Foodie Friday: A case for the slow cooker


Ah, the slow cooker. It was a part of every childhood nightmare, but will soon be everyone’s college kitchen savior.

There were countless “mystery meat stews” sluggishly brewed in that forbidden cauldron all-day during youth. And no hip, angsty, crop-top-wearing college scholar would dare break out their slow cooker to make a tofu-Celiac-delight for dinner. That would be social suicide, of course.

To that, my brothers and sisters, I say nay. Let’s
be rational. 

It was the late, great Whitney Houston who once said, “I believe the children are our future. Teach them well and let them lead the way. Show them all the beauty they possess inside.” 

Clearly, Houston was telling us to use slow cookers at home. We are the future. We do possess beauty inside … our kitchens.

The slow cooker requires little-to-no tending. It is cost-efficient and can make anything lying around in the pantry taste like grandma’s home cooking. Slow cooker recipes require few ingredients and can create an entire meal in one
easy-to-clean-up pot. 

They are not just for dinner. Breakfast, lunch and dessert are all perfectly suited for slow cookers. For all the people out there who don’t know the difference between boiling and braising, slow cookers only require basic finger dexterity and the occasional use of the thumb.

During a late-night cram session, combine oats, water, milk and a fruity topping in the slow cooker, set it to low and fall asleep. In the morning, breakfast will be waiting. I’ve set this bad boy up on my bedside table once so I didn’t even have to get out of bed to have my breakfast. It was one of my prouder moments.

Before class, combine leftover cooked pasta, milk, butter and shredded cheddar cheese, turn the slow cooker to low and actually go to class. Three hours later, with time for a quick lunch, mac and cheese will be waiting, ready to go. 

Date night? Chocolate fondue. Boom.

Stop saying no to the slow cooker. Stop resisting true feelings for the slow cooker. It’s time to let that slow cooker in the kitchen and into
the heart.

If I haven’t been convincing enough yet, I’ve got one word: queso.

It may not be the most glamorous of culinary knickknacks, but the slow cooker can be life-changing. It is no longer a tool for every bad pot roast of recent memory. The slow cooker has become the vessel to reinvent classic comfort food.

Take a chance. Throw it back to the 70s with a slow cooker. A little food for the soul may be just what a tightly-wound college
student needs.