Two Ingredient Slow Cooker Meals

Two Ingredient Slow Cooker Recipes! Here's how to make the easiest crock pot recipes!

Here are the easiest meals to make in a slow cooker or crock pot: two ingredient slow cooker recipes! 

This is one of the best tips I have, and it requires so little cooking or skill, I’m almost hesitant to share it here for fear you’ll take away my cooking license. The good news is that I don’t have a license. So.

Tell me if you can relate: Sometimes I just don’t have the time or the energy to create a delicious meal — even a meal in my slow cooker, which yes, is the saving grace of sanity. Sometimes all I want, all I need in the world, is my own personal *Jamie Oliver.

*For strictly cooking purposes you guys! Obviously.

Two Ingredient Slow Cooker Recipes! Here's how to make the easiest crock pot recipes!

And when those times come calling, I reach into my back pocket for this tip. The two-ingredient slow cooker recipe. It saves my life, and I know that if you’re not using it, you should be! So here it is: You can combine any meat (chicken, beef, pork) with just about any bottled sauce (a marinade, salsa, marinara…you name it) in your crock pot, and cook on low for 6 to 8 hours, and the resulting meat will be nothing short of marvelous. It will taste just as good as some of the crock pot meals you take 15 minutes to put together!

Two ingredients, friends — one of which you didn’t make yourself! And you don’t even have to use a sauce; you can use broth, too. Chicken, vegetable, or beef broth work really well if you want to leave the flavor of the meat fairly simple so that you can use it in a variety of dishes throughout the week! An example: Combine boneless skinless chicken breasts with chicken broth in your slow cooker, cook on low until tender, shred the meat, then use some of it in chicken salad sandwiches for lunch, in chicken pot pie for dinner, and then add the rest to enchiladas another night.

But play around! Chicken and salsa? It works. Pork and barbecue sauce? Pulled pork! Ground beef and marinara? Don’t make me say it again!

Use enough sauce just to cover the meat and let the mix slowly cook all day long. The finished product will be infused with the flavor of the sauce (a reason to use only sauces you love!) and so tender it falls apart upon fork contact. Try it!


What’s your favorite slow cooker combination?



45 thoughts on “Two Ingredient Slow Cooker Meals

  1. Renee

    Exactly what I did for my family today! And I was short on time, so I set it for 4 hours on high instead. Just boneless, skinless chicken breasts and barbecue sauce.

    I actually pulled some out after about 3 hours, when it was done, super tender, and still holding together. Then I left it in the slow cooker on “warm” after, and it’s been sitting while we eat and get or little one down to sleep. Then I’ll pull it apart for meals for later this week. Wraps, served over lettuce, whatever…

    Good stuff!

  2. TJ

    Yum! There is a McCormick Grill Mate seasoning “Memphis Pit BBQ”, rub that on very generously add some Worcestershire, oh baby come to Momma! :)

    1. Cari

      I love the McCormick’s Grill Mates Mesquite marinade. It’s delicious, I end up using it for every family or friends gathering, BBQ, party, whatever. Everyone loves it. I’m actually trying a slow cooker version of the Mesquite for the first time today, I added a little KC Masterpiece Original BBQ sauce along with it. Attempting to make pulled chicken sandwiches! We’ll see how it turns out. I’ve been wanting to try it for months now, just never got around to it. I’ll have to try the Memphis Pit BBQ one now, too!!

  3. Katie P

    Do you have a favorite slow cooker? I have been wanting to get one for a while and would love a recommendation.

  4. Happy Girl

    Totally new at the cooking thing and now I have 5 mouths to feed! Does the protein/meat need to be fresh or can I use frozen? If I use beef what happens to the grease? Is it absorbed at all? Thanks for the ideas! Loving the blog!

  5. Rockingmomma

    I kinda have the same question as Happy Girl. Do I use frozen or thawed? I find when I use frozen skinless boneless chicken there is a little “foam” or ‘Scum”. Is that what is causing it? It kinda grosses me out! Let me know.

    1. Jen

      You can use frozen, works like a charm. Some worry about bacteria because they think it doesn’t get hot enough to kill it, but I have NEVER had a problem with that. I figure as long as it the meat is done, it’s all good.

  6. Melinda

    I love chicken with a bag of frozen broccoli (or oriental veggies) and a bottle of teriyaki sauce. Technically 3 ingredients, but still simple. Serve over rice. Yummy.

  7. Lynne

    I love chicken breast with marinara. I added shredded mozzarella at the end to make it cheesy. Yum!

    I throw the meat in frozen, for those that asked. It works fine, sometimes you end up with more liquid in the crockpot than you’d expect.

  8. [email protected] hungry artist

    I love that you simplify it to its essence!

    Thank you.

  9. Jan

    We got a slow cooker given to us for our new appt but I’d been struggling to come up with interesting new recipes to make use of it.

