Slow Cooker Cauliflower and Cheese

It’s not that you have to hold me down and force me to eat my veggies, it’s just that I think they need a little ‘help’ to make them good. If you add cheese, then they’re great and I’m going to eat them like they’re going out of style. This slow cooker cauliflower and cheese is a super-simple way to make a delicious side dish that anyone will love.
I’ve made slow cooker cauliflower with cheese a number of times. Sometimes I mix it up by using half a head each of cauliflower and broccoli. Or just broccoli. Whatever you prefer, it’s good stuff!

For a little kick, add a few pinches of red pepper flake. For a little crunch, serve topped with a few good sprinkles of French fried onions.

Slow Cooker Cauliflower and Cheese

Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time1 hr 30 mins
Total Time1 hr 40 mins
Course: Side
Servings: 4 -6 servings
Author: Inspired by a recipe from Spicy Southern Kitchen

Ingredients

  • 1 head cauliflower or broccoli cut into florets (or do 1/2 head of each)
  • 1 10.5 ounce can condensed cheddar soup
  • 1 5 ounce can evaporated milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 cup finely diced onion
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar

Instructions

  • Lightly spray a 3-4 quart slow cooker with non-stick spray.
  • Add the florets.
  • In a medium saucepan over medium heat, combine the remaining ingredients. Stir until the cheddar has melted.
  • Pour the cheese mixture over the florets. Cover and cook on low 1 to 1 1/2 hours or until crisp-tender. Cook longer if you like your veggies more tender.

Slow Cooker New Orleans Roast Beef Po Boy

This slow cooker New Orleans roast beef po boy all I need on a cold day. Nothing fancy, just great-tasting tender beef that melts in your mouth. On a French bread loaf (real po boy bread is something that’s hard to come by here in Indy. although I do occasionally make my own), topped with a slice or two of cheese, slathered with plenty of mayonnaise. That’s it.

Oh sure, I could add shredded iceberg and some tomato slices and maybe some onion. Not this time. Just give me that great New Orleans roast beef po boy flavor and I’ll be a happy guy.
You could actually serve this slow cooker New Orleans roast beef po boy like a French dip. Just serve a bowl of the juices from the cooker on the side. The shredded beef is also great over tortilla chips as nachos. Just add some cheese, salsa and whatever your favorite nacho toppings might be!

Also try my slow cooker beef debris po boy sandwich.

Slow Cooker New Orleans Roast Beef Po Boy

For 6 servings you'll want to pile the roast beef on pretty deep. You can easily get 8 servings out of this recipe depending on how much you want to use on each po boy.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time10 hrs
Total Time10 hrs 10 mins
Servings: 6 servings
Author: Mike

Ingredients

  • 3 pound chuck roast trimmed
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 14.5 oz can beef stock
  • 1 10.5 oz can French onion soup
  • 1 cup dry red wine
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 6 loaves French bread
  • 3 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 12 slices Provolone cheese

Instructions

  • Spray your slow cooker with non-stick spray.
  • Add the bay leaf, stock, onion soup, red wine, pepper and garlic powder.
  • Cook on low 8-10 hours or until the beef is completely tender and falls apart. Remove to a cutting board and chop or pull. Return the meat to the slow cooker.
  • Discard the bay leaf.
  • Brown the rolls and slather with the mayonnaise. Don't be shy with it, you might need more.
  • Spoon the meat onto the rolls and top with the cheese.
  • Ladle the juices from the slow cooker into bowls for dipping.

Slow-Cooker Bourbon Cocktail Sausages

I wasn’t going to post these slow-cooker bourbon cocktail sausages when I first made them because I didn’t think that the world needs another cocktail sausage recipe. But after making them, and watching them disappear in no time at a family get-together, I decided I just had to share.

Slow-cooker bourbon cocktail sausages are very, very simple, yet very, very delicious. I actually left out the bourbon and was still left with a (just slightly) spicy sauce that was wonderful with the smoked sausage slices.
I used sliced smoked sausage when I made these slow cooker bourbon cocktail sausages, but you could just as easily add Lit’l Smokies cocktail links. Make sure you let everything get happy in the slow cooker for the full 3 hours. The sauce will flavor the sausages over time, so give them time.

Also try my sweet-and-sassy slow cooker appetizer meatballs.

Slow-Cooker Bourbon Cocktail Sausages

Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time3 hrs
Total Time3 hrs 5 mins
Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: American
Servings: 8 -10 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 pound smoked sausage cut diagonally into 1/2" slices
  • 1 12 ounce bottle chili sauce
  • 1/3 cup bourbon optional
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons grated white onion
  • Red pepper flake or hot sauce to taste (optional)

Instructions

  • Brown the sausage in a skillet over medium-high heat. Drain well.
  • Combine the chili sauce, bourbon, brown sugar, onion and red pepper flake or hot sauce in the bottom of a slow cooker.
  • Add the sausage and stir.
  • Cook on low for 3 hours.

