8 Make-Ahead Crock-Pot Recipes That Will Last All Week

Crock-Pots are great for cooking meals in large quantities without having to do too much hands-on work. Sometimes this means you have some extra food, but why not put this gadget to work and create meals for yourself and your family that can for multiple days?

Here are eight, easy make-ahead recipes you can make on Sunday or Monday that will last you all week.

1. Overnight Breakfast Casserole

No need to rush in the morning when you have this breakfast casserole on hand. Filled with all the breakfast staples, including eggs, hash browns, bacon, sausage, and cheese, this slow-cooker recipe only takes 30 minutes to prep, but will give you multiple meals.

The Gracious Wife

Recipe: The Gracious Wife

2. Italian Chicken

Dinner Monday through Friday is served — or if you prefer, you can freeze this savory herbed chicken instead, and use it in dishes later on. Crumble it in salads, toss it with pasta, or sandwich it between some bread slices for an easy meal that definitely doesn’t lack flavor.

The Frugal Girls

Recipe: The Frugal Girls

3. Italian Meatball Soup

Soups are easy to make in bulk and even easier to store. Whether you want to keep it for the week, for the month, or maybe the whole winter season, this crockpot Italian meatball soup is hearty, filling and easy to throw together.


Recipe: Pillsbury

4. French Dip Sandwiches

This recipe is great to use for dinner one night and lunch the next day. Pot roast is cooked in the slow-cooker, then served on buns with melted cheese and au jus dip. It’s like eating at a restaurant—only at home.

Chef Savvy

Recipe: Chef Savvy

5. Chicken Fajitas

Prep these fajitas in a bag, freeze them for later and throw them in a Crock-Pot when you’re ready to eat them. You can serve them in tortilla shells, over rice or even wrapped up in a burrito.

Mommy Savers

Recipe: Mommy Savers

6. Pizza Bake

Pizza and pasta combined? Yes please. This Crock-Pot pizza bake is great for an entree or main dish, and it can last multiple meals. It’s also budget-friendly, made with a myriad of tasty but inexpensive ingredients such as sausage, penne, mushrooms, cheese, pepperoni and olives.

Favorite Family Recipes

Recipe: Favorite Family Recipes

7. Spaghetti Bolognese

Spaghetti bolognese is a classic dish, and if you make your bolognese in a crock pot, you’re filled with tons of new options for the entree. Use the meat with foods other than spaghetti if you’re feeling bored, or just enjoy the flavorful Italian meal all week.

Spend With Pennies

Recipe: Spend With Pennies

8. Veggie Tortilla Soup

Crock-Pot meals don’t need to be filled with meat. This vegetarian version of tortilla soup is healthy, filling and easily frozen for later use. When you’re ready to eat it, you can top it with avocado, sour cream, tortilla chips and more.

Oh My Veggies

Recipe: Oh My Veggies

Here’s The Ultimate Road Trip To Visit All The National Parks

Anyone up for a road trip? This one travels through all 47 national parks in the continental U.S. and will take you two months to complete. But hey, if you’ve got plenty of vacation time saved up—why not?

The route is just under 14,500 miles, according to The Washington Post. The Optimal U.S. National Parks Centennial Road Trip map was designed to commemorate the 100th birthday of the National Park Service, which was in August of 2016.

Randal Olson

The map was created by Randal Olson, a researcher at the University of Pennsylvania. He had a little help from the Traveling Salesman Problem, which calculates the shortest route you can take to hit up a number of different cities before ending up back where you started.

RELATED: 5 National Park Road Trips To Take This Summer

So, if you’re looking for a road trip and hit all 47 national parks (excluding those in Alaska, Hawaii and other U.S. territories), then, this would be the shortest, fastest way to do it. Olson recommends setting two months aside to take in all the sights.


Olson designed a circular route so that you can hop on at any point and still stay on track. To learn how the trip was calculated or to create your own trip, check out his blog.

Here’s a list of all the national parks in order:

  1. Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona
  2. Petrified Forest National Park, Arizona
  3. Saguaro National Park, Arizona
  4. Guadalupe Mountains National Park, Texas
  5. Carlsbad Caverns National Park, New Mexico
  6. Big Bend National Park, Texas
  7. Hot Springs National Park, Arkansas
  8. Mammoth Cave National Park, Kentucky
  9. Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Tennessee
  10. Everglades National Park, Florida
  11. Dry Tortugas National Park, Florida
  12. Biscayne National Park, Florida
  13. Congaree National Park, South Carolina
  14. Shenandoah National Park, Virginia
  15. Acadia National Park, Maine
  16. Cuyahoga Valley National Park, Ohio
  17. Isle Royale National Park, Michigan
  18. Voyageurs National Park, Minnesota
  19. Theodore Roosevelt National Park, North Dakota
  20. Badlands National Park, South Dakota
  21. Wind Cave National Park, South Dakota
  22. Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado
  23. Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve, Colorado
  24. Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park, Colorado
  25. Mesa Verde National Park, Colorado
  26. Canyonlands National Park, Utah
  27. Arches National Park, Utah
  28. Capitol Reef National Park, Utah
  29. Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah
  30. Zion National Park, Utah
  31. Great Basin National Park, Nevada
  32. Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming
  33. Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming
  34. Glacier National Park, Montana
  35. North Cascades National Park, Washington
  36. Mount Rainier National Park, Washington
  37. Olympic National Park, Washington
  38. Crater Lake National Park, Oregon
  39. Redwood National and State Parks, California
  40. Lassen Volcanic National Park, California
  41. Yosemite National Park, California
  42. Kings Canyon National Park, California
  43. Sequoia National Park, California
  44. Pinnacles National Park, California
  45. Channel Islands National Park, California
  46. Joshua Tree National Park, California
  47. Death Valley National Park, California

Now, set your sights on the open road. Summer is fast approaching, so you might as well spend it road trippin’ through nature, right?

[h/t: Mental Floss]

If road trips are your thing, check out this route that hits 48 states! Every stop is a landmark, national park or historic site: