These Are the Most Surprising Foods That Can Be Made in a Crockpot

crockpot cooking a meal

There are some unexpected recipes you can make in a crockpot. | iStock.com/matt6t6

“Set it and forget it” and “low ‘n slow” are two phrases synonymous with crockpots. The kitchen tool gets a new home on the counter come fall and doesn’t leave until summer. Whether you’re a rookie or veteran using a crockpot, these recipes will surprise anyone when you tell them how they’re prepared. Keep reading for surprising foods you can cook in a crockpot.

Dulce de leche

Make homemade dulce de leche in the crockpot. This is a great alternative cooking method if slaving over the stove all day doesn’t sound like fun. Blogger, Chungah, of Damn Delicious demonstrates how to make creamy caramel in the crockpot. The secret ingredient is sweetened condensed milk.

Eggplant Parmesan

It’s a quick, indulgent meal. | iStock/Getty Images

Many Italian dishes can be prepared in a crockpot. Eggplant Parmesan is one of them. Seven ingredients is all you need to cook this classic Italian meal. Eggplant Parmesan is the ultimate quick and easy weeknight meal.

Enchiladas

A little prep in the morning turns into a showstopping dinner. | iStock/Getty Images

“I layer enchilada ingredients in the slow cooker, turn it on and forget about it,” Mary Luebbert of Benton, Kansas, tells Taste of Home. Layers of cheese, beans, and veggies is a showstopper and surprising easy to make. Prepare the enchiladas in the morning and get ready for a satisfying dinner in the evening. Pair with crockpot salsa (see page 5) for a complete meal.

Chocolaty peanut clusters

You can’t go wrong with chocolate and peanut butter. | iStock/Getty Images

Add chocolatier to your resume with chocolaty peanut clusters. “Making candies couldn’t be any easier!” Pam Posey of Waterloo, South Carolina, tells Taste of Home. Stirring the ingredients halfway through cooking is as complicated as this recipe gets. In the words of Ina Garten, how easy is that?

Salsa

Tomato salsa with corn tortilla chips

Let your slow cooker take salsa to the next level. | cobraphoto/iStock/Getty Images

Prepping for a dinner party or taco night is made easier with a crockpot. Make a big batch of salsa by combining ingredients in a slow cooker. This salsa takes 15 minutes to prepare, letting the crockpot do the rest of the work while the ingredients cook together for two hours. Impress your family and guests with homemade salsa. They don’t need to know how easy it is to prepare.

A whole chicken

Fresh chicken with spices on vintage background

Simplify your chicken dinner with the crockpot. | iStock.com/Wiktory

Easily prepare dinner by cooking a whole chicken in the crockpot. The recipe creator compares a whole chicken in the crockpot to a rotisserie chicken. Chicken cooks for seven to eight hours and falls off the bone. This is a quintessential example of a set it and forget it recipe.

Burgers

Burgers on the wooden background

Trade your grill for a slow cooker. | iStock.com/badmanproduction

Use a slow cooker in place of a grill or broiler to make burgers. Shape patties as you would normally, and place in the bottom of the crockpot. Cook for 4-6 hours. This comes in handy especially when the weather doesn’t permit outdoor grilling.

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Read more: 10 New Ways to Use Your Crockpot You’ve Never Tried