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VINE VOICEon February 1, 2002
Yes, crock pots, once considered a kind of quaint relic of the seventies, are making a comeback. And why not? The basic idea is that you take a bunch of ingredients, throw them into the crock pot in the morning, and by dinnertime, voila--you have something hot, fragrant, and tasty. And what's more, a lot of the foods cooked this way taste even better as leftovers.
The strength of this cookbook is in the sheer volume of recipes provided, and in their overall simplicity. These truly are "fix it and forget it" types of dishes, including a lot of soups, chiles, and simple stews. Surely out of the 800+ recipes here anyone who purchases this book will find enough winners to make it a worthwhile buy.
Potential buyers should be forewarned, however, that this is by no means *haute cuisine*. Lots of the recipes include generous glops of canned creamed soups, dry soup mixes, canned vegetables, "American" cheese, and other gastronomical abominations. The point is, however, that there are so many recipes included that it's easy to skip over those and go on to ones that appear more promising.
The bottom line is that during the short time that I have owned this book, it has proven itself incredibly valuable and useful. My wife and my family are very glad that I picked it up, and that I brought the ol' crock pot out of its previously semi-retired state.
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on October 20, 2001
We hate to cook, but restaurants, take-out and frozen foods have lost their appeal for my husband and me in our last 6 years as empty-nesters. Our new larger crock-pot and THIS book have been the answer! Since the larger cookers are far superior to their ancestors of the 70's, we were looking for interesting recipes that stretched beyond the lentil soup recipes of the older crock-pot cookbooks. On the other hand, we didn't want to have to make a special trip to the international market for exotic ingredients each time either. Lemon roasted chicken, beef burgundy, and the tenderest ribs ever are just a few of the great meals we've had from this collection. While some of the old crock-pot stand-bys are included: baked beans, chili, lentil soup, and one pot meals made with cream of mushroom soup and cheese, there are many newer and creative recipes that serve their purpose - easy to prepare with common home kitchen ingredients, ready when you get home for dinner, and delicious.
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on February 12, 2003
I bought this book and I am not sure I would again. There are about 800 recipes in the book. There are 4 major drawbacks to this book. First -- A vast number of them do contain a LOT of cheese and fats (1 to 3 cups per recipe) and preprepared soups and soup mixes. Definitely not the healthy meals I try to prepare. Second -- There are multiple variations of the same recipe. How many times can you vary beef stew and beef vegetable soup and still call it a different recipe? This book does it about 50 times. Third -- the table of contents isn't detailed enough. You have to sift through 200 main dish recipes at a time. It would have been nice if there was some grouping such as 'beef main dishes, chicken main dishes, vegetarian main dises' etc. Fouth -- It could use a better overview section on the principles of slow cooking to cover such things as safety, keeping the crockpot at least 1/2 full, etc. Having said that I did go through and highlight the recipes that I would cook -- reasonble in fat and salt content. I found that there were only about 10% (excluding the repetitive ones) that I would use. Because of the 800 recipes to start with this still leaves me about 80. I tend to think of the value of a cookbook in how many recipes I get for the value. So this one ended up being 80 recipes for the cost of the book. That's not unreasonable.
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VINE VOICEon September 1, 2001
I've compared this cookbook with Betty Crocker, Sunset, Hoffman, etc. In my opinion, it beats all of them. Fix It and Forget it is a collection of recipes from people all over the country. There are twenty different chili recipes to choose from, as well as appetizers, desserts, main dishes, and soups. The book is divided in these categories, listing several recipes per page. Each recipe is very simple to follow. So far, I've tried the Saucy Pork Chops and the Creamy Chicken Italiano. The pork chops were excellent, and I'm not a big pork lover. The Chicken Italiano was a step up from the Chicken Helper you can get in the supermarket. If I make this again, I'd put more spices in it. If you don't like a lot of spice in your food, then you'll enjoy this dish.
I'd recommend this book to anyone who has a crock pot and anyone who doesn't. Some of these recipes, like the pork chops, you can cook on the stovetop. There's something for everyone in this book.
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on September 18, 2001
If you run as short on energy and time during the run of a day as I do, you will not want to be without this terrific book. Who ever thought meal preparation could be so simple for those of us who put in a full day at the office. The title says it all: "Fix It and Forget It" Forget the microwave section of your favourite supermarket and pass by the fast food outlets on the way home - too much of that will eventually play havoc with your health anyway. It takes just a few minutes each morning, when we do have the energy, to peel a few veggies, cut up a portion of meat if that is to your liking, toss it in the slow cooker with a dash of this and a dab of that and...voila, your meal will be waiting for you at the end of the day. The recipes are terrific in this book, particularly the stews and soups, and the flavourful goodness that comes out of the pot is out of this world! Buy the book; it's a real time saver.
