These cheap crockpot recipes are perfect for busy days! You will find delicious options with simple ingredients to make the best budget-friendly crockpot meals, which your whole family will love!
(There are affiliate links in this post. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. Please read the full disclosure policy for more info.)
I published a round-up of cheap and easy recipes not too long ago. It contained all kinds of frugal meals—from super easy slow cooker recipes to healthy and even some vegetarian recipes.
Today, I am back with a list of cheap and easy-to-make Crock-Pot meals.
In our family, we’re huge fans of cheap crockpot meals. If you love to try different types of food, you know that there is nothing cozier (especially in cold weather) than having a delicious Crock-Pot meal served on a plate.
My husband and I love cooking different types of budget-friendly recipes in our favorite Crock-Pot. And after trying and tweaking so many recipes, I can finally say that we have a little arsenal of easy and cheap Crock-Pot recipes to try any time.
We have been using our trusty slow cooker for many years, and it’s still going strong! This is the model I own, and after using it for a long time, I can only say that it is the best kitchen appliance investment I’ve ever made.
Cooking in a Crock-Pot is super easy and very convenient, but the biggest benefit is that it will save you time and money!
Is a Crock-Pot the Same as a Slow Cooker?
Truth be told, in our family (and probably yours too), we called our Crock-Pot a slow cooker and vice-versa. But is there any difference between the two?
After doing a little bit of research, I’ve found out that both names are used interchangeably and that a Crock-Pot is a type of slow cooker.
According to CNET, the name “Crock-Pot” was given to rebrand the first type of slow-cooker appliance.
The main takeaway is that both appliances use the same type of technology to cook food: moist heat. Here is an article with more in-depth information about the difference between a Crock-Pot and a slow cooker.
Regardless of the name you would like to use, there’s no doubt that owning a slow cooker or a Crock-Pot has become a staple in the majority of households.
As mentioned above, I truly believe that a Crock-Pot or slow cooker is a lifesaver for busy people and a money-saving appliance that your budget will thank you for!
Note: If you are looking for weekly meal plans with cheap and easy recipes, I recommend the $5 Meal Plan. The $5 Meal Plan is a meal planning service that sends you a delicious meal plan and shopping list every week for just $5 a month (after the 14-day trial period!). Find out more about the $5 meal plan here.
35 Cheap and Easy Crock Pot Meals
Below, you will find different types of cheap, quick, and easy Crock-Pot meals. I have the list separated by meal types, such as soups, chicken, pork, pasta, and many other main ingredients.
I have decided to start this list with my family’s two favorite cheap and easy Crock-Pot recipes. These are a staple in my house.
So, without further ado, let’s begin!
1. Crockpot Chicken Tortilla Soup
Chicken tortilla soup is one of my family’s favorite cheap Crock-Pot meals for those rainy or cold days, but you don’t need to wait for fall or winter to cook this delicious recipe. You can certainly try it at any time of the year!
This Crock-Pot chicken tortilla soup takes only eight to ten minutes to prep, and it will make six to eight servings. The best part is that you can freeze and eat any leftovers later during the week.
- 4 chicken breast halves
- 2 15oz. cans of black beans (undrained)
- 2 15 oz. cans stewed tomatoes (I use Rotel tomatoes)
- 1 14 oz. can of tomato sauce
- 1 cup of salsa (choose your preferred heat)
- 2 cups of shredded cheese
- Tortilla chips ( I prefer Tostito’s Scoops)
- Place all ingredients except the chips and cheese in the Crock-Pot and stir to combine gently.
- Cover the Crock-Pot and cook on low for eight hours.
- Remove the chicken breasts, shred or slice them into bite-sized portions, put them back into soup, and stir.
- Serve soup topped with tortilla chips and cheese. I prefer to serve only the soup with cheese on top and a handful of Tostito’s Scoop on the side.
2. Easy Crockpot Chili
Cooking chili may sound complicated because of all the ingredients needed to prepare the meal. But with time and some tweaking, I have come up with a super easy and cheap Crock-Pot meal.
This slow cooker chili recipe makes about six servings, but you’re welcome to add more of some ingredients, such as the meat and beans, to double the recipe.
- 1 lb. uncooked ground beef ( you can use turkey too)
- 1 envelope of dry chili seasoning
- 16 oz. can chili beans in chili sauce
- 2 28 oz cans of crushed or diced tomatoes (preferably seasoned with garlic and onion)
- Crumble the ground beef or turkey into the Crock-Pot.
- Add the rest of the ingredients and stir gently to combine.
- Cover the Crock-Pot and cook for six to eight hours on high or four to six hours on low. Stir halfway through cooking time if possible.
- Serve chili over warm, cooked white rice.
Optional: Garnish with shredded cheese on top and crackers on the side.
Crockpot Chicken Recipes
Chicken is almost always a cheap alternative to feed your family on a budget. I’ve been lucky enough to find a pound of chicken for only $0.49 sometimes.
