Slow Cooker Tips

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Spicy Beef and Bean Chili

A couple of days ago I invited you to participate in a Virtual Cooking Class with Chef George Duran entitled Game Day and Slow Cooker Recipes.  Chef Duran gave us a lot of useful information for using slow cookers that today I would like to pass on to you:

  • Use canned ingredients for slow cookers.  If you are going to add fresh ingredients, it is important to add them at the very end, if not they will get mushy.
  • When cooking with meat, sear it first, the searing caramelizes the outside and makes sure all the juices remain inside.  It adds a lot of flavor to the dish.  Try sauteing beef before adding to the slow cooker.
  • Make sure the meat is cooking at at least 165 degrees, so you know the meat is cooking all the way through.
  • Slow cookers are one of the best tools to make stock.  Always strain it through a fine sieve, and you’ll have the most delicious, flavorful stock ever.  Throw away whatever’s left over.
  • One of the few things that are not recommended to cook in a slow cooker is fish or shrimp as they are very delicate, you can add them however at the very end.  Squid and octopus on the other hand are tougher and need a long time to cook, so they are perfect for slow cookers.
  • When choosing a slow cooker, brand does not matter, as long as you are happy with the design, size, and options.  Slow cookers are one of the least expensive culinary tools on the market.
  • Robyn from Robyn’s Online World suggested Cook’s Illustrated website for reviews of slow cookers.


For more recipes for Game Day please visit

Enjoy the Big Game!!

Disclosure:  As a host of the cooking connections class, my time is compensated.  As always my opinions and love for cooking are solely my own.

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