Monday, January 2, 2017

Slow Cooker Loaded Potatoes

  Ok, so lets talk about comfort food. You have your mac n cheese or lasagna or some other favorite pasta... You have your pizza and your deep fried EVERYTHING... You have your casseroles or your burgers... I love ALL of them. But for me, the one thing that will always be highest on the comfort foodometer is POTATOES! Any kind, any color, and every way you can possibly think of cooking them, potatoes are my go-to comfort food. I'm not even kidding. French fries are totally my undoing. I've literally never met a potato I didn't like. Now, add cheese and bacon and cook them in a slow cooker! BOOM. You've taken a simple potato and elevated it to something AMAZING. It's seriously the definition of comfort food, especially when you want something hearty to fill you up on a cold day.
 I first saw this recipe in a Delish video, and immediately added it to my Must List. I was originally going to make it as a side dish for a ham dinner, but then realized it goes GREAT as a breakfast or brunch side dish too!! Serve 'em up with a fried egg on top and it's heaven on a plate! It's the perfect thing if you want to free up some oven space, or if you'd like to avoid turning on the oven altogether! It's also convenient because you can assemble it ahead of time. It's so good, you could even have it as a main dish! If you don't own a slow cooker, this is definitely a good reason to buy one!

Cooking spray
2 lbs. baby potatoes, halved and quartered if large
3 c. shredded Cheddar
2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
8 slices bacon, cooked
1/4 c. sliced green onions, plus more for garnish
1 tbsp. paprika
kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Sour cream, for drizzling

 Line a slow cooker with foil and spray with cooking spray. Add half the potatoes, 1 1/4 cups cheese, half the garlic, 1/3 of the cooked bacon, half the green onions, and half the paprika. Season with salt and pepper. Repeat. Cover and cook on high until potatoes are tender, 5 to 6 hours. (The bigger your potatoes, the longer they'll need.) About 20 to 30 minutes before serving, top with remaining cheese and bacon (this is your moment to make the potatoes look pretty!) Garnish with more green onions, drizzle with sour cream, and serve.

Ok, I know this is where I usually talk about everything I'd do to tweak the recipe or vary it in some way, but honestly, this recipe is just perfect the way it is! The only thing I'd say is.. just like Mom always said.. if you like a lot of something, add a lot! Want more cheese or maybe a different kind? How 'bout some more bacon? Are you a pepper monkey? Add as much as you want! Actually, come to think of it, I think I might add more scallions next time, and maybe a little less garlic. TBH, I didn't even measure. I just kinda threw everything in. You do you!

oh, and one other thing.. yes, my Pixar slow cooker is the envy of all who see it!! 

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