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Crock Pot Virgin

by Meghann on September 10, 2012

When Derek and I first created our wedding registries back in March, there was one item I couldn’t wait to add to the list: a crock pot.

I know – exciting stuff. ;)

The truth is I’d never owned a crock pot before, nor had I ever actually used one. Not sure why, but my dad was very anti-crock pot growing up. I sort of adapted his attitude towards crock pots, until I realized how much they really could come in handy. Like… when you’re at swim practice until after 8:00 and just want to eat when you get home instead of messing with food. Yep, definitely come in handy then. ;)

I think my teammates may have overheard me yearning for one of those crock pot pre-prepared meals once or twice post-practie because this beautiful new crock pot was one of the first gifts I opened at my surprise bridal shower on Saturday.

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Sa-weeeettttt.

What’s the rule with bridal shower/ wedding gifts? Are you supposed to wait until after the wedding to use them? Umm… yeah, was not happening with this baby! I couldn’t wait to put our new toy to the test!

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Like I said, I’d never used a crock pot before, so I had absolutely no idea where to begin. After a quick search on google, and shout out via my social media networks, I decided to keep it basic and simple with bbq pulled pork for my first go.

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Honestly, I couldn’t believe how easy all the recipes I looked up online were. They all pretty much had the same principles: pork loin, onion, and a bottle of bbq sauce. You don’t need much more than that.

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I sliced the onion and placed the pork, onion, and 1/2 a bottle of bbq sauce in the crock pot.

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Then, I locked the lid, set the temp to medium for 6 hours, and walked away.

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The delicious aroma of bbq pork filled the whole house. It was mouth watering.

6 hours later the pork was pretty much already falling apart on its own. I just took a couple of forks to it and finished it off. The pork had no fight left in it, the whole thing shredded effortlessly.

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I served the pork with roasted potatoes and steamed green beans.

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The pork was delicious. Really delicious. And so freakin’ easy thanks to the crock pot. Why, oh why, did I wait so long to get one of these?! So happy to have it now! AWESOME bridal shower gift!

Now I just need to figure out what else I can do with this bad boy. Any suggestions? What’s your favorite crock pot recipe? Please share! ;)

{ 80 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Aimee @ Happy Medium September 10, 2012 at 11:09 pm

Hey we have the same crock pot! I honestly don’t use mine enough, but I might have to bust it out and make this bbq pork recipe. Looks delicious!

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2 Angie September 11, 2012 at 12:04 am

We love beer BBQ chicken. It’s the only Sandra Lee recipe I like. Take chicken breast, mix a beer with BBQ sauce and pour over chicken, add a onion and I add jalapeño t give it a kick. The chicken falls apart and has a spicy BBQ taste.

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3 Janette September 10, 2012 at 11:09 pm

Not the healthiest but yummy all the same. Chicken pieces, can mushroom soup. Half can milk. Box stuffing mix, make the stuffing mix as directed, put on top of other ingredients and cook for 6 hours or less depending on your model mine is usually done in four, the stuffing mix kind of melts into the mushroom soup and makes a thick yummy gravy. My kids just gobble this up.

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4 Katie @ Talk Less, Say More September 10, 2012 at 11:30 pm

I don’t have a lot of crock pot experience, but I did make a delicious (vegan) taco filling once that was SUPER easy. I think they used to get a really bad rap back in the day but then I think people started realizing that if you take your crock pot meal and fix it up with some fresh ingredients (like green beans or herbs), it’s SO much better!
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5 Meghann September 11, 2012 at 11:19 am

Do you have the recipe for the taco filling? Would love to try it!

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6 Katie @ Talk Less, Say More September 11, 2012 at 9:00 pm

It’s one of MamaPeas: http://peasandthankyou.com/recipage/?recipe_id=6003917
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7 Angela September 10, 2012 at 11:38 pm

I love Taco Soup in the crockpot!

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8 Kadye September 10, 2012 at 11:41 pm

I desperately feel the need to mail you a bottle of real BBQ sauce (aka: MEMPHIS BBQ sauce) for your Crock Pot adventures.
Kadye recently posted..I hope you all …

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9 Carolyn September 11, 2012 at 9:26 am

You can mail me one! ;-)
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10 Meghann September 11, 2012 at 11:26 am

I wouldn’t turn it down!

