A Crock Pot is a counter-top electrical appliance that uses moist heat to cook food over an extended period of time. The term “Crock Pot” is often used interchangeably with “slow cooker.” The term Crock Pot is basically a brand name of a slow cooker trademarked by the Sun Beam Products company. A Crock Pot can make it easy to cook delicious meals: simply toss a variety of ingredients into the cooker early in the day, cook for several hours, and by dinner time you’ll have ready-to-serve dish. They can be a lifesaver for busy parents who love to eat delicious, home-cooked meals but don’t have too much time to cook.
Read on for three great-tasting ground beef Crock Pot recipes.
Who doesn’t love chili? This is one of the easiest ground beef recipes you can make in your Crock Pot, so it’s great for the rookie cook. The best part is you can exchange and add lots of ingredients to shake things up and customize the dish to your particular tastes.
For basic chili, gather a pound of ground beef, two 15-ounce cans of beans (you can mix and match the beans–red kidney and cannellini beans are great), one can of drained kidney beans (black beans work well, too), three quarters of a cup of diced onions, three quarters of a cup of diced pepper (red or green), two cans of tomato puree, half a tablespoon of chili powder, a quarter teaspoon of black ground pepper, a dash of hot pepper sauce, a teaspoon of salt, three quarters of a teaspoon of oregano, half a teaspoon of parsley, and three quarters of a teaspoon of basil.
Cook the beef in a greased skillet until brown. Drain the oil, then add the beef and the rest of the ingredients into the Crock Pot and cook for eight hours on low heat. And that’s it!
2. Chili Macaroni and Cheese
The chili version of macaroni and cheese is a fun and delicious combination of the chili and the mac and cheese dishes that can easily be made in your Crock Pot. You’ll need a tablespoon of olive oil, a pound of ground beef, a cup of diced onions, two cans of tomato puree, one packet of taco seasoning mix (or you can make your own by using spices like ground black pepper, oregano, parsley, basil, etc.), one can of pinto or black beans, two teaspoons of ground cumin, 1.5 cans of drained whole kernel corn, half a cup of chopped pepper (green pepper works well), a package of macaroni and cheese, and shredded cheese and cilantro for the garnish.
Use the olive oil to grease a frying pan and cook the beef and onions over medium heat until the meat is thoroughly cooked. Add the meat and onions along with the tomato puree, taco seasoning, beans, ground cumin, corn, and chopped pepper to the Crock Pot and cook over low heat for five to seven hours. Allow yourself about thirty to forty minutes to cook the macaroni and cheese according to the instructions on the package. Once the Crock Pot ingredients are cooked, mix them with the mac and cheese and cook in the Crock Pot for an additional ten to fifteen minutes. Garnish with shredded cheese and cilantro before serving.
3. Beef Shepherd’s Pie
This dish is a favorite in the United Kingdom which has also become very popular in the United States. Gather two pounds of ground beef, a cup of chopped onions, 1 garlic clove (chopped), a can of diced tomatoes, a bag of frozen peas, a cup of chopped carrots, a teaspoon of salt, 2 teaspoons of oregano, half a teaspoon of pepper, packaged instant mashed potatoes, and shredded cheese as a garnish (if desired). This recipe makes enough for about eight people, so make sure to make enough mashed potatoes since they always go quickly!
Cook the ground beef in an oiled skillet until brown. Then put all the ingredients in the Crock Pot except for the mashed potatoes and cook over low heat for seven to eight hours. About thirty to forty minutes before serving, cook the mashed potatoes according to the package instructions. Add the mashed potatoes on top of the Crock Pot ingredients and cook for an additional half hour. Add the shredded cheese at the end, right before serving.