We've said it before, and we'll say it again—our slow-cooker is one of our kitchen heroes, come winter, spring, or even summer. Many people break out this contraption for low-and-slow stews and stroganoffs, meaty chilis and chicken soups. But it's equally handy for all kinds of non-meaty things: beans, lentils, vegetable stocks, even applesauce, just to name a few.
Below, you'll find a bevy of vegan recipes to make in your slow-cooker. Just throw in your ingredients, turn on the machine, and go on with your day. You'll come back to a warm, comforting meal that's something akin to magic.
With a bit of time in the slow-cooker, dried beans plump up into hearty, creamy pockets of flavor. An agrodolce sauce gives these borlottis a punch of pucker and sweetness (and the honey's easily replaceable with maple syrup), perfectly cutting through the grits they nestle into.
Black beans are unbelievably versatile, and this slow-cooker method takes all of the thinking and planning out of the operation. Just throw dried beans, plus a few spices, into the slow-cooker, turn it on, and come back a few hours later to a whole heap of cooked beans to use for tacos, rice bowls, and salads galore.
This basic recipe can often feel not-so-basic—but it's essential, too. Let the slow-cooker do all the work for you here, and you'll be rewarded with flavor-packed vegetable stock ready for a million things.
A slow-cooked, mushroom-packed, umami-rich broth acts as the base for all manner of vegetables and noodles. If you want to keep leftovers, store the broth and the noodles separately.
Lentils are right at home in a slow-cooker, where they'll get tender and absorb all the flavors of the liquid they're simmering in. This recipe brings in some spices and coconut milk to do just that, resulting in an intensely flavorful soup. Throw in a handful of spinach for some greenery at the end.
Lentils, root vegetables, and aromatics meld together beautifully in this soup, with herbes de Provence and fresh rosemary to add some herbal depth. The original recipe calls for some grated Parm and a rind, but this can easily be left off (or replaced with some nutritional yeast) to make it fully plant-based.
Lentils, meet slow-cooker (yet again!). Warming Moroccan spices, creamy tomato paste, lentils, and a whole mess of vegetables make for an ultra-comforting soup. Try it with couscous or a crusty piece of bread.
A luxuriously thick, velvety soup, without a lick of cream (thanks, coconut milk!). Try using the homemade vegetable broth you slow-cooked earlier in this recipe.
A few pantry staples swirl together in a slow-cooker for a streamlined take on a Greek classic. The feta here is optional—in its place, just add a pinch of nutritional yeast, pine nuts, and/or an extra drizzle of red wine vinegar.
Yes, you can and should cook a whole squash in a slow-cooker. The toppers can be riffed however you like—try crumbles of cashew cheese or pine nuts in place of the feta, and whatever fresh herbs you like best in place of the parsley.
Artichokes can be a bit fussy to cook, but this slow-cooker preparation couldn't be simpler. Lop off the tops, steam them with lemony water in your slow-cooker, and enjoy with garlicky, peppery olive oil (just mix together raw or roasted garlic, olive oil, and a big pinch of red pepper flakes).
Slow-cookers can make snacks, too! These salty, nostalgic little friends will disappear before your eyes.
Invest a few minutes before bed and wake up to a comforting, creamy breakfast (just swap out the whole milk for your favorite nondairy milk).
With just three ingredients, apples' natural sweetness and caramelly flavor really shine through in this applesauce. Trust us: You'll taste the difference making it at home.
Picture this: A warm fireplace, a rousing game of Scrabble, and a steaming mug of spiced mulled cider. At least this last part can be yours, thanks to this recipe.
Warming mulled wine is popular during the holidays, but as long as it's still cool out, we're ladling it for ourselves.
The Food52 Vegan Cookbook is here! With this book from Gena Hamshaw, anyone can learn how to eat more plants (and along the way, how to cook with and love cashew cheese, tofu, and nutritional yeast).Order now