"No-Prep Slow Cooker: Few Ingredient Meals Without the Browning, Sautéing or Pre-Baking” by Chrissy Taylor, Page Street Publishing Co., $19.99, 176 pages, paperback 

Looking for an easy-to-make, delicious dish to serve at a midmorning get-together, I began perusing cookbooks. Since the forecast was for freezing temperatures that morning, I wanted something warm and comforting.

My search ended when I picked up “No-Prep Slow Cooker” by Chrissy Taylor, founder of the blog The Taylor House. Her cookbook includes a chapter called "A Bowl of Comfort" featuring favorite soup and stew recipes perfect for serving on a cold day. My only problem was deciding between the recipes for loaded baked potato soup and tomato basil soup.

Side Dish: Recipes for Tomato Basil Soup, Loaded Baked Potato Soup

The book’s cover perfectly describes Taylor’s recipes: “Few-ingredient meals without the browning, sautéing or pre-baking.”

In the introduction, she says, “The recipes I grew up making inspired me to put a twist on them and share the new versions with my family. … Slow cooker recipes have always been a favorite of mine. … It’s almost become a fun game, figuring out how to make a traditional recipe in the slow cooker and have it come out tasty and with the perfect texture. The fewer the ingredients, the better!”

She opens the book with a list of ingredients for a well-stocked pantry, then moves to 11 chapters of recipes from Full-flavor Fantastic Chicken to Drinks for a Crowd. Among the recipes are chicken Marsala, red wine pot roast, smothered pork chops, quinoa-stuffed peppers, shrimp fajitas, veggie frittata, sweet party meatballs, s’mores hot fudge cake, fresh salsa and vanilla latte.

A shortcoming of the book, especially for those of us who aren’t experienced slow cooker users, is that Taylor doesn’t say what size slow cooker works best for the recipes. The book is illustrated with full-color photographs, but not all recipes are pictured, nor is nutritional information included.

Taylor’s “No-Prep Slow Cooker” cookbook offers a good collection of simple-to-make recipes sure to please family and friends.


Cheramie Sonnier is a food writer and columnist. Contact her at sonnierfood@gmail.com, and follow her on Twitter, @CheramieSonnier.