Slow Cooker Breakfasts for a month of weekdays

It’s a well-established fact that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Some would argue that it’s also the tastiest. But many would also agree that it’s the toughest one to get on the table and actually enjoy before the demands of the day kick in. With the aid of your slow cooker and a little outside-the-box thinking a healthy make-ahead breakfast can be more than a possibility. Today I’m sharing enough slow cooker breakfasts for a month of weekdays. That’s an entire month’s worth of prepped the night before and simply scooped out and enjoyed in each morning.

Breakfast Casseroles

  • This Breakfast Casserole from Karen at 365 Days of Crockpot includes all the basics – sausage, eggs, hash browns and cheese. And you really can’t go wrong throwing in a few veggies too, like spinach or mushrooms.
  • This Easy Breakfast Casserole is perfect for a late morning brunch or cooking all night for an early breakfast. It’s a classic comfort food at it’s best
  • I’ve added a little trick to my slow cooker Hashbrown Casserole that allows you to enjoy some breakfast ham or smoked sausage with your hashbrown casserole and very little extra effort.
  • This Loaded Cheesy Potato Casserole is not your basic cheesy potato dish. It’s been kicked up a notch or three compliments of my sister and her crowd-pleasing comfort-food recipe.

  • Frittatas are such a filling option for breakfast or brunch, and this Ham and Swiss Frittata is no exception. It’s loaded with wonderful flavors and it just looks pretty sitting on a plate, though it won’t last long there at all!

Grains & Sweets

  • Grits are a staple here in the south, but they do take a chunk of time in the morning. Unless you have this recipe for Slow Cooker Grits from Add a Pinch, that is. Then you can put your grits in the night before and they’re all ready for a hearty southern breakfast come morning.
  • This Cinnamon Swirl Pancake Bake from Dawn at Cutefetti only takes about an hour in the morning and it bakes while you get the rest of your day started. As opposed to stopping your routine to fix breakfast. How wonderful is that?!

Photo credit to Mary at Berefeet in the Kitchen

  • Peanut butter and chocolate chips and granola and a slow cooker? There’s really no need to convince you to try this Chocolate Chip Granola from Mary at Barefeet in the Kitchen now is there? Yum!

Oatmeal 6 Different Ways

  • If you’ve ever wanted a big slice of apple pie for breakfast, but just didn’t see it as a healthy option, then this Slow Cooked Apple Oatmeal recipe is for you. In an attempt to keep it healthy, I would recommend adding milk as opposed to ice cream as a side.

  • If hot spiced apple cider is more to your liking, then you’ll want to toss this Hot Spiced Apple Cider Oatmeal into the slow cooker before you head to bed tonight. Waking up in the morning shouldn’t be a problem with the lovely scent that will greet you!
  • The citrus flavor with the sweet-tart cranberry taste is a great way to start the day. Especially when it comes in the form of a bowl of Cranberry Orange Oatmeal as opposed to say a sugar-topped muffin.
  • It’s a good thing when your husband texts you mid-morning to tell you that breakfast was awesome. When he does that two different morning, then you know you have a winner of a recipe. You can find out what all the fuss is about this Gingerbread Oatmeal!

  • Peaches and cream for breakfast? Yes, please! You can add this Peaches and Cream Oatmeal to your slow cooker and set it to be ready in the morning. You’ll find the recipe and a sweet little tip to make your slow cooker programmable, just in case you didn’t purchase a programmable one.
  • Pumpkin Spice Oatmeal is full of all the pumpkin pie spices we know and love, and you don’t have to wait until Thanksgiving, or October to enjoy it. It’s perfectly cozy and tasty all year round!

Fruits & Such

  • Scalloped Peaches would make for a wonderful weekend breakfast paired with a favorite protein and a tableful or family. There’s something about fresh fruit that makes you just want to slow down and enjoy a bit. It’s such a great tone to set for the day, don’t you think?
  • Steph’s Poached Stuffed Pears, from her blog 52 Kitchen Adventures, would make a fine dessert. But why not breakfast with their fruit, nut and sweet spice ingredient list. It’s definitely a sweet way to start your day!

Photo credits to Steph at 52 Kitchen Adventures

  • This Blueberry Butter is similar to an apple butter, but obviously with blueberries. Steph shared this on her blog 52 Kitchen Adventures and it’s such a great way to savor the flavor of blueberries all year round, on toast or pancakes or mixed in with yogurt. Yum!
  • Homemade Apple Sauce is super easy to make if you have an apple corer/peeler. And once you have the homemade apple sauce, you’ll be hard pressed to go back to the store-bought variety. Ever.

Photo credits to Kimberly at Daring Gourmet

  • Did you know that you can make Yogurt in your slow cooker using this recipe from Kimberly at The Daring Gourmet? It does take time for the yogurt to process, but the hands-on time is minimal and the result is a creamy Greek yogurt that you can top enjoy with pretty much all of the other breakfast recipes I’ve shared here.

Clearly, slow cookers are for much more than just dinner!

Try a few of these recipes this week and tell me if your morning coffee doesn’t taste just a little better when it’s accompanied with a hearty breakfast that you didn’t have to stress over as soon as your feet hit the floor! Which one will you start with?

 

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40 Perfect Side Dishes for Summer Picnics

A few weeks ago I shared a collection of Over 30 Delicious Recipes for Easy Picnic Food with you, just in time for National Picnic Day.

With summer warming up, we’re already in summer picnic mode and couldn’t be happier about that! Not only are picnics a great way to enjoy the outdoors, they are a fun way to enjoy family time most months out of the year. Which means the more picnic food options we have, the better! So today I figured you could use 40 Perfect Picnic Sides to add to your picnic menu options. Enjoy!

