Good things come to those who wait…especially regarding slow cooker recipes. Some think that a slow cooker recipe is a time consuming endeavor that should only be done for special occasions. However, it is quite the contrary. Once you add everything into the pot, you can go about your day as usual. In reality, you’ll probably only spend 5-10 minutes in the kitchen! The benefit of slow cooking, generally, is that the meat becomes incredibly tender, and that the flavor can infuse over time.
Below are 5 general tips that you should know before cooking with a crock pot:
- Don’t fill the crockpot over 2/3 of the way full. The contents won’t fully cook properly.
- Because vegetables don’t cook as quickly as meat, they should be placed on the bottom of the pot.
- Contents on the bottom of the crockpot will cook faster and be moister.
- Before putting meat into the crockpot, try removing as much fat as possible. Fatty foods cook too fast.
- DO NOT lift the lid. Every time the lid is lifted, add another 30 minutes to the cook time.
Slow cooker tips for specific contents:
- Never cook seafood for more than an hour in the crockpot, or it will have a rubbery texture.
- Don’t cook tender vegetables such as tomatoes and mushrooms for more than an hour in the crockpot.
- Spices tend to lose flavor if in the crockpot too long, so include spices last 1-2 hours of cooking.
Slow Cooked Jambalaya with Rice
- PAM No-Stick Cooking Spray
- ¾ pound boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut into pieces
- 1 tablespoon salt-free Cajun seasoning
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 2 cups frozen cut okra
- ¾ cup chopped white onion
- ½ cup chopped celery
- ½ cup chopped green bell pepper
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped jalapeno pepper
- 2 cans (14.5 oz each) Hunt’s Fire Roasted Diced Tomatoes with Garlic, undrained
- ¾ cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
- 6 ounces frozen cooked small shrimp without tail (6 oz = about 20 small)
- 4 ounces turkey smoked sausage, split in half lengthwise and cut into ½-inch slices
- 6 cups hot cooked brown rice
- Hot pepper sauce, optional
- Spray inside of 3 to 4-quart slow cooker with cooking spray. Layer, in order, the chicken, Cajun seasoning, oregano, okra, onion, celery, bell pepper, jalapeño and undrained tomatoes in slow cooker. Add broth.
- Cover; cook on LOW 6 to 8 hours.
- About 30 minutes before serving, add frozen shrimp and sausage to slow cooker; stir gently. Increase to HIGH; cover and cook until shrimp and sausages are hot.
- Serve jambalaya over rice
Author Bio: This is a guest post by Justin D on behalf of Hunt’s. View more easy dinner recipes at Hunt’s website.