Help Me Make Better Meals for One in the Slow Cooker!

published Jun 14, 2011
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Q: I cook for one, and have a wildly varying schedule. I bought a small CrockPot thinking it would be a fairly simple way to boost my overall nutrition and “home cooked meal” count. I put in my ingredients and run it overnight. However, I am having varying success translating the recipes I find into smaller quantities. Often, the results are just too mushy. I gave in and bought a larger one with varying sized crocks but they still make too much and after freezing the balance, I am either uninterested in the leftovers or again find them too mushy.

Are there any good rules of thumb on cutting down these standard CrockPot recipes for the smaller crocks?

Sent by LK

Editor: LK, my first question is on the types of recipes you’re making in the slow cooker. Frankly, I don’t use the slow cooker for many complex meals. I use it mainly to cook meat (pulled pork or chicken, or pot roast), beans, and chicken stock. In other words, I like it more for preparing the components of a meal, rather than the entire meal. I have problems with too-mushy food as well. If you eat meat, I recommend using the slow cooker to prep a few pounds of pork or chicken, then refrigerate or freeze in individual portions, and use with eggs, rice, polenta, or other quick sides that can be cooked when you get home from work.

Readers, any suggestions for LK and cooking for one with a slow cooker?