 Quick Dips and Spreads for Crackers and Fruits and Veggies, Oh my!

  1. Pesto Bruschetta Spread
  2. Sun Dried Tomato Artichoke Hummus
  3. White Bean and Garlic Hummus
  4. Roasted Garlic Hummus
  5. 7 Layer Dip (In little jars)
  6. Guacamole for Chips
  7. Homemade Salsa
  8. Fusion Dip for Veggies
  9. Tomato Basil Dip for Crackers
  10. Honey Peanut Butter dip
  11. Cream Cheese Trio Appetizers for crackers

Appetizers & Snacks & Tasty Little Treats

  1. Hard Boiled Eggs
  2. Huli Huli Bacon Chicken Bites
  3. Almost Homemade Pickles
  4. Kale Chips
  5. Sweet Heat Slow Cooker Chex Mix
  6. Country Bob’s Tangy Chex Mix

A few More Traditional Picnic Favorites

  1. Chicken Salad
  2. Potato Salad
  3. Baked Beans

Pasta & Grain Salads for Light Summer Dining

  1. Perfect Pasta Salad + Tips and Tricks
  2. Another version of Pasta Salad
  3. Broccoli Tomato Tortellini Salad
  4. Bacon Tomato Ranch Pasta Salad
  5. Wild Rice Salad

Veggies Salads for those who prefer Healthy Picnicking

  1. Asian Broccoli Salad
  2. Ranch Veggie Salad
  3. Tomato Artichoke Heart Salad
  4. Summer Corn Salad
  5. Orange Red Onion Salad
  6. Cucumbers and Onions
  7. Cucumber Tomato Salad
  8. Green bean and Tomato Salad
  9. Creamy Italian Herb Cucumbers & Tomatoes

Slaws for Days

  1. Hawaiian Coleslaw
  2. Quick Coleslaw
  3. Tomato Jalapeno Slaw

Fruit Salads as sweet as dessert

  1. Easy Apple Salad
  2. Easy Fruit Salad
  3. Sliced Apples (with a no-browning trick!)
  4. Wild Watermelon

So how about you? Do you have a favorite side dish that you always have to make for picnics? I would love to hear what it is in the comments below. And in the meantime … Happy Picnicking!

More Picnicking Resources

 

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32 Simple Side Dish Ideas

There are all kinds of things you can serve as side dishes, but if you’re like me you prefer simple things that don’t require a lot of prep.  Unless the main dish practically makes itself, I normally don’t like to spend time on the sides.

With that in mind, here’s a list of 32 simple side dishes that come together quick.  A few do require baking/slow cooking time, but the hands on prep is minimal.

 

SideDishes

Salads

  1. Simple Lettuce Wedge Salad
  2. BLT Salad
  3. Black Bean and Corn Salad
  4. Cucumber and Tomato Salad
  5. Cucumbers and Onions
  6. Quick Cole Slaw
  7. Ranch Veggie Salad

Here are 7 things you can add to your salad to make it more interesting

Fruit

  1. Warm Cinnamon Applesauce with Toasted Marshmallows
  2. Cranberries and Oranges
  3. Ambrosia – so easy and tastes like more than the sum of its parts
  4. Easy Peachy Fruit Salad
  5. Vanilla Fruit Salad

Vegetables

  1. Honey Glazed Carrots in the Slow Cooker
  2. How to Cut Cauliflower in 1 Minutes (so you can steam it or eat it raw)
  3. Mashed Cauliflower
  4. Grilled Zucchini
  5. Parmesan Zucchini and Summer Squash in the Microwave
  6. Roasted Broccoli and Red Pepper
  7. Slow Cooked Apples and Butternut Squash
  8. Winter Squash in the Slow Cooker

Potatoes/Stuffing/Pasta

 

  1. Apple Cornbread Dressing – 10 minutes to the table
  2. Baked Potatoes with Onions
  3. Southwestern Cornbread Stuffing
  4. Garlic Cream Cheese Smashed Potatoes
  5. Macaroni and Cheese & Macaroni and Tomatoes
  6. Parmesan Fettucini
  7. Easy Mashed Sweet Potatoes
  8. Roasted Potatoes
  9. Roasted Sweet and White Potatoes
  10. Sweet Potato Fries
  11. Sweet Potatoes and Apples in the Slow Cooker
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Lemon Cheesecake Fruit Dip

 

 

This is a guest post from my friend, Laura at Real Mom Kitchen.  She has a new cook book out.  I had a chance to look through it recently and it is full of easy, delicious recipes.  Please welcome Laura as she shares one of her recipes with us.

Summer is a great time to enjoy fresh fruit. I also love to serve fresh fruit with a nice dip. This recipe for Lemon Cheesecake Fruit Dip from my new cookbook “Real Mom Kitchen Recipes” is an excellent choice to pair with the abundance for fresh summer fruit. It really does taste like lemon cheesecake but in a dip-able form. Who wouldn’t love to eat fresh fruit with a dip that tastes like cheesecake? Lemon adds such freshness to any dish and the lemon in this dip also adds a nice fresh flavor. [Read more…]

Peach and Blackberry Pie

peach and blackberry pie slice

Last week my neighbor gave me some fresh blackberries.  There weren’t quite enough for a cobbler or pie, but I had a few peaches too.  I was not sure if this combination would taste good, so I asked for opinions on the Eat at Home Facebook page.  A few thought it was worth trying and a few people voted no on the idea.

Curiosity got the best of me and I decided to try it.  The verdict?  Yum!  You can’t go wrong with fresh summer fruit sweetened and baked into a pie.

[Read more…]

Vanilla Fruit Salad

This is another super, simple side dish.  Two ingredients and a couple of minutes are all you need.

[Read more…]