It is not usual for stores to lower the price this much, but when you find a good deal like this, try to stock up. You can always freeze it to use later.
Also, remember to thaw your frozen meat before cooking it in the slow cooker. Thawing it will make the whole cooking process easier, and according to USDA, properly defrosting meat before cooking can prevent any potential foodborne illnesses.
Let’s check out the best cheap slow cooker chicken recipes from around the web!
3. Pineapple Salsa Chicken
This easy crockpot recipe is super budget-friendly; it only requires 3-Ingredients! Pair this recipe with rice, beans, or tortillas, and you have a perfect meal!
4. Crock-Pot Buffalo Chicken Drumsticks
This is an easy and quick slow cooker recipe to make. You can prepare this slow cooker buffalo chicken in only minutes. It’s an easy and cheap recipe where you just dump the ingredients into a crockpot!
5. Balsamic Rosemary Chicken
This classic dump-and-cook recipe with simple ingredients can make a great meal for your family.
6. Slow Cooker Whole Chicken
This slow-cooker roasted chicken requires only a few minutes. You can set it in the morning and come home to have dinner waiting for you!
7. Slow Cooker Mississippi Chicken
This cheap slow cooker recipe is very versatile; you can make it with any meat, such as beef, chicken, or pork. Serve it over rice, noodles, or potatoes; you can have the perfect budget meal!
8. Slow Cooker Garlic Chipotle Lime Chicken
“This super simple slow cooker garlic chipotle lime chicken is a very flavorful, paleo, low-carb dish that can be tossed in the slow cooker in a snap. A set it and forget it crock pot & Instant Pot dinner.”
9. Slow Cooker Pulled Chicken
“For a busy parent, making weeknight dinners can sometimes be a daunting task – which is where this crockpot shredded chicken recipe comes in. This super easy Slow Cooker Pulled Chicken is something you can throw into your crockpot, set it, and forget it. “
10. Slow Cooker Whole Chicken Cranberry Bake
Is cranberry sauce only for Holidays? Not anymore! Whole Chicken Cranberry Bake makes a great meal no matter what time of year you serve it.
11. Gluten-Free Slow Cooker Shredded Chicken Tacos.
“This versatile gluten-free shredded chicken can be used for gluten-free tacos, enchiladas, quesadillas, and nachos. “
Pork is another slow cooker alternative to cook when you are on a tight budget. There are so many cheap dinners that you can make with pork. Here, I have gathered the best low-cost pork-based recipes you can try this month.
12. Slow Cooker Pork Shoulder
“This super easy recipe takes less than 10minutes to prep and can be cooked in as little as 4-5 hours on the high setting. Use the delicious shredded meat for pulled pork and carnitas recipes to make meal planning a breeze, all the while fooling your loved ones into thinking you spent hours over the stove.“
13. Easy Crock-Pot BBQ Ribs
“Cook the ribs in as little as 4 hours using the high setting on your crock-pot. Use your favorite rack of ribs (spare, country style, baby back, beef) and barbecue sauce for an easy comforting meal any night of the week. “
14. BBQ Pulled Pork in the Slow Cooker
“The best ever BBQ Pulled Pork in the slow cooker for perfectly tender shredded pork coated with an easy, flavorful sauce.”
15. Gluten-Free Slow Cooker BBQ Pulled Pork – 4 Ingredients!
This gluten-free pulled pork is a cheap crockpot recipe! and with only four ingredients, it couldn’t be easier!
16. Slow Cooker Cuban Mojo Pork
“This Mojo Pork is marinated with the best citrus and garlic Mojo Criollo and slow cooked until fork-tender. The perfect crock pot dump-and-go Cuban pork recipe!”
Soups, Stews and More
I love to cook all types of soups in my Crock-Pot because I consider them to be delicious, and besides, soups are super cheap meals! My favorite is chicken tortilla soup (recipe above), which I think is perfect for a cold or rainy day.
Below, you will find a list of cheap Crock-Pot soup recipes and also some alternatives, such as slow cooker stew or chowder, to feed your whole family.
17. Slow Cooker Tuscan Soup
“If you are craving a heartwarming and flavorsome meal that practically cooks itself, look no further than this slow cooker Tuscan soup. Its delightful blend of Italian sausage, aromatic herbs, and creamy textures creates an experience that transports you straight to Italy with every savory spoonful.”
18. Chicken Salsa Queso Soup
“A low carb Instant Pot Chicken Salsa Queso Soup that is easy to make, keto, gluten-free, and oh, so delicious! It can be made in the electric pressure cooker or also in the slow cooker.”
19. Cheeseburger Soup
“This delicious Crockpot Cheeseburger Soup is perfect for a cold winter day. Whether you are looking for a good soup for the colder months or something new to serve picky eaters, this is easily going to become a family favorite. “
20. Crockpot Taco Soup Recipe
This great cheap Crockpot recipe can be cooked with beef or turkey! Or, if you prefer, you can make a vegan taco soup too! Perfect to feed your whole family on a budget!
