It’s 4 p.m. and chances are you’re wondering what’s for dinner. Again. If you’d started a slow-cooker meal this morning, you’d have the answer. “The best thing about slow cookers is that you fix a meal, walk away, and it’s ready when you want it,” says Kitty Broihier, MS, RD, and co-author of Everyday Gluten-Free Slow Cooking.

After a long day or a tough workout, it’s hard to muster the motivation to make a nourishing meal. Most of our slow-cooker dishes are meals in themselves, and they require little fuss to prepare. Even better: Slow cookers simplify cleanup, a big plus for busy people.