Crockpot Recipes for Vegetarians (No Fish, Chicken, Etc.)
Every time I open my pantry, my crockpot stares angrily at me. We've never once used it! I have no idea what to make with it (except for veg chili, which I do on the stove).
Can anyone help me justify the amount of space the huge crockpot takes up in my small pantry? Thanks a whole bunch.
as suggested by others soups, stews, ratatouille, chili, etc.
i have made a cacciatore in there... use tofu or seitan or tempeh
lentil soup - veggie broth, water, lentils, diced onions, diced carrots, cumin, coriander, garlic, salt and pepper (sometimes i use cauliflower instead of lentils)
scalloped potatoes or corn
mac 'n' cheese
sweet n sour cabbage
veggie stew with cornmeal dumplings
i have recipes if you're interested in any of these...
In addition to the soups and beans for meals, I use my crock to make vegetable stock or broth to freeze. Nice to have available for lots of things. I make several kinds (like a tomato based broth, a mushroom stock, etc). I have one crock that I almost only use for homemade stock or broth, and it is in use at least once a week. I let it brew for at least 24 hours, strain and freeze. I like it better than Pacific Organic.
Try making stuffed peppers, my husband says he doesnt even miss the meat!
Mix about one cup cooked rice with half a cup of tomato sauce, a can of shoepeg corn, a can of black beans, and half a cup of jalepeno cheddar or jack cheese and shove the mixture into the peppers (I have a 6qt so I make 5-6 peppers) and pour about 2/3 of a cup of water or stock down in the bottom of the crock pot. Cover and cook for about 3 hours on high or 6 on low.
Scoop those puppies out and serve them with a little sourcream and salsa. (I add extra cheese on top too!)
I do variations of eggplant chickpea stew, changing spices (curry, middle eastern--love cinnamon, thyme/rosemary like a ratatouille, chili), vegetables depending on season (works great w/ winter squash and summer), mood. I serve it over rice or hearty bread to dip in the sauce. It's the best thing to come home to on a cold night--hearty and rich. This is a basic recipe:
If you entertain often, I use the crockpot to heat food/drinks and keep them warm. It also does a good bread pudding and keeps it warm for potluck parties.
If you don't use it more than once a year, IMO it's a space-waster. But, I find the crockpot is invaluable for making any and every sort of vegetable stew. Cut up chunks of eggplant, onion, tomato, zucchini, bell pepper, toss with some salt and pepper, lay into crockpot and just cover with vegie broth. High on 5 or Low on 8; either way you've got ratatouille that you can eat plain, eat on good toast, toss into pasta, use as a base for a dynamite minestrone soup. A great side dish is chunks of peeled assorted squash (acorn, butternut, etc. ) just covered with apple cider, cloves, cinnamon, a dash of salt and some cardamom if you like it; low on 5 hours or until tender, and re-taste for salt. You can do a standard amalgam of root vegies:onions, potatoes, sweets, parsnips, carrots, turnips, season with garlic, rosemary and thyme, again w/ the veg broth, low for 5-6 hours. The best thickener I"ve found for these dishes is arrowroot, if indicated. Oh, a great big huge pot of tomato sauce; you can throw in tofu during the last hour for added protein. They're great for soups of any sort: I've thrown stock, spinach, onions and garlic into the slow cooker, looked in four hours later and after 2 whisks and some salt and pepper; instant soup when I tossed in some yogurt. Beans of any kind. Try the crockpot for your vegetarian chili; you may be pleasantly suprised.
Oh, and I'm sure you know these times are pretty approximate. Wait, one more: during the holidays you can use it to keep dips warm or mull cider or wine, and you can use it as a transporter for casseroles and the like to potlucks to keep the food insulated and have your own warming capacity.