Our Top Meaty Recipes for Cranking On Your Slow Cooker

Come home to fall-apart, perfectly tender meat main dishes of pork, chicken, turkey and beef with slow-cooker recipes from Food Network.

If there was ever a secret weapon in the kitchen, your trusty slow cooker is it. With its ability to transform tough, often cheaper meats into tender, fall-apart mains of greatness, it’s no wonder that this hands-off cooking vessel is a wintertime staple.

The key to using a slow cooker to its utmost potential is setting it all up in the morning, letting it do its thing and coming home later to a full-fledged, perfectly executed meal. Simply clear some space on your countertop, prep your ingredients and crank on that slow heat for delicately cooked, no-fork-necessary preparations for pork, beef, chicken and turkey.

Beef

Beef can take so many forms in the slow cooker, whether it’s luscious short ribsstick-to-your-ribs beef stewhomemade corned beef or any number of other preparations.

Photo by: Brian Kennedy ©2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Brian Kennedy, 2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

A no-oven take on the special-occasion family favorite, this recipe for Slow-Cooker Beef Pot Roast is one of our finest, with a robust, home-cooked gravy laying the foundation.

PULLED_PORK_SAND_089.tif

PULLED_PORK_SAND_089.tif

Food Stylist: Jamie Kimm Prop Stylist: Pamela Duncan Silver

Photo by: Andrew Purcell

Andrew Purcell

Pork

Ingredients like brown sugar, apple cider vinegar, paprika and tomato paste make Food Network Magazine’s Slow-Cooker Pulled Pork Sandwiches the easiest way to get the coleslaw-topped sandwich favorite even in the dead of winter. Cooked low and slow for hours on end, pork shoulder gains all the quintessentially smoky vibes of barbecue without ever entering an actual smoker.

Slow Cooked Cuban Sandwich

 

Slow Cooked Cuban Sandwich

 

For more takes on slow-cooker pork, pile it into tortillas for Slow-Cooker Pork Tacos or make your own slowly cooked meat for homemade Cuban sandwiches.

MEXIJITA_CHICKEN

MEXIJITA_CHICKEN

©2012 Food Network

2012 Food Network

Chicken

Everything about this spicy Mexajita Chicken makes it an easy meal, from the hands-off preparation to its needing only five ingredients: store-bought fajita seasoning, pinto beans, canned diced tomatoes and a little canola oil, plus the chicken itself. If cooking it on the stove is more your speed, you’re in luck — this recipe includes a how-to for that, too.

FN_FN Kitchens Chicken Curry.tif

FN_FN Kitchens Chicken Curry.tif

Slow Cooker Chicken Curry

©2012, Television Food NEtwork, G.P. All Rights Reserved

2012, Television Food NEtwork, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Slow Cooker Chicken Curry

Switch up your go-to chicken dinners with more slow-cooker ideas, like Indian-style chicken curryeasy tortilla soup and a slow-cooker take on classic chicken noodle soup.

Turkey

You may still be having nightmares over cooking your high-stakes turkey at Thanksgiving, but executing this meat in the slow cooker makes for no-fuss, even-better results. For a sandwich that rivals your go-to pulled pork, pile juicy, spice-rubbed turkey thighs into the slow cooker with ketchup, brown sugar, a little mustard and some seasoning for Slow-Cooker Pulled Turkey Sandwiches. With a little patience, it becomes perfectly shreddable and far more interesting than turkey cold cuts.

Slow Cooker Turkey Chili

Photo by: Brian Kennedy ©2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Brian Kennedy, 2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Slow Cooker Turkey Chili

Or, take turkey out of the sandwich zone entirely. On extra-chilly nights, cocoa-spiked Slow-Cooker Turkey Chili will be just the thing, and Food Network Magazine’s Slow-Cooker Moroccan Turkey Meatballs are cooked in a mix of diced tomatoes, apricots and chicken broth for extra-moist and -flavorful results.

MEATBALLS_097.tif

MEATBALLS_097.tif

Slow-Cooker Moroccan Turkey Meatballs

Photo by: Andrew Purcell

Andrew Purcell

Slow-Cooker Moroccan Turkey Meatballs

Load up on more of our top slow-cooker recipes here.

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