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Horrible cook requests help. Slow cooker salvation?

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Agreeing with the folks who have said to not compare to stovetop or roasting. 
Also remember what slow cookers do best which is low and slow cooking. So keep that in mind for the cuts of meat you use.  Super lean cuts like chicken breasts or pork tenderloin CAN be cooked in the slow cooker, but not for an all day thing since it will dry them out. 
Cuts like pork shoulder, beef chuck roast, stew meat, chicken thighs, country-style ribs and the like do well in the slow cooker because they need to be cooked slow, (or braised or stewed) to help tenderize the meat. 

I love pork shoulder or even pork sirloin roasts in the slow cooker. 
My very favorite homemade pulled pork is called Lazy Man's Barbecue Pork Sandwiches. 

4-5 pound pork shoulder roast (boneless) OR boneless pork sirloin roast
1 can (14.5 oz ) beef broth
1/3 cup hot pepper sauce  (YES, trust me. it mellows)
1/3 cup Worcestershire Sauce
1-2 teaspoons liquid smoke (optional)
Favorite barbecue sauce and sandwich buns

Place pork in bottom of large slow cooker. Combine broth, hot pepper sauce and Worcestershire sauce, and pour over pork. Cover and cook 8 -10 hours on low setting until pork is very tender.
Place pork on cutting board; reserve 1 cup cooking liquid. Coarsely chop or shred pork; combine with reserved cooking liquid and put back into slow cooker (set on Keep Warm setting) until ready to serve. Spoon pork onto sandwich buns and serve with bbq sauce.
Serves 10-12

Leftovers can be put into freezer bags and frozen for up to 3 months.  And because you don't add sauce to the finished product, you can do all sorts of things with the leftovers like top a salad with pulled pork, put into quesadillas, or put on baked potatoes with cheese.

Other favorites in the slow cooker is  (So good and so easy.  And yes, get a good basic spaghetti sauce. Again, trust me it works)

I also like This gal's blog.  Some recipes are better than others.  She also tells about FLOPS. 
I actually just had her Rotisserie-style chicken and it is really good.  I put halved small yellow potatoes and third whole carrots in the bottom and put the chicken on top so it doesn't sit in its juices.  Plus it is a whole finished meal.

Also would recommend using a crockpot liner (find them where foil and plastic wrap are) and make Sunday Chicken. (another one that is on my rotation.  After it is done cooking I cube or shred the chicken and put back in the sauce.  Serve it over either rice or mashed potatoes or even egg noodles with broccoli or peas.  Also I have used about any cream of something soup with it so cream of chicken works well.) 

Can you tell I work with food and sometimes teach cooking?  :)

Stock!  We keep a gallon zip-lock bag in the freezer. Every time we have a rotisserie chicken, beef ribs, pork chops, etc. we put the trimmings and bones in the bag. We also add onion and garlic skins, carrot and potato peels, celery tops, tomato ends, mushroom stems, etc. (NO broccoli, cabbage, or other strongly-flavored veggies.)

When the bag is full, dump in crock pot, add some oregano, basil, salt & pepper, and a few glugs of white wine or vinegar. Cook on low for 8-10 hours, strain.

It looks awful in progress, but ends up with amazing flavor!

I like this website for slowcooking recipes -

I also agree that the lipton onion mix recipe is good, though the ones I used also had cranberry sauce.  Ended up with a really nice glazed roast.

Crockpots are also good for making things like dry beans, or overnight oatmeal.

I have also just stuck a thawed whole chicken in, dumped a jar of salsa over it, and left it all day.  Yum.   I have even done this with still-frozen chicken, but I understand that is not recommended for food-safety reasons. (Takes too long to come up to germ-killing temperature)

My favorite is bbq pulled pork/beef/chicken.

I take 2 lbs of whatever kind of meat I want (chicken breasts, pork roast and beef roast all work well), dump in a bottle of good quality bbq sauce, let it cook until the meat starts to fall apart (up to 8 hrs on low, depending on the size and thickness), pull the meat out and shred it well with a fork, dump it back in, stir, and let cook another half hour to really mix in the sauce flavor.

Serve over buttered egg noodles or on a toasted bun with coleslaw.


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