10 Easy, Comforting Slow Cooker Appetizers That Totally Pass as Dinner

updated Mar 13, 2020
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One of the best things about being an adult is that you can 100% decide what passes as dinner. Some nights, that’s a perfectly balanced plate with loads of vegetables. Other nights, it’s cheesy dip that you eat on the couch while watching Netflix.

From savory caramelized onion dip to cheesy tots, here are 10 of our favorite slow cooker appetizers to make and devour whenever you feel like it.

Credit: Joe Lingeman

1. 5-Ingredient Slow Cooker Honey-Garlic Meatballs

This recipe takes store-bought frozen meatballs and turns them into a sweet-and-savory snack.

Credit: Joe Lingeman

2. Slow Cooker Spinach-Artichoke Dip

Serve this creamy spinach-artichoke dip with crackers, veggie sticks, or pita chips for the ultimate set-it-and-forget-it appetizer. (Pro tip: It’s also delicious served cold.)

Credit: Joe Lingeman

3. Slow Cooker Queso Dip

This creamy queso dip only takes three ingredients to make and is a guaranteed hit. You just throw everything into the bowl of a slow cooker, let it melt, and stir it together right before serving with tortilla chips.

Get the recipe: Slow Cooker Queso Dip

4. Slow Cooker Honey Chipotle Meatballs

These sweet-and-spicy meatballs are cooked in a simple sauce made with cherry preserves, smoky barbecue sauce, and a handful of staple spices. The recipe uses homemade meatballs, but feel free to use your favorite store-bought brand to save yourself some time.

Get the recipeSlow Cooker Honey Chipotle Meatballs from Little Spice Jar

5. Slow Cooker Hot Caramelized Onion Dip

You’ll have to caramelize the onions on the stovetop before adding them to the slow cooker, so make sure to plan ahead and give yourself enough time. It’ll take about 25 minutes to fully brown them.

Get the recipeSlow Cooker Hot Caramelized Onion Dip from Little Spice Jar

Credit: Joe Lingeman

6. Slow Cooker Chicken Parm Meatballs

PSA: Frozen meatballs can go directly into the slow cooker from frozen without having to thaw them.

7. Slow-Cooker Caponata

Caponata is a Sicilian eggplant relish made with celery, onions, and tomatoes. The flavorful spread is typically served with bread. This version, made entirely in the slow cooker, is a delicious hands-off version that comes together in no time.

Get the recipe: Slow-Cooker Caponata

Credit: Joe Lingeman

8. Cheesy Taco Crock Tots

Even better than tater tots? Tots with melted cheese and ground beef.

Get the recipe: Cheesy Taco Crock Tots

Credit: Lauren Volo

9. Slow-Cooker Chex Party Mix

Making homemade snack mix in the slow cooker might sound strange, but it actually makes sense. The low, even temperature prevents the mix from overcooking.

Credit: Lauren Volo

10. Buffalo Chicken Dip

This recipe provides instructions for cooking your own chicken and shredding it, but you can (and should) use store-bought rotisserie chicken to save time.

Get the recipe: Buffalo Chicken Dip