School’s out for the summer! And that means busy moms finally get a break from all that school day cooking. To give you more time for all the summertime activities, step away from that stove and let your slow cooker do the work for you. It promises ease, convenience, and deep, rich flavor. So here we have 15 easy crockpot recipes for summer – from healthy, to kid faves, to desserts and dips. Just toss in the required ingredients, switch on the cooker, and enjoy a fabulous dish hours later!
5 Healthy Crockpot Recipes for Summer
No greasy frying. Just slow cooking to get the most flavor into lean meat, chicken, and veggies!
- Slow Cooker Chili – Cook a hearty batch of this flavor-rich chili from Hungry Blonde and enjoy it meal after meal (perfect for a summer cookout or picnic, too)!. Serve it with tortilla chips, avocado, cheese, sour cream, and fresh herbs.
- Asian Chicken Nachos – While nachos may be Mexican, who says you can’t give them an Asian twist as in this recipe from Life Made Sweeter? The sweet and spicy chicken is flavored with buffalo sauce and Thai sweet chili sauce. Then, marinated cabbage gives it extra crunch.
- Crockpot Butter Chicken – Thanks to Kitchen Sanctuary, here’s a creamy and spicy chicken dish (but not too spicy for the kids to enjoy too) that’s perfect with a bowl of fluffy rice.
- Slow Cooker Stuffed Peppers – This simple vegetarian recipe is such a colorful and delicious way to eat healthy this summer! Based on the recipe we found at Slow Cooker Gourmet, you just mix the stuffing ingredients, fill the peppers, then slow-cook everything peppers and all!
- Black Bean and Mushroom Chilaquiles -Black beans for protein and a lot of other healthy ingredients like tomatoes, mushrooms, bell peppers and spices come together in this Mexican-inspired dish from Moms with Crockpots. To serve, crumble tortilla chips in bowls and spoon the bean mixture on top.
5 Crockpot Recipes Kids will Love
- Slow Cooker Mac and Cheese – Yes, even this kiddie classic can be made in your crockpot. Try this recipe from Dinner Then Dessert that uses uncooked pasta noodles and cream cheese – and a super-easy “dump in the ingredients, mix, and cook” procedure!
- Easy Crock Pot Sloppy Joes – Speaking of easy, Yummy Healthy has this sure-hit-with-the-kids recipe that uses ground beef or turkey, spices, and ketchup all tossed into a crockpot. Once cooked, simply spoon the mixture onto whole wheat buns, then sprinkle with grated cheese.
- Chicken Pot Pie Chowder – Soup may not be quite your summer go-to dish. But this chowder recipe from Woman’s Day would make a hearty addition to a summer picnic or cookout. And (to be honest) we just couldn’t resist those star-shaped biscuits to go with it!
- Slow Cooker Meatballs – Minced turkey makes lighter meatballs which are better for kids. Plus this dish from BBC Good Food also freezes well so you can batch cook, and simply heat up portions as needed all summer long!
- Slow Cooker Child-friendly Chili – Here’s another great option from BBC Good Food that you can batch-cook and freeze for future meals-in-a-crunch. And the “hidden veggies” make moms happy and kids healthy! Serve with rice or tacos, sour cream, grated cheese, and sliced avocado.
Bonus: 5 Slow Cooker Desserts & Dips
For summer entertaining, beat the hosting hassles! Have batches of half-made desserts that you can just assemble and serve, as well as dips and sauces for sudden guests.
- Slow-Cooker Tropical Bananas Foster – A cold tropical treat for a summer day from Pillsbury! Though named “banana foster,” this dessert also contains fresh pineapple. The fruits are slow-cooked in brown sugar and coconut milk with a dash of rum, then served with vanilla ice cream.
- Very Berry Slow-Cooker Cobbler – Check out this cake-in-a-crockpot recipe we discovered by Betty Crocker. Everything, from the cake mix to your choice of fresh berries, goes right into the slow cooker. Then, it reappears as a delicious dessert to be served with ice cream!
- Slow Cooker Bean and Cheese Queso – Here’s a flavorful way to fancy up a summer snack of tortilla chips, courtesy of Baked Bree. The recipe is a spicy blend of chilies, spices, beer, cheese, and refried beans.
- Cheesy Corn Dip – This rich, creamy chip dip is a winning game-day favorite, as attested to by Kleinworth & Co.. And super-easy, too, as your slow cooker does all the work!
- Slow Cooker White Pizza Dip – For an “instant” appetizer for summer meals or BBQ cookouts, try this pizza-inspired dip recipe from Family Fresh Meals. Make it ahead in your slow cooker, then serve with veggie crudites, stone-ground chips, or rounds of garlic bread.
Clearly, you can’t beat a crockpot for amazing cooking convenience. So try out these recipes and have time to spare for your family’s summer activities!