It's true you can pretty much make anything in a slow cooker, but that doesn't mean you should. Take a look at this list before you put your cooker on high.
Adding milk, cream, cheese, sour cream or yogurt to a slow cooker will curdle them.
It'll only get mushy and completely unappetizing. Instead, cook it separately and add it to whatever's in the recipe right before you serve it.
When cooking it a slow-cooker, you'll get and undercooked grains in the center. Since it only takes about 20 to 30 minutes to prepare, you should stick to a sauce pan. Extra time is its enemy.
We don't care how many slow-cooker lasagna recipes you've seen on Pinterest. This is a bad idea. No matter what the end result will always be a sad, soppy plate of pasta. Cook it separately and add it at the end.
5. Boneless Chicken Breast
When cooked for a long time, lean meats can get super tough and dry out easily. It's best to grill, roast or sauté boneless chicken breast than to toss it in the slow cooker. If it's got a bone, go for it but remove the skin — no one wants to eat a rubbery, chewy, gelatinous mess.
6. Raw Meat
You simply won't get the full flavor from whatever you're cooking. Instead, sear the cuts first and then add them to the slow-cooker pot. The only exception here is chicken.
7. Extra Fat
If you've got a roast with a bunch of extra fat on it, consider trimming it. Not only will this lighten the dish, it also ensures your meal will cook properly. (Fat increases the temperature, which can create inconsistent results.)
8. Delicate Vegetables
We're talking about asparagus, peas, spinach, tomatoes, eggplant, zucchini and more. Sturdier stuff like carrots, potatoes, and cabbage can take the long-lasting heat but the softer veggies should be kept on the side or added in the final minutes. This goes double for fresh herbs.
Scallops, shrimp, salmon, and more cook in a matter of minutes. Any more time on the heat and it all gets rubbery. Not delish.
Any alcohol added to a slow-cooker dish has no way to escape. Unlike stove-top cooking, the booze can't really cook off and evaporate because it's covered. This means you'll probably end up flooding your dinner with an unpleasant flavor.