Slow Cooker Mexican Haystacks

My favorite kind of food…. healthy and delicious!!  This is a also a great meal for anyone with kids because they can pick what toppings they want and, I can attest, may eat impressive amounts afterwards.  This idea came from Six Sisters’ Stuff and couldn’t be much easier.


Slow Cooker Mexican Haystacks

  • 6 or more frozen boneless/skinless chicken thighs
  • 1/2 packet your favorite taco seasoning
  • 1 jar chunky red salsa (I used a 24oz jar, but less would be fine too!)
  • cooked rice (we like to use brown rice!)
  • Mexican blend shredded cheese
  • corn
  • red bell pepper diced
  • onion diced
  • other toppings of your choice!


Plunk your chicken in the crock pot and sprinkle taco seasoning on top.  Dump your salsa over the chicken, cover, and cook on low for 6 – 8 hours.  Shred it up with a fork and keep warm while you cook your rice.  I cooked 2 cups dry brown rice in chicken broth (it really boosts the flavor!) and had to make one more batch for the amount of chicken we had.

Scoop some rice on your plate, add on the chicken, toppings of your choice, and enjoy!  We think all Mexican food needs cornbread on the side.  If you’re interested, this is one of our favorites: Buttery Corn Muffins.



Chicken Stroganoff

I found this crazy easy gem on The Coers Family.  I tweaked it a bit to fit our style and it was delicious!  I left out the container of sour cream because *ahem* one of the adults in our family won’t touch anything with sour cream in it.  I was a little worried it would be too dry without it, but it was honestly just fine and healthier this way too!  I also used cream of chicken soup instead of mushroom, because…. mushrooms.  Yuck.

Chicken StroganoffChicken Stroganoff

  • 5 – 6 boneless, skinless chicken thighs frozen
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1/2 – 1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 10.5 ounce can cream of chicken soup
  • 1 8 ounce package cream cheese
  • 1 1/2 bags of egg noodles
  • salt and pepper

Place chicken thighs in crock-pot and pour chicken broth on top.  Sprinkle with poultry seasoning and garlic powder. Spoon chicken soup over the chicken.  Cube up cream cheese and drop around the chicken.  Add desired amount of salt and pepper (it’s easy to add more in later to get the taste right).  Cook on low about 7 hours or chicken is cooked through.  Stir a couple times while it’s cooking to help everything blend.  The chicken should generate plenty of liquid, but if you think it looks dry at any point, add a little chicken broth.  When you’re about ready for supper, cook egg noodles, drain, and add to chicken mixture.  Stir up to combine and break up the chicken.  If you’ve cooked it long enough, the chicken should shred apart pretty easily with a spoon.  Tasty!

Chicken Stroganoff in the Crock-Pot

Crock-Pot Chicken

This might not even be considered a recipe, because it’s just that easy!  It’s also pretty tasty and extremely versatile.  I use this one all the time when I need cooked chicken – mainly because I think thawed, raw chicken is one of the nastiest things ever.  I love a scoop of this chicken on a bun with melted American cheese, crisp lettuce, and a slice of onion!Crock-Pot Chicken Sandwiches

Crock-Pot Chicken

  • boneless, skinless chicken thighs, frozen
  • about 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • poultry seasoning
  • salt & pepper

Place frozen thighs in your crock-pot and drizzle with olive oil.  Liberally shake poultry seasoning all over the chicken and season with salt and pepper.  Cover, and cook on high 3-4 hours or low 6-7 hours or until the chicken shreds easily with a fork.  Give the chicken a taste and if needed, sprinkle with a little more salt.  I think it’s better a little on the salty side.  Use it for sandwiches, quesadillas, enchiladas, whatever floats your boat!  You can make a giant batch or just a few and it’s still easy peasy.

Beef Tamale Pie

This recipe edited from Taste of Home is one of those all-in-one meals that lets the crock-pot do its thing.  It’s quite healthy and tastes delicious.  You can easily use a different cornbread recipe in place of this one.  Just keep an eye on it, especially the first time you try it, so it doesn’t overcook.

Beef Tamale PieSlow Cooker Beef Tamale Pie 1
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 cups frozen corn
  • 1 medium onion diced
  • 1 green bell pepper diced
  • 1 (15 oz) can black beans rinsed/drained
  • 1 (14 1/2 oz) can diced tomatoes with chilies
  • 1 (10 oz) can tomato sauce
  • 1 package (8 1/2 oz) cornbread muffin mix
  • 2 eggs
  • 1-2 cups cheddar cheese

Brown beef in skillet.  Stir in cumin, salt, chili powder, & pepper.  Move beef mixture to your slow-cooker.  Stir in corn, onion, bell pepper, black beans, tomatoes, & tomato sauce.  Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours or heated through.

