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11 of Our Best Summer No-Stress Slow Cooker Recipes

When the weather is warm, keep your kitchen cool and get back to enjoying the outdoors with these eleven no-stress slow cooker recipes.

With so many activities and holidays calling us outside during the summer, the last thing you want to do is spend all afternoon in the kitchen preparing dinner. Your slow cooker is the secret weapon that helps you prepare delicious dishes that won’t heat up your house or keep you indoors when the weather is nice. With a lineup of recipes like these, you’ll find yourself slow-cooking all year round. 

Italian Beef Subs 

With tender beef and peppers piled on crusty bread and topped with a tangy giardiniera, it’s not hard to see why these sandwiches are a popular street food in Chicago. Here, your multicooker saves hours by using high pressure to guarantee succulent and juicy results in a fraction of the time. To make this in a traditional slow cooker, add all of step 1’s ingredients to the insert and cook on low for 8 hours. 

 Get the recipe: Italian Beef Subs 

Slow Cooker Sloppy Joes 

Take a bite of nostalgia with this summery riff on Sloppy Joes that requires just five minutes of easy prep. Pre-chopped peppers and onions give a head start to the classic, beefy filling made in the slow cooker with umami-rich Worcestershire sauce, ketchup, and garlic. 

Get the recipe: Slow Cooker Sloppy Joes

Slow Cooker Apple-Berry Crisp 

This recipe takes a simple apple crisp and jazzes it up with fresh red and blue berries, making it an easy choice for any patriotic celebration. The whole crisp cooks right in the insert and makes enough for a crowd.  Swap an equal amount of cornstarch for the flour if you want to make this gluten-free. 

Get the recipe: Slow Cooker Apple-Berry Crisp 

 Slow Cooker Zucchini Bread  

Everyone needs a good zucchini bread recipe to get through summer’s surplus, and this one doesn’t even require the oven! Here the batter is poured right into the insert and cooked on high until a toothpick comes out clean. Letting just enough steam escape while cooking is critical, and if you don’t have a toothpick try using the handle of a fork or a chopstick. 

 Get the recipe:  Slow Cooker Zucchini Bread  

St. Louis Slow Cooker Pulled Pork Sandwiches

Sometimes the best barbecue you’ll eat all year is done inside your house and not on the grill. Hours of slow-cooking break down the tissue in this pork shoulder for tender meat you can shred with a spoon. This recipe makes a lot of servings and reheats well, making it a great candidate for meal prepping and leftovers. 

Get the recipe: St. Louis Slow Cooker Pulled Pork Sandwiches 

Slow Cooker Chili-Cheese Dogs 

These make-ahead chili dogs will bring all the joy of the stadium right from your own home. Cooking the hot dogs in the chili helps build flavor and doubles as an easy self-serving station for game day potlucks or parties. Setting out a topping bar takes this simple crowd-pleaser to the next level. 

Get the recipe: Slow Cooker Chili-Cheese Dogs   

Slow Cooker Chicken Enchiladas  

It seems too good to be true at first, but you can even slow cook enchiladas! Low heat melts the cheese and bakes the tortillas while retaining the chicken’s moisture. Once that magic is complete, all that’s left to prepare is your favorite toppings for an easy weeknight meal . 

Get the recipe: Slow Cooker Chicken Enchiladas  

 Slow Cooker BBQ Baked Beans:  

Your slow cooker takes the “baked” out of these beans without losing an ounce of flavor. Hours of low and slow cooking ensure the sauce thickens and the beans are soft and creamy. Pair with your favorite barbecue meats and cornbread. 

Get the recipe: Slow Cooker BBQ Baked Beans

Honey Mustard Ribs

Who knew the sweet and tangy pairing of honey and mustard would work so well as a meat glaze? Your slow cooker does all the work of getting juicy fall-off-the-bone meat, then a quick sear on the grill caramelizes the glaze and imparts a smoky finish. If you don’t have a grill, you can broil until some spots are lightly charred for a similar effect. 

Get the recipes: Honey Mustard Ribs 

Slow Cooker Strawberry Vanilla Jam  

Making your own jam gives you control over the ingredients and slow cooking gives you a hands-off method that doesn’t require constant stirring or a thermometer. Just simmer on low for several hours as you go about your day and then mash to your desired consistency. Your morning toast will thank you. 

Get the recipe: Slow Cooker Strawberry Vanilla Jam 

Slow Cooker Birria Tacos  

These trendy tacos have been all the rage lately, and our recipe takes what could be a daunting amount of work and simplifies it using your slow cooker. Apart from getting tender and flavorful pork, hours of cooking build an incredibly flavorful broth to use for dipping. For a low-carb option, the shredded birria meat is just right at home in our quinoa bowl variation. 

Get the recipe: Slow Cooker Birria Tacos

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