Jacket potatoes in the slow cooker (baked potatoes)

Perfecting a jacket potato is super-satisfying – I’ve experienced first-hand the disappointment (often in my college days) of a canteen baked potato that’s still just that little bit too hard, ruining the anticipated delight of tucking into a fluffy, buttered spud!

When you get them right, though, they provide a delicious hearty meal, great to come home to especially in the colder months when their warmth and ease is so much appreciated.

Oven-cooking them is all well and good if you have an hour to kill; even microwaving them can take its sweet time if you’ve four or five biggies to zap for a family lunch or dinner.

The best results, I’ve found, are from slow-cooking them, and this also provides an easy route for those pressed for time or needing a quickly-accessible homemade ready meal at a time to suit all the family.

The most satisfying aspect, apart from eating the end result of course, is that you can bung them into the Crockpot in minutes, either before dashing to work or on a leisurely Saturday or Sunday when you’d rather be out with the fam than slaving over a hot stove. And they’re ready just when you need them, foil-wrapped and ready to fill with your favourite toppings.

Slow-cooking in general is one of my most highly recommended life hacks. My best friend gave me my Morphy Richards 6.5L slow cooker for my 36th birthday, and I’ve raved about it ever since. The greatest time/effort saving impact since ceramic hair straighteners in the early 2000s, if I’m honest.

We often enjoy ours with combinations of grated cheese, ham, sardines or mackerel, and some kind of salad on the side, even if it’s just some slices of cucumber.

Here’s how to make those tasty weekday saviours!

  1. Wash your jacket potatoes as usual.
  2. Prick each potato several times with a fork.
  3. Place each potato on a piece of tinfoil that’s big enough to wrap it up in.
  4. Drizzle a little oil of your choice on the potato.
  5. Wrap it in the foil.
  6. Pop them in the slow cooker.
  7. Cook on high for 4-5 hours or low for up to 8 hours; times may vary depending on your slow cooker.
  8. Unwrap, slice and serve with the choice of fillings!
  9. Watch the whole family clear their plates.
  10. Feel smug. Can cooking really be this easy?
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