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on February 25, 2006
I bought this book after reading some online reviews and have never been so disappointed in a cookbook. Just about every recipe includes high-sodium, high-fat, junky canned and/or processed food ingredients such as cream of mushroom soup. I simply don't eat that way and wasn't about to start just so that I could use my new slow-cooker. In all fairness, many crockpot cookbooks use these ingredients, I've learned, but this one doesn't even seem to have been put together by an expert. It appears to be a compilation of solicited reader submissions and reminds me very much of a community potluck fundraising cookbook. For instance, there are several recipes titled 'pot roast,' each submitted by a different person and no pictures, not that pictures would have changed my opinion of this book. When I purchase a cookbook, I'm trusting the author to have created or at least tried the recipes in the book and to present the best one. Not the case here. I returned the book and went to a local bookstore, and sat there with a bunch of cookbooks, reading through each to determine which one to buy. By the way, "Fix it and foget it lightly" wasn't any better. My selection was 'Not your mother's slow cooker cookbook," which presents recipes using only healthy ingredients that I would actually eat.
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VINE VOICEon October 26, 2004
For people looking for sheer quantity of recipes, this may be a great book.

For me, however, there were two significant problems with the book. First, no attempt seems to have been made to standardize the size of the recipes -- and you can't tell from reading the recipe whether it was developed for a 2 qt crock-pot or an 8-qt one. Other crock-pot cookbooks I've found have all recipes calculated for one size (often the common 4-5 qt crock-pot), and those using other sizes know to multiply or divide as need be. Another aspect that seemed missing in this cookbook was an introductory section with general crock-pot cooking tips -- since so many crock-pot cookers are students, young adults, or those just unfamiliar with cookery, this can be incredibly important.

Two books I'd recommend instead of this one are "Betty Crocker's Easy Slow Cooker Dinners" and "Crock-It" -- the former will appeal more to those wanting to cook dishes from a diverse range of cultures, the latter will appeal to those looking to use the crock-pot for homestyle casseroles and the like.
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on November 19, 2001
This is by far, the best crock pot cook book that I have ever come across. The recipes are from real cooks - like you and me - and are extremely delicious and easy to prepare.
What I liked best about this book is that a lot of recipes have a couple of different versions. For example, when I made rice pudding, I had about five different recipes to choose from. Some had cooked rice, some didn't, some involved putting a dish inside the crock pot and some required different amounts of involvement from me.
The best thing about this book is that almost every recipe in it I can actually picture myself making. None of the recipes are too difficult or too fancy. Plus, the book is a great bargain because it offers more recipes for a lower price than the other slow cooker cook books.
This would make a great gift (with a brand new crock pot!) for a college student or someone getting married!
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on June 4, 2004
I don't recommend this book at all. So many of the recipies sound unappetizing, are high in fat, and call for a can of condensed cream of mushroom soup.
This cookbook doesn't promise to deliver much, and it lives up to this promise. First, there's a disclaimer that the recipies haven't been kitchen tested by the editors. Second, it promises numerous recipies that vary by only one ingredient. How many chili and baked beans recipies do you really need? Well, this book has over 30 for chili and almost 60 for baked beans. The rest of the book is stews and other dishes that would go perfectly with a side of Wonder Bread, like this sample recipie:
Ham Bar-B-Que
1 lb boiled ham
1 cup of cola
1 cup of ketchup
Cook on low 8 hrs.
HAM + COKE + KETCHUP = DINNER?
What kind of cookbook is this?
Of course, not all the recipies are this poor, but only 1 of the dozen or so dishes I've tried is worth making again. If you're looking for a good slow-cooker recipie book, try Betty Crocker.
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on August 22, 2004
I first saw this book at an aquarium gift shop in Oregon (yes, its true). I decided to check it out from the library before purchasing. I am glad I did! The continued repetition of the same recipe is boring. Most recipes used processed, high fat and sodium foods (velveeta being a favorite). My favorite recipe??? "Perfection Hot Dogs". "Place hot dogs in slow cooker. Cover and cook for 1-2 hours."
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