Slow Cooker Barbecue Beans and Sausage

I made this really delicious slow cooker recipe from The Food Network a few weeks ago when the weather started getting a little chilly. Hey, it’s slow cooker season! Then again, when is it not slow cooker season? Regardless, we are in pandemic mode, working and studying at home. Having the awesome smells coming the kitchen was an extra treat while plugging away. The end results were delicious plus it was super simple to make.

I didn’t change a thing. Not much more to say about that. Sometimes a recipe is just right.

I gathered my ingredients, but put aside the cider vinegar and Worcestershire sauce. You’ll add that later at the end. There were a lot of ingredients, but nothing too exotic.

Slow Cooker Barbecue Beans and Sausage

Slice an onion in half and stick a clove in each half. Ok, that’s a little strange, but it turned out not to be weird after all. The clove gave it a hint of spice that I wouldn’t have thought of. Next, slice the apple chicken sausages in half lengthwise. Throw everything in the slow cooker (well, measure first, of course) and mix, making sure the onion, sausage, and beans are all nestled in together. Cook on high for 6-7 hours until the beans are tender.

Remove the onions. They were there only to add flavor. Stir in vinegar and Worcestershire sauce. Then let it sit for at least 15 minutes. This last addition really gives it a tang.

And that’s it. Seriously. The hardest part was waiting. The apple sausage gave the dish a sweet taste that complemented the honey mustard and molasses. The dish was a perfect blend of tangy sweet and completely comforting. With the soft texture of the beans, everything felt like it was melting in your mouth.

Slow Cooker Barbecue Beans and Sausage

I will definitely make this again. We managed to eat most of the sausages in one sitting, but there were plenty of beans leftover, which we enjoyed as sides until they were gone.

Slow Cooker Barbecue Beans and Sausage

Slow Cooker Barbecue Beans and Sausage

Servings 6

Ingredients
  

  • 3 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 3 cups water
  • 1/3 cup tomato paste
  • 1/3 cup light brown sugar packed
  • 3 tablespoons molasses
  • 3 tablespoons honey mustard
  • 2 tablespoons barbecue seasoning blend
  • 4 garlic cloves chopped
  • 1 pound dry navy beans rinsed and picked over
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 1 small onion halved
  • 1 1/2 pounds chicken apple sausages halved lengthwise
  • 2 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

Instructions
 

  • Whisk the broth, water, tomato paste, brown sugar, molasses, mustard, barbecue seasoning and garlic in a slow cooker. Add the beans. Push a clove into each onion half. Tuck the onions and sausages into the beans in the slow cooker. Cover and cook on high until the beans are tender, about 6-7 hours.
  • Discard the onion halves. Stir in the vinegar and Worcestershire sauce. Let the mixture sit, uncovered, for at least 15 minutes. (The longer the beans sit, the more flavorful they will be.)
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Slow Cooker Chicken Tikka Masala

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One reason why I think Indian food is so special is because it often requires you to cook your seasonings before using them. This brings out an intense flavor not found in many other dishes. With that said, I decided to try Slow Cooker Chicken Tikka Masala from the kitchn. It’s a wonderful creamy dish with tomatoes and cooked spices that is perfect over rice. And it’s hardly Indian at all. I looked it up and learned that it’s a popular British dish with South Asian roots. Well, this is awkward. This is sort of like saying chimichanga is Mexican food.

While I go research authentic Indian recipes, let’s enjoy this one because I promise that even picky eaters won’t turn this down.

Gather your ingredients and measure them out. Chop up your onion. Mince that garlic. Grate the ginger.

Slow Cooker Chicken Tikki Masala

You probably don’t have all these spices in your cupboard. You might be wondering where to get them or when you’ll use them again. I’m happy to say that you should be able to find all of these in your grocery’s spice section. You will not have to go to a specialty store. I recommend getting the smallest containers possible, even if it costs more by weight, because spices lose their taste and potency over time. You really don’t need a tall container of cumin unless you use it a lot.

I changed the recipe order because I didn’t want to dirty up a pan so instead of using a separate pan, I used the saute setting on my slow cooker. Heat oil and then saute your onion for about 8 minutes. Add the garlic, ginger, and spices, and cook for about 1 minute. When you can smell the spices is just long enough. Add tomato paste and cook for another minute. You want to see that the tomato paste is a little darker than before. Add the diced tomatoes and the rest of the salt. Bring it to a simmer, but to be honest, there was nothing really to simmer. Add the chicken, yogurt, and a teaspoon of salt in your slow cooker and mix it all up.

