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Monday, January 27, 2014

Slow Cooking

The slow cooker, aka the Crock Pot can be such a helpful tool in your kitchen.  Especially if you are very busy and have little time to spend cooking.  But here's the thing, there are so many recipes out there for using the slow cooker that are not clean, healthy eating.  Also, there are many recipes that require some pre-cooking like browning meat on the stove first.  As someone who understands food and the science of cooking, I completely understand why a recipe will yield better results with that method.  As a busy mom, who hates dishes, I feel like it defeats the convenience of the slow cooker.  So this week I wanted to bring you some great recipes that are very easy to assemble and they are healthy. 

Clean Eating Slow Cooker Pineapple Chicken- This recipe suggests eating the cooked chicken over chunks of raw zucchini.  But there are plenty of options for serving this.  It would also be easy to eat it over brown rice.  Or in butter lettuce cups or with tortillas as filling in a wrap.

Chicken Fajitas- This is a simple recipe for chicken fajitas that you can prep in advance, put in a freezer bag to freeze and then just defrost the night before you want to cook it.

2 peppers, sliced
1 onion, chopped
1 1/2 pound chicken breast
1/2 cup chicken broth
1  taco seasoning packet (or 1 tablespoon of Homemade Taco Seasoning)
1 tsp. chili powder
1/2 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. salt

1.    Put all the ingredients in a large freezer bag. (Make sure you label the bag with instructions.)
2.    When it’s time to cook it, dump it all in your slow cooker and cook on high for 3-4 hours or low for 5-6 hours.
3.    When it’s cooked, shred the meat and add it back to the pepper mixture and serve on warm tortillas and your favorite toppings.

Vegan Crock Pot Polenta Lasagna- Instead of layers of noodles, this recipe uses polenta.  Because it is vegan, it includes a recipe for a vegan cheese sauce to layer with the vegetables and polenta.  You can easily just use shredded part skim mozzarella and ricotta cheeses.

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