Can you believe the temps in Texas have actually been dropping below 60 degrees occasionally? Embrace this chilly weather while we have it because you never know when the heat will sporadically return to our southern state. Time for all of us to over-bundle in our barely used parkas and whip up some hot meals to serve after the sun goes down.
Slow cooker meals are hands-down the simplest way to impress diners with minimal effort on a cold fall evening. Just plop a bunch of ingredients in the pot, set the temperature as the recipe indicates, and then let everything simmer until it becomes a mouthwatering meal a couple of hours later. You can make everything from tender meats to traditional soups in a crockpot without racing around like an overworked chef after a long day at the office.
Not sure what to try making? Here are a few cozy recipes that are sure to wow even the pickiest eaters.
Crockpot Chicken and Dumplings
What says "comfort food" more than juicy chicken breasts and shortcut dumplings drenched in a creamy sauce? Holly at Spend With Pennies posted a recipe that makes this meal almost effortless. You'll just need the ingredients for the sauce, chicken breasts, and some premade biscuits. Add them to your cooker in the order she dictates (which should only take a couple of minutes), then be amazed by the steaming hot results roughly five hours later.
Slow Cooker Pot Roast
Admit it: the thought of perfectly-cooked beef roasting with an assortment of yummy vegetables and soups makes your mouth water. Tiffany at Don't Waste the Crumbs can show you how to chuck some meat, veggies, and other ingredients into the cooker in just the right order. It'll take you no time at all to prep the meal, although you will have to let it all stew together for approximately eight to ten hours, so plan in advance for this tasty dish.
Loaded Baked Potato Slow Cooker Soup
April at Mama Loves Food concocted the ideal blend of cream cheese, fresh potatoes, seasoning, and chicken broth. Pop it all in one pot and let it simmer for a little over six hours until it's wonderfully creamy and flavorful without feeling too heavy. April recommends garnishing the finished soup with some crumbled bacon, shredded cheese, and green onions for a little extra pizzazz.
Crock Pot Beef Stew
After spending a day out in the brisk weather, coming home to a steaming hot cup of stew is the best way to recuperate. For a no-fuss beef stew recipe, turn to Savory Nothings. The step-by-step instructions will help you prevent the veggies from overcooking while the meat becomes deliciously tender. The thick dish has a delightfully rustic flair, and you can cook it in just four hours if you turn your crockpot to high heat.
Slow Cooker Chili
Visit Cooking Classy for a chili recipe that's both delicious and a breeze to create. With just a little bit of spice and tons of tasty ingredients, this dish will impress anyone, and it only takes about fifteen minutes to prepare. Cook it on low heat for between five and six hours, then serve with pride. The recipe also recommends that you pair the finished result with cheese and sour cream for extra flavor.
Slow Cooker Chicken Tortellini Soup
Chicken soup is truly the epitome of all things cozy and winter. Nothing warms your bones up more than some chicken broth and noodles. Alyssa at The Recipe Critic stepped up her chicken soup game by including cheesy tortellini and tons of tasty veggies. Quickly combine all of the ingredients (excluding the tortellini), then leave the cooker alone for six hours on a low setting. Dump the tortellini in about fifteen minutes before the rest is done, then serve with salt and pepper to taste.
Slow Cooker BBQ Beef Brisket
We Texans can't resist our barbecue, even when summer nights and pool parties are long gone. Don't feel like heading outside to grill in the cold? Cook up some tender brisket without leaving the comfort of your kitchen. Although the meat will take roughly twelve hours or more to become extra tender in a slow cooker, it only takes ten minutes to get the meat going. Leave it to cook while you go about your daily tasks, then dine on the smoky brisket in the evening. Pair with some fresh bread and the sides of your choice.
Do you have a favorite slow cooker recipe to use in the fall/winter? Let us know in the comments! Also, don't forget to contribute your best Thanksgiving recipes to our survey so we can include them in our DFW roundup.