I cooked this on low for 8 hours. When it was done, I stirred in the cream and served it. The recipe suggests cooking it for another 30 minutes for a thicker sauce, but I found the sauce consistency to be perfect.

Serve over rice and garnish with cilantro. Everyone liked it. The boy did pick out the tomatoes and refused the cilantro (green foods are bad), but they gave this dish two thumbs up. I just like how easy and tasty it is.

Slow Cooker Chicken Tikki Masala
Slow Cooker Chicken Tikka Masala

Slow Cooker Chicken Tikka Masala

Servings 6

Ingredients
  

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1/2 cup whole-milk (not Greek) plain yogurt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt divided
  • 1 large yellow onion diced
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 2 teaspoons garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 15 ounces canned diced tomatoes drained
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • chopped cilantro for garnish
  • cooked rice for serving

Instructions
 

  • In a slow cooker, heat the oil using the saute setting. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender, about 8 minutes. Add the garlic, ginger, coriander, garam masala, cumin, and turmeric and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the tomato paste and cook until darkened in color, about 1 minute. Add the drained tomatoes and 1/2 teaspoon of salt and bring to a simmer, scraping up the browned bits from the bottom of the pan.
  • Place the chicken, yogurt, and 1 teaspoon of the salt in the slow cooker. Stir to combine.
  • Cover and cook on the High setting for 4 hours or Low setting for 8 hours. Stir in the cream. If you prefer a thicker sauce, leave the slow cooker uncovered and cook on the High setting for 30 minutes. Taste and season with salt as needed. Serve garnished with cilantro and serve over rice.
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Slow Cooker Cube Steak

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I haven’t been cooking anything new lately. With all the uncertainty of the world lately, I just want what’s familiar. Spaghetti and meat sauce. Stroganoff. Tacos with carnitas or ground beef. (Yes, with the little taco mix seasoning packet. Don’t judge. It’s not authentic, but it’s tasty. You know you love it too.) I also bought plenty of chicken thighs, which I’ve been marinating and grilling. We ate a sugar glazed ham for Easter, which I heated up in the slow cooker. But I haven’t made a single new dish. I’ve been stress baking cookies and bundt cakes lately too.

A few million days ago (ok, March, but it seems like forever ago), I made something completely new that I ended up loving. I want to make it again, but that would require me to go to the grocery store, which I’ve been avoiding like the plague. Pun intended. I found the recipe on Delish: Cube Steak.

Now, I don’t know about you, but I’ve never had cube steak before. For those of you who are familiar with it and maybe eat it all the time, you have my permission to laugh. I’ve seen it, but didn’t know what to do with it. Or even what it is. But in a particularly brave moment, I decided to buy some and learn what it is.

News flash. It’s just a round or top sirloin steak that has been through a tenderizing that puts these cube shaped indents in it. It’s commonly used for chicken fried steak, which I love so I’m a little embarrassed I didn’t know that until now. Duh.

This recipe is really simple. Take a few steaks and season them with salt and pepper.

Slow Cooker Cube Steak

Throw them into a slow cooker. Slice up some onions.

Slow Cooker Cube Steak

Add garlic powder, onion soup mix (yep…this is home cooking, folks), and beef broth. Set it to low for 8 hours. About an hour before it’s done, mix water and cornstarch, and add it to the slow cooker, which magically turns the liquid to gravy. Sever over buttered egg noodles or rice, which is what I did.

Slow Cooker Cube Steak

Not only is it super easy, it’s both tasty and comforting. Maybe I should don on my face mask and brave the grocery store.

Slow Cooker Cube Steak

Slow Cooker Cube Steak

Servings 4

Ingredients
  

  • 2 pounds cube steak about 4 pieces
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons black pepper
  • 2 large onions sliced into 1/4" rings
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 ounce onion soup mix packet
  • 1 cup low-sodium beef broth
  • 1/4 cup cold water
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • buttered egg noodles or rice for serving

Instructions
 

  • Season steaks with salt and pepper. Add to slow cooker. Slice onions and add to slow cooker. Then, add garlic powder, onion soup mix, and beef broth. 
  • Set slow cooker to low for 8 hours.
  • One hour before you’re ready to serve, mix cold water and cornstarch in a small bowl. Stir into slow cooker. Cook on high until gravy has thickened, stirring periodically. Serve over buttered egg noodles or rice.
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