Simply, this cookbook rocks. If your crock pot is collecting dust, it's time to get it ready for some serious cooking.
When I get home from work, the last thing I want to think about is preparing dinner. I enjoy cooking when a) it can be accomplished within twenty minutes, b) I just know it's going to turn out like a masterpiece, or c) I'm watching someone else do it. (Basically: never.) But that's the greatest thing about using a slow cooker: preparing the meal is typically under a half an hour, the meals are simple enough that they turn out great (almost) every time, and it's like you're watching someone else do the cooking.
This is not your typical, boring soup-stew-and-dip book. This cookbook was born from author/cook Stephanie O'Dea's New Year's Resolution to use her crock pot daily for a year, so the result is a collection of unique recipes that include beverages, baking (yes, baking!), desserts, snacks, seafood, "takeout fake-out," jam, yogurt, and more.
What I love about her approach is that she gives you "the verdict" - what her children and husband thought of the meal. It's a great way to gauge how company- or kid-friendly the dish is. The recipes are all gluten-free, but you can easily substitute ingredients to suit your needs or wishes. The one downside is that she does not have pictures of her creations in the book, but that doesn't bother me. If that's something that bugs you, she has great pictures on her blog: http://crockpot365.blogspot.com/
My personal favorite from this book has to be the Orange Chipotle Ribs. So fast. So simple. So delicious. It's now on my regular rotation!
Recommended by Leah Youse