Slow Cooker Hamburgers

Slow Cooker Hamburgers

The Spruce / Rachel Riesgraf

Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 7 hrs
Total: 7 hrs 15 mins
Servings: 8 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
336 Calories
20g Fat
6g Carbs
32g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 8
Amount per serving
Calories 336
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 20g 26%
Saturated Fat 7g 37%
Cholesterol 101mg 34%
Sodium 516mg 22%
Total Carbohydrate 6g 2%
Dietary Fiber 1g 3%
Total Sugars 3g
Protein 32g
Vitamin C 45mg 223%
Calcium 50mg 4%
Iron 4mg 20%
Potassium 635mg 14%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

If you want dinner ready after a full day of work or fun with little to no effort, prep these slow cooker burgers and set it and forget it. The hamburgers will emerge moist and flavorful, similar to a classic steamed burger. Tomato juice and ketchup gives them a flavor reminiscent of meatloaf. The chopped onions and celery help keep the patties from scorching and sticking to the bottom of the cooker. Serve on soft buns with toppings like cheese, pickles, and fresh lettuce and tomato.

This slow cooker hamburgers recipe is so easy the kids can make it all by themselves since it doesn't require a hot pan or grill. Just make sure they wash their hands after touching the raw meat when forming the patties. Everyone in the family will be rewarded with a delicious dinner at the end of the day. Serve with oven fries or air fryer fries or potato salad.

This recipe is courtesy of Phyllis Good's Fix-It And Forget-It Kids' Cookbook, Good Year Books, 2012.


  • 1 cup chopped onions

  • 1/4 cup chopped celery

  • 2 pounds ground beef

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt, divided

  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

  • 2 cups tomato juice

  • 1 tablespoon ketchup

  • 2 teaspoons garlic, minced

  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Slow Cooker Hamburgers ingredients

    The Spruce / Rachel Riesgraf

  2. Place chopped onions and celery in the bottom of a 4 or 5-quart slow cooker.​

    chopped onions and celery in a slow cooker

    The Spruce / Rachel Riesgraf

  3. Place beef, 1 teaspoon of salt, and pepper into a large mixing bowl. Use your hands to mix salt and pepper into the beef.

    ground beef with salt and pepper in a bowl

    The Spruce / Rachel Riesgraf

  4. Divide hamburger mixture into eight balls, each the same size. Flatten so they look like hamburger patties.

    shaped hamburger patties on baking sheet

    The Spruce / Rachel Riesgraf

  5. Place patties in slow cooker on top of onions and celery. Try not to stack them. If you have to, stagger them, so they don’t lie exactly on top of each other. Wash your hands well.

    beef patties on top of the onion mixture in the slow cooker

    The Spruce / Rachel Riesgraf

  6. In a medium-sized mixing bowl, stir together tomato juice, ketchup, minced garlic, Italian seasoning, and remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt.

    tomato juice, ketchup, minced garlic, Italian seasoning and salt in a bowl

    The Spruce / Rachel Riesgraf

  7. Pour sauce over hamburgers in slow cooker. Cover with lid and cook burgers on low for 7 to 9 hours.

    hamburger patties and sauce in a slow cooker

    The Spruce / Rachel Riesgraf

How to Serve

  • If you'd like cheeseburgers, add slices of cheese to each patty and re-cover. Keep cooking on low for about 10 minutes, or until the cheese is melted.
  • Place each burger with a bit of the sauce on a hamburger roll.
  • Add the toppings of your choice, such as pickles, fresh leaves of lettuce, sliced tomato, sliced onion, mustard, and/or mayonnaise.
  • These crock pot burgers are also delicious as chili cheeseburgers. Simply top with cheese followed by warm chili and, if desired, a sprinkle of diced onions.