This fab explanation – and all of this weeks recipes – come from Kelly Rankin over at www.bittybowsboutique.com (now I know how she has time to be so creative! She crockpots!!!)
Thanks Kelly for giving us a peek into your pot!
I began using my crockpot and freezer in tandem for two reasons. 1) I began to realize that the portions required for a full (normal sized) crockpot were wasteful for our family. Our family of 5 will never eat a full roast, and we also usually don’t eat leftovers. I loved the convenience of a crockpot, but it made me cringe every time I threw away spoiled leftovers. 2) When I figured out that I could use a smaller crockpot for less waste, I realized that I could actually make a normal sized recipe, but dump half of it in the crockpot, and the other half in a freezer bag for later use. This began my experimentation with freezer crockpot cooking!
My version of freezer/crockpotting varies in complexity. Sometimes it is as simple as dividing a Costco roast into chunked portions that will later be the perfect size for my family, so that I can easily just throw in a couple carrots, potatoes, etc. Other times, I do a full recipe and make baggies of crockpot meals, with everything ready to be dumped in the crockpot. Occasionally, it is the other way around, where I use my large crockpot, and freeze leftovers for later use.
One of my biggest “discoveries” was the mini crockpot I have began using. I remember a while back reading in crockpot cooking that you want the crockpot at least 2/3 full for it to have optimal cooking evenness. I found this out too when I tried to make smaller portions in my big crockpot–things got scorched on the edges. This didn’t happen with a full crockpot. This mini crockpot is the perfect size for my family with 3 young kids, and allows me to fill it up without using a ton of food. It will not work once my kids get older and start eating more, but for now it helps me stretch my food budget. Here it is, from Amazon.
4 Simple ingredients and a day of crockpot cooking lead to an amazingly simple, economical, and delicious pork BBQ. No smoker needed, and the leftovers freeze beautifully for a later meal. The liquid smoke and beef bouillon are the essential keys to this simple recipe, giving the pork a great flavor with minimal BBQ sauce. Perfect for a large gathering or you can freeze after you’ve cooked it in small portions for sandwiches!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 7-9 hours
Yields: 10 servings
5 lb Pork Sirloin Tip Roast
2 Tablespoons Liquid Smoke (Typically found with condiments)
2 Tablespoons Beef Bouillon (NOT Broth)
1/3 Cup Water
Serve with your favorite BBQ Sauce, to taste
Place pork roast in a large crockpot. Pour water, liquid smoke, and bouillon on top of pork roast. Cook on High for 7-9 hours, flipping roasts once during cooking, if possible, to allow the juices to simmer all sides of the meat. Meat is finished cooking when it easily pulls apart with a fork. Remove roasts from crockpot and pull pork apart. Return pork to crockpot and add BBQ sauce to taste, or serve BBQ sauce on the side. Great on sandwiches or by itself.
To freeze: Place cooked BBQ in 1 quart freezer bags, removing air. Thaw, rewarm, and serve. Keeps in freezer up to 6 months