Just enough time this week to pop in with an early Thursday Tip. Here are a few favorite slow cooker holiday recipes, perfect to take to a potluck or host a large group at home.
First up is a favorite at the office (I’ve taken a double batch in for several work potlucks now), Paula Deen’s Slow Cooker Mac N Cheese. Okay, I admit 1. I’m not a huge fan of Paula Deen (not even before the whole “racist” shenanigans) and 2. This is ridiculously unhealthy for you. The thing is, it’s outrageously delicious, serves a large group, and is super easy to make. Sold.
I’ve made a few of my own tweaks to the recipe, but you can find the original here.
Slow Cooker Mac N Cheese
2 cups elbow macaroni, cooked and drained
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter, cut into pieces
2 1/2 cups grated sharp cheddar cheese
1/2 cup sour cream
1 can condensed cheddar cheese soup
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup whole milk
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
Combine all ingredients in slow cooker. Cook on low for 3 hours, stirring occasionally.
Yes, that’s truly it. Paula has you melting the cheese and butter ahead of time and adding 3 eggs. I don’t have time for that shiz. Plus, if you haven’t already gathered, I’m an incredibly lazy cook. So I was like “screw you Paula, your pre-melted sauce, and your eggs.” Guess what? Came out the same as when I followed the directions. When I take this one in for a potluck, I cook the macaroni the night before and keep it in the fridge overnight. In the morning, I grab all my ingredients and go, then throw everything in there and start cooking it at work. Don’t panic if your cheese looks clumpy when it first starts to cook. It all melts together beautifully over time (just be sure to stir it every once in a while).
Next up? Another classic holiday side dish. Mashed potatoes- in the slow cooker- and you don’t have to peel them! Mind blown, right? Mashed potatoes are tricky as a potluck food, so I was super excited when I found this recipe and could bring mashed potatoes to our holiday potluck last year.
Slow Cooker Mashed Potatoes
5 lbs red potatoes (or sierra gold), diced and unpeeled
1 cup water
1 cup butter, cut into pieces
1 tablespoon salt
3/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 1/3 cup milk
Combine all ingredients except milk in slow cooker. Cook on high for 4 hours. After 4 hours, mash potatoes by hand or with a mixer. Add as much milk as needed till you achieve the right consistency.
Yes, that’s it. For the potluck I just did the same kind of thing as I did for the mac n cheese- I cut up the potatoes the night before and took all ingredients into work with me so it could cook. Yes, I also took a potato masher (the potatoes get so soft that mashing is no biggie).
Hope everyone has a safe and happy Thanksgiving!