One of the best ways to streamline Thanksgiving dinner preparations and save yourself some time is taking advantage of any recipes that can be made in slow cookers.
Use your slow cooker to free your oven up for other tasks
The small kitchen appliance is useful in so many ways. They keep dishes warm, free-up valuable stove and oven space for those dishes that cannot be cooked ahead of time or in a slow cooker and they help keep the house from getting too hot.
I also use a roaster to cook our turkey for these same reasons. I can use the oven to bake all kinds of delicious desserts without worrying about how to cook everything using just my oven.
Here are some of my top Thanksgiving slow cooker dishes:
1. Mashed Potatoes. This is a simple recipe that I have been using for years. Peel 5 lbs potatoes and cut into 1 inch chunks and add to your large slow cooker along with 1 stick of butter and 1 1/2 cups of chicken broth. Cook on high for about 4 hours until chunks are soft enough to mash. Add 1 cup of milk and mash until desired consistency. Add salt and pepper to salt.
2. Green Bean Casserole. This is a simple Green Been Casserole recipe that can be made in a slow cooker and ready to go when dinner is finished.
3. Cranberry Sauce. You can very easily adapt any homemade cranberry recipe you use to a slow cooker version. If you don’t have a recipe. I suggest this one.
4. Stuffing. Do you call it stuffing or dressing? You can prepare any stuffing recipe and add it to a slow cooker to cook for 6-8 hours on low. It doesn’t matter if you call it stuffing or dressing, either way this recipe makes it easy to throw together homemade stuffing and allow it to cook while you work on other components to your dinner.
5. Apple Crisp. This Caramel Apple Crisp Recipe is my family’s favorite! You can cook it in your oven, or add it to your slow cooker and cook on low for 4 hours. Serve warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and enjoy!
I hope you will consider using a slow cooker or two this year in your Thanksgiving dinner preparations to save time and space.
Kristie Sawicki is the author of Saving Dollars and Sense, where she blogs about Money Saving Ideas and Frugal Living Tips, as well the Best Coupons, Deals and Freebies around. You can connect with Kristie Sawicki on Google+.