60 Crowd-Pleasing, Rib-Sticking, Classic Midwestern Slow Cooker Recipes

Dontcha know: we Midwesterners love our slow cookers! These slow cooker recipes are as warm and inviting as the people who made them.

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Slow-Cooker Roast Chicken

It’s easy to make a whole chicken in a slow cooker. We save the shredded chicken to use during busy weeks. —Courtney Stultz, Weir, Kansas

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German-Style Short Ribs

Our whole family is excited when I plug in the slow cooker to make these amazing ribs. We like them served over rice or egg noodles. —Bregitte Rugman, Shanty Bay, Ontario
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Egg Noodle Lasagna

Mary Oberlin of Selinsgrove, Pennsylvania was lucky enough to receive this recipe from one of her friends. The perfect take-along for charity events and church potlucks, the comforting crowd-pleaser is sure to warm tummies on the coldest of winter nights.
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Slow-Cooker Pinto Beans

I love pinto beans, but I always feel the flavor can easily turn too bland. I added a little this and a little that and came out with this amazing but easy slow-cooker pinto beans recipe. —Erica Vanderpool, Clarksville, Tennessee
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Chicken with Mushroom Gravy

This deliciously moist chicken is a longtime favorite with family and friends of Darolyn Jones in Fishers, Indiana. "It’s so easy, comforting and rich." she says. "A friend shared the recipe years ago, and I adapted it by adding a few new ingredients. I like to serve it over mashed potatoes or rice."
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Slow-Cooked Turkey Sloppy Joes

This tangy sandwich filling is easy to prepare in the slow cooker, and it goes over so well at gatherings large and small. I frequently take it to potlucks, and I'm always asked for my secret ingredient! —Marylou LaRue, Freeland, Michigan
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Pork Chops with Sauerkraut

Pair tender pork chops with sauerkraut for a filling main dish that's quick and easy to put together. —Stephanie Miller, Omaha, Nebraska
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Easy Slow-Cooker Cinnamon Rolls

I love how these scrumptious treats make use of my slow cooker and are so easy! I can just walk away and come back to perfectly cooked slow-cooker cinnamon rolls ready for the taking! —Nina Ward, New Port Richey, Florida
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Chuck Roast Dinner

A tasty tomato sauce nicely coats this comforting combination of beef, potatoes and carrots. My father gave me the recipe. It was one of our favorites when we used to hike all day—it takes only minutes to throw together! —Cindy Miller, Estes Park, Colorado
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Slow-Cooker Spiral Ham

My family loves when I make this slow-cooker spiral ham. I'm not sure which they love more though: eating it straightaway or as leftovers on sandwiches. —Angela Lively, Conroe, Texas
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Simmered Smoked Links

No one can resist the sweet and spicy glaze on these bite-sized sausages. They’re effortless
to prepare, and they make a perfect party nibbler. Serve them on frilled toothpicks to make them extra fancy.
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Apple Crumble with Granola

Tender apple slices are tucked beneath a sweet crunchy topping in this comforting apple crumble with granola. For variety, replace the apples with your favorite fruit. —Barbara Schindler, Napoleon, Ohio
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Sloppy Joe Tater Tot Casserole

This sloppy joe Tater Tot casserole is an easy dinner for both you and the kids. Serve with carrot and celery sticks for a fuss-free feast. You can also stir in some spicy brown mustard if the adults want more zing. —Laura Wilhelm, West Hollywood, California
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Creamy Celery Beef Stroganoff

Cream of celery soup adds richness to a recipe that has become a family favorite. It’s so simple to prepare and, oh, that flavor! —Kim Wallace, Dennison, Ohio
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Slow-Cooked Stuffed Peppers

My favorite kitchen appliance is the slow cooker, and I use mine more than anyone else I know. It does a great job with this good-for-you dish. —Michelle Gurnsey, Lincoln, Nebraska
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Tomato Hamburger Soup

