I contemplated getting a smaller crock pot. But before I did so, I wanted to try one little thing. I read a tip that suggested using a smaller, covered casserole dish inside the crock pot to cook smaller portions. This made perfect sense! The food would be exposed to much less of the hot surface area, and would retain it’s moisture in the smaller dish. Unfortunately I did not have quite the right-sized oven-proof pot-with-a-lid to fit, but I quickly remedied that by picking up one of these.
At 1.5 qts, this is the perfect size to hold 2 large chicken breasts and some vegetables and sauce. I decided to test it out on a cheap, super easy dish – salsa chicken and black beans. I figured I would try it first with something very simple with ingredients I already had on hand, so that if it didn’t work, I wouldn’t have wasted time or money (I’d just be starving at dinner time and have to figure out something on the fly!) All you need to do is put whatever you would put inside the crock pot in the small casserole dish instead. So that’s what I did – two semi-frozen chicken breasts, some southwest seasoning, a cup of salsa and a half cup of black beans. I covered it and set it right inside my crock pot, put the lid on, set it on low for 7 hours and left for the day.
I am so glad this worked, and I will definitely be putting my crock pot to use now. I’m on the lookout for some tasty, healthy and creative dishes – any suggestions, send them my way!