Pro Tip: Shrimp boils are messy fun, so keep extra napkins handy.

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 5 hours

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Creole Chicken and Sausage

Slow cooker Creole chicken and sausage

Pinch of Yum

Ward off the chill of an autumn or winter's day with Pinch of Yum's recipe for slow cooker Creole chicken and sausage. This set-it-and-forget-it recipe starts with smoked andouille sausage and skinless chicken breasts, which are added to the slow cooker along with chicken broth, onions, tomato sauce, garlic, Creole seasonings, and a few other ingredients. After simmering for up to eight hours, the sausage-and-chicken mixture is complemented by black beans, chopped bell peppers, and a little bit of brown sugar and almond butter.

Pro Tip: Serve the dish with rice and a sprinkle of sliced green onions.

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 6 hours

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Peach and Pepper Pork Chops

Slow cooker peach and pepper pork chops

Melanie Makes 

If you have 10 minutes to spare—and some ripe peaches on hand—you're well on your way to making this recipe for slow cooker peach and pepper pork chops by Melanie Makes. The five-ingredient recipe comes together in a snap: Nestle pork chops in the bottom of a slow cooker; smother them with a mixture of peach preserves, garlic, salt, and pepper; place some sliced peppers and peaches on top; then press cook.

Pro Tip: You can make a glaze using the existing peach sauce by whisking it in a saucepan with some cornstarch.

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 4 hours

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Applesauce Chicken

slow cooker applesauce chicken

Strength and Sunshine 

Sweet meets savory in this recipe for slow cooker applesauce chicken by Strength and Sunshine, and the results are delicious—and couldn't be easier to come by. Just place two pounds of chicken breasts in a slow cooker, cover them with unsweetened applesauce (homemade or jarred), sprinkle with spices, and cook for seven hours or until the chicken is done. Serve the chicken with mashed potatoes and a side of greens.

Pro Tip: To avoid an overly sweet dish, be sure to use unsweetened applesauce.

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 7 hours

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Ratatouille

Slow cooker ratatouille

Eating Bird Food

This recipe for slow cooker ratatouille by Eating Bird Food calls for eggplant, zucchini, grape tomatoes, bell peppers, and fresh basil, proving it to be a delicious way to make use of freshly harvested summer veggies. Add the vegetables to a slow cooker along with onions, garlic, salt, and savory spices, then cook until the veggies are tender. Do as the French do and serve this classic French stew alongside grilled fish, chicken, or an omelet.

Pro Tip: Remove the lid from the slow cooker during the last hour of cooking to prevent the veggies from becoming too mushy.

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 4 hours

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Mexican Pot Roast

Slow cooker mexican pot roast

Foodie Crush

Pot roast gets a south-of-the-border twist in Foodie Crush's recipe for slow cooker Mexican pot roast. Don't expect a seriously spicy dish, however. Instead of hot peppers, this recipe finds its Mexican inspiration through the use of chile powder, ground cumin, and smoked paprika. Once cooked and shredded, the beef is garnished with chopped cilantro and paired with tortillas and roasted red potatoes.

Pro Tip: Shred the pot roast using a stand mixer, or for a low-tech approach, employ two forks.

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 4 hours

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Easy Broccoli Cheese Soup

Slow Cooker Broccoli Cheese Soup

Pinch of Yum 

Comforting, delicious, and decidedly simple to whip up, Pinch of Yum's recipe for slow cooker broccoli cheddar cheese soup could only be made better by one thing: a hunk of buttery bread for dunking. To make the soup, stir fresh broccoli florets and chopped onion into condensed soup, two kinds of milk, and salt and pepper to taste. After the soup has cooked, top it with shredded cheddar cheese and pair it with your favorite loaf or buns.

Pro Tip: For a smoother consistency, whirr the soup in a blender for 10 seconds.

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 4 hours 30 minutes

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Sweet Potato Lentils

Slow Cooker Sweet Potato Lentils

 Pinch of Yum

Pinch of Yum's recipe for slow cooker sweet potato lentils results in an Indian-inspired dish that's not quite soup and not quite stew, but totally delicious nonetheless. Protein-rich lentils join diced sweet potatoes and onion to give the recipe its hearty base, while coconut milk, coriander, garam masala, and chili powder impart global flavor and a creamy consistency to the dish.

Pro Tip: Pair the lentils with warm naan or a side of sauteed kale.

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 4 hours 30 minutes

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French Dip Sandwiches

Slow cooker french dip sandwiches

Garnish With Lemon 

The key to a memorable French dip sandwich? Tender, juicy beef that practically melts in your mouth. That's exactly what you'll get with this slow cooker French dip recipe by Garnish With Lemon—and you'll have your slow cooker to thank. Because the chuck roast is cooked low and slow in the appliance, it emerges soft and flavorful—perfect for tucking into a crusty hoagie roll lined with melted cheese.

