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While we’re all focusing on where to get our caffeine fix, one thing always pops into mind: What do I eat?!
Come on, your food is just as crucial as coffee!
They give you the necessary energy and nutrition to go about your day. Unfortunately, it seems much easier to grab takeout over cooking your own cheap and healthy meals under $5, especially when you’re tired or have no time.
That’s why I bought myself a Crockpot to make cheap vegetarian meals (though they work amazingly with meat and desserts, too).
20 Cheap Crockpot Meals for Families
Crockpots are ideal for those too busy to whip their own dishes in the kitchen all day. All you need to do is prep your ingredients and toss them into the Crockpot, letting it do all the work.
Today, I’ll share recipes you can use as Crockpot freezer dump meals or even fancy pot roasts for house parties!
Make sure to pin this image to your favorite Pinterest board so you can come back for updates on the best cheap Crockpot meals.
1. Honey Garlic Chicken
When searching for delicious chicken Crockpot recipes, you’ll usually come across ones that use whole chickens.
But instead of that, you can try making shredded chicken, which is covered in a yummy honey garlic sauce to give your meals even more flavor.
2. Crockpot Taco Soup
There are a ton of cheap Crockpot freezer dump meals, with taco soup being a must-try, especially during cold days!
Enjoy Taco Tuesdays with a ‘lil twist as you serve delicious fillings in a bowl.
3. Crockpot Chicken Lo Mein
When thinking of the best healthy Chinese recipe ideas to whip up, it’s worth serving chicken lo mein, a traditional dish that’s been around for 2,000 years!
So if you thought healthier versions of your favorite Chinese takeout would be drab, think again.
Crockpot chicken lo mein will be your go-to every time your noodle craving gets intense.
4. Slow Cooker Vegetable Curry
Budget-friendly vegetarian recipes that are inexpensive exist, with this vegetable curry dish proving it!
Your family won’t look for chicken or pork in their dishes as they dig into a creamy, spice-filled meal.
5. Vegetarian Crockpot Lasagna
No meat Mondays are made even better with a hearty vegetarian lasagna!
The Crockpot does wonders as it produces an extremely rich lasagna loaded with a ton of cheese.
What replaces meat, you ask? Mushrooms, which emulate the meatiness of ground beef well.
6. Crockpot Oatmeal
Oatmeal is the usual go-to breakfast because of how quick it is to prep. But gosh, having plain instant oatmeal every day becomes boring!
Replace instant oats with steel-cut oats to cook in your Crockpot overnight! Out will come an amazingly creamy, hearty bowl of oatmeal that will have you say goodbye to those instant packets!
7. Turkey Chili
Whether you’re meal prepping or need budget Crockpot meals to feed the entire family on a budget, you can never go wrong with chili.
After all, nothing beats a warm bowl of chili loaded with beans, tender turkey, veggies, and spices on a cold night! Pass me two bowls of turkey chili with extra cheese, please!
8. Crockpot Ribs
No need to keep checking if your pork ribs are cooking well.
Leave your Crockpot to do its job, then out will come tender, juicy, fall-off-the-bone ribs that are perfect for weeknight dinners or parties to impress loved ones!
9. Beef and Broccoli
Beef and broccoli is my top go-to order whenever I’m buying Chinese takeout. It’s the lesser evil in terms of calories and allows me to get my fair share of greens!
Obviously, we can’t have Chinese takeout every day since it hurts the wallet.
Fortunately, it’s easy to find healthy Crockpot meals on a budget that tastes almost like your best-loved dishes in restaurants, like this beef and broccoli recipe!
10. Crockpot Chicken Tacos
Need Mexican-themed inexpensive crock pot meals?
Start with tacos!
With just three ingredients, you have chicken perfect to use as your meat base for tacos.
Serve it with your choice of tortillas or taco shells, along with a ton of toppings to fill your tummy.
11. BBQ Pineapple Meatballs
Meatballs can become cheap and easy Crockpot meals when using store-bought frozen meatballs.
But don’t just dump them in your Crockpot alone! Add tropical flavors to it with pineapples and BBQ sauce for the sweetness to complement savory meatballs.
12. Vegan Sloppy Joes
You would think meat is an absolute must in Sloppy Joe’s, but lentils are a surprise ingredient that gives your dish a meaty texture.
Your kids might not even detect the vegan-friendly ingredient swap!
13. Cauliflower and Cheese
I’ll never get over the versatility of cauliflower.
Heck, you can even make mac and cheese from it!
Replace mac with cauliflower, making your comfort dish even healthier. It’s perfect for those going low-carb!
14. Baked Potatoes
Who doesn’t love potatoes?
Here’s a foolproof baked potato Crockpot recipe that you’ll always crave!
Thanks to Greek yogurt, your potatoes will become smooth and decadent. Don’t forget to top it off with a ton of cheese!
15. Rotisserie Chicken
If you’re hosting a party and need an affordable dish to steal the show, then rotisserie chicken is the way to go.
Save time cooking an entire chicken using your Crockpot. Your end result will be a juicy chicken packed with flavor!
16. Baked Ziti
You won’t have to run to your nearest Italian restaurant to get a taste of delicious pasta.
Prepare Baked Ziti using your handy Crockpot, overloading it with cheese and Italian sausages!
17. Crockpot Roast
No need to spend a ton of money on ready-to-eat dinners when you can make an entire pot roast at home with Crockpots!
You can save money by purchasing cheaper cuts of meat, which will end up tender and flavorful after slow-cooking it for a few hours.
18. Crockpot Breakfast Casserole
You’ll have something new to look forward to with your kitchen smelling like heaven in the morning!
Breakfast casseroles are now easier to make with the Crockpot, as it eliminates your need for baking.
19. Crockpot Jambalaya
Crockpot Jambalaya gives you an entire meal in one dish!
It’s comfort food that will have your mouth explode with savory, zesty flavors in every bite.
Just watch out for the spice, though it’s actually perfect during winter.
20. Slow Cooker Mushroom Ramen
When rainy weather comes, I can’t think of anything better than a hearty bowl of ramen.
It will only take two hours to have vegan-friendly ramen with a rich broth to warm the soul.
From the umami flavor to meaty shiitake mushrooms, you have an almost authentic Japanese dish to enjoy for lunch or dinner.