Easiest Crockpot Recipes for Seniors

Crockpot with chicken and sauce.

Who doesn’t want to make their life easier? We all look for ways to simplify things, especially when it comes to the things we usually see as chores. For instance, over the years the dishwasher became a kitchen mainstay because it makes life so much easier. Washers were developed that allow us to actually wash those silk and satin clothes we used to dry clean, thus saving us lots of time and money.

The same is true of walk-in tubs and other aging in place home modifications.  Even medical alert technology makes life easier by helping ensure peace of mind – and if someone needs assistance, they can get it with a single touch of a button.

Among all the wonderful things that make our life easier these days, there’s one that has stood the test of time: the crockpot.

The History of the Not-So-Humble Crockpot

Also known as a slow cooker, the crockpot was borne of a tradition dating back to at least the 19th century. The Smithsonian Magazine tells it like this: In Vilnius, Lithuania, Jewish families prepared for the Sabbath by placing meat, beans, and vegetables in a pot on the Friday before nightfall. They then took the pots to the town bakeries and placed them in the ovens. The residual heat from the ovens slowly cooked what was in the pots, creating a delicious stew.

A man named Irving Nachumsohn was born in New Jersey in 1902. He had a passion for inventing, and that often led him to create items for the kitchen, such as an electric frying pan. He also created the telesign, which was the precursor to today’s electronic news scrollers – today, those are the headlines that scroll across the billboards in Times Square. (If that sounds a little mundane, you should also know that he created the first version of today’s modern lava lamp.)

He learned of the Lithuanian tradition of slow cooking from a relative and worked on creating something of the same, only a countertop version. Recognizing that it would also help cut down on the oppressive summer heat, he knew families would love the convenience. His patent for the original slow cooker, called the Naxon Beanery, was granted in January of 1940. It was a hit in the 1950s, but by the time he sold the rights to Rival Manufacturing in 1970, the Naxon Beanery was nearly forgotten.

However, it came to life again in 1971 – this time as the Crock Pot.

Just how popular is this appliance? In 1971, the crockpot brought in $2 million in sales. By 1975, that number had jumped to a whopping $93 million.

Anyone who has owned a crockpot understands the appeal. It allows you to create a meal with few ingredients, let them cook all day while you do other things, and produce a delicious, nutritious meal without hours of work in the kitchen. It keeps the heat contained in a small space, so there’s no oven heating up the kitchen in the summer. And many of the newer models can keep food warm when it’s cooked just right, helping out cooks who might have had a very long day. In fact, back in 1975, the Washington Post called the Crock Pot an appliance “perfect for working women.” [1]

Today, the crockpot is ideal for cooks of all experience levels. The novice cook can make something just as delicious as the experienced cook can when using this tiny but mighty kitchen must-have. Statista says that in 2018, Americans purchased 12.7 million slow cookers (keep in mind, that’s just in the United States), and the appliance is reliably on the top of wishlists on Amazon. [2]

Just like your fall detection sensor or your rocker light switches, it’s safe to say a crockpot makes life much easier. What makes it even more appealing? Recipes that take only a few ingredients (in some cases, quite literally, just two). Here are some of those delicious meals.

Easy Recipes for Seniors

These recipes are very easy – so easy, in fact, that you can literally take only a few minutes to combine the short list of ingredients and go about your day. In addition to recipes that are very easy, we looked for those that freeze and reheat exceptionally well.

Crockpot Chili


·         1 pound lean ground beef

·         1 16 oz. jar of salsa (your choice of heat)

·         1 15 oz. can of kidney beans

·         1 tbsp. white sugar

·         1 15 oz. can of diced tomatoes (optional)


This is a delightfully simple recipe. Add the ground beef, salsa, and kidney beans. Mix them a bit to blend the ingredients and break up the ground beef into smaller pieces. Sprinkle in the white sugar. If you prefer your chili with a “brighter” flavor, stir in the optional can of tomatoes.