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11 Kadye September 11, 2012 at 12:09 pm

E-mail me an address I can send it to and I totally will!
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12 Kelsey September 10, 2012 at 11:41 pm

I do salsa chicken– 2 chicken breasts and a cup of salsa. Cook on high for 4 hours or low for 6-8 hours. Done. Shred it and make tacos, enchiladas, nachos…you get the hint!
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13 Tracey S September 10, 2012 at 11:47 pm

My fav simple thing for the crockpot. I love rotisserie chicken but hate heating the oven for it. Also, I will cook one on the weekend then we just eat off it Sat and Sun when hungry. This is the best way I’ve ever tried. (not my site or anything, just found it to be a good recipe.) perfect for a late night dinner, and healthy, too.

http://www.onegoodthingbyjillee.com/2012/05/how-to-make-your-own-rotisserie-chickenno-rotisserie-required.html

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14 Meghann September 11, 2012 at 11:28 am

Thanks! I love rotisserie chicken too, I’ll give this a try.

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15 Crystal September 11, 2012 at 12:12 am

I’m lazy. I just throw a whole chicken in there and let it cook. Then a bag of steamed veggies and dinner is done.

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16 Michelle September 11, 2012 at 12:12 am

It’s technically called white chicken chili, but it doesn’t actually turn out white…Diced chicken breast, a couple cans of black beans and Great Northern white beans, shredded Pepper Jack cheese and a jar of salsa. I love using “Hot” salsa for the flavor, and a dash of chili and cayenne peppers to make it extra spicy. Set it on medium for 2-3 hours or low for 4 hours.

This was a go-to meal for my roommates and I during the winter months…The best part is, you can make as little or as much as you want and it makes fantastic leftovers!

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17 Addison September 11, 2012 at 12:22 am

I love my crock-pot, it makes cooking so easy! Here are my two favorite recipes.

Brown Sugar & Balsamic Glazed Pork Loin
http://bit.ly/UG1oEn

Apple Butter
http://bit.ly/RP1jOX
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18 Aimee September 11, 2012 at 12:30 am

Big chunks of chuck roast, onions, carrots, potatoes, a packet of dry onion soup mix and a big glug of red wine. Throw some frozen peas in for the last 15 minutes or so. Cozy beef stew!

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19 Anne @strawberryjampackedlife September 11, 2012 at 12:43 am

My husband loves these crockpot enchiladas. Of course I have tried to “healthify” them up or at least add some veggie sides. But he’s a picky eater.
http://strawberryjampackedlife.com/2012/01/26/crockpot-enchiladas/
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20 Grazia September 11, 2012 at 6:06 am

I bought the same crock pot last week, but mine is purple (so cute!). I cooked only some chicken breast with rosemary so far, but I’ve heard that it’s excellent for beans, chickpeas and pulses in general. Can’t wait to try!

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21 Cait @ Beyond Bananas September 11, 2012 at 6:22 am

Good for you using that so quick. I got one for my shower – and I was (am) SO excited about it.. but I haven’t used it yet! I am thinking I will use it more now that I am back to work.. it will be nice to throw a meal in before I leave for school and have dinner when I get home!
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22 Katie @ Peace Love and Oats September 11, 2012 at 6:22 am

I really need to use my crockpot… Ingot one last year and only used it once! I guess it just makes me nervous to leave in while I’m gone
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23 Sara @my less serious life September 11, 2012 at 7:08 am

the crock pot is SUCH a great invention. you’ll find a million uses for it soon enough. try cooking your sweet potatoes in it next – thats my favorite way to do them! plus if you add a touch of cinnamon – your whole house will smell delicious!
Sara @my less serious life recently posted..my less serious day: medicated

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24 Meghann September 11, 2012 at 11:29 am

I would never have thought to cook sweet potatoes in it. Thanks for the tip!

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25 Chelsie @ Balance, Not Scale September 11, 2012 at 7:34 am

The second I get a crock pot I’m making baked apple pie oats. I’m (1) all about the breakfast, and (2) all about the sweet/cinnamon. I’m saving my “crock pot virginity” (haha! love it!) for when I move into my new condo, and that’s definitely the first thing I’ll be making (overnight) to enjoy after I’ve woken up there for the first time!
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26 Meghann September 11, 2012 at 11:31 am

I love the idea of making the apple overnight for breakfast. Smart thinking! :)

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27 Hope @ With A Side Of Hope September 11, 2012 at 7:46 am

I love using the crock pot! I have several good crock pot recipes on the recipe page of my blog. Two favorites are chicken cacciatore and a roast that I made using the Pioneer Woman’s recipe but made it crock pot friendly. :)
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28 Jenn S September 11, 2012 at 8:02 am

Buy crock pot liners from Publix (by the ziplock bags) and clean up will be a breeze. Most amazing invention ever.

