Crock-pot cooking is an easy way for busy people to get dinner on the table. Crock-pot recipes tend to center around stews, soups and roasts that cook well in liquid and do not require a lot of attention. Cooking in a Dutch oven--a large, heavy pot with a lid--is another method for creating a no-fuss, one-pot meal. Converting crock-pot recipes for use in a Dutch oven follows a general formula but may require some experimentation from time to time.
Things You'll Need
- Original crock-pot recipe
- Dutch oven
- Conventional oven
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Examine your original recipe for a crock-pot meal and note the measurements of liquid ingredients. A Dutch oven placed inside a conventional oven creates steam, whereas a crock pot does not. You may need to add between a 1/2 and 1 cup of additional water, broth or other liquids when using a Dutch oven.
Adjust the original cooking time. Crock-pot recipes that call for the low setting cook for approximately four times as long as a dish that simmers in a Dutch oven at 325 degrees F. For example, if you cook a beef stew in the crock pot for 8 hours, expect that it will take around 2 hours in the oven. Cut the cooking time in half if you are converting a recipe that cooks in the crock pot on the high setting.
Experiment with seasonings when cooking in the Dutch oven. It is not uncommon to find that foods taste blander when cooked in the oven. Add up to twice as much dried herbs as you would in the original crock-pot recipe.
Give yourself plenty of time to allow for variations in the recipe conversion process. Cooking times as well as measurements are approximate, and they may need to be adjusted during the actual cooking process. Start your meal early enough in the day so your family won't be waiting into the evening if you underestimated the cooking time.