As a full-time teacher, I only have time to cook from scratch a few nights each week. This slow-cooker soup recipe makes a big enough batch to feed my family for two nights. —Julie Kruger, St. Cloud, Minnesota
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Shredded Beef au Jus

My mom found this recipe in a farm journal soon after she and my dad got married. The tender beef has been a family favorite for years, and my dad often requests it. —Danielle Brandt, Ruthton, Minnesota
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Slow-Cooker Short Ribs

These slow-cooker short ribs are an easy alternative to traditionally braised short ribs—you don't need to pay any attention to them once you get them in the slow cooker. (That makes it my favorite beef short ribs recipe!) —Rebekah Beyer, Sabetha, Kansas
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Chili Coney Dogs

From the youngest kids to the oldest adults, everyone in our family loves these hot dogs. Inspired by the classic Coney dog, they’re so easy to throw together in the morning or even the night before. —Michele Harris, Vicksburg, Michigan
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Sweet 'n' Tangy Chicken Wings

I love the convenience of slow-cooker recipes for get-togethers. Start these sweet and sour chicken wings a few hours ahead of time and you'll have fantastic appetizers ready when your guests arrive. —Ida Tuey, South Lyon, Michigan
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Pumpkin Pie Pudding

My husband loves anything pumpkin, and this creamy, comforting pumpkin pudding recipe is one of his favorites. We make our easy pudding all year long, but it's especially nice in the fall. —Andrea Schaak, Bloomington, Minnesota
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Shredded French Dip

A chuck roast slow-simmered in a beefy broth is delicious when shredded and spooned onto rolls. I serve the cooking juices in individual cups for dipping. —Carla Kimball, Callaway, Nebraska
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Creamy Hash Brown Potatoes

Convenient frozen hash browns are the secret behind the cheesy slow-cooker potatoes I cook up for potlucks and big group gatherings. —Julianne Henson, Streamwood, Illinois
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Slow-Cooker Chili

This hearty slow-cooker chili can cook for up to 10 hours on low in the slow cooker. It's so good to come home to its wonderful aroma after a long day away. —Sue Call, Beech Grove, Indiana
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Beef in Onion Gravy

I double this super recipe to feed our family of four so I'm sure to have leftovers to send with my husband to work for lunch. His co-workers tell him he's lucky to have someone who fixes him such special meals. It's our secret that it's an easy slow cooker dinner! —Denise Albers, Freeburg, Illinois
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Creamed Corn

Five ingredients are all you'll need for my popular creamed corn recipe. It's wonderful no matter what the occasion is. Try it on a barbecue buffet or holiday menu. —Barbara Brizendine, Harrisonville, Missouri
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Italian Beef Hoagies

You'll need just five ingredients to feed a crowd these tender and tangy Italian beef sandwiches. On weekends, I start the roast the night before, so I can shred it in the morning. —Lori Piatt, Danville, Illinois
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Minister's Delight

A friend gave me this recipe several years ago. She said a local minister's wife fixed it every Sunday, so she named it accordingly. —Mary Ann Potter, Blue Springs, Missouri
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Slow-Cooked Spaghetti Sauce

I like to serve this homey dish to company and not just because it’s easy and economical. I’d be lost without my slow cooker!—Shelley McKinney, New Castle, Indiana
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Creamy Bratwurst Stew

A rich sauce coats this hearty combination of potatoes, carrots and bratwurst chunks. I adapted a baked stew recipe that appeared in a newspaper. This is so comforting on cold winter evenings. —Susan Holmes, Germantown, Wisconsin
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Contest-Winning Mushroom Pot Roast

Wow! The wine-warmed flavors in this recipe are amazing! Packed with wholesome veggies and tender beef, this is one company-special dish all ages will like. Serve with mashed potatoes to enjoy every last drop of the rich, beefy gravy. —Angie Stewart, Topeka, Kansas
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Hash Brown Egg Brunch

