Cooking chicken in a slow cooker is a culinary delight, not only for its simplicity but also for the tenderness and flavor it imparts to the meat. While chicken breasts can be used, they have a tendency to dry out quickly, making it advisable to cook them immersed in a sauce to retain moisture. However, the real champions of the slow cooker are chicken thighs and legs.

These cuts are more exercised than breast meat, meaning they contain more red muscle fibers and more collagen. The higher collagen content translates to a moist, tender result when cooked at a temperature of 170°F (77°C) or above.

This process of slow, controlled cooking allows the collagen to break down over time, transforming into gelatin that imbues the meat with a rich, mouth-watering flavor. So, for the best results with your slow cooker, opt for chicken thighs and legs—they’re hard to beat!

Chicken Recipes:


Slow cooking pork is a surefire way to savor tender, succulent meat that melts in your mouth. Notably, pork shoulder and leg shine in the slow cooker due to their need for prolonged cooking times to break down the meat. The slow cooker’s low and steady heat allows these cuts to become delectably soft and absorb flavors to their fullest.

Likewise, pork belly, with its higher fat and collagen content, lends itself beautifully to slow cooking. However, be prepared to allow additional time for the fat to render and the collagen to melt, culminating in an irresistibly rich and succulent dish. On the other hand, cuts like pork loin, tenderloin, and pork steaks tend to dry out in the slow cooker.

To circumvent this, consider cooking them in a sauce or a generous amount of liquid to ensure they remain moist and flavorful. Slow cooking might take patience, but the pay-off, a feast of flavorsome pork, is undoubtedly worth the wait.

Pork Recipes:


Slow cooking gammon joints is an age-old technique that brings out the most exquisite flavors from the meat. The beauty of this method lies in its versatility. You can experiment with a multitude of different flavors, ranging from sweet and tangy glazes to savory herbs, spices, and broths.

Alternatively, you can opt for a simpler approach — fill the slow cooker pot with water and let the gammon simmer slowly. This method, known as poaching, keeps the gammon incredibly moist and tender, while also removing some of its saltiness.

Whether you choose to flavor your gammon with a honey-mustard glaze, cook it with a medley of vegetables, or simply submerge it in water, slow cooking ensures that your gammon joint will be tender, succulent, and packed with flavor. A slow-cooked gammon joint is truly a treat for the senses, promising a harmonious blend of taste, texture, and aroma.

Gammon Recipes:


When it comes to slow cooking beef, choosing the right cuts can make a world of difference to your culinary experience. Chuck and blade joints, known for their high collagen and fat content, are prime candidates for your slow cooker. These cuts, often tough when quickly grilled, undergo a transformation, becoming tender and flavorful with slow, steady cooking. Similarly, a brisket joint also works beautifully in a slow cooker. Its abundant collagen content and natural juiciness yield a tender, melt-in-your-mouth dish after hours of cooking.

Alternatively, round steak, skirt steak, and flank steak, although not traditionally quick-cooking cuts, can deliver excellent results when slow-cooked. They become tender and flavorful over time, making them perfect additions to stews and casseroles. However, quick-cooking cuts like sirloin, rump, and fillet are best left for grilling or pan-frying, as they tend to become tough and dry in a slow cooker.

Not to be overlooked are the topside and silverside joints. Originating from the hind quarter of the animal, nestled between the rump and the leg, these two cuts are superb for slow cooking. The topside, lean yet tender, makes an excellent roasting joint in the slow cooker, with the slow heat enhancing its flavor and tenderness.

Remember, slow cooking beef is a culinary journey, not a race. So, choose your cuts wisely, be patient, and savor the results of your slow cooking adventure.

Beef Recipes:


When it comes to slow cooking lamb, the types of cuts you select can profoundly influence the texture and flavor of your dishes. Cuts such as shoulder, leg, forequarter, shanks, neck chops, and lamb ribs are typically tougher due to their high connective tissue and fat content. However, these attributes make them perfect for slow and low cooking methods.

The scrag end of lamb, although tough and less meaty, carries a lot of flavors making it excellent for slow cooking in soups and stews, either on or off the bone. Middle neck or neck, traditionally used for slow cooking on the bone in dishes like Lancashire hot pot, can be cut into 2.5 cm slices. Neck fillets, typically used for fast cooking, also tenderize beautifully when slow-cooked; they usually require no more than 45 minutes to cook in a stew.

Boned and diced shoulder or leg cuts are perfect contenders for stews or casseroles. Shoulder meat needs to be trimmed of excess fat first, while leg cuts offer neat, lean pieces of meat. Both cuts yield meltingly tender and flavor-packed meat when slow-cooked. Leg and shoulder joints become tender to the point of falling off the bone when slow-roasted in a covered pan for several hours.

Lamb shanks, lean and gelatinous, are well-flavored meat that is ideal for long, slow cooking, producing melt-in-the-mouth results. The chump cut, solid and lean, is great for dicing and slow-cooking due to its well-flavored meat. In conclusion, choosing the right cut for slow cooking lamb can elevate your dish from ordinary to extraordinary, making the culinary journey as enjoyable as the result.

Lamb Recipes:

Minced Meats

Minced meats, such as beef, lamb, and pork, offer great versatility when used in a slow cooker, allowing for a wide array of delicious, comforting dishes. Minced beef, a classic choice, is often used in hearty dishes like Bolognese – a rich, flavorful sauce slow-cooked to perfection and served over pasta. The slow cooking process allows the flavors to meld together, creating a robust and deeply satisfying dish.

Lamb mince, on the other hand, is a traditional favorite for dishes like Shepherd’s Pie. Cooked slow and low, the lamb mince develops a deep, intense flavor that pairs beautifully with the velvety mashed potato topping.

For minced pork, the slow cooker can transform it into a tender, juicy component perfect for a variety of dishes. The slow, gentle cooking breaks down the fibers of the meat, resulting in a melt-in-your-mouth texture that’s simply irresistible.

When choosing mince for the slow cooker, it’s advisable to opt for meat with a lower fat content – around 5% is ideal. This ensures that while the meat remains tender, it does not release excessive fat during cooking, which could make your dishes greasy. Thus, whether it’s a comforting Bolognese, a classic Shepherd’s Pie, or a delectable pork dish, the use of minced meat in a slow cooker can result in mouth-watering meals that are bursting with flavor.