Holiday prepping, baking and long hours in the kitchen may have you leaning towards quick, hearty meals for the rest of winter. Many have their own ideas about the best invention since sliced bread, but the tried-and-true crockpot is a top runner in that department! Put away the pots, pans, and baking dishes. Give the dishwasher a rest. Gather tasty combinations of ingredients then sit back and let your slow cooker make a sensational meal, dessert, or filling appetizer you and your family will fall in love with! If you need some warm winter meal ideas, you came to the perfect place! Here are six mouthwatering, fill you up, no place like home options that will keep everyone asking for more!
Buffalo Chicken and Chips
After overwhelming holiday feasts, sometimes the simplicity of a chip and dip kind of meal is what you’re craving! This one is easy, delicious, and a real crowd pleaser!
Cost: Approximately $15 including the chips. It serves four or more with generous portions.
Tip: catch the chicken breast on sale, stock up, and keep several in your freezer to make this dish extremely cost-effective!
2 boneless chicken breasts
8 ounces of original ranch dressing
8 ounces shredded cheddar cheese
8 ounce block cream cheese
1/4 cup blue cheese dressing
1/2 cup of Franks buffalo sauce (More can be added for extra heat)
Add all the ingredients to your crockpot and cook on high for four hours.
Shred the chicken when it is done and tender.
Serve with celery and carrot sticks and of course your favorite tortilla chips.
Thoughts of a cold, snowy night bring to mind a pot of something cooking over a blazing fire. What better contents than a simple bowl of chili, loved by everyone!
Cost: Approximately $14.
Tip: Use ground chuck for more meat and less fat which means more to go around!
2-pounds ground chuck
2 packages McCormick original chili mix
4 8-ounce cans of tomato sauce
2 15-ounce cans of red kidney beans
Brown ground beef in a large skillet and drain off fat.
Place beef and remaining ingredients in slow cooker.
Stir until well mixed then cover.
Cook eight hours on low or four hours on high.
Stir occasionally while cooking.
*Optional: Top with sour cream, shredded cheese, Fritos, and/or chopped green onion.
Chicken Taco Soup
Serve up a hot bowl of fiesta goodness on a cold winter's night!
Cost: Approximately $13 for a pot full to fill the family!
2-3 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 cup of mild salsa
15 ounce can black beans, rinsed and drained
15 ounce can pinto beans, rinsed and drained
15 ounce can kernel corn, drained
14.5 ounce can petite diced tomatoes
1 tablespoons taco seasoning
2 cups organic chicken broth
2 teaspoons cumin
Place salsa, black beans, pinto beans, corn, diced tomatoes, taco seasoning, and chicken broth in slow cooker.
Stir to combine.
Place chicken into the slow cooker so that it’s completely covered by the other ingredients.
Cover and cook on low for 6 hours.
Remove chicken and shred.
Stir chicken back into the soup.
Serve with toppings as desired.
*Optional toppings: cilantro, shredded cheese, Fritos or tortilla chips, sour cream, sliced avocado, chopped green onion.
Barbecue Chicken or Pork Sandwiches
This is the perfect solution for your taste buds when you want summer flavors this winter!
Cost: The BBQ meat will run around $10 for multiple servings. The sides are up to you but shouldn’t go over $4.00!
3 boneless chicken breasts or a 3-4 lb. boneless pork loin roast
1 1/2 cups ketchup
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup finely chopped bell pepper
1 small onion, finely chopped
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp McCormick chili powder
1/4 tsp basil
Cook meat (fat side up on pork) in oven at 425° for 40 minutes per pound.
Add meat to crock pot
Add remaining ingredients
Stir as if basting occasionally
Cook on low for 4 hours.
Serve on buns with fries or potato chips
Just because the Christmas cookies are gone doesn’t mean the craving for something sweet has said “to all a good night!“ Keep it sweet but make it healthy with a cinnamon apple scent to fill your home with the aroma that is perfect all season long!
Cost: This dish will put smiles on faces for dessert or breakfast for around $10.
8 green apples cored, peeled, and sliced
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 1/4 cup flour
3/4 cup old fashioned oats
1 1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tbsp cornstarch
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup walnuts or pecans
1/3 cup raisins
4 Tbsp butter
3/4 cup apple juice or cider
Core, peel, and slice apples (thicker makes them firmer, thin slices make it mushier).
Put apples in a bowl.
Mix cinnamon, 3/4 cup flour, 1/2 cup oatmeal, 1 cup brown sugar, and cornstarch.
Add raisins and/or nuts
Add apples and fold together until all apple slices are coated well.
Spray the inside of the crockpot with non-stick spray.
Pour apple mixture in cooker.
Add apple juice/cider on top of apples.
In another bowl mix together the remaining 1/2 cup of flour, 1/2 cup of brown sugar, salt, melted butter, and the remainder of oats.
Sprinkle this mixture on top of the apples in your slow cooker.
Put the lid on and cook on low for 2 1/2 hours.
Serve alone or top with vanilla ice cream.
Breakfast in a Crockpot
Here’s a healthier version of a breakfast crockpot casserole to get any winter day fueled up and off to a good start!
Cost: This healthy breakfast will run in the neighborhood of $15 which is a fraction of a morning meal at well-known restaurants. Plus, your whole family can get free second servings at no additional cost!
2 bell peppers, chopped
1 small head of broccoli, separated
1/2 onion, chopped
4 egg whites
8 whole eggs
1 30-oz bag of frozen hash browns
4 strips of cooked bacon
2 tsp mustard, stone-ground
1/2 tsp garlic salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 tsp salt
8 oz shredded cheddar cheese
3/4 cup milk
In a medium bowl, whisk together the whole eggs, egg whites, milk, mustard, garlic salt, salt, and pepper. Set aside.
Lightly grease the bottom of the crockpot.
Place half of the hash browns on the bottom.
Layer with half the bacon, chopped onion, bell peppers, broccoli, and cheese.
Add the other half of the hash browns.
Top with the remaining veggies, bacon, and cheese.