Since the creation and release of the “Crock-Pot” by Rival in 1971, this kitchen appliance has been the go-to dinnertime solution for many busy families.
Working moms and dads could easily throw ingredients into the crockpot, set the temperature and head out for a busy workday, knowing that a delicious, home-cooked dinner would be waiting to nourish their families at the end of the day.
Busy families still turn to crockpots to create effortless meals that will satisfy their cravings for hearty, warm suppers and nourish their souls as they gather around the dinner table to share experiences and discuss the news of the day.
Crockpots are the perfect tool for preparing and serving your offerings at the proper temperature at buffets, potlucks, and family gatherings. Crockpots are also excellent to use during the holidays when you prepare large meals because they free up oven and stovetop space.
Crockpot cooking has moved way beyond preparing the standard soup, chili, roast, and meatball recipes. From lasagna and enchiladas to cornbread and pound cake, many of our favorite recipes can be adapted to cooking in a crockpot.
As our schedules become more packed and the popularity and usage of crockpots grows, the market is responding by making crockpots even easier and more convenient to use. Many meal preparation kits and easy clean-up products are available for your crockpot.
Crockpot Tips :
Line your crockpot with a disposable cooking bag for easy cleanup. If your crockpot comes with a sleeve or the cooking bag is not disposable, spray the inside of the sleeve or liner with cooking spray before filling it.
- Line your crockpot with a disposable cooking bag for easy cleanup. If your crockpot comes with a sleeve or the cooking bag is not disposable, spray the inside of the sleeve or liner with cooking spray before filling it.
- To avoid food poisoning, food needs to reach a temperature of 140 degrees. A properly working crockpot will cook on High at 300 degrees and Low at 200 degrees.
- If you will be cooking on the Low setting, it is best to cook for the first hour on High and then set the crockpot on Low for the rest of the recommended cooking time.
- Cooking food for one hour on the High setting is the same as cooking it for two hours on the Low setting.
- Do not put frozen foods directly into the crockpot. All foods should be thawed to room temperature or refrigerated before going into the crockpot.
- Do not overfill your crockpot. It should be one half or two thirds full. Overly full crockpots do not cook properly. You may need to purchase a larger crockpot or adjust your recipe size for proper cooking.
- Do not lift the crockpot lid and stir your meal. Every time you lift the lid, the temperature drop and you have to add on 20 minutes to your overall cooking time. If you need to check on your meal, spin the lid until the condensation drips off. The lid will clear and you can see what is going on inside.
- Clean meat and prepare fresh produce before adding them to the crockpot.
- Remove skin, and fat from meat.
- Wash and peel vegetables and fruits.
- Less expensive cuts of meat are perfect for crockpot cooking. In general, they need to be cooked for about 8 hours on the Low setting. These cuts of meat become delicious and tender when cooked for a long period in a moist environment.
- Cook ground meats fully before adding them to your crockpot. They will not cook properly when added raw.
- To add flavor and color to your meal, brown large pieces of meat, such as roasts, before adding them to the crockpot.
- Be sure to include enough liquid so that your meal does not cook too quickly or burn.
- The liquids you add to your crockpot will not evaporate as they boil. If you are adapting a recipe to the crockpot, be sure to cut the amount of liquid you add by ? to ½, unless you are preparing rice or soup.
- To preserve their flavor, only add spices during the last hour of your cooking time.
- Softer vegetables, such as mushrooms, zucchini, and celery should be added during the last 45 minutes of cooking time so that they do not become mushy.
- Unless your recipe says something different, only add dairy products during the last 30 minutes of your cooking time so that they do not curdle.
For more tips on using your Crock-Pot slow cooker, visit the Crock-Pot website
Breakfast Options :
Other Main Dishes :
Soup and Chili :