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29 Meghann September 11, 2012 at 11:32 am

Thanks for the tip. I have a friend that uses them and it looks like they would make the whole clean-up process so much easier. :)

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30 helen September 11, 2012 at 8:13 am

I adore my crack pot – I call it a slow cooker. Its makes perfect meals for the winter and you can also make some pretty great puddings in it too. I have two great recipes you might like, when I have chance I’ll post them on my blog for you to download.
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31 helen September 11, 2012 at 10:13 am

Oh my god – I just saw my typo! CRACKpot! LOL!
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32 Meghann September 11, 2012 at 11:33 am

CRACK pot ! Love it!

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33 Em September 11, 2012 at 8:25 am

Check out this blog – http://crockpot365.blogspot.com/ for anything you could ever think of making in a crock pot.

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34 Meghann September 11, 2012 at 11:34 am

Thanks! Adding it to my google reader now. :)

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35 Lisa in IL September 11, 2012 at 9:06 am

Boneless chicken breasts & half a bottle of your favorite italian dressing (not the creamy kind). High for 6 hours, serve with a salad and veggies, easy peasy.

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36 Elspeth September 11, 2012 at 9:08 am

Best meal ever: Tex Mex Chicken http://www.kraftrecipes.com/recipes/slow-cooker-tex-mex-chicken-107258.aspx

We make this a least once every two weeks, so easy, great over rice, in a wrap. Add beans for more substance and leftovers are delicious.

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37 Melissa September 11, 2012 at 9:13 am

Shredded chicken!! Just as easy as making pulled pork – and it can be done so many ways — buffalo shredded chicken, taco chicken, etc.

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38 Victoria September 11, 2012 at 9:17 am

have you looked at skinnycrockpot.com? Lots of healthy crock pot recipes.

I love my crock pot, especially during football season when we have guests. People can help themselves as they would like, and it’s minimal cleanup. My absolute favorite recipe is my friend from Mississippi’s turkey chili soup. It is AMAZING and secretly full of veggies that J would never eat otherwise.
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39 Meghann September 11, 2012 at 11:36 am

I had not heard of that site. Thanks for the link – I’m checking it out now.

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40 Abby September 11, 2012 at 9:21 am

We love using Sweet Baby Ray’s Vidalia Onion BBQ sauce. SO GOOD. Plus after we shred the pork, stick it in the oven with a bit more bbq sauce to finish it up!! yumyum!!!! Have fun in all your crock pot adventures!!
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41 Carolyn September 11, 2012 at 9:25 am

Crock pots are amazing! For recipes with bigger veggies, throw them in the bottom first, and then the meat on top. It actually takes the veggies the longest to cook (I’m thinking of carrots in particular), and it keeps the meat from burning.

That’s about as domestic as I get. Keep sharing the good recipes!
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42 Lauren September 11, 2012 at 9:29 am

I have a great, non-traditional roast that everyone who’s tried has love – chuck roast, a whole jar of pepperocinis (with the juice too!), a bit of beef stock to add some liquid, and two packets of dry italian dressing. that’s it! let it go all day, and it makes a delicious roast! i throw it in onions and potatoes and carrots too for a full meal.

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43 Rachel R. September 11, 2012 at 9:39 am

My two favorite crockpot recipes:

Kind of a Mexican-flavored creamy chicken soup (easy to healthify with light cream cheese)
http://heldscraptive.blogspot.com/search?updated-max=2011-09-24T11%3A29%3A00-07%3A00&max-results=7

Crockpot Buffalo Chicken
http://www.sixsistersstuff.com/2012/07/slow-cooker-buffalo-chicken-sandwiches.html

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44 Hannah Hawley September 11, 2012 at 9:48 am

Any pulled meat, summer squash casserole, soups, stews, chilies, applesauce, oh the list goes on!
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45 Hilary September 11, 2012 at 9:49 am

I love my crock pot! This is one of the best things I’ve ever made in it, enjoy!
http://noblepig.com/2012/05/slow-cooker-honey-soy-pulled-pork/

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46 Sam @ Better With Sprinkles September 11, 2012 at 9:53 am

I miss having a crock pot! It’s definitely going on the birthday/Christmas list.