Slow cookers aren't just for making dinner. I make this often if we're having company overnight. With just a little planning and not much work, I can prep it the night before and have a lovely breakfast waiting in the morning. —Barb Keith, Eau Claire, Wisconsin
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Easy Beans & Potatoes with Bacon

I created this recipe because I love the combination of green beans with bacon. It’s smart when company is coming because you can start the side dish in the slow cooker and continue preparing the rest of the dinner—or visit with your guests! —Barbara Brittain, Santee, California
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Slow-Cooker Spareribs

Even my three little ones love these easy-to-make and delicious-to-eat slow-cooker spareribs. The succulent meat falls right off the bone! —Julie Czmer, West Bloomfield, Michigan
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Navy Bean Vegetable Soup

My family likes bean soup, so I came up with this hearty, hammed-up version. The leftovers freeze well for first-rate future meals. —Eleanor Mielke, Mitchell, South Dakota
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Cheddar Spirals

Our kids always loved this cheesy pasta and would sample a spoonful right from the slow cooker when they walked by. Adding cocktail sausages, sliced Polish sausage or cubed ham makes it a hearty dinner. —Heidi Ferkovich, Park Falls, Wisconsin
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Slow-Cooked Pizza Casserole

A friend from church gave me the recipe for this satisfying slow-cooked casserole. It's always one of the first dishes emptied at potlucks, and it can easily be adapted to personal tastes. —Julie Sterchi, Campbellsville, Kentucky
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Hungarian Goulash

Talk about your heirloom recipes! My grandmother made this Hungarian goulash recipe for my mother when she was a child, and then Mom made it for us to enjoy. Paprika and caraway add wonderful flavor, and sour cream gives it a creamy richness. It’s simply scrumptious! —Marcia Doyle, Pompano, Florida
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Sunday Pot Roast

With the help of a slow cooker, you can prepare a down-home dinner any day of the week, not just on Sundays. The roast turns out tender and savory every time. —Brandy Schaefer, Glen Carbon, Illinois
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Meat Loaf from the Slow Cooker

This simple, easy-to-make meat loaf is one of my personal favorites. I'm often asked for the recipe. —Laura Burgess, Mount Vernon, South Dakota
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Slow-Cooked Loaded Potato Soup

I like to put twists on my grandmother's recipes, which is what I did with this one. I look forward to passing my own delicious comfort food recipes to my kids. —Jamie Chase, Rising Sun, Indiana
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Slow-Cooker Beef Tips

As a busy mom, I love my slow-cooker meals! Beef tips remind me of a childhood favorite. I make this slow-cooker beef tips recipe with mushrooms and red wine, then serve over brown rice, noodles or mashed potatoes. —Amy Lents, Grand Forks, North Dakota
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Cranberry BBQ Pulled Pork

Cranberry sauce adds a yummy twist to pulled pork, and my family can't get enough of it! The pork cooks to tender perfection in the slow cooker, which also makes this dish conveniently portable. —Carrie Wiegand, Mount Pleasant, Iowa
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Hearty Beans with Beef

My husband raved about this sweet bean dish after tasting it at a party, so I knew I had to get the recipe. It's perfect for get-togethers because you can mix it up a day early and toss it in the slow cooker a few hours before your guests arrive. —Jan Biehl, Leesburg, Indiana
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Hearty Vegetable Split Pea Soup

This slow-cooker soup is my secret weapon on busy days. It’s delicious served with oyster crackers that are tossed in a bit of melted butter and herbs and then lightly toasted in the oven. —Whitney Jensen, Spring Lake, Michigan
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Mushroom Wild Rice

This is one of my favorite recipes from my mother. With only seven ingredients, it's quick to assemble in the morning before I leave for work. By the time I get home, mouthwatering aromas have filled the house. —Bob Malchow, Monon, Indiana
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Creamy Chicken Thighs & Noodles

