There is just nothing like the simple comfort that a warm bowl of steaming soup or hearty stew can provide. Especially in winter, when the temperature drops and the air turns icy, stepping through the doorway to the delightful smells emitting from a simmering Crock-Pot is truly one of life’s simplest pleasures.
Although the process of making a soup — the chopping, sautéing, and simmering to slowly and thoughtfully build and layer flavors — can be therapeutic, the ease and efficiency of using a slow cooker for the task is pure magic. Using a slow cooker to make a soup or stew will unchain you from watching the stove as your favorite soup comes together to make one hot cold-weather meal that is bursting with flavor.
Because, for some of us, the best kind of comfort food is the kind that cooks itself. Keep your slow cooker working around the clock with these 33 delicious slow cooker soups and stews perfect for winter.
Here’s a hearty vegetarian stew that is packed full of flavor and freezes beautifully if you happen to have any leftovers!
Serve this classic-style beef stew, which is boosted by cumin and cinnamon spices, over a bed of brown rice to add an extra nutty bite.
Butternut squash soup is a staple during the colder months of the year, and this hearty slow cooker soup is fortified with Italian sausage, spinach and small pasta.
This might not technically be a slow cooker recipe, but that doesn’t mean you can’t use a slow cooker to make this tasty soup. Simply follow the directions with your slow cooker on high until you deglaze with the vermouth, then turn it to low for 4 to 6 hours and blend once everything is cooked and smelling divine.
Everything except the cheesy tortellini is added to the Crock-Pot to be simmered on high for four to six hours. Then, 10 minutes before mealtime, toss in the tortellini with generous shavings of quality Parmesan.
You don’t need to spend hours over the stove working on that comforting chicken matzo ball soup. Let the slow cooker put all the effort in, so you don’t have to.
Use store-bought rotisserie chicken in this slow cooker soup to make it even easier.
A delicious fragrant spiced soup to banish those winter blues. A contemporary twist on slow cooking using good, simple ingredients.
This hearty soup comes together in a flash; just throw everything into your slow cooker and let it go for 4 to 5 hours on low. Served over rice, this is a winning dish.
Butternut Squash soup is a guaranteed winner in everybody’s household. This recipe has a hint of ginger which gives it a nice kick. To convert this recipe to a slow cooker, first sweat the onions, then combine the rest of the ingredients and cook on high for 4 hours before blending into a delicious, silky smooth soup.
Sweat out the vegetables on the high setting of your slow cooker before adding the rest of the ingredients. Then simply cook on low for 6 to 8 hours or high for 3 to 4 hours.
Split pea soup is the perfect budget-friendly soup to melt your winter blues away! This recipe is simple and delicious. If you don't have an immersion blender... get one! Just kidding, feel free to use a regular blender, it works just as well!
This healthy, flavorful soup is loaded with tons of fresh, nutritious ingredients like spinach, carrots, celery and onion. The flavors deepen exponentially while the soup simmers in a slow cooker all day.
This lemon chicken and rice soup is flavored with lemongrass, cilantro, and serrano chiles to give it a unique taste and heat.
Just throw everything in the pot and come back later. It’s almost like magic.
This recipe suggests that you use frozen store-bought meatballs for this delicious soup bursting with classic Italian flavor.
This soup base will emit the most amazing thyme- and sage-laced smells. Thirty minutes before you are ready to eat, add the orzo, zucchini, and spinach to the pot.
Osso Buco is traditionally made with veal shanks, white wine, vegetables, herbs, and a little tomato, but this version uses cubes of stew meat instead of the shanks to accommodate the slow cooker. Don’t skip the lemon zest and parsley as garnish, though, because the flavors are key to unlocking the full potential of the dish.
Meaty poblano chiles are a wonderful addition to corn chowder. Omit the chicken and chorizo if you want to opt for a vegetarian version.
This tortilla soup is made without tortilla strips (thus the “sans”) and is perfect for all those who love the flavor of chicken tortilla soup but can’t stand soggy tortilla chips. It is still packed with spicy kicks of chili powder, green chiles, smoky cumin, slow-cooked chicken, and hearty diced tomatoes.
This borscht will bring a wonderful smell to your house as it slowly cooks. Sliced cabbage is stirred in toward the end of cooking and basil leaves are added for garnish. Serve it with your favorite bread or simply enjoy it by itself.
This chicken soup is something serious: Aside from the fact that it's perfumed with more than 40 cloves of garlic, pinches of saffron, cumin, cayenne, and paprika, it is topped with a poached egg, which, when pierced, infuses the soup with its rich flavor.
The smoked paprika in the chorizo is the key ingredient is this stew. The ingredient list is otherwise short and simple, so be sure to use the best possible ingredients when you recreate it at home.
This chili is incredibly easy to make and full of sweet, smoky, and slightly spicy flavor. Just brown some ground beef and chop a few vegetables before simmering the chili in your slow cooker. There’s really nothing better on a cold night than a big bowl of chili,… except maybe a big bowl of chili that requires virtually no effort to cook!
This slow cooker stew is made with coconut oil and gets a hint of umami flavor from the addition of fish sauce.
This chili is vegan — although it does taste divine when topped with shredded cheese and sour cream. This stew is hearty and delicious and will definitely chase away any winter chills. It also freezes incredibly well, so why not make a big batch and store it in your freezer for a great one-pan recipe you can just freeze, heat and eat.
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