And one of my favourite things to do in the crockpot is a whole chicken – rub it with olive oil, salt, pepper and whatever other flavours you want (garlic, lemon, whatever) through it in the crock pot for 6-8 hours and you’re good to go. It makes the most tender chicken ever!
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47 tania September 11, 2012 at 10:00 am

i make stuffed peppers in the crock pot, the peppers turn out wonderfully sweet! although there is some pre- prep involved, i like to make 2-3 batches at a time, and freeze 2 until im ready to throw them into the crock pot.

i also make oatmeal in the crockpot in the winter, cook it on low, and in the morning, i make up the the wonderful smell of apple cinnamon oatmeal.

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48 Heather September 11, 2012 at 10:01 am

I love my crockpot! I have a recipe for a cheesy chicken on my blog, I also make taco soup, roast, and at Christmas I made cider with red hots melted in. Awesome.
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49 Anne P September 11, 2012 at 10:03 am

We have a crock pot on our registry, too! And we’ve been totally using all our gifts as soon as we get them. :)
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50 Christa September 11, 2012 at 10:04 am

This past weekend I made BBQ Beer chicken from How Sweet Eats blog for tacos for game day. SO FREAKING GOOD! Just a can of beer, a couple bottles of sauce (i was feeding 6 people and making leftovers), and 5 chicken breasts. After 8 hours on low they shredded up without any issues. We had tacos out of them Saturday night, stuffed baked potatoes last night, and there’s still enough for BBQ chicken pizza tonight!

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51 Megan @ The Running Doc September 11, 2012 at 10:11 am

I’m convinced the crock pot is the best invention ever! I think my favorite meal so far from the crock pot has been buffalo chicken. You just throw in 3-4 chicken breasts, 3/4 bottle of Frank’s buffalo sauce, and 1 packet of ranch mix. Cook it for 8 hours on low and you’ve got some seriously tasty buffalo chicken!
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52 Meghann September 11, 2012 at 11:41 am

I like the addition of the packet of ranch mix. I’ll have to try that!

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53 amyt September 12, 2012 at 2:05 pm

via pinterest….. 1 bag of frozen chicken breast – 1 bottle of hotsauce (I like texas pete) 1 packet of ranch dry mix……..7-8 hrs on low…..then take it out shred chicken, put it back in – for around another hour. DELISH

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54 Suzanne @ Fit Minded Mom September 11, 2012 at 10:11 am

I don’t know what I would do without my crockpot!! I am such a fan of them. My fave crockpot recipes are:

pulled pork
beef fajitas…..they are phenomenal cooked this way. YUM!!
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55 Reenie September 11, 2012 at 10:18 am

Oh how I love my crock pot. So easy throw ingredients in the morning ~ and you have dinner when you get home.

I love pot roast. I add the roast, a pkg of Lipton Onion Soup mix, cut up potatoes, celery, onion, and carrots, and a cup of water. Oh so good.

Pioneer Woman has a great receipe on her blog ~ Drip Beef…. there are 2 recipes, the one with the peppercorn (sp) peppers is really good.

There’s also a blog….. I can’t remember the name, but she used her crock pot every day for one year! So, lots of recipes there. I’ll try to find it and post the link.

Happy Crock-potting. =)

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56 Reenie September 11, 2012 at 10:21 am
57 Reenie September 11, 2012 at 10:25 am
58 Jenna September 11, 2012 at 10:28 am

I made ELR’s Tex Mex Chicken Lettuce Wraps last night, and they were great. I added some beans in and have tons of leftover for tonight. http://www.eatliverun.com/crock-pot-tex-mex-chicken-lettuce-wraps/

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59 Emily N September 11, 2012 at 10:30 am

We have done chicken frequently in a similar manner to the pork (I skip onion because I don’t like it though!). I have also done chili in my crock pot. And a roast a few times!
My sister does ribs in hers and then finishes them off on the grill. I have not done this myself, but I have eaten hers and they are AMAZING!
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60 Steph September 11, 2012 at 10:41 am

how have you survived this long without a crockpot??? I can’t imagine living without it!

I have tons of crock-pot recipes, but I love to do pot roasts. I usually throw random veggies in the crock pot with my roast (carrots, celery, sweet potatoes, onions) with a bit of water and leave it on low all day…yum.

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61 Carrie @ Fitness and Frozen Grapes September 11, 2012 at 10:53 am

We’re definitely a crock pot household. During the winter, it’s normal for multiple crock pots to be cooking away. My mom makes delicious soups, and my all-time favorite meal is rice and beans–perfect for chilly days. :)
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62 Rae September 11, 2012 at 11:01 am

Yesss…I knew you would love pulled pork in a crock!! I know that cookbooks are sort of archaic at this point, but check out the “Fix it and Forget it” series if you can-awesome awesome crock recipes!!

