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Recently, I had the opportunity to review the Casserole Crockpot. Up until a couple of months ago, I had NO idea that they even existed. But when I saw it, it was love at first sight. I knew this thing was going to change my world!
Okay, maybe that’s going a little too far, but, seriously, it has become a great help to me in the kitchen. I honestly don’t understand why more people don’t know about this baby. It’s a a great companion to the regular crockpot and a lifesaver for all of us who find ourselves running around like mad chickens with no time to make good, stomach filling meals.
Here’s what you need to know about the Casserole Crockpot, including why you need one in your kitchen.
1. REMOVABLE DISH-The casserole crockpot comes with a stoneware dish, just like a 9×13 pan, that can be removed. It can also be used in the oven if you end up needing to warm something with an oven. It’s also nice to remove it for serving.
2. FASTER COOK TIMES-It has three settings-low, high, and warm. Dishes that don’t have raw meat can be cooked in 2-3 hours on high while others with raw meat take about six hours on low (like a regular crockpot). You would still want to cook a roast in a regular crockpot; this one is meant more for casseroles or oven type chicken dishes. You can also find the programmable Casserole Crockpots if you like that extra step of convenience (it costs a little more).
3. CONVENIENCE-My son recently started baseball. This year, it takes up three nights a week with practices and games. Many times, I have had to run off to a game right during the time I would normally make dinner or when something would be cooking in the oven. It can be a drag because I really love a good casserole and many of our favorite dishes require the oven. Casserole Crockpot has been a superhero since I got it, flying in to save my day! Just this week, I had a game at 5. It was 4:40 and I hadn’t figured out what to do for dinner yet. I decided on lasagna. Yes, lasagna. I have a really simple recipe that my kiddos love. Anyway, it took about 20 minutes, including cooking the sausage and noodles, to get it layered together in the crockpot. I set it on high and we ran out the door, a little late to the game. Two hours later, we came home and the lasagna was perfectly cooked. The cheese was bubbly and slightly golden. It was such a relief for me to have it ready to serve. I didn’t have to go into panic mode and find something to throw together. Plus, my family all loved it and went to bed happy. My five year old had three pieces!
4. NO MORE HOT KITCHEN-It’s started warming up and so has my kitchen. We have a gas stove and oven and a small kitchen. Even in the winter months when I cook, our kitchen become stifling. In the summer time, it can be unbearable! But now, with the combination of the casserole crockpot and my regular crockpot, I literally don’t have to use my oven. I can make a roast in the regular and then a side dish, like party potatoes, in the casserole dish. It’s just a matter of getting them timed correctly. If you were to do a roast, it would need to go in the regular crockpot about 3-4 hours before you would hook up the casserole crockpot with your side dish.
5. NO MORE JUGGLING-I know that some newer kitchens are coming with a double oven. Those people are very lucky! But, we have an older home, one that we love, and it has just one oven. I have found myself frustrated on many occasions, especially when making a nice meal with several items, because I have to cook things one at time. Unfortunately, not all dishes can be baked at the same temperatures. So what happens when you have a chicken dish that needs to be baked at 375, a side dish at 350, and biscuits at 400? I finally found a solution and it’s my new best friend. If I need to, I can cook one thing in the oven, have another in the casserole crockpot, and another in the regular crockpot. For example, for Sunday dinner, I have cooked a roast in the regular crockpot, potatoes in the casserole, and then I have been able to bake my rolls in the oven and have everything done at the same time. You can even bake a dessert in the casserole crockpot. It’s true-I made brownies in mine!
I have only had my little crockpot for about a month and I have been experimenting like crazy with it, and I have more plans to come. Here’s what I have made so far. I should note that I haven’t had anything not work out yet!
Ultimate Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Brownies
The Best Party Potatoes
Cran-Raspberry Dump Cake
Easy Cajun Ranch Chicken
BBQ Pork Chops
It’s a nice list so far! I still would like to try making rolls and breadsticks in it. I will definitely update this list as I work on things and link you to all of the recipes that I use, which included instructions for both conventional ovens and the crockpot.
I have also found all the different styles they have and linked them below. So far, all of the prices have stayed right around $40. Mother’s Day is just a couple of days away and I would highly recommend this as a gift for Mom! It would be a great wedding gift as well. Many of the stores will allow you to buy online and pick up in the store, so you don’t have to go searching for it or wait in line. I would love to hear if you buy one and how it works out for you.
Also, I have been working very hard on my very first eBook! It’s a week of easy recipes that includes a grocery list. I have included the instructions for using the casserole crockpot too. All of these recipes are family favorites and have been easy to get done quickly on busy baseball filled nights. Right now, it’s only available to my Newsletter Subscribers and it’s FREE! If you haven’t already, sign up for my weekly newsletter and it will be delivered to your inbox. All eBooks are going to be sent out by Monday, May 11.