Being able to throw a few ingredients together and leave them unattended for 6 to 8 hours only to return to a perfectly executed meal is just about the greatest thing ever!
Check out the top 10 reasons to use a crockpot, rather than stovetop or oven cooking.
I really enjoy serving up a super tender pot roast that falls apart with a fork. Nevermind the flavorful gravy that’s made from the drippings left over from cooking. With a slow cooker, there’s no worrying about over-cooking. The longer the meat simmers, the more tender it becomes.
Of course if you’re pressed for time, a pressure cooker can give you about the same results in a heck of a lot less time. However, with a pressure cooker you need to be right there while it cooks.
I like that the crockpot is more like a gourmet robot that works by itself.
Here are some more ways to make meat tender when cooking:
- Always bake meat at 350 or 375 degrees. The meat will cook slower, which is a key element in tender meat. Meat cooked too fast will be tough and more difficult to chew, and you will probably need both a steak knife and fork to cut it. Source
- Marinating the meat head of time will help tremendously. Remember that in a marinade you need an oil, an acid, and a flavoring. If you want to buy your meat in bulk, it would be a good idea to marinade it first, then wrap it in plastic wrap, and finally in freezer paper. This will help to protect it from freezer burn. Thaw it by removing the freezer paper and letting it sit in room temperature water. Source
- First, poke holes into the steak — both front and back — using a fork. Then make your own meat tenderizer. Source
- Beat it with a hammer, instead of using a meat tenderizer. This is better than the chemical meat tenderizer because it doesn’t rely on pre-digestion which continues after the meat is cooked and consumed. Once you pound the meat, it stays pounded. Source
- If you want tender meatballs or meatloaf, combine all of the other ingredients first before adding the meat. As with all ground meat recipes, too much handling will make the meatballs tough. Source
Do you know which cuts of meat are the most tender to begin with, and which are the toughest cuts of beef?