Summertime is all about relaxing and taking it easy. And nothing is easier than having a ready-to-eat meal in your Crockpot at the end of the day.
When you think about a Crockpot, what probably comes to mind are recipes focused on warm comfort foods like chilis, soups, and stews. But warmer summer weather calls for something lighter and healthier.
Whether you’re looking for desserts, sides, or main dishes, this list of 11 no fuss Summer Crockpot Recipes are sure to hit the spot!
12 Crockpot Tips and Hacks for Beginners
A crock pot is one of the most versatile kitchen appliances. And practice makes perfect. Don’t be discouraged if your first attempts aren’t what you expected. With our helpful tips and hacks, you’ll become more comfortable in no time.
- Choose the right size: Make sure to use a crock pot that is appropriate for the amount of food you’re cooking. Using a smaller crock pot may lead to overcrowding, while a larger one may cause food to cook unevenly.
- Preheat when necessary: Some recipes benefit from preheating the crock pot before adding the ingredients. This is especially true for recipes that require browning or sautéing ingredients beforehand.
- Layer ingredients properly: Layering ingredients in the crock pot can affect cooking time and results. Place dense vegetables and meat at the bottom, as they take longer to cook. Delicate ingredients, like herbs and seafood, should be added toward the end.
- Use the right amount of liquid: Crock pots require less liquid compared to other cooking methods. Generally, only a small amount of liquid is needed, as the slow cooking process helps retain moisture. Start with less and then add more if needed.
- Avoid lifting the lid: Opening the lid of the crock pot during cooking can significantly increase cooking time. We know it’s tempting but resist the urge to check on it frequently. Each time the lid is lifted, heat escapes, and it takes time to regain the lost temperature.
- Trim excess fat: Trim excess fat from meats before cooking them in the crock pot to avoid a finished dish that’s greasy in texture. Leave just a small amount of fat to help enhance flavor and moisture.
- Consider cook time and temperature: Most recipes provide suggested cooking times, but it’s essential to consider factors such as the size and type of ingredients. Adjust the cooking time accordingly and follow the temperature recommendations to achieve the best results.
- Don’t overfill: Fill the crock pot no more than two-thirds full to prevent overflow and ensure proper heat distribution. Overfilling can lead to undercooked or unevenly cooked food.
- Experiment with flavors: Slow cooking allows flavors to meld and develop. Don’t be afraid to add herbs, spices, and seasonings to enhance the taste of your dishes. You can also try using broths, stocks, or wine as a flavorful cooking liquid.
- Plan ahead for texture: If you prefer a thicker consistency or want to reduce excess liquid, remove the lid for the last hour of cooking or use a thickening agent like cornstarch or flour.
- Use slow cooker liners: Slow cooker liners are convenient and make cleaning up a breeze. They help prevent food from sticking to the pot and save you time on scrubbing.
- Store leftovers properly: Once the cooking is complete, transfer any leftovers (if you have any!) to airtight containers and refrigerate promptly. Be sure to use the leftovers within 2-3 days or freeze them for longer storage.
11 Summer Crockpot Recipes
- Pineapple Pulled Pork | Momma Fit Lyndsey – This recipe makes a batch of pulled pork that’s sweet, tender, and delicious. Add it to salads, sliders, enchiladas, or tacos.
- Slow Cooker Summer Vegetable Soup | Simple Nourished Living – Soup is not just for cold weather. This delicious vegetable soup is healthy and best enjoyed with a crusty slice of Italian bread.
- Slow Cooker Peach Cobbler | Growing Up Gabel – Nothing says summer like fresh peaches. With only three ingredients, you’ll have the perfect dessert in no time.
- Skinny Crock Pot Santa Fe Chicken | The Comfort of Cooking – Light and healthy, it’s a recipe you can enjoy all summer long. Enjoy with a wrap, brown rice, or lettuce leaf.
- Slow Cooker Summer Beef Stew | Running to the Kitchen – Beef stew is not just for summer. This combination of beef and fresh vegetables is comfort food that’s summer appropriate.
- Easy Crock Pot Baked Beans with Bacon and Brown Sugar | Unsophisticook – You had us at bacon and brown sugar! These baked beans make the perfect side dish for a family dinner or a summer barbeque.
- 3 Ingredient Slow Cooker Pineapple Dump Cake | Slow Cooking Perfected – This sweet summer dish is packed with flavor. And best of all, it only requires three ingredients!
- Slow Cooker Summer Vegetable Chili | Ready Set Eat – If you have lots of fresh summer produce on hand, you’ll want to try this recipe. It would be delicious topped with avocado and crushed corn chips.
- Crock Pot Creamy Chicken and Summer Squash | Crock-Pot Ladies – Summer squash is the star in this recipe. You can use any type of squash you can find from your garden, farmer’s market, or local grocery store.
- Crockpot Bread Pudding | In the Kids Kitchen – Introduce your kiddos to the beauty of bread pudding. With just five minutes of prep, you’ll have a sweet, delicious dessert that leaves your house smelling amazing.
- The Easiest Slow Cooker Chicken Fajitas | Scrambled Chefs – With only a few chicken breasts, bell peppers, and onions, you’ll have a delicious meal that your kids will love. Top it with guacamole, salsa, shredded cheese, or a scoop of sour cream.
From baked beans and beef stew to pulled pork and peach cobbler, these 11 Summer Crockpot recipes will help you make the most of your Summer.
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