It’s still too hot to use the oven for long periods of time, but I squeezed in one oven-baked recipe last week on a cloudy day! Here’s what was on the menu at my house last week – all tried and true favorites. 🙂
On The Menu
- Green Smoothies
- Yogurt with Blueberries and Peanut Butter Granola
- Salads with grilled chicken
- Taco Casserole over Corn Muffins/Fruit
- Baked Chicken Parmesan Meatballs/Pasta/Caesar Salad
- Creamy Ranch Chicken/Cucumber & Tomato Salad
- Crab Cakes/Baked Potatoes/Caesar Salad
- Chicken Sausage Skillet/Brown Rice/Broccoli
- Date Night
I made that Creamy Ranch Chicken in the slow cooker and regretted it. I’m getting to where I feel like the slow cooker is only good for soups – meat just has a different texture after it’s cooked in that thing all day. Even with a fairly new model I’m not happy with the results.
Does anyone else feel like this? Let me know in the comments!
10 thoughts on “Menu Monday and Slow Cooker Woes”
Honestly…no luck here with slow cooker other than soups. Seems like everything tastes the same when it has been in there together that long. I get more use out of it cooking on the stove them simmering for hours in cooker or even to keep hot while serving a crowd.
That’s about where I am. I love it for chili and keeping meatballs hot on Christmas Eve!
Also a fan of browning the meat before slow cooking. Additionally I’ve found that if you start out cooking on high and then turn it down to low when it starts to bubble the meat tends to turn out better. And maybe the newer slow cookers do this automatically if the cook isn’t home to do it?!? Not sure because mine’s a dinosaur! Have a great day!
Would you believe that I have a new slow cooker and I liked my old one much better? Crazy!
I actually made that same recipe last week in the slow cooker, and thought it turned out well. I used chicken tenders instead of breasts, and then cut them up in small pieces/shreds which made it more like a thick soup or stew. For larger cuts of meat, like roasts, pork, and larger chicken breasts I agree that browning first seems to make a big difference.
I’m glad it worked out well for you, Kathi! I haven’t tried browning first but I need to give that a shot. Thanks!
It’s still super hot here, too. Yuck! What if you cooked the chicken separately and then added it into the rest of the meal shortly before serving? I do this sometimes if I don’t want all the extra stuff that cooks with the chicken to mix into the meal. It’s an extra step, but it seems worth it to me to have a better final recipe.
That’s an interesting idea, I will try that sometime! Thanks!
I’ve had the same slow-cooker meat experience! I have had good luck when I brown the meat first on the stove and then slow cook, and depending how much liquid comes out during cooking…I’ll serve the meat from a separate plate vs in the crock. Serving separate might be more a visual trick for my family, but does help, or I’ll add 2-3T cornstarch + cold water right before serving, to make up a gravy.
I’ve never thought to sear meat before putting it in the crock pot. Thanks for that tip!