Slow Cooker White Chocolate Peppermint Pretzel Candy

This slow cooker white chocolate peppermint pretzel candy was divine. I don’t know why I didn’t think of melting chocolate in a slow cooker. I’ve always been somewhat challenged at melting chocolate, be it in the microwave or in a double boiler.

The slow cooker made it as easy as it could be, turning out the perfectly creamy smooth chocolate for these white chocolate peppermint pretzel candies. They are nice and crunchy and packed with peppermint flavor. These were an instant holiday success in our household (and at Anita’s office!).
The chocolate mixture in this slow cooker white chocolate peppermint pretzel candy was very easy to work with. I didn’t have to rush to get the mix onto the baking sheets before it began to set. I had plenty of time to do it right.

This candy was easy to make in part because of the shortening. I think that the low-and-slow melting of the chocolate in the slow cooker also helped. I plan on using this same approach with any future chocolate goodies that I make.

Also try my chocolate-dipped peanut butter Bugles.

Slow Cooker White Chocolate Peppermint Pretzel Candy

Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time1 hr
Total Time1 hr 5 mins

Ingredients

  • 5 tablespoons butter flavored shortening
  • 26 ounces white chocolate chips
  • 1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract
  • 1 15 ounce bag pretzel twists, crushed
  • 1/2 cup peppermint candies finely crushed, plus more for topping
  • 3 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips

Instructions

  • Place the shortening into your slow cooker set to low.
  • Add the white chocolate chips. Cover and let melt at least 20 minutes, until creamy smooth, stirring often. Meanwhile, line 3 large baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • Stir in the peppermint extract.
  • Slowly stir in the pretzel pieces and 1/2 cup of the crushed candies. Make sure they are all well combined.
  • Spoon the mixture out onto the baking sheets. Sprinkle with the remaining crushed peppermint candies. Let sit at least 30 minutes until firm.
  • Melt the semi-sweet chocolate chips per the package instructions. Drizzle or pipe over the pretzel candies. Let cool before serving or packaging.

Slow Cooker Holiday Green Bean Casserole

We’ve all had it. The traditional holiday green bean casserole. Good stuff, but not much of a ‘wow’ factor. Well, scrap that and move on to this slow cooker holiday green bean casserole. Same idea, but oh, so much better.

Anita told me to make this again before we were halfway thru the first batch. There’s nothing about it that’s not great. Beans in creamy Alfredo sauce, flavored with water chestnuts, mushrooms and pimentos (or in my case, roasted red bell peppers) and a little cheese. And yes, French fried onions and toasted pecans. This slow cooker green bean casserole screams holidays.
I made this early enough in the fall to get fresh green beans, which I blanched first. Frozen beans work just fine too. But, if you’re like me you’ll want extra French fried onions. No, they’re not for the slow cooker holiday green bean casserole. They’re for munching on while you watch everything cook in the slow cooker.

Also try my copycat of Stove Top’s chicken stuffing!

Slow Cooker Holiday Green Bean Casserole

Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time4 hrs 30 mins
Total Time4 hrs 40 mins
Course: Side
Servings: 8 servings

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds fresh green beans trimmed (or 2 16 oz bags frozen green beans, thawed)
  • 1 15 ounce jar Alfredo sauce
  • 1 8 ounce can diced water chestnuts, drained
  • 1 6 ounce can sliced mushrooms, drained
  • 1 2 ounce jar diced pimentos, drained (I substituted 1/4 cup chopped Mezzetta roasted red bell pepper strips)
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 6 ounce container French-fried Onions, divided
  • 1/2 cup coarsely chopped pecans

Instructions

  • If using fresh green beans, first blanch the beans in boiling water for 2-3 minutes then place in an ice bath to cool. Drain well.
  • In a large bowl combine the beans, Alfredo sauce, water chestnuts, mushrooms, pimentos, Parmesan, pepper and a third of the French fried onions.
  • Lightly spray your slow cooker with non-stick spray and add the bean mixture.
  • Cover and cook on low for 4 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally.
  • Just prior to serving, toast the remaining French fried onions along with the pecans in a small skillet over medium heat. Sprinkle over casserole and serve.

Slow Cooker Copycat Snapple Tea

It’s summer. That means iced tea for me, and in particular, Snapple tea. This slow cooker copycat of the fantastic bottled version hits the spot on a hot day for sure. Just toss a few ingredients into your slow cooker and in a few hours you get great tasting tea. I prefer peach- or lemon-flavored tea, but you can use any flavor you’d like.
For lower calorie, lower carb slow cooker copycat Snapple tea use artificial sweetener and any one of the sugar-free fruit flavors of Torani syrup. I’ve found that some syrup flavors can be hard to find locally. Thankfully, shipping isn’t bad so I ordered a few bottles online. You don’t have to worry about the syrups expiring either, so don’t be afraid to try several different flavors in your teas.

