Don’t put away that slow cooker just yet!
Put it to use this summer to keep your kitchen cool and to create hands-off meals that will allow you to play all day and still come home to a delicious, healthy, easy dinner.
Read on for ridiculously simple, gluten-free, dairy-free recipes to throw into your slow cooker this summer.
By using your slow cooker during the warm months you'll keep your kitchen cool and be able to go outside and enjoy the sunshine while dinner cooks away at home.
To get you inspired, I've rounded up my favorite simple, fresh, healthy real food summer recipes to keep your kitchen cool.
These are simple, vibrant recipes that use the best seasonal produce, and are inspired by classic barbecue flavors and the abundance of local farmer's markets.
Use these recipes on hot nights when you can't stand to turn on the oven, on activity filled weekends when you're busy playing outside, or for barbecues or potlucks when you want to feed a crowd simply and easily.
gf: gluten-free, df: dairy-free, p: paleo, vg: vegetarian
Summer Ready Slow Cooker Soups and Stews
Slow Cooker Creamy Potato Corn Chowder (gluten-free, dairy-free, vegetarian)
Grab some sweet corn at the farm stand and make this amazing, creamy, dairy-free slow cooker summer chowder for dinner tonight! It's hit with adults and kids alike.
Slow Cooker Farmer's Market Chicken Soup (gluten-free, dairy-free, paleo)
A fresh and tasty way to use your farmer's market finds, this summer slow cooker soup freezes well and is paleo and Whole30 friendly.
Slow Cooker Chicken, Veggie & Quinoa Stew (gluten-free, dairy-free, paleo, vegetarian)
A weeknight staple, filled with tons of protein and veggies, you'll want to add this summer slow cooker stew recipe to your weekly menu all year long.
Crockpot Sunshine Lemon Chicken Chowder (gluten-free, dairy-free)
Sunshine in a bowl! Packed with protein from the chicken, and the perfect slow cooker recipe to use all that sweet summer corn.
Summer Slow Cooker Sides & Snacks
Slow Cooker Barbecue Chickpeas (gluten-free, dairy-free, vegetarian)
A great plant-based alternative to burgers or chicken at barbecues or potlucks, make this slow cooker recipe as a main dish or as a side for any summer gathering.
Easy-Prep Slow Cooker Baked Beans (gluten-free, dairy-free, vegetarian)
The perfect side dish for potlucks or barbecues, these baked beans are so easy to throw together in your summer slow cooker and a total crowd pleaser!
Slow Cooker 5-Ingredient Fire-Roasted Marinara (gluten-free, dairy-free, paleo, vegetarian)
Instead of standing over a hot stove, whip up a delicious, homemade marinara in the slow cooker. Serve over pasta or zoodles for a no-cook alternative.
Slow Cooker Spinach Artichoke Dip (gluten-free, dairy-free, paleo, vegetarian)
Parties, barbecues, potlucks—you’ve got to make this better-than-the-original dairy-free summer slow cooker spinach artichoke dip!
Summer Slow Cooker Main Dish Recipes
Slow Cooker Balsamic Tomato Basil Pulled Chicken (gluten-free, dairy-free, paleo)
Grab a few pints of cherry tomatoes at the market or from your backyard garden and whip up this easy and insanely tasty pulled chicken. So good, this summer slow cooker recipe is and paleo and Whole30 friendly, too!
Slow Cooker Pulled Tropical Chicken (gluten-free, dairy-free)
You won’t believe how easy and tasty this twist on classic BBQ chicken is. A totally summer slow cooker family favorite.
Slow Cooker Peach Chicken with Basil (gluten-free, dairy-free, paleo)
Fresh peaches and verdant basil are the perfect combo and come together beautifully in this ultra-simple, crowd please chicken recipe. Hello summer peaches!
5-Ingredient Slow Cooker Fajita Salsa Chicken (gluten-free, dairy-free, paleo)
This chop, drop and go slow cooker recipe is so easy and so darn good. Serve as a taco filling, in bowls, or over rice. Top with whatever fixins you like this summer and everyone will be happy.
Healthy Slow Cooker Ranch Chicken & Veggies (gluten-free, dairy-free, paleo)
All the flavors you crave, none of the junk. A family friendly one-pot meal perfect for summer.
Slow Cooker 6-Ingredient Slow Cooker Carnitas (gluten-free, dairy-free, paleo)
Hello taco night! Minimal ingredients and crazy good results.
Slow Cooker Citrus Chicken (Pollo Asado) (gluten-free, dairy-free, paleo)
Bright citrus and smokey cumin makes this summer slow cooker hicken a total no brainer.
Slow Cooker Refried Bean Tacos (gluten-free, dairy-free, vegetarian)
Easy, simple, and completely satisfying, whip up a batch of homemade vegetarian refried beans and watch them disappear.