Adapt a recipe for the slow cooker

Article by: Allrecipes staff  |  Picture by: Linda
Adapt a recipe for the slow cooker
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You can adapt many conventional recipes for the slow cooker. Any oven or hob recipe that has some moisture in it - whether it is water, stock, wine or sauce - will work in your slow cooker.

Halve the liquid amounts

Because slow cookers work at low temperatures with lids on, there is hardly any liquid lost during cooking. With most cooking methods, the liquid in a dish turns to steam and evaporates, with a slow cooker the steam collects on the lid. So if you're inventing your own slow cooker recipes or adapting your favourite hob and oven recipes for the slow cooker, you need to decrease the amount of liquid you use.
Adjust cooking time

For every hour you'd cook something in the oven or on the hob, allow 8 hours on low or 4 hours on high. (When in doubt, turn it on low and leave it all day or overnight.) The LOW setting on a slow cooker is approximately 95 degrees C and HIGH is about 150 degrees C.
Choose your cuts wisely

While you can cook just about any kind of meat in the slow cooker, some cuts are better than others. Chicken on the bone, as well as cheaper cuts of beef, lamb and pork work really well in the slow cooker.
Just a few final tweaks...

Towards the end of the cooking time you can reduce any excess liquid by removing the lid and turning the slow cooker up to high. This is also the time to thicken the sauce or to stir in cream, soured cream, creme fraiche or grated cheese and to adjust seasonings or add fresh ingredients like chopped herbs or lemon juice.

Check out our Slow cooker recipe collection for loads of inspiration!
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  • Great tip about reducing the liquid or removing the lid and switching to high.I usually end up reducing in a saucepan at the end of cooking time!
    Posted: 17 Jan 2012 Easy
    Thanks. Only bought my slow cooker today, so this is really helpfull
    Posted: 03 Jan 2012 Easy
    • joken
    • Intermediate
    • leeds, UK
    Thank you for those tips. been slow cooking for years but always following recipes in the slow cooker book. Now I can play around and adapt my own
    Posted: 22 Nov 2011 Easy


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