Pro Tip: Sharp provolone or cheddar are recommended, as these cheeses have a tang that contrasts the savoriness of the beef.

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 8 hours

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Chicken Pot Pie Soup

Slow cooker chicken pot pie soup

Pinch of Yum

 

Pinch of Yum's recipe for slow cooker chicken pot pie soup is a crustless take on the original, but you won't be left wanting carbs. That's because this rich, satisfying soup is topped with heart-shaped croutons crafted from puff pastry. And just like classic chicken pot pie, this soup relies on a roux to create a creamy consistency in every spoonful. The quick 10 minutes of prep time is an added bonus.

Pro Tip: Cornstarch helps give more substance to this soup, but it's not required.

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 4 hours

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Jerk Pork in Pineapple Rice Bowls

SLOW COOKER JERK PORK IN PINEAPPLE RICE BOWLS

How Sweets Eats 

Who says slow-cooker meals can't deliver on presentation? This recipe for slow cooker jerk pork in pineapple rice bowls by How Sweet Eats is a feast for the eyes and the taste buds. It all starts with pork shoulder that's been cooked in pineapple juice and a robust blend of spices—think paprika, allspice, nutmeg, thyme, and cinnamon, to name a few. Once cooked, the pork is shredded, then served in a hollowed-out pineapple along with rice and a fresh pineapple salsa.

Pro Tip: To cut down on the ingredients list, purchase a premade jerk seasoning blend.

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 8 hours

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Lentil and Brown Rice Tacos

Slow cooker lentil and brown rice tacos

Melanie Makes

Taco Tuesdays just got a little easier thanks to this recipe for slow cooker lentil and brown rice tacos by Melanie Makes. To begin, add lentils, rice, diced onion, and garlic to a slow cooker, then add water and your spices: chili powder, onion powder, red pepper flakes, paprika, cumin, salt, and pepper. Cook for up to four hours and stuff the mixture into taco shells or burritos.

Pro Tip: Use green lentils for this recipe instead of red. Green lentils are less apt to fall apart while cooking.

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 3 hours

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Vodka Bolognese Pasta

Slow Cooker Vodka Bolognese Pasta

Half Baked Harvest

Great for dinner parties and family meals alike, this recipe for slow cooker vodka bolognese pasta by Half Baked Harvest is an elevated take on regular ragu. A mix of ground beef and spicy Italian sausage brings complexity to the dish, while the bite of vodka and the creaminess of milk help temper the sweetness of the tomato-based sauce. A plateful of thick noodles rounds out the meal.

Pro Tip: Rather omit the vodka? No problem—just replace it with an equal amount of broth or water.

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 6 hours

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Chicken Pumpkin Curry

Slow cooker chicken pumpkin curry

The Modern Proper

 

For a cozy fall evening that centers around a nourishing meal, bookmark The Modern Proper's recipe for slow cooker chicken pumpkin curry. Chicken and fresh pumpkin are slowly simmered in a Thai-inspired sauce consisting of coconut milk, curry paste, fish sauce, soy sauce, and sugar. Toward the end of the cooking time, fresh spinach and bell peppers are added to the mix. The curry is served over rice with a squeeze of fresh lime and a sprinkle of chopped cashews.

Pro Tip: Butternut squash can be substituted for the pumpkin.

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 4 hours

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French Wine and Mustard Chicken

Slow cooker French wine and mustard chicken

Half Baked Harvest

Dry white wine, grainy Dijon mustard, and heavy cream serve as the basis for Half Baked Harvest's recipe for slow cooker French wine and mustard chicken. The resulting sauce is creamy yet tangy—and made even better with the addition of fresh thyme, sage, and, of course, chicken. For a nutritious dose of greens (and a pop of color and texture), fresh kale is added into the slow cooker during the last 30 minutes of cooking.

Pro Tip: Before adding the chicken to the slow cooker, sear it on both sides to enhance the flavor of the meat.

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 5 hours

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Salsa Chicken

Slow cooker salsa chicken

Strength and Sunshine

It doesn't get much easier than this recipe for slow cooker salsa chicken by Strength and Sunshine. In fact, the recipe only has two steps: Place the chicken in the slow cooker and cover it with a jar of salsa, some water, and a medley of Mexican-inspired spices. Cook the chicken for up to seven hours or until the meat is cooked through.

Pro Tip: Make this recipe your own by experimenting with different salsas and spice amounts.

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 7 hours

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