Don't Have a Slow Cooker? You Can Still Make These 15 Slow-Cooked Meals
Don't Have a Slow Cooker? You Can Still Make These 11 Slow-Cooked Meals
Shutterstock / Elena Shashkina
Luckily, even if you don’t have a slow cooker, you can still enjoy the delicious fruits of the glut of slow cooker recipes available with a few simple modifications. The transition from slow cooker to stovetop or oven is simple if you remember to adjust cooking times and temperatures. Additionally, cooking in the oven or on the stovetop might require a slight liquid adjustment if you plan to cook the recipe faster and at a higher temperature. Slow-cooker recipes tend to use very little liquid because the food is cooked so slowly, leading to less evaporation.
The heavy cast-iron Dutch oven is an ideal replacement for the slow cooker because it tends to distribute heat evenly. If you are comfortable leaving your oven on all day, set it to a low temperature, between 200 (for slow-cooker recipes that call for low) and 250 (for slow-cooker recipes that call for high) degrees F. Place your ingredients in the Dutch oven as you would the slow cooker, and cook as directed in the recipe. Remember to use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature of pork and poultry to ensure it is safe to eat.
We’ve rounded up our favorite slow cooker recipes that will transition from slow cooker to oven or stovetop without a hitch.
Braised Lamb Stew
Thinkstock / PierreLavigne
Feel free to add other herbs, like rosemary or thyme, and vegetables like chickpeas or beans, but this lamb stew is delicious as is. — Yasmin Fahr
Without a slow cooker: Cook in the oven, using a Dutch oven, at 200 degrees F for 2 to 3 hours or until the lamb is tender.
Thinkstock / PierreLavigne
Thinkstock / dbvirago
Be sure to use steel-cut oats for this recipe, as regular oatmeal will not hold up to this length of cooking. If you like your oatmeal very creamy, you can cook it up to eight hours.— WeightWatchers.com
Without a slow cooker: Cook in the oven, using a Dutch oven, at 200 degrees F for 4 to 6 hours.
Easy Slow Cooker Fire Pot Roast
Wait till you try this pot roast; it's easier and tastier than ever! Your whole family will love this simple slow-cooker recipe. Plus, you even get a delicious side dish out of it and can use leftovers for hearty sandwiches. What’s not to love? — Pillsbury
Without a slow cooker: Brown the pot roast on the stovetop in a Dutch oven, then add the liquid and cover. Cook in the oven at 200 degrees F for 2 to 3 hours or until the meat is tender.
Green Chile Slow Cooker Queso
Pair this creamy, spicy cheese dip with breadsticks and serve as an appetizer at your next party.
Without a slow cooker: Cook as directed and then keep warm on the stovetop on low flame.
Mini Cheeseburger Pies
Shutterstock / Richard Griffin
Wrapping the phyllo dough around the burger brings the texture and flavor to another level. Combine it with your go-to burger toppings for a dish you won't forget. — Francesca Borgognone
Without a slow cooker: Cook the patties in a Dutch oven at 250 degrees F for 1 hour. Alternatively, you can cook the patties in a sauté pan on the stovetop for 5 to 6 minutes on each side.
Slow Cooker Carnitas Tacos
Shutterstock / Rebecca fondren
As the weather cools down, there is nothing like coming home to an apartment filled with the aroma of meat that has been slow-cooking all day. These carnitas made my kitchen smell amazing, and they were delicious and easy to make, too. — Carly Goldsmith
Without a slow cooker: Cook in the oven, using a Dutch oven, at 200 degrees F for 8 hours.
Slow Cooker Chicken Pot Pie Soup
Thinkstock / Purestock
Chicken pot pie soup is truly a comfort food soup. It's thick, creamy, and does taste like chicken pot pie without the crust! — Jennifer Drummond
Without a slow cooker: Cook in the oven, using a Dutch oven, at 200 degrees F for 7 to 9 hours or at 250 degrees F for 5 hours.
Slow Cooker Chili with Jalapeño Corn Muffins
Shutterstock / Carol Mellema
With chili, the longer it cooks, the more the flavors marry together. I find this to be true with dishes that have a tomato base with many seasonings. That means you can throw it together after lunch, put it in the slow cooker, and it will be perfect come game time. Leftovers are even better the next day. — Erin Swing
Without a slow cooker: Cook according to the instructions in a Dutch oven on the stovetop. Allow to simmer on medium-low heat for 1 to 2 hours.
Slow Cooker Coconut Nutella Pudding Cake
Shutterstock / MShev
Fact: Anything with Nutella is awesome. Need I say more? This cake is decadent, delicious, and perfect with vanilla ice cream. Or better yet, with coconut ice cream. That would be awesome. Five stars — double it if you're having company. — Karen Peterson
Without a slow cooker: Cook in the oven, using a Dutch oven, at 250 degrees F for 1 ½ to 3 hours or until the cake is done.
Slow Cooker Cranberry Citrus Meatballs
Thinkstock / Hemera
These meatballs are the perfect party food. Throw them in the slow cooker and they’re ready when you are. Make-ahead tips: Make the meatballs and brown them ahead of time. Refrigerate or freeze until ready to use. Mix up the sauce ahead as well and store in refrigerator. A few hours before your shower or party, put the meatballs and sauce in the Crock-Pot. — Shelby Kinnaird
Without a slow cooker: Cook in the oven, using a Dutch oven, at 250 degrees F for 1 ½ to 2 hours or at 200 degrees F for 3 to 4 hours.
Slow Cooker Cuban Braised Beef
If you’re OK with being tortured by these tantalizing smells all day, this recipe is always a winner. Zesty yet comforting, this slow-cooker recipe will be an instant hit with your entire family. — Shelby Kinnaird
Without a slow cooker: Cook in the oven, using a Dutch oven, at 250 degrees F for 4 to 5 hours.
Slow Cooked Eggs with Roasted Tomatoes and Goat Cheese
Shutterstock / Elena Shashkina
You will have loads of roasted tomatoes left over from this recipe. Enjoy them spooned over pasta or grilled chicken breast, or feel free to change up the filling entirely, since these eggs will taste delicious with a multitude of flavor combinations. Just be sure not to overfill the ramekins with ingredients, as you want a nice balance between the eggs and the filling. — Peggy Bourjaily
Without a slow cooker: Heat the oven to 300 degrees F and cook in ramekins set in a water bath for 8 to 10 minutes or until the eggs are set.
Slow-Cooker Hash Brown Casserole
Cheesy, delicious, and totally worth the wait, this slow-cooker meal will have you “mmm-ing” after each bite. Add in bits of bacon or any of your other favorite breakfast meats and your simple side will be transformed into a hearty main dish. — Lauren Gordon
Cook in the oven, using a Dutch oven, at 200 degrees F for 3 hours.
Slow Cooker Mexican Style Quiche
Particularly useful when cooking for a crowd that may be arriving for a mid-morning brunch, this recipe is the perfect blend of classic morning fare and flavorful midday treat. The spices, cheeses, and even the vegetables are all easily customizable to your personal preferences. — Lauren Gordon
Without a slow cooker: Follow the recipe and first cook a crust in the Dutch oven at 250 degrees F for 1 hour and 30 minutes. Then, cook the assembled quiche at 200 degrees F for 2 ½ hours.
Slow Cooker Turtle Monkey Bread
Shutterstock / Ivana Lalicki
This turtle monkey bread is the ultimate chocolate-caramel dessert to serve at your next dinner party. Top with ice cream for a truly decadent experience.
Without a slow cooker: Cook in the oven, using a Dutch oven, at 250 degrees F for 1 ½ to 2 hours.