21. Slow Cooker Potato Corn Chowder
“This Potato Corn Chowder recipe is creamy, thick, flavorful and easy to make in the slow cooker/crockpot. This hearty and delicious corn chowder features tender chunks of potato and creamy corn. Top it with crispy bacon for the ultimate chowder recipe!”
22. Crockpot Vegetarian Pasta e Fagioli Soup
“This Crockpot vegetarian pasta e fagioli soup recipe is a hearty and flavorful meatless meal that is easy to throw together so you have a hot meal ready with minimal effort!”
23. Easy Slow-Cooker Navy Bean Soup
“Slow Cooker Navy Bean Soup is a hearty meal that uses leftover ham, canned beans, chicken stock, and pantry staple spices. A dump-and-go meal that is infused with deep wholesome flavor.”
24. Slow Cooker Chicken Chickpea Stew via Mashup Mom
This Moroccan-inspired crock-pot recipe is full of flavors! You can serve this recipe over rice, couscous, or quinoa!
Cooking chili in a Crock-Pot is a great way to prepare an easy and frugal meal for small or large families. There are so many chili varieties—with beans, without beans, with ground beef, turkey, mixed meats, and so on. Regardless of your preferred chili version, I have gathered some cheap and easy slow-cooker chili recipes here.
25. Keto Chili Recipe (Low Carb Chili)
“An EASY low carb keto chili recipe, using common ingredients, quick prep, and a Crock Pot, Instant Pot, or stove top. Hearty and flavorful!”
26. 5-Ingredient Crockpot Chili Recipe
“This easy 5 ingredient crockpot chili recipe is the easiest you will ever make. Just dump everything into your slow cooker in the morning and enjoy for dinner! “
27. Crockpot Chili
“Combine two easy things into one delicious meal and that’s what you get with this crockpot chili! Perfect for a fall evening meal, or anytime for that matter!”
28. 3 Bean Chicken Chili via We’re Parents
This 3-bean chili recipe is great for those busy days. Serve with Greek yogurt or your favorite sour cream, and you will have a hearty, delicious meal!
29. Easy Homemade Chili
“This Southern Homemade Chili is EASY + HEARTY + DELICIOUS! The perfect combination of lean ground beef, crushed tomatoes, hearty beans, and a tasty blend of spices.”
Pasta, Sloppy Joes, and More
Can you cook pasta in a Crock-Pot? Absolutely! I was able to find a couple of cheap pasta recipes that are perfect for cooking in a Crock-Pot. Also, check out the slow cooker versions of sloppy joes and tater tot casserole!
30. Crockpot Lasagna Recipe
This recipe comes in handy for those busy days. Perfect for any occasion, and your whole family will love it.
31. Slow Cooker Sloppy Joes
“These slow cooker sloppy joes are made with ground beef, tomato sauce, brown sugar and spices, all cooked to savory perfection. An easy crock pot meal that’s kid friendly and perfect for serving a crowd.“
32. Tater Tot Casserole in the Slow Cooker
This Tater Tor Casserole is easy to make and can be done with Frozen ground meat.
33. Crockpot Spaghetti Casserole
“This full of Italian flavors family favorite Crockpot Spaghetti Casserole Casserole is easy to cook using pantry staples, requires minimal prep and is freezer friendly.”
34. Slow Cooker Philly Sloppy Joes
“This homemade sloppy Joes recipe has all the best parts of the classic recipe we loved as kids: perfectly seasoned meat, a toasted hamburger bun, and a little messiness with every bite. It’s an easy favorite for a party or a quick weeknight dinner.”
You May Also Like:
- 25 Easy Crockpot Soup Recipes (The Best Slow Cooker Soups!)
- 30+ Easy Dump and Go Crockpot Dinner Recipes
- 35+ Cheap and Easy Meal Ideas for a Frugal Budget
- 27 Cheap and Easy Instant Pot Recipes You have to Try!
There you go! Now you have a variety of cheap and easy Crock-Pot meals to prepare at any time.
How to Earn Cash Back on Your Grocery Shopping?
Use Ibotta (Get a FREE $10 bonus)
There are many money-saving apps to use; however, one of my favorite apps is Ibotta.
Ibotta is a money saving app that could help you reduce your grocery bill and put money back in your pockets!
With Ibotta, you can get cash back when shopping at the grocery store.
You will get cash on things you already buy like milk, eggs, bread, potatoes, bananas and more! Things that most families usually buy when grocery shopping.
Ibotta users have earned over $500,000,000 in cash back rewards to date. And you can definitely be part of this and get money back easily.
Bonus: Grab a FREE $10 welcome bonus from Ibotta just by signing up through this link.
Do you have any favorite Cheap and Easy Crock-Pot recipe? Share it below in the comments. I’d love to know!