There are few things the almighty Crock-Pot can't tackle, but above all else it makes getting dinner on the table a whole lot more manageable on busy nights, and even helps us to serve up some healthier choices. I know I am not alone when I say that if it wasn't for my slow cooker, there would have been many more nights of frozen pizza and takeout this year.
From stew and chili to takeout favorites at home, these were our top slow cooker recipes of the year.
Let your slow cooker help you make this takeout favorite at home. It's the best General Tso's you can at home without stir-frying and you can feed your family in shifts as they stagger in the door tired and hungry.
This is a stir-fry meets slow cooker mash-up we haven't been able to get enough of, and neither could you. Meaty chicken thighs and a full-flavored sauce bring the rich goodness of stir-fry, while the slow cooker makes dinner easy.
This hearty, meat-free chili is a mostly hands-off affair that cooks all day to greet you with rich tomatoey flavor, smoky spices, tender butternut squash, lentils, and beans. It makes a big batch, which means leftovers for lunch the next day.
Try this easy stovetop alternative once, and you may never go back to making fajitas on the stovetop. I haven't.
This is vegetarian comfort food at its finest. I love this recipe for getting another meat-free meal on the table during the week and using up the lingering veggies in the fridge.
Any time the slow cooker can deliver my entire meal — the main and the sides — in a single swoop, it feels like a huge win. And that's just what this wholesome recipe does.
These pineapple-teriyaki glazed brisket sandwiches became a favorite during cookout season, and have kept going strong ever since. It's a totally delicious way to feed a crowd without turning on the oven.
This recipe proved that the slow cooker is arguably the best tool to have around when peach season is here. One halved peach just adds a slight perfume to complement the deep flavors of the pork.
This piccata will win your heart not only for its bold layers of flavor, but also for how simple it is to pull together. It's cooked on a bed of tender red potatoes, then tossed with a buttery lemon sauce that's punched up with briny capers.
This riff on classic chicken in milk, made popular by Jamie Oliver, uses the slow cooker for ease and convenience, and coconut milk for those avoiding dairy or just looking for a flavor upgrade to this splendid supper sensation.
My best advice to you is to serve this hearty stew with a big chunk of bread, or over a bed of egg noodles or cauliflower rice, because you are going to want to mop up every last drop of the savory-sweet gravy.