Cook the ingredients on low for four to five hours. Give it all an occasional stir to help break up the ground beef even more throughout the cooking process. Serve it with traditional chili sides and condiments, such as:

·         Crackers

·         Cheese

·         Sour cream

Pepperoncini Beef Sandwiches

The idea with this recipe is to use a very cheap cut of beef. This might be a piece of meat that is really tough, without much connective tissue. Cheaper cuts work well for this because the pickling brine for the peppers will break down the fibers and turn them into something succulent and delicious.


·         1 package of skirt steak or London Broil (about 2 pounds is great)

·         1 jar of pepperoncini peppers with the pickling brine


Place the beef in the slow cooker. Open up the jar of peppers and pour them evenly over the meat, including all the brine. You can remove the stems of the peppers if you prefer a little less heat.

Cook the beef on low for eight hours. When it pulls apart easily, shred it for sandwiches. Serve with these additional ingredients:

·         Potato buns or other “sturdy” bun

·         Provolone cheese

·         Mayonnaise or other condiments of your choice

Kahlua Pork

This three-ingredient recipe calls for items that might be a bit exotic in some locales. If you can’t find these ingredients in your local store, look at online grocery sites.


·         Pork shoulder roast, 2-4 pounds

·         Several drops of hickory liquid smoke

·         Generous shakes of Red Hawaiian salt


Place the pork in the crockpot. If it’s rather large, feel free to cut it into pieces to better fit and cook faster. Drop the liquid smoke onto the pork, to your taste – often between five and ten drops adds good flavor. Shake the salt generously over the pork until there is a fine covering on the meat.

Cover and cook on low for 6 to 8 hours, depending upon the size of the pork shoulder. You’ll know it’s done when you can easily shred it with two forks. Shred it thoroughly, then let it simmer in its own juices for a few minutes while you prepare the following ingredients for tacos:

·         Tortillas

·         Shredded cheese

·         Sour cream or guacamole or both

·         Fresh limes for squeezing on the flavor

·         Green onions, chopped fine

Teriyaki Meatballs

This three-ingredient recipe is incredibly versatile, allowing you to pair the meatballs with everything from pasta to mashed potatoes to hoagie buns.


·         1 32 oz. bag of frozen meatballs, any style

·         1 16 oz. jar of teriyaki sauce

·         1 15 oz. can of pineapple chunks


Place the meatballs in the crockpot and pour the teriyaki sauce over the top. Use a long spoon to move the meatballs around and coat them evenly with the sauce. Set the crockpot to low and cook for 3-4 hours. At that point, drain the pineapple chunks and pour them in, stirring well. Let the mixture cook for one more hour.

Serve with these additional ingredients:

·         For hoagies: Buns, condiments, and provolone cheese

·         For a hearty meal: mashed potatoes and vegetables

·         For pasta or rice: Cooked penne pasta or long-grain rice, with an extra splash of teriyaki sauce

Root Beer Pork

This pulled pork has a unique flavor you’ll never forget. This recipe feeds a crowd, so it’s ideal for a reunion or potluck.


·         Boneless pork shoulder, about 5-6 pounds

·         1 12 oz. bottle of root beer

·         1 16 oz. bottle of barbecue sauce (your choice of flavor)


Place the pork in a crockpot, with the fattier side up. Pour the root beer over the pork and cook it on low for about eight hours. Shred the pork with two forks right in the slow cooker, then gently stir in the barbecue sauce. Reduce the heat to low for 30 minutes or so until it’s all heated through.

This makes excellent tacos or sandwiches. For sandwiches, consider using these ingredients:

·         Sturdy buns

·         Your choice of cheese slices

·         Coleslaw

·         Extra barbecue sauce

The Importance of Simplicity

Simple meals can be just as delicious and appreciated as time-consuming spreads.

Simplicity can also mean having more peace of mind in everything we do. Much of that peace of mind comes from how we modify our homes to allow us to age in place as long as possible. A medical alert pendant or watch can help you keep the independence you want while still getting the prompt care you deserve. Alert1 even offers medical alert systems with fall detection, so if for some reason you can’t push the handy button that connects you to our 24/7/365 assistance, the pendant itself can send an alert for you. Keep things simple and get peace of mind with Alert1. Bon appetit!