If your family is like mine, there just aren’t enough hours in the day. With school, work, sports, homework, and housework, who has time to prepare a nutritious dinner the whole family will love?
The answer might be almost no one if it weren’t for that favorite workhorse kitchen appliance, the slow cooker. Whether on the stovetop or in the oven, cooking foods low and slow for many hours can yield delicious results. It’s a method that’s been used for centuries to turn tougher cuts of meat and hearty vegetables into flavorful, tender soups and stews.
But it took an inventor named Irving Naxon to turn a traditional cooking method into a countertop revolution. In 1940 Naxon was granted a patent for an electric appliance that was inspired by a favorite family recipe for a traditional Jewish dish called Cholent. His grandmother used the cooling ovens of the family bakery to cook the dish, as the ovens slowly lost heat overnight. This invention, called the Naxon Beanery, was the precursor of the modern slow cooker.
From the most basic Crock Pot to the most sophisticated multi-purpose appliance, slow cooking has been a boon for busy families everywhere. What could be easier than throwing healthy, delicious ingredients into a slow cooker in the morning and returning to a hot, ready-to-serve meal when tired, hungry family members gather back home for supper?
We’ve gathered Cabot’s favorite slow cooker recipes in this roundup of family friendly, time sensitive, totally tasty slow cooked meals and side dishes.
We start with one of Cabot’s most popular slow cooker recipes, Slow Cooker Turkey Chili with Cabot Pepper Jack Cheese, a delicious way to feed a hungry family.
Next we feature a lighter – and even simpler – chili recipe, Slow Cooker Lighten Up! Rotisserie Chicken Chili. It’s a great slower cooker recipe and light enough to serve any time of year.
At our house soups are a favorite for any meal. And yes, that means even at breakfast, we’ve been known to heat up a bowl of soup and drop a poached egg into the mix. What a great way to start the day.
This recipe for Crock-Pot Chicken Tortilla Soup is a favorite of Cabot Cheese Board member Jenn at Peas & Crayons. We loved it so much we asked her to let us keep it on the Cabot site as a Featured Blogger recipe. We think you’ll love it too!
Whether you make Cabot’s Slow Cooker Spicy Hot Potato Soup or the best ever Slow Cooker Broccoli Cheddar Soup you’ll ever make, it’s a dish that will serve you well. So make extra, these soups are even better the next day.
Stews are just calling out for a slow cooker to work its magic. This Slow Cooker Hearty Cheddar Topped Sausage Stew from the Cabot recipe archives is an all-around family-friendly dish that is almost impossible to resist.
There are times when nothing else will do but a classic comfort food meal. For those times you’ll definitely want to serve up Cabot’s take on Slow Cooker Macaroni and Cheese.
This dish works its slow cooker magic on an American favorite. Our recipe for Slow Cooker Smothered Pork Chops with Mashed Cheddar Buttercup Squash might just become your go-to pork chop preparation.
And finally, we offer up two swoonworthy slow cooker side dishes. If you haven’t tried polenta, Cabot’s recipe for Slow Cooker Cheddar Polenta is a fantastic introduction to this corn-based dish.
And speaking of corn, this extraordinary recipe for Slow Cooker Loaded Creamed Corn, a Featured Blogger dish, comes from Cabot Cheese Board member Kita of Pass the Sushi. If you like creamed corn, you will adore Kita’s take on it. It’s so rich, so full of flavor, just so darned good, you’ll want to make an entire meal of it.
Candace Karu reports on all there is to discover and love about food and farming as well as communicating Cabot’s mission to support community, volunteerism, and sustainability. Whether online, on air, or in person, her job is to amplify the passion and commitment of the 1200 farm families who own Cabot. When Candace is not representing Cabot, she lives, cooks, and works out in Cape Elizabeth, Maine.