Monday, March 29, 2010

My New Favorite Thing

Lately it seems like I've been struggling to get dinner on the table. The other meals are nothing fancy, but I like dinner to be something homemade if I can pull it together. So, I put some serious thought into this problem and there was only one obvious solution: the crock pot.

Really, think about most crock pot (slow cooker) recipes you know. Dump some items in for anywhere from 3-8 hours and then when your family is starving, it's all ready to scoop out and feed them!
I already had some recipes that I liked from previous years, but I found another website from a friend's blog that was called A Year of Slow Cooking. Apparently this woman used her crock pot for a year straight to provide dinners for her family. I think she might be my new hero.
So far I've tried her carnitas recipe and tonight we did her Slow Cooker Meatballs in Peanut Chile Sauce. Both were a hit. Both were easy.
The trick with the crock pot is to remember to do it early enough in the day. There have been plenty of times that 4 o'clock rolls around and I'm wondering what to do for dinner and think I should've used the crock pot. 4 o'clock with no dinner plans usually equals In'N'Out for us. (It's really naughty that we live so close to one and that it's so darn cheap to feed the whole family.)
My old crock pot has become my new answer to dinner. The two biggest problems:
1. Cleaning the crock pot after we finish up, so that it's ready to go the next day.
2. In most recipes there's only a main dish. Who needs sides anyway?
So, if you've got a great recipe to share--leave me a link or email it to me! I'm on a mission here.


wackywilsons said...

I totally agree! The clean up process stinks, but in general, it is so practical and makes the house smell so yummy.

I like the stacked enchiladas or the lasagna in the crockpot...yummy.

mmhamblin said...

My sister buys crock pot liners that she loves. They are just plastic and you toss them when you're done!

Mariley Johnson said...

Problem #1, I have TWO crockpots. It just happened that way. I had a small one and got a bigger one for Christmas one year.

And, my all time favorite crockpot meal is from Kraft recipes. It's the Perfect Winter Beef Stew. Check it out on their website, or if you can't find it email me and I'll get it to you.

And that carnitas dinner so unds goood!

Mel said...

I love my crock pot too! And thanks for the new site. I am always looking for new recipes and especially for the crock pot. Who need cookbooks anymore when you have the internet?

Adrienne said...

Thanks for the comment, it was good to hear from you! I love checking in now and then and seeing how your cute family is doing!

I love crock pot cooking - and I love the liners too. Some of my faves are salsa chicken and chicken supreme, if you search my blog for them you can find the recipes!

rachel said...

This is so great. I love it. I love putting soup in the fridge and bringing it back out and reheating it in the crock pot. So it's totally two meals. My favorite is chicken cordon bleu in the crockpot. SO Good!!

Lauren and Trevor said...

Sadly enough our crock pot just recently broke. I would really like a new one because I love crock pot meals! What size do you have? My favorite recipe: 3-4 chicken breasts, 1 cup salsa and then add 1/2 cup sour cream the last hour or so. Shred it up and it is really yummy chicken tacos.

Lyndsey said...

so i don't have a link... but i want your link....we do crock pot twice a week so we can go to a late workout class....i am running out of ideas!!

Tiffini said...

i love my crock pot, too! i use it at least once a week. makes the temptation to eat out more resistable knowing i have dinner ready to go when we get home at 6from laci's gymnastics.

i love doing swiss steak in the crock pot for Sunday dinner. sure, i still have to do some peeling for mashed potatoes on the side, but there's no way you can skip those! Best part about swiss steak is that it cooks in it's own gravy! I like to strain it after removing the meat to a platter, add a little beef bouillon for more flavor; boil in a saucepan to thicken. And, within 30 minutes of walking in the door, we have a yummy Sun dinner!

Tina said...

I found that site a year ago and have loved it. I use recipes from there whenever I feel like cooking (which unfortunately is not all that often). Our favorites from the site are Obama chili and Apricot and Orange Pork (which I make all the time- sometimes with chicken).

Jack and Annie said...

Love the crock pot too! Remembering to put stuff in it in the morning is my downfall! I've got some good ones I will email you too!

Jenn Toon said...

I'd love any recipes or links you have! I usually hit the internet for good recipes. We do a lot of crock pot meals when it's baseball season or I'm working a show. So fun to keep up your family!