How to Use a Slow Cooker for Vegetarian Cooking


Slow cookers, or crockpots, are not just for meat eaters. Vegetarians can create a wide variety of meals and dishes in a slow cooker, including rice, beans and other meatless fare. Slow cookers come in various sizes, with a wide range of options, so finding the slow cooker that suits your lifestyle and budget is not a difficult task. Often, nearly new slow cookers can be picked up at garage sales and thrift stores for very little money.

Step 1

Use the slow cooker for making soups or stews. Toss all the ingredients in the cooker in the morning, turn on low and let cook all day. You can also put frozen leftover soup or stew in the slow cooker and cook on high for 4 hours. The soup will be defrosted and ready to eat after the allotted time; turn to low or keep warm if you plan to eat later.

Step 2

Bake potatoes and other root vegetables in the slow cooker. No water is necessary as the cooker will utilize the moisture in the vegetables. Baked veggies can be fork tender in as little as two hours on high.

Step 3

Roast garlic, onions and other vegetables by drizzling olive oil and herbs on the veggies and cooking on high for 2 to 4 hours. The time needed depends on the density of the vegetable, with garlic and onions taking the longest.

Step 4

Using the crockpot as a steamer for vegetables, place 2 inches of water in the slow cooker and preheat on high for 30 minutes. Add your steamer basket filled with vegetables. Cook for two hours or longer, depending on how tender and soft you like your vegetables.

Step 5

Turn your slow cooker into a rice cooker. Rinse the rice and place in your steamer basket. Turn your slow cooker on high and add the amount of boiling water needed to cook the amount of rice you have in your basket. Lower the basket into the water and cover the slow cooker. Let the rice cook 1 to 2 hours or until the rice is soft and fluffy.

Tips and Warnings

  • See References below for slow cooker food safety information.

Things You'll Need

  • Slow cooker
  • Steamer basket
  • Various pots and pans (for precooking)
  • Soup ingredients
  • Vegetables, olive oil, herbs
  • Rice


  • Food Safety Recommendations for Preparing Meals With Slow Cookers
Keywords: vegetarian, cooking, slow, cooker, crockpot

About this Author

G. K. Bayne is a freelance writer, currently writing for Demand Studios where her expertise in back-to-basics, computers and electrical equipment are the basis of her body of work. Bayne began her writing career in 1975 and has written for Demand since 2007.

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