In a separate bowl, stir together cornbread mix & eggs.  Drop in spoonfuls on top of beef mixture.  Cover and cook about 45 min – 1 hour longer or a toothpick inserted near center comes out clean.  Sprinkle desired amount of cheese over the cornbread.  Cover for a few minutes until the cheese melts.Slow Cooker Beef Tamale Pie

Spicy Pulled Pork Crock-Pot Style

“Nap Time” isn’t really happening for my two year old today.  It also didn’t happen yesterday.  Please tell me she isn’t giving up afternoon sleeping because it’s one of the only semi-productive moments of my day.  Regardless, “Quiet Time” is still happening.  “Quiet Time” means she stays in her bed anyway and reads a few books from 12:30-2:30 every afternoon.  It isn’t quite the same thing, but it’s still a much needed break for everyone.  This recipe from Hold the Grain is going to attempt to make its way onto my blog while I alternate between typing, checking on Abby and getting Evie back to sleep (she’s at least half-heartedly napping for me right now).  Here we go!

Spicy Pulled Pork Crock-Pot StyleSpicy Creole Pulled Pork Crock-Pot Style

  • 3-4 lb pork butt roast
  • 2 Serrano chili peppers
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons paprika
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 tablespoon pepper
  • 1/2 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1/2 tablespoon oregano
  • 1/2 tablespoon thyme
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/4-1/2 cup water

Wearing gloves, cut peppers in half, remove stems & seeds, and place skin side up on a baking sheet.  Pop in the oven and broil for about 5 minutes or until skin just starts to lightly brown.  While your peppers are roasting, mix all of the dry spices in a small bowl.

Dice your roasted peppers and mix with the mustard.  Rub over pork.  Sprinkle dry spices over pork, then rub into the meat.

Place the pork in the crock-pot and pour enough water around to cover the bottom (1/4-1/2 cup).  Cook on low until cooked through, about 8-10 hours.

Shred meat with a couple of forks and eat!  It’s great on a bun or even plain served along with some veggies.  The best part about this recipe is that it’s super versatile.  If you are missing a spice here or there, you’ll still end up with a tasty bunch of meat.

Southwestern Chicken Stacks

This is a winner recipe around here because it’s not only simple and tasty, but it’s super healthy too!  Chock full of fiber, so you can’t go wrong.  Inspiration from Taste of Home.

Southwestern ChickenSouthwestern Chicken Stacks

  • 1 lb bag of frozen corn
  • 2 cans (15 oz) black beans rinsed/drained
  • 1 medium onion diced
  • 1 (24 oz) jar chunky salsa
  • 5-6 boneless skinless chicken thighs
  • oregano
  • tortilla chips & cheddar cheese

In a crock-pot, combine the corn, beans, onion, & half of the salsa.  Place chicken on top (I just use it straight out of the freezer).  Pour remaining salsa over chicken and sprinkle with oregano (1/2 – 1 teaspoon).  Cover and cook on low for about 8 hours or meat is cooked through and tender.  Remove chicken, shred with forks, & mix back into the crock-pot.  Scatter some tortilla chips on a plate, scoop some of the chicken mixture on, and top with cheese!  You could also leave the chicken in whole pieces and simply serve on top of the corn & bean mixture with cheddar over it all.  Either way works!  This meal has simple ingredients without a lot of added spices, but you will be amazed at the wonderful flavor.  Since this meal allows you plenty of free time before the supper hour, you have no reason to leave out these delicious cheesy muffins as a side. 🙂Southwestern Chicken Stacks again

French Dip Sandwiches

This is one of those winner pulled meat sandwich recipes that I can’t get enough of.  Hate me or not, I’m really not into the barbeque flavored pulled meats.  I think it has to do with eating it way too frequently at 90% of large gatherings (graduation parties, various receptions, funerals, family reunions, you name it, they serve it).  I can eat it, but I can’t love it.  This, however, has all the glory of being incredibly easy along with the delight of tasting GOOD! In other news, I love using my crock-pot.  It’s wonderful in every season and it always makes me feel like I’m majorly winning at supper time (because I AM!).  What is better than getting a million things accomplished (that have nothing to do with cooking) up until the moment everyone wants to eat?!  Exactly.  If I could use my crock-pot every day, I would.

French Dip SandwichesSlow Cooker French Dip Sandwiches

  • 1 beef chuck roast (3lb)
  • 2 cups beef broth
  • 1/2 cup reduced sodium soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon crushed rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon thyme
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • Buns or rolls for serving

Place roast in crock-pot.  Pour broth and seasonings over roast.  Cover and cook on high 5-6 hours or until tender.  Remove meat from broth and shred with forks.  If you want to use the broth for dipping, strain it, skim fat, and pour broth into small cups for dipping.  Serve beef on buns/rolls.  We like having these with cheesy potato soup, mostly because I enjoy dipping my sandwich in the soup instead of the broth.