This is my version of our BBQ pulled pork, which is an easy meal to put together for the slowcooker. I serve this dish with a fresh salad. This one was a cabbage and apple salad with salt pepper, olive oil and apple cider vinegar as a light dressing.
All purpose spice rub
Below measurements in approx descriptions as well, in case you want to quickly sprinkle rub from spice jars on hand.
Make a big batch of this spice rub and you can use it for several different dishes. Put your pork into a freezer bag, sprinkle a generous amount of the spice rub into the bag (approx 2 Tbs), and shake making sure it gets into the pork really well. Leave in the fridge to marinate overnight and put into the slowcooker in the morning, or place in the freezer the next day for a meal later in the week.
In the slowcooker place:
2kg pork shoulder with spice rub
1/8 cup grand marnier (or other orange liqueur)
1/8 cup chicken stock
Cook on low for 6-8 hours. Take out of the slowcooker and shred. Serve with smokey BBQ sauce.
Smokey BBQ sauce
4 diced tomatoes or 1/2 jar of passata
1 diced onion
8 tbs tomato paste
5 garlic cloves
2 tbs spicy Dijon mustard
2 tbs smoked paprika
2 tbs apple cider vinegar
1 tsp liquid smoke ( optional, gives a more smokey flavour )
1 tbs paleo tomato sauce/ketchup (or similar)
1 tsp chilli powder ( add more if desired)
2 cups beef or chicken stock
1 tsp salt
1 can crushed pineapple in juice
Simmer all ingredients in a medium saucepan for at least 30min at a low simmer, then use an immersion blender to purée.
I made this easy slowcooker meal for today’s dinner, and with a few tips it was to quick to organise.
1kg chopped chuck steak
250g mushrooms chopped
3 small sweet potatoes chopped chunky
3 carrots chopped chunky
1 cup chicken stock / bone broth
2 tins tomatoes
1 Tbs Paprika
1 tsp garlic
Salt and pepper
A few sprigs fresh thyme – stems removed (use 1 tsp dried thyme if you don’t have fresh)
Place all ingredients into your slowcooker. I had the beef already diced and frozen from the week before, which I had taken out of the freezer the night before. This way half the prep is done already. I chopped all other ingredients into the slowcooker with the meat and added all the spices. Place the slowcooker on Low for 6-8 hours (mine cooks really hot so I use a 24hr timer to make sure it doesn’t overcook)
Pre cut all slowcooker meat ahead of time and freeze in freezer bag for easy slowcooker meal options later in the week or for a few weeks later!
Put all ingredients into slowcooker the night before while you’re making another meal and put the insert into the fridge for the next day.
Prepare all ingredients for your slowcooker meal on the weekend for an easy option so there is no prep to be done during the week.
The orange and maple syrup in this recipe seems to cut through some of the saltiness of the beef, but I have had it without those two things as well and also loved it, so it is optional, but if you have them on hand, give it a go! If you don’t want to use the oranges just fill up the slowcooker with more water. The white sauce I make is nut free, and is based with coconut cream, so it does have a coconut flavour to it. We don’t mind that, but if you want to, test out some different brands to find the best flavour for a less strong coconut flavour. You can also add extra mustard for a richer sauce. I used white potato here because we ran out of sweet potato, but make sure when you are using sweet potato to cut the pieces quite large.
1.5 – 2kg beef silverside
Enough cloves to randomly spike the outside of an onion
2 star anise (optional – to go with oranges)
2 Tbs maple syrup or honey (you will not taste this)
3-4 potatoes cut in half
4 carrots cut into large pieces
2 Tbs apple cider vinegar
Arrange vegetables around the beef in the slowccoker. Add vinegar, peppercorns, bay leaves, star anise and maple syrup into the slowcooker and squeeze juice from the oranges inside and place oranges on top. Cover with water and cook on low for approx 6hrs. Once cooked, rest for 10min (take away from direct heat of slowcooker and cover lightly with alfoil) to rest before cutting into slices.
2 Tbs Butter (or coconut oil/ghee)
Small Can of coconut cream (approx 270ml)
2 Tbs Dijon or whole grain mustard (or horseradish)
1/2 cup chopped parsley
Salt and pepper
Heat butter/oil & coconut cream together for a couple of minutes on a medium heat. Add the rest of the ingredients except for the parsley and simmer all until it thickens (approx 5-10min) then add parsley and serve with meat and veg from the slowcooker!
Who loves easy meals – I do! The slow cooker is my Fav thing for easy meals during the week. When using a Slow Cooker/ Crockpot, cooking / browning the meat first is optional, however, it gives a nicer colour to the dish and renders off the fat from the meat, giving the end dish a less oily consistancy. Either way is is yummy and a time saver. See my note below for extra tips and tricks.
1 Tbs coconut oil
8 skinless chicken thighs
1 onion, finely chopped
2 parsnips, cut into sticks
3 carrots, cut into sticks
1 cup chicken stock
4 Tbs wholegrain mustard
2 Tbs honey
small handful thyme sprigs
flat-leaf parsley, chopped to serve
salt and pepper
Heat the oil in a large frying pan. Season the chicken with salt and pepper and brown until golden, then remove to a plate. You don’t want to cook the chicken for too long if you are going to be using the slow cooker. Cook the onion in the same fry pan for 2 mins until softened, mainly just to lift the chicken goodness from the fry pan. If you don’t want to fry the onion, that’s ok. You can de-glaze the pan with the stock instead and just put the onion into the slow cooker as is.
If using a Slow Cooker
Place the parsnips and carrots into your slowcooker and add the thighs and the onions. Mix the stock with the mustard and honey, then pour in. Scatter over the thyme, and cook on low for 4hrs or on high for 2hrs. (If you put the all ingredients into the slow cooker raw, cook on low for 6hrs or high for 3hrs.) Serve with chopped parsley and green veg of choice, if desired. I didn’t – it was a meal in itself!
If using a Casserole Dish
Place the thighs and the onions to your casserole dish and add the parsnips and carrots. Mix the stock with the mustard and honey, then pour in. Scatter over the thyme, then bring to a simmer. Cover, then cook for 30 mins on stove top or 1hr in a 180 C Oven, until the chicken is tender.
If using a slow cooker, I like to fry off the meat and onion the night before, put everything into the slow cooker dish, put the lid on and place into the fridge for the next day. Then all you need to do is put it on in the morning.
I have my slow cooker on a 24hr power point timer so I can set it to start cooking later and be finished near to when I get home. This is such a great thing to have so you don’t over cook your dish. Yes, you can over cook meals in the slow cooker!
A great Weekend prep idea is to brown your meat, then put all ingredients for your slow cooker meal into a freezer bag or container to go in the freezer. You now have your quick meal ready to take out of the freezer for later in the week.