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Lori Lavender Luz

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Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Slow cooker cookbooks for families and kids with GIVEAWAY asked me to try out two of their slow cooker cookbooks, and I have spent the last 6 weeks dutifully slaving in the kitchen.

Or not. After all, the reason I said I would review the cookbooks is because crock pot cooking is about the only kind I do during the cold months (and in the warm months Husband works the grill most nights).

Throw in a protein, some veggies, a few more ingredients and seasonings -- and here's the hard parts -- put on the lid and turn on the switch. Walk away for several hours. Soak up the compliments from your family members when they walk in the house and assume from the aroma that you've spent all day preparing to nourish them. Serve up a delicious meal that requires minimal cleanup. Bask in your heroism.

Like I said, slow cooking is my kind of cooking.

The first reviewed book is Fix-It and Forget-It Christmas Cookbook ($19), but despite its title it's not just for Christmas. This book includes 600 recipes compiled by New York Times author Phyllis Pellman Good. So far I've tried the following, with not a loser in the bunch (according to the 4 palates in my home):
  • Pulled Pork BBQ (20 min prep)
  • Basil Chicken (15 min prep)
  • Southwestern Bean Soup wtih Cornmeal Dumplings (20 min prep)
  • Pineapple Glazed Chicken with Sweet Potatoes (30 min prep)
  • Turkey Breasts, Acorn Squash and Apples (35 min prep)
  • Salsa Beef (15 min prep)
  • Creamy Chicken Italian (15 min prep, in the crock pot as I write)
This cookbook offers more than just main dishes. Included also are recipes for appetizers (Snack Mix, for example), brunch (Boston Brown Bread), vegetables (Orange-Glazed Carrots),  beverages (Pomegranate Punch), and desserts (Pineapple Upside Down Cake). And this:

Christmas Smells
4 C water
rind of a lemon
rind of an orange
1 oz box of whole cloves
1 oz box cinnamon sticks
2 bay leaves
  1. Pour water into 2 qt slow cooker so it's half to 2/3 full.
  2. Add all other ingredients. Stir well.
  3. Cover. Turn cooker to High until mixture boils.
  4. Remove lid. Reduce heat to Low. Let mixture simmer and fill your home with good smells. Add water as needed. (Do not leave unattended.)
This cookbook is a keeper, though I do wish it were bound in a way that it would stay open. (Update: it does come in a ring-bound edition -- woot!)

Fix-It and Forget-It Kids' Cookbook, ($20) on the other hand, is ring-bound (yay!) and has 50 easy recipes for kids to make using a slow cooker. Some that Tessa and Reed tackled with me:
  • Sweet-Baked Oatmeal (10 min prep)
  • Chunky Chili (15 min prep)
  • Super Bowl Dip (15 min prep)
  • Mac and Cheese (5 min prep)
  • Gooey Chocolate Pudding Cake (15 min prep)
All were simple enough for school-age kids, who get exposure to measuring, fractions, cooking technique, project management, and lots of Velveeta.

GIVEAWAY: is giving away one of these slow cooker cookbooks to a commenter. Leave a comment below by December 22 and will pick a winner. The comment must indicate which of the two books you'd most like to have, and should include your email address in case you win. You can get extra entries with a tweet, a Facebook status update, or a blog post that links to this post.

***WINNER*** spit out #12, so Alison, you win the Fix-It and Forget-It Christmas Cookbook. EMail me your mailing info within a week (Lori at WriteMindOpenHeart dot com). Congrats, and don't forget to invite me over for dinner!

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23 chiming in:

mary elizabeth said...

i need some SERIOUS help with cooking for my crazy picky eaters. this book sounds perfect!

Meghan said...

Ohhh.... I've recently become a slow cooker convert. I'd love the christmas one

meghan.e.hoffman (at)

Ratna said...

Wow. These both look amazing but I've never heard of slow cooker recipes for kids. That would be soooo helpful because as a working mom it's so hard to whip something up at 6pm for hungry tykes. Thanks for the chance!

sarah musson said...

I love using slow cookers for meals - especially in the winter months. I am always trying to get my kids to help with meal planning and preparation - not because it makes things easier on me but because I find that the more involved they are the more likely they will eat what's for dinner. Ahhh, a peaceful meal with no complaining and clean plates! Can't wait to try this kids cookbook!

Kristin said...

I'd pick the Fix-It and Forget-It Christmas Cookbook.

Kristin said...

I tweeted this giveaway.

Kristin said...

I shared it on facebook.

Anonymous said...

I'd take the Christmas one. I love my slow cooker but I don't know what to put in it!

Anonymous said...

I tweeted it

Anonymous said...

I facebooked it

Anonymous said...

I would love to have the Fix-It and Forget-It Christmas Cookbook. The Christmas Smells recipe sounds fabulous, even if you can't eat it!

Anonymous said...

I Facebooked it!

Ecomomical said...

oooh! the Christmas book looks awesome. Thanks!

Tonia said...

I would LOVE the kids one! Ihave a picky eater wirh allergies. I can modify most any recipe I find... It's finding the recipes!

Sheri said...

I LOVE crock pot cooking...and little prep time, delicious smells, and lots of compliments, etc.

If I win, I'd like the Christmas, "Fix It And Forget It."


SLS(atlmuzikfanzinc) said...

I would really like to win the Fix-It and Forget-It Kids' Cookbook.

atlmuzikfanzinc at gmail dot com

SLS(atlmuzikfanzinc) said...
atlmuzikfanzinc at gmail dot com

SLS(atlmuzikfanzinc) said...

shared on fb
atlmuzikfanzinc at gmail dot com

ape2016 said...

I would love the Christmas book. I just got a slow cooker for an early Christmas gift and I need recipes!

ape2016 said...


ape2016 said...

shared on FB

Jen said...

definately the Kids cookbook. peanut butter sandwiches are getting old (its the only thing one of my kids will eat)

Jen said...


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