365 Days of Slow Cooking: Kitchen Tip Tuesday: Why do you use tapioca in your slow cooker recipes?
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Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Kitchen Tip Tuesday: Why do you use tapioca in your slow cooker recipes?


Happy Tuesday to you.  Guess what?  School starts in a week!  I know some of you will think I'm mean but I'm really excited for it to start!!  I love a little silence in my home during the day.

I have gotten a few great questions in the last little bit so I thought I'd share one with you today.
Why I use Tapioca in most all of my slow cooker recipes and how it makes them turn out better. #slowcooker #crockpot #kitchentip

I see you use quick cooking tapioca in many of your recipes. What is the purpose/flavor.....is there anything I can substitute that will not alter the intended flavor of the recipe?

Yes, I do use tapioca. It is a thickener. It has no flavor. I like to use it instead of cornstarch because it's easier for me to add it in at the beginning with all the rest of the ingredients than it is for me to use cornstarch at the end. Slow cooking is awesome but everything tends to get really runny because there is no evaporation that occurs. Thickeners are necessary or your dishes will turn out really really liquid-y. If you don't have tapioca you can 
*dredge any meat in a little flour.  
*Or you can reduce on the stove-top at the end.  
*Or you can use a little cornstarch and water at the end.  
*I also like to cook on HIGH for the last hour without the lid because it helps some liquid evaporate off.

I buy my tapioca in the jello aisle. It costs less than $3.00 a box most of the time.


  1. I just used my first tapioca in one of your recipes last week. Don't know what I was scared of!

  2. Jennifer G.28/8/12 18:29

    I just read through all the kitchen tip Tuesday's that had a link under another tip that I could find. What a great idea! Although some I knew, I also learrned some new ones. It seems we are always looking for new ideas especially to make life easier, since there never seems to be enough hours in the day. Thank you for the tips and I will look forward to your future tips. Keep up the good work!!

  3. Do you know that I had been meaning to ask you this question? I printed a few of your recipes that called for it, and I wasn't quite sure what the purpose was. Thank you for the tips, and GREAT BLOG!

  4. i'm a fan of Arborio rice in soups and stews. i toss it in the crock pot when i have 45 minutes left of cooking. sops up the liquid and i just love the taste and texture. may bot work so wekk for sweet dishes.

  5. Is it possible to use xanthan gum as a substitute for tapioca in your recipes? I don't know if you're familiar with using it, but I thought I'd ask anyway :) Thanks!

  6. Taryn, I'm not familiar with xantham gum and how it would work in slow cooker recipes. If you try it out, let me know if it works!