Join the Slow Cooker Odyssey with Carrington Fox

With her first column, “Slow Cooker Odyssey: It Begins,” food writer Carrington Fox has embarked on a journey that promises to give us all a winter of excellent recipes. Share your own slow cooking ideas here—we’re all ears.


I loved Carrington’s sweet potato soup article and am looking forward to more. I’m crazy about my slow cooker, I use it more than anything.
I’m so glad you asked for slow cooker ideas! I came up with this one years ago and impressed myself no end. I share it with anyone who’s interested, even if they’re just pretending. I made this up on my way out the door one morning, literally. Coat on, keys in hand, kid already buckled in, I remembered about dinner.
Put 2 or 3 frozen boneless skinless chicken breasts in the slow cooker. Add about half a bag of baby carrots and half a bag of frozen corn. Dump a jar of salsa on top, rinse the jar out with just a couple tablespoons of water and add that, cover and cook on low for 8 hours or so. Salt to taste during the last hour or so.
For the record, my baby carrots that day were pretty tired, the corn was Trader Joe’s, the salsa was Paul Newman’s medium hot. That’s what was in the cupboard and freezer and fridge that morning. Anything works, variations are endless.
Thanks for letting me share!


Thanks for this. I have been wondering if salsa wd work in the slow cooker. I seem to always have half-used-salsa-that-is-about-to-go-out-of-date.

I made the sweet potato soup and it was a hit!


Crock pots are the best and I’ll be looking for updates to this column. I will recommend that everyone stocks up on this babies: Life. Changing.


I can’t wait for more slow cooker recipes from Carrington. Last weekend I hit pay dirt with the combination of Lipton Onion soup mix, a can of Dr Pepper and a pork butt. I would have been a happy cook in the 1950s, I know.



That is a heroic story–getting dinner together while kid is strapped in the car seat.

I use salsa + protein quite a lot in the slow cooker. Lazy Pulled Pork (chicken, beef).


Here’s my favorite slow cooker recipe. It’s from Nom Nom Paleo, and it changed the way I think about slow cookers. (I always thought of them as big bathtubs of food, very liquid-forward.)

Ingredients: beef brisket, kosher salt and smoked paprika

Lay beef brisket in the slow cooker. Season liberally with salt and smoked paprika. (Smoked paprika is a staple in my house, if I didn’t have it, I think I’d sub chili powder and cumin to try to get a smoky taste.)

Cook on slow for 8 hours or so.

NO LIQUID! You get brisket cooked to a deliciously ropey, falling-apart texture. Miraculously, it is not dry. The hardest part of this recipe is going to the store and getting a brisket. I find that challenging sometimes.


Try it with Strongbow Apple Cider as part of the liquid if you like the apple taste; delicious!!


I’m about to make the sweet potato soup for tonight’s dinner. Hubby usually cooks dinner (he is a splendid cook!) but he attempted to cut off his baby finger yesterday (not on purpose – a bad combination of haste, very sharp pruners, and a wet pepper plant), so I’m the dinner cook for at least a few days. I came onto the site to double-check the recipe (Hah! a poor excuse!), and half an hour later I’m still here wandering around in the lounge peeking over everyone’s shoulder. Time to get back to work… pretty soon.


I am in fact cooking the sweet potato soup as I write this-I- threw in a Granny Smith apple this time along with carlielery, carrots, onion and garlic. Will report.


I’m really looking forward to playing with the slow cooker that my Mum is going to bring for me to play with when she comes to stay at the end of the month. I shall report back once I’ve tried it out!

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This post was a game changer for me! Last week I cut up a bunch of sweet potatoes, threw in a chopped onion, poured off some veg stock, and voila! Last night I adapted a recipe for spring stew from Jack Bishop’s A Year in the Vegetarian Kitchen. I reduced the liquid by 1 cup, and, boy, oh, boy, was I happy to come home from work to that cooking-all-day-but-not-really smell!


I threw in one Granny Smith apple in addition to a pile of sweet potatoes (two different kinds) carrots, celery, garlic, and an onion. Not too sweet at all. In fact, I would like a touch of sweetness and I"m still figuring out how to season the soup more to my taste. I started the soup too late last night for us to have it for dinner (husband hunted and gathered on the way home instead) but now I have soup to take to work for the week.


It’s never bad to have soup!


I made the sweet potato soup last week but couldn’t resist the chance to add cauliflower because it’s November and that’s what’s in my fridge! Thumb’s up all around.

The brisket recipe sounds delicious, have to put that on the short list. My go-to pulled pork recipe is using the McCormack’s Pulled Pork Slow-Cooker package, but I double the brown sugar, ketchup and apple cider vinegar because we like more sauce. Add some homemade coleslaw and Martin’s Potato Rolls and you’ve got a classic.


No, in fact, I was gone last night and my husband had voluntarily eaten a bowl of it without my prompting. Recipe’s a winner.


I made this yesterday, it was excellent! Thumbs up from everyone at the table.

So glad, Susan.

I made it this week with a frozen chuck roast and was surprised that it was even better than brisket! (It’s such a thrill when the cheaper thing turns out to be better than the more expensive thing.) Also, it was a really small chuck roast (about a pound and a quarter), so I didn’t end up having to eat it for a solid week. Makes such excellent hash, and Olive is in absolute heaven whenever it’s on hand.


Made the sweet potato soup today; so good!

after reading about your sweet potato soup, I saw a gorgeous pot of soup being sampled at Trader Joe’s, a mix of 2 of their convenience foods involving carrots, ginger and a quinoa pilaf. The colors! bright yelloworange, dots of red and pepper green… at home I did your sweet potato trick but added some sauteed pepper and onion and some cooked quinoa. wow. the possibilities!