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Easy and delicious crockpot recipes… this is what we do! Even better, we’ve rounded up 20+ amazing dump-and-go slow cooker recipes. Every single one is freezer-friendly and includes instructions on how to prep it ahead and thaw it.
What Is a “Dump-and-Go” Slow Cooker Recipe?
We define it as a meal that requires no cooking techniques on the front end. You simply dump the ingredients in the slow cooker, pop on the lid, and slow cook.
In its best form, a “dump-and-go” recipe is a lifesaver for busy days!
Pros and Cons of Dump-and-Go Meals
The Bad News:
Oftentimes dump-and-go slow cooker meals can taste… meh. They lack flavor, texture, and oftentimes provide incorrect cooking times and come out dry.
The Good News:
We’ve tested hundreds of slow cooker recipes over the years. We’ve pulled together several of our very best dump and go crock pot meals that we know work.
You may have to do a little work on the back end after the meal slow cooks (i.e. broil for a few minutes, thicken a sauce, shred the meat), but it shouldn’t take long. Pinky swear!
Freezer meals are the ultimate time-saver. A smart way to use your time efficiently is to double each of the freezer-friendly recipes below and freeze one for later. In fact, every recipe below has freezer meal instructions. Your future self will thank you for doing this!
When you’re ready to use your dump and go freezer meal, be sure to FULLY THAW it either in the refrigerator for 24 hours or using one of these safe thawing methods.
It is NOT safe to put frozen food in the crockpot according to the USDA, so we don’t recommend that.
20+ Dump-and-Go Slow Cooker Recipes
Alright, you’ve heard our best tips and tricks regarding dump and go meals. Now it’s time to get cooking!
Honey Bourbon Chicken
A little sweet and a little spicy, this easy chicken recipe is BIG on flavor and takes just minutes to throw in the slow cooker. Stir fry some veggies while it cooks and then serve it all over rice. A reader favorite! This can also be made in the Instant Pot.
French Dip Sandwiches
My kids cheer when they see this drop-and-go crock pot meal on the menu plan. It slow cooks all day long and is fall-apart tender by dinnertime. Simply shred the meat, put together the sandwiches (a quick broil toasts up the rolls and melts the cheese), and dip them in the leftover au jus. Or…turn them into grilled cheese sandwiches to take them over the top!
BBQ Chicken Sliders
With 3 simple steps, you’ll have finger-licking good BBQ Chicken Sliders. The perfectly seasoned, shredded chicken breasts are served on mini buns and topped with BBQ Sauce to make an easy weeknight meal or a scrumptious meal for groups of people.
Vegetarian Tortilla Soup
This pantry staple Vegetarian Tortilla Soup recipe is a meatless “one pot wonder” that I’ve been making and freezing for years for my family. Filled with beans, tomatoes, chilis, corn, and more, it only gets better the longer it sits in the fridge (or freezer).
Easy No Peek Stew
Friends, making beef stew gets NO EASIER than this recipe. My mother-in-law taught me this one when I first got married, and I’ve been serving it up to big crowds ever since. Slow cooker (or oven) directions are included in the recipe.
These 7 easy marinades for chicken breasts will transform this boring cut into several tasty and healthy meals! They can all be cooked in the slow cooker. Here are the recipes:
Crockpot Baby Back Ribs
You don’t need a smoker or to heat up your kitchen with the oven for hours to make amazing ribs. Your slow cooker and a few minutes under the broiler will do all the hard work for you, resulting in fall-off-the-bone, caramelized BBQ ribs.
Slow Cooker Crispy Carnitas
This is the type of dump and go recipe our readers go ga-ga over. Slow Cooker Carnitas are a dump-and-go crock pot meal that’s easy to make, freezes well before or after cooking, and everyone loves them!
Two of our favorite meals–pizza and soup–come together in this gluten-free, dairy-free Pizza Soup recipe to create a meal that’s healthy, filling, and incredibly tasty. It’s absolutely delicious and can be prepped as a freezer meal.
It’s got the perfect balance of complex flavor, texture, and gooey goodness. Trust us when we say, the interesting combo of ingredients results in one amazing hot sandwich. Plus, you can make the fall-apart pulled pork in either the slow cooker or the Instant Pot.
Balsamic Shredded Beef
A reader favorite! It’s delicious, healthy, freezer friendly, and a great recipe for large groups.
Chicken Parmesan Sliders
This is hands-down one of my favorite kid-friendly meals on a busy night. By far one our easiest weeknight crockpot meals.
Shredded Beef Tacos
With 5 main ingredients, you can have a batch of Shredded Beef Tacos into your crockpot or Instant Pot in minutes. The Mexican shredded beef packs so much flavor and will fall apart after cooking. Say “holá” to a new weeknight favorite in your home!
Greek Pitas with Pulled Pork
This recipe will quickly become a regular in your home. After the pork shoulder slow cooks all day in a blend of spices (or is cooked quickly in the Instant Pot), you’ll shred it and serve it on whole wheat pita bread. Top the shredded pork with chopped fresh veggies, tangy feta cheese, and our creamy, herb-infused Easy Tzatziki Sauce.
4 Ingredient Savory Drumsticks
These drumsticks require only 4 pantry ingredients and come out moist and delicious every time. Not only are they gluten-free and dairy-free but they work great as a make-ahead freezer meal too. All ages love these.
Slow Cooker Short Ribs
Making Slow Cooker Beef Short Ribs is super easy and results in a fall-apart tender, decadent, gourmet dinner! This dump-and-go recipe is perfect for the holidays or a special birthday dinner.
Crockpot Mexican Chicken
This creamy, comforting Crockpot Mexican Chicken makes for a delicious, healthy, and EASY meal. Serve over brown rice with your favorite Mexican toppings. Freezer meal instructions included, so you can double the batch and have another later.
Making these BBQ chicken drumsticks in the slow cooker results in fall-apart tender and moist chicken on the bone. With a few minutes under the broiler at the end, you’ll have a crispy and perfectly seasoned dinner ready to go in no time.
BBQ Beef Sandwiches
Slow-cooked chuck roast with the perfect seasoning blend and BBQ sauce make these sandwiches to die for. Such an easy dump and go slow cooker recipe!
Low and slow is almost always the better choice. You run less chance of overcooking your food.
Sorry to be the bearers of bad news, but while cooking a frozen meal in the Instant Pot is safe, putting a frozen meal in the slow cooker is not generally recommended. Loading your slow cooker with icy ingredients will keep food in the temperature danger zone (40° to 140°F), where bacteria can flourish for too long.
A meat thermometer will become your best friend when using a slow cooker. Let it be your guide instead of the clock, and you’ll be amazed at how great food can be when it’s cooked perfectly.
You’re likely overcooking it.
With the exception of larger recipes (like 8+ servings), It only takes 2.5-3.5 hours on LOW for boneless, skinless chicken breast to be fully cooked in the slow cooker.
Each peek you take during the cooking process will add 15 to 20 minutes to the cooking time. So curb the urge to open the lid and stir, unless we specifically instruct you to. It’s usually not necessary and tends to slow down the cooking.
Make 6 Dump-and-Go Freezer Meals in 1 Hour!
- Shopping & equipment lists
- Step-by-Step instructions & video tutorial
- Serving suggestions & dietary substitutions & more