Top 5 Healthy Crock Pot Recipes for Busy Moms

Crock-Pot

Today on the Quiltcast, Amy and I talked about how we balance our mom jobs and our day jobs–and one of the tools we mentioned is our slow cooker! Both of us love to use our crock pot to get dinner done–in fact, mine is going upstairs right now (See below, Kathy’s White Bean and Chicken Chili). Using a crock-pot, of course, gives me a little more time for this:

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For me, it is important when I am feeding my family that the meal not only be fast and not too fussy, but that it be nutritious, real food too. And, as we discussed on the Quiltcast, I have a pretty bad time with MSG and preservatives, so that’s just another reason I don’t like to add canned soups, etc, to our meals.

Without further ado, these are 5 Crock Pot meals that I use on a regular basis in my home. Because we’re all busy, but we all want to be healthy. Throw one in your slow cooker tomorrow morning, and have dinner done before breakfast is over!

xoxo

April

Slow Cooker French Dip Sandwiches:

These are so good! We get crusty rolls and broil some cheese and italian spices  on top before making our sandwiches. Yum! I use the recipe here to make my own Onion Soup Mix without bouillon or MSG.

Split Pea Soup:

This is a perfect comfort food, and a great way to use leftover ham. Even better, my kids love it! If you have fussy children who don’t like texture, you may want to leave the ham out until the veggies are all cooked, remove the bay leaf, and puree the soup in a high speed blender before adding the ham.

Harvest Ham and Root Veggies:

This is such a simple recipe, I can’t even find a link for it. Here goes: Use a 1 to 1 1/2 pound boneless ham, 6 carrots, and 3 medium sweet potatoes. Peel potatoes and carrots, and quarter or cut into bite size pieces. Place carrots and potatoes on the bottom of the crock pot. Place ham on top of vegetables. Pour 1 cup of pure maple syrup (not extract, and not waffle syrup) over ham and vegetables. Cover, cook on LOW for 6-8 hours. (Original recipe found in Crock-Pot Slow Cooker Best-Loved Recipes.)

Kathy’s White Bean and Chicken Chili:

This is one of those “Throw it all in and forget about it” kind of crock pot meals. Just the kind I like. On the beans, I have usually done this with canned beans, but it’s so much more delicious with dried beans. See the link below if you haven’t ever used dried beans.

Place 3 chicken breasts, 1 can of black beans, 1 can of great northern beans, 2 cups of salsa, 1 cup of diced tomatoes, and 2 tsp of cumin in greased crock pot. Cook on low heat 6-9 hours. Break chicken into bite sized pieces with two forks before serving.

Black Beans (Side or Soup):

I confess, I really love me a meatless meal. The nice part about this recipe is that with a little tweak or two, you can change a pot of beans from a side into a soup. So, if you prefer some meat with your beans, use this as a side recipe. If, like me, you’d like to make these beans the star of the show, well, follow the soup recipe or use them as a topping for some rice. These recipes are both stovetop variety, but can easily be put in a crock pot as well for a few hours, and has the advantage of being a little faster than a large cut of meat that needs to cook all the way through. I use organic beef broth if I’m making the soup, and use dried beans, instead of canned beans. Here’s a great link on using dried beans.


Comments

  1. 1
    Kathy says:

    Yum! I will have to try the chili with dried beans. Although Costco now has organic canned beans. :)

  2. 2
    *LyndiLou* says:

    YUM!!! These are some great recipes. Kathy’s Chili is the best! Thanks for sharing. :)

  3. 3
  4. 4
    Jane B says:

    Just came over to your blog from Ellison Lane from the post on the new Amy Smart book. I love the idea of easy nutritious meals and thought I would leave a comment about my favorite new “old” kitchen appliance: a pressure cooker. The new ones are not like your mom or grandma’s pressure cooker, they have easy directions and no little weight rocking back and forth, but they work so great for making beans from dried or brown rice without an hour for simmering. I think of them as a fast crock pot. Almost any meal that you can cook all day in the crock pot is fabulous in a pressure cooker and you can get the meal on the table fast, like on a day where you forget to start the slow cooker in the morning.

    • 4.1
      April says:

      Oh Jane. I’m going to have to get a hold of one of these pressure cookers. Sounds fabulous. I’ve always been scared of them because my grandpa used to tell stories about them exploding…

  5. 5
    Susan says:

    Tried split pea soup amazingly delicious. My daughter too loved it.

  6. 6
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