I love recipes that you can just throw into the slow cooker and let it do all the work. This easy chicken dinner is one of my favorites. —Christina Petri, Alexandria, Minnesota
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Tomato-Basil Steak

We grow the basil and bell peppers I use in this dish. It's easy to prepare, yet so rich and delicious. —Sheryl Little, Sherwood, Arkansas
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Zesty Beef Stew

Preparation couldn't be simpler for this hearty no-fuss stew! I created this dish when I didn't have some of my usual ingredients for vegetable beef soup. My husband says it's the best I ever made! —Margaret Turza, South Bend, Indiana
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Slow-Cooked Golden Mashed Potatoes

Making a grand meal can be a little daunting, even for the most experienced cook. The convenience of the slow cooker for these classic spuds makes your task one step easier and allows you to spend more time with family. —Samantha Six, Fredricksburg, Indiana
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BBQ Brats

In Wisconsin, brats are a food group! We are always looking for new ways to cook them. This recipe is easy and a hit at any tailgate party or cookout, any time of year. —Jessica Abnet, DePere, Wisconsin
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Country Ribs Dinner

Ribs slow-cooked with carrots, celery, onions and red potatoes are pure comfort food for us. To add a little zip, we sometimes sprinkle in cayenne. —Rose Ingall, Manistee, Michigan
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Creamy Chicken Thighs & Noodles

I love recipes that you can just throw into the slow cooker and let it do all the work. This easy chicken dinner is one of my favorites. —Christina Petri, Alexandria, Minnesota
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Big Batch Cheeseburger Soup

When my mother-in-law gave me her recipe for cheeseburger soup, I changed it a little to make it my own. It's the perfect comfort food to enjoy on a cold winter evening. —Christina Addison, Blanchester, Ohio
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Beef Brisket in Beer

One bite of this super tender brisket and your family will be hooked! The rich gravy is perfect for spooning over a side of creamy mashed potatoes. —Eunice Stoen, Decorah, Iowa
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Apple Pie Oatmeal Dessert

Warm and comforting oatmeal desserts bring back memories of times spent with my family around the kitchen table. I serve this dish with sweetened whipped cream or vanilla ice cream as a topper. —Carol Greer, Earlville, Illinois
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Savory Sausage Stuffing

I used to make the same old dressing every year for Thanksgiving. About 10 years ago, I decided to jazz up my recipe by adding pork sausage. Now everyone requests this dish for all our holiday meals. —Ursula Hernandez, Waltham, Minnesota
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Broccoli-Cauliflower Chicken Casserole

A chicken, broccoli and rice casserole is one of our favorite comfort foods. I make my easy variation in the slow cooker. You can easily substitute whatever cheese you prefer. I sometimes use dairy-free cheese to create a more paleo-friendly dinner. The dish is also delicious sprinkled with a simple bread crumb topping. —Courtney Stultz, Weir, Kansas
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Cheesy Tater Tots & Canadian Bacon

This slow-cooker meal was created to pay homage to my favorite style of pizza—Hawaiian with bacon and pineapple. The Tater Tots in this recipe make it family-friendly. —Lisa Renshaw, Kansas City, Missouri

Ellie Martin Cliffe
Ellie has spent almost 20 years writing and editing food and lifestyle content for several well-known publishers. As Taste of Home's content director, she leads the team of editors sharing tasty recipes, cooking tips and entertaining ideas. Since joining Taste of Home 13 years ago, she has held roles in digital and print, editing cookbooks, curating special interest publications, running magazines, starring in cooking and cleaning videos, working with the Community Cooks and even handing out cookies and cocoa at local holiday events. Gluten- and dairy-free since 2017, she’s a staff go-to on allergy-friendly foods that actually taste good. If she's not in her plant-filled office, find Ellie in her family’s urban veggie garden, in the kitchen trying new GF/DF recipes or at a local hockey rink, cheering on her spouse or third grader.