10 Spring Classics You Can Make in the Slow Cooker

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(Image credit: Emma Christensen)

Once spring rolls around, I’m happy to trade slow-cooking, ultra-hearty stews, chilis, and braises for lightened-up meals with fresher flavors and ingredients. However, I will not be trading in my slow cooker. I’ll be using it just as much now as I did during winter to bring these 10 spring classics to the dinner table.

Your slow cooker is the foolproof solution to make the most tender, succulent salmon. Add in plenty of sliced lemon and fennel to infuse it with more flavor.

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(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

Spring means the arrival of fresh herbs, which naturally means the return of all things pesto. This recipe relies on basil, but you can really use any one of your favorite herbs for this generously coated poached chicken.

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(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

If your idea of classic spring fare involves all things lemon, this juicy slow cooker chicken is right up your alley. It’s simmered in a lush lemon-garlic sauce that hits the plate with a bold flavor and a velvety-smooth texture.

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(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

Potato leek soup is spring’s answer to winter’s potato soup. This version cooks all day, and is light and elegant with a mellow, mild flavor. I like to start with frozen sliced leeks to save time on prep.

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(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

Spinach and artichokes are a classic springtime combination, and there is no better way to bring them to the dinner table right now than with this easy and elegant chicken dinner.

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(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

If you’re looking for a delicious way to welcome the return of picnic and potluck season, this slow cooker sandwich favorite is it. Searing the sausages before putting them in the slow cooker adds a nice layer of browning and gives them that signature snap when you bite into the skin.

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(Image credit: Christine Han)

You’ll want to keep this versatile condiment on hand for grilling season. This Sicilian eggplant and tomato relish is swimming in a light sweet and sour sauce, and makes the perfect partner to grilled chicken, pork chops, and fish.

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(Image credit: Karla Conrad)

Lemons are the key to brightening this hearty vegetarian lentil dish. You’ll want to cycle it through your meal plan all spring long.

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(Image credit: Leela Cyd)

As fresh spring fruits make their return to the market, here is how to turn them (and all other fruits) into a dessert sauce to spoon over ice cream, yogurt, and all sorts of cakes.

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(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

Cheesecake (preferably topped with the aforementioned fruit sauce!) is the dessert to make for all your spring celebrations. The low heat of the slow cooker yields a perfectly creamy, silky, almost custard-like texture to cheesecake.

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