My fave recipe is probably taco soup: corn, black beans, peppers, onions, tomatoes, veggie stock and taco seasoning. I prep it the night before and stick it in the fridge-turn on the crock the next morning and soup is ready at 6pm when I get home!
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63 Jessica September 11, 2012 at 11:25 am

Just FYI… You might want to check the instructions that came with the crock pot. The lid is not meant to be locked while cooking. I believe it’s a hazard because of pressure built up from the steam that can’t escape. You only lock the lid if you’re transporting food.

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64 Meghann September 11, 2012 at 11:44 am

Thanks for pointing that out. I’ll be sure to unlock the lid in the future. I guess it helps to read the directions before using a new toy. :)

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65 Jaala September 11, 2012 at 11:46 am

Buffalo chicken dip and crock pot french onion soup! The soup is amazing!

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66 colleen September 11, 2012 at 11:57 am

Love my crockpot! I have four sizes. I made BBQ pork on Saturday for football food and today I threw in semi-frozen chicken breasts, frozen diced onions, cream of chix and mushroom soups, can of diced tomatoes and green chiles, cheddar cheese, and corn chips. Will shred the chicken when I get home and serve it over rice or eat it by itself.

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67 Maureen September 11, 2012 at 12:06 pm

My slow cooker is my BFF. Here are some of my slow cooker posts:

Slow Cooker Lasagna – http://www.organicallymo.com/2011/10/13/slow-cooker-lasagna/

Mexican Chicken – http://www.organicallymo.com/2011/10/20/masterpiece-theater/

Slow Cooker Rotisserie Chicken – http://www.organicallymo.com/2011/12/09/slow-cooker-rotisserie-chicken/
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68 Kelly @foodiefresh September 11, 2012 at 12:46 pm

I have several, but this is one of my favorite — Southwest Crockpot Chicken!

http://foodiefresh.com/2012/01/10/southwest-crockpot-chicken/

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69 Kathleen @ morethaneasymac September 11, 2012 at 12:47 pm
70 BroccoliHut September 11, 2012 at 12:51 pm
71 Sarah September 11, 2012 at 1:28 pm

I use my crockpot every Sunday while I’m marathon training. Cooking is pretty much the last thing I want to do after running for three hours. Two of my recent faves:

http://www.kalynskitchen.com/2011/10/crockpot-recipe-for-sweet-and-spicy.html

http://www.preventionrd.com/2012/03/crockpot-sausage-peppers-onions/
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72 Erin September 11, 2012 at 1:43 pm

I’m actually making this slow cooker pulled pork taco recipe for dinner tonight! I’ve had it before and it’s pretty tasty!
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73 Lisa in IL September 11, 2012 at 2:34 pm

http://pinterest.com/lisaisaac/crockery-goodness/
I have an entire board dedicated to crockpot recipes.

And anything on sixsistersstuff.com has generally turned outwell for me.

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74 Meghan @ After the Ivy League September 11, 2012 at 3:37 pm

My roommate made a crockpot meal on Sunday…and the smell of ribs roasting away was seriously so intoxicating! I’ve been dying to try some pulled pork, I think it needs to happen this weekend!
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75 Meghan September 11, 2012 at 4:33 pm

If you do not want to buy the liner you can spray the inside with cooking spray before adding the ingredients. Makes clean up a breeze since the saucybpartnwillnnot dry out and stick to the sides.

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76 Angela September 11, 2012 at 5:34 pm

My top tip is to buy one of those plug in timers that you use for switching on lamps and such. They are really useful for recipes that don’t need 6+ hours cooking time. I set mine to switch on in the afternoon so by the time I get home from work it’s cooked without turning to mush! As the shorter ones are usually veggie recipes it doesn’t matter if it sits at room temp for a while before cooking.

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77 Ashley @ This Is The Place September 12, 2012 at 7:23 am

Anything from this site – http://crockpot365.blogspot.com/2007/12/alphabetical-listing-of-recipes.html

The chicken and dumpling soup is AMAZING. So freaking delicious!
Ashley @ This Is The Place recently posted..On Bad Races, Real Life, and Letting Go of Things

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78 Brian September 12, 2012 at 10:00 am

Every time I make BBQ in the CrockPot, I always use a bottle of beer. I’ll also prepare a few meals at once, freeze them and just throw them in the morning I want to cook it.

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79 Running Betty October 24, 2012 at 2:06 pm
80 Candice November 12, 2012 at 9:22 pm

Grandma Anderson made a Mexican dish that was amazing! You should ask her :)

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