My resistance to cooking hearty rib-sticking food disappeared with the first fall chill a couple of weeks ago. Currently the weather in New York is being civil and everyone’s letting their guards down. But any day now, boom! Frost. And everyone’s going to be running for their braisers and slow-cookers willy-nilly, shoving smaller people out of the way, only to find they’re slightly out of practice. 

Get your slow-cooker legs back with these easy soups, stews, chilis, braises and even a tagine that are great to make in huge batches, always taste better the next day and reheat without drying out or fussy tricks like damp paper towels or that plastic dome thing people sometimes keep in their microwaves that always gets splattered with food.

You know what I’m talking about.

Whenever I get to the step in a slow-cooker recipe where you put the lid on and leave it alone for a few hours I always yell “set it and forget it!” in my head. I should just yell it out loud. It’s so supremely satisfying.

More hearty fall fare for lunch on Food Republic: