Most of us have a slow cooker sitting around. I love slow cooking but sometimes lack the time to prep or even look up recipes to get creative. I know there is so much you can make with a crock pot so I am determined to use it more often. Not only have I found that the crock pot is great for roasts and stews, but this crock pot can easily be used all year round for great recipes.
We love our slow cookers during the cooler months of the year, but come spring, this amazing little kitchen appliance goes back in the cabinet. If you ask me, that is a mistake. Slow cookers are wonderful appliances year around. Yes, they are perfect for those hearty winter dishes that we used to cook at the back of the stove in the darker months. But believe me, that pot of beef stew tastes just as delicious in the spring or summer.
The main reason many of stews and roasts are winter dishes is because they had to cook and bake for a long time. In the hot summer months, we don’t want to heat up the house any more than necessary. And running the stove or oven for several hours before dinner will certainly do that.
But guess what doesn’t heat up the house? Your slow cooker. It puts up a lot less heat and it’s portable. That means that on a really hot day when your air conditioner is barely keeping up, you can go plug in the slow cooker on the porch and have dinner cooking while you hang out in the backyard with the kids.
Your slow cooker also comes in handy anytime you’re grilling in the back yard. No more slaving away in the kitchen fixing side dishes while everyone else gets to hang out in the yard and watch your husband grill burgers. Instead, you do a little prep work in the morning, start a side dish in the slow cooker (saucy vegetables are always a favorite around here) and you can grab a beer and join the fun in the yard.