Are you all about your slow-cooker? If not, you should be! Slow-cooked meals are not only affordable but will also cut your energy bill. Check out our favorite slow-cooker recipes in this slideshow!
Slow-Cooker Stout & Kitchen Stew
Chicken thighs can take plenty of cooking without getting tough or drying out, which makes them perfect for the slow cooker. Here we braise them in Guinness stout along with hearty vegetables, with just the right amount of bacon for added savoriness.
By cooking your own dried beans, you save money, reduce sodium and get better flavor along with, surprisingly, more vitamins and minerals. If you can't use the whole batch, freeze surplus cooked beans for later use in soups, salads and dips.
In France, this classic stew made with beef, vegetables and red wine would be known as a daube. Slow-cooking the surprisingly lean beef shanks melts and softens the connective tissue, producing succulent results. If you prefer, use nonalcoholic wine.
This wholesome sweet-and-sour soup combines beef, caraway seeds, sweet paprika and cabbage—ingredients that star in a number of German dishes. For an even heartier soup, add diced cooked potatoes along with the cabbage. Recipe by Nancy Baggett for EatingWell.
Earthy mushrooms, tomatillos and a subtle layering of spices combine to give this full-bodied vegetarian chili a deep complexity of flavor. Note that dried beans need to be soaked before going into the slow cooker. Once that's done, the chili can gently bubble for hours.
This brothy stew is boldly flavored with a blend of characteristic Middle Eastern spices and finished with fresh spinach and fiber-rich chickpeas. Economical lamb shoulder tenderizes beautifully when leisurely cooked in a slow cooker. If you can't find boneless shoulder stew meat, do not substitute more-expensive lamb leg. It tends to dry out during slow cooking. Instead, purchase lamb shoulder chops and debone them. Serve over bulgur and accompany with a salad.