Slow Cooker Copycat Snapple Tea

Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time3 hrs
Total Time3 hrs 5 mins
Course: Drinks
Cuisine: American
Servings: 3 quarts
Author: Mike

Ingredients

  • 3 quarts water
  • 4 family-sized tea bags I used Luzianne decaf
  • 1 cup sugar or sweetener
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon bottled is ok
  • 1/4 cup peach Torani syrup you can use any flavor you like

Instructions

  • Add all ingredients to a slow cooker.
  • Cook on low 3 hours.
  • Serve cold or over ice.

Slow Cooker Jalapeno Pot Roast

It’s not uncommon for me to dream of a meal the night after I’ve had it. What isn’t common is when I dream about a meal BEFORE I’ve even had it. I knew going in that this slow cooker jalapeno pot roast was going to be great. Of course, after a day in the slow cooker the meat was tender and easy to shred. And it has just the right amount of spicy kick to it. It’s definitely not a bland pot roast by any stretch of the imagination.
I set out making slow cooker jalapeno pot roast for po boy sandwiches and that’s it. As soon as I came across the recipe I knew that that’s what I was going to do. And the sandwiches came out absolutely perfect. I could’ve served the pot roast over mashed potatoes or made an open-faced sandwich or even better, used it in tacos, but I wanted a sandwich with some cool toppings like tomato and onion and lettuce to contrast the spicy beef. Perfect!

Also try my slow cooker BBQ pot roast and Mississippi pot roast.

Slow Cooker Jalapeno Pot Roast

Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time10 hrs
Total Time10 hrs 5 mins
Course: Main
Cuisine: American
Servings: 6 -8 servings

Ingredients

  • 3 pounds chuck steak or roast
  • 1 4 ounce can fire-roasted jalapeno peppers, not drained
  • 1 large yellow onion sliced thin
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar

Instructions

  • Place meat into the slow cooker.
  • Combine remaining ingredients in a large bowl and pour over the meat.
  • Cover and cook on low 8-10 hours.
  • Carefully remove the meat and chop or shred as desired, then return to the slow cooker to absorb the juices.

Chicken Sauce Piquante

Watching Emeril Lagasse is what got me interested in cooking. Years ago he had a show, Emeril Live. It was part entertainment and part cooking. Chef’s cooking fascinated me and inspired me to stop eating out of bags or containers. This chicken sauce piquante is one reason why I’ve never looked back fondly at the days when I scarfed down fast food on a regular basis. Nothing I ever had then could even come close to the flavors in this dish. Sure, there are a number of ingredients, and it takes a bit of time, but the end result is layer after layer of incredible rich flavor. Tomatoes, bell peppers, celery and even a bit of heat make for a sauce that was so heavenly I almost forgot about the delicious chicken.
The original recipe for chicken sauce piquante called for a whole chicken, cut into pieces. I prefer thighs so I ended up using boneless skinless chicken thighs instead. In a dish like this one I wanted the extra richness of the dark meat in thighs. And, well, it was easier to use thighs!

Chicken Sauce Piquante

Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time3 hrs 30 mins
Total Time3 hrs 45 mins
Course: Main
Cuisine: American
Servings: 6 -8 servings

Ingredients

  • 12 boneless skinless chicken thighs
  • 1 tablespoon Creole Seasoning
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 medium onion chopped
  • 1 medium green bell pepper chopped
  • 3/4 cup chopped celery
  • 1/2 medium jalapeno pepper seeded, minced
  • 2 cloves garlic minded
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried red pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 28-ounce can whole tomatoes, drained and juice reserved
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • Cooked rice for serving
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley for garnish

Instructions

  • Place the chicken into a large bowl.
  • Combine the Creole seasoning and flour and sprinkle over the chicken. Toss to coat well.
  • Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
  • Working in batches, remove the chicken from the flour mixture, shaking off the excess and transfer to the skillet. Brown on both sides and transfer to a slow cooker.
  • Add the onion, bell pepper, celery and jalapeno to the skillet and saute for 2 minutes, scraping up any bits on the bottom of the skillet.
  • Add the garlic, dried pepper flake, thyme, cayenne and bay leaves and cook another minute.
  • Add the tomatoes without any of the juice. Break up the tomatoes with a spatula.
  • Add the tomato paste, Worcestershire sauce, sugar and salt along with 1/2 cup of the juice reserved from the tomatoes.
  • Bring to a simmer and cook another minute.
  • Add the sauce to the slow cooker (be careful to not splatter any on yourself since it is hot).
  • Cover and cook on low 3 hours or until the chicken is tender but not yet falling apart.
  • Remove bay leaves before serving over hot rice, garnished with parsley.