    You have just solved my problem :)

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  11. Katie @

    Hi Andie! I too am wondering about the ground beef in the crockpot recipe. You mentioned ground beef with marinara…so does the grease absorb? Do you put the ground beef in frozen or thawed? I ask because I feel like the ground beef would cook faster than say a chicken breast or thicker cut of meat so I was thinking maybe put it in frozen.


  12. J

    Cheap, lean beef roast and a jar of pepperocini–those pickled pepper rings you can put on sandwiches. Just pour the whole jar over the roast and cook on low all day–juice and all. Smells super vinegary while it cooks, but makes the BEST sandiwches or whatever. Not too spicy, but with a good kick.

  13. Ashley

    Our Costco has a 3 pack of Patak’s Tikka Masala/Korma sauce – I have chicken breasts in the crock pot with the tikka masala sauce right now. I can’t wait!

    For those who asked: I use frozen chicken breasts. Draws out the cooking time making the meat more tender and less likely to dry out.

    1. jenna lehr

      does your tikka masala sauce have half and half/milk in it? I was worried slow cooking a sauce with milk for so long.. does it get weird? or work well?

      Thanks so much!

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  15. jenna lehr

    I am so glad you shared this! I know it seems common sense but sometimes we forget to do the easy things in life and waste time for no reason! Inspired by reading this last night I made two wonderful dishes today…

    First I used garlic expression salad dressing (which has whole cloves of garlic) and i also used a big handful of fresh basil from my balcony garden and I cooked in my slower cooker for 4 hours on high. Then i shredded it and served it with baked sweet potatoes.

    Then because I get on these little kicks i couldnt stop at just one slower cooker dish… so i also did an 8 hour on low chicken with light sweet basil italian dressing which i also put a handful of chopped fresh basil from the garden. I also sliced one red pepper and one green pepper. So this will be all ready for our lunches for tomorrow.

    Thanks again for inspiring me to do some stress free simple cooking! My fiancé loved loved loved the garlic chicken!

    I paired my dinner with small apple tarts from the local orchard which opened today :) Delicious!

    Thanks agin!

    1. Kate

      Hey! I don’t know for sure about that particular one, but most Indian cooking is done with coconut milk, which isn’t milk or dairy at all.

      Hope that helps!

  16. Samantha

    Hi Andie! You have made me want a slow cooker for this winter. Which model do you have? There are so many out there, it’s hard to know what is good. Do you recommend a size for the recipes you mentioned? Thanks!

  17. Brenda

    My fav is Salsa Chicken. It’s four ingredients but it’s fantastic. My mexican son-in-law actually likes it ;) Just toss in a bag of frozen chicken fillets, one pkg taco seasoning, large jar of your fav salsa and one can (ok, i know this sounds gross) of cream o mushroom soup. 6-8 hours on low. Serve with refried beans and warm tortillas and maybe a little spanish rice. YUM!!

  18. Cynthia Cone

    Yes, the slow cooker is a wonderful invention, but as a nurse, I have to suggest that if you’re using pre-made, processed sauces, opt for low-sodium versions. Bottled sauces often have way too much salt for daily use.

  19. Mark


    “You can combine any meat (chicken, beef, pork) with any pre-made bottled sauce (marinades, salsa, marinara, you name it), and set it to cook on low for 8 to 10 hours”.

    I have two kids, a full-time job, no time, and pathetic cooking skills. Everyone kept telling me how a slow cooker could simply my life…after reading that sentence, I get it. Brilliant in its simplicity.

    Can anyone suggest any additional meats and pre-made bottled sauces that would work?

    Thank you so very much.

    1. Jen

      I love frozen chicken breats/tenders with a bottle of Trader Joe’s Island Soyaki sauce. You can shred the chicken when it’s done, put on your favorite bun or wrap with some pineapple, whatever greens you like etc.. and it’s so tasty! Perfect in summer :)

  20. Stacy

    I love this! but i am definitely cooking the chicken before i put it in the slow cooker, I dont think my boyfriend would eat it uncooked. I have a love for buffalo sauce, could i put that sauce in with the salsa instead?? Thanks!

    1. Tracy

      Stacy, the slow cooker cooks the chicken… no need to cook it beforehand! If it makes you nervous, use a food thermometer. The innermost part of the chicken should reach 165 F to be safe for eating.

    2. Pam

      Hey, Stacy – Please don’t cook the chicken first – the slow cooker does it – I PROMISE!!!

      Also, try a jar (or as much as you want) of Frank’s hot sauce and a package of ranch dressing for a yummy buffalo chicken like you want – no salsa.

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  22. Tracy

    I dont’ cook my chicken, but I do brown in the frying pan before putting in the slow cooker. Just makes it look better. Either way it’s to die for no matter what you do to it! Get a slow cooker with the smart option, so it turns to warm after you cook it for however many hours. That way if you work and are away for 10 hours, cook for 8 hours and automatically switch to warm. Trust me on that. Get a smart crock pot!

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  25. Michelle

    Guilty but oh so good,,, pork roast and dark soda… Root beer, Dr Pepper, whatever. Add some Lipton onion soup mix up you’re feeling adventurous.. umm, so good!

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