WELCOME

Welcome to this slow cooker/crockpot blog. I believe slow cookers are the best thing to happen to modern day cooks. I used mine often when I worked outside the home and continue to do so even in retirement. It is so nice to put food on and forget about it. Slow cookers also allow us to cook many things we would normally have to use the oven for; what a relief in hot Texas weather! Some of these recipes are mine, many are ones I have collected over the years.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

CHEESY CAULIFLOWER

2 pkgs (10-oz each) frozen cauliflower, slightly thawed
2 tbsp butter, melted in a saucepan
1 tbsp flour
1 cup evaporated milk
1/4 cup cheddar cheese
2 tbsp cottage cheese
1 tbsp Parmesan cheese
4-5 slices bacon, fried crisp, drained, crumbled

Place the cauliflower evenly in a crockpot or slow cooker.

Stir the flour and evaporated milk into the butter, stirring until smooth.  Heat over low heat, stirring constantly, until thickened.  Stir in the cheddar, cottage, and Parmesan cheeses; pour over the cauliflower in the cooker.

Sprinkle the crumbled bacon over all.  Place lid on cooker and cook on low heat 4 to 5 hours.

Yield: 4 to 6 servings

Note: This is a stock photo.

NOTE: This recipe is good for diabetics, too.  However it is best to use low-fat evaporated milk and cheeses.

Monday, October 29, 2012

CHILI PEANUTS

1/2 stick butter, melted
2 cans (12-oz) cocktail peanuts
1 packet (1 5/8-oz) chili seasoning mix

Place the peanuts in a 3-quart slow-cooker; pour butter over nuts.  Sprinkle the dry chili mix over all.  Stir to blend.

Place lid on cooker and cook on low 2 1/2 hours.  After 2 1/2 hours remove the lid and turn cooker to high.  Cook nuts on high, without the lid for about 15 minutes.

Delicious served warm or cooled.


Store in an airtight container.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

SLOW COOKER HAM-POTATO CHOWDER

1 pkg (5-oz) scalloped potatoes with sauce mix
1 cup lean ham, cubed
4 tsp chicken-flavored bouillon powder
4 cups water
1 cup chopped celery
1 small carrot, diced
1/4 cup chopped onion
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
2 cups low fat cream
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
shredded cheddar cheese for garnish, if desired
chopped green onion for garnish, if desired

In a 4-quart slow cooker, combine the potatoes with the powdered sauce mix, ham, bouillon, water, celery, carrot, onion, salt and pepper; stir to blend well.

Place lid on cooker and cook chowder on low for 7 hours.

In a small bowl, mix the cream into the flour blending until smooth.  Slowly stir the mixture into the chowder, stirring constantly. until smooth.  Replace lid and continue cooking for 45 minutes to one hour or until thickened, stirring several times.

Ladle chowder into serving bowls and sprinkle with cheese and/or green onion, if desired.

Friday, October 26, 2012

SLOW-COOKER DOUBLE CHILI




1 lb ground beef
1 can (28-oz) diced tomatoes with the juice
1 medium onion, chopped
1 medium-sized green bell pepper, chopped
1 can (15-oz) fat-free vegetarian chili
1 can (8-oz) tomato sauce
2 tbsp chili powder
2 tbsp minced fresh parsley
1 tbsp dried basil
2 tsp ground cumiin
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp dried oregano
3/4 tsp black pepper
1/8 tsp hot pepper sauce
6 tbsp shredded reduced-fat cheddar or other cheese
1 tbsp minced chives or sliced green onion.

In a nonstick skillet, cook beef over medium heat until no longer pink; drain. Transfer to a 3-quart slow cooker. Add the tomatoes, onion, green pepper, chili, tomato sauce, chili powder, parsley, basil, cumin, garlic, oregano, pepper and hot sauce. Cover and cook on low for 6 to 8 hours. Sprinkle with cheese and chives or green onion before serving.



Yield: 6 servings
Per 1 1/3 cups serving: 266 cal, 8 g fat (3 g sat), 42 mg chol, 759 mg sodium, 27 g carbs, 8 g fiber, 23 g protein

Diabetic exchanges: 3 lean meat, 3 vegetables, ½ starch

Thursday, October 25, 2012

EASY ITALIAN SAUSAGE SCRAMBLE

Note: This is a recipe from Rival, maker of the Crock Pot.

1 medium onion, diced
1 1/2 lbs. Italian sausage, removed from casing
6 medium red potatoes, diced
1 medium tomato, diced
1 cup fresh or frozen kernel corn
1/4 cup fresh Italian parsley, minced
2 cups cheddar cheese, grated
1 cup milk
1 1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp freshly ground black pepper

In a medium skillet, saute the onion and brown and crumble the sausage.  Drain any fat and transfer sausage and onions to the Crock-Pot slow cooker.  Add the remaining ingredients, mixing well to combine thoroughly.  Cover; cook on Low for 6 to 8 hours (or on High for 3 to 4 hours), or until the potatoes are tender.  Makes 6 servings.

Note: Choose your favorite style of Italian sausage to make this dish memorable or try a sweet or extra spicy style as an exciting variation.

 
One of Rival's many Crock-Pots.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

CROCK POT SPINACH DIP

This makes a warm version of the classic spinach dips.

12-oz cream cheese, cubed
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
1 pkg (10-oz) frozen chopped spinach
1 envelope dry onion soup mix
1 tsp hot sauce
1/2 cup green onions, finely sliced
1 tsp fresh lemon juice

Combine the cream cheese and whipping cream in the cooker.  Place the lid on the cooker and cook on high until the cream cheese is melted.  This will take 45-50 minutes.

Add the spinch to the cooker along with soup mix, and hot sauce; stir together thoroughly.

Place lid back on the cooker and cook on high for another 30 minutes. 

About 5 minutes before serving, add the green onions and stir in the lemon juice; mix together well.

Serve directly from the cooker or place in a bread bowl.

Serve dip with fresh veggies, party crackers, or party breads.

Note: This is a file photo.

Monday, October 22, 2012

SPICY LENTIL SOUP

1 cup rinsed lentils
1 can (28-oz) stewed tomatoes with juice
2 large red potatoes, diced
2 large carrots, sliced thin
1 medium-size yellow onion, diced
1 stalk celery, sliced thin
3 large garlic cloves, minced
3 bay leaves
3 tbsp curry powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp coarsely ground black pepper
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp Cajun seasoning
4 cups vegetable broth*

Combine the ingredients in a crockpot or slow cooker.  Place lid on cooker and cook on low setting 8 to 10 hours or on high half that time or until the lentils are tender.  Remove the bay leaves and discard before serving.

 
Serves 4 to 6


Sunday, October 21, 2012

PEPPERONI PIZZA-FLAVORED RICE

2 cups uncooked brown rice
2 cups pizza sauce
3 1/2 cups water
1 can (7-oz) mushrooms, drained
3 oz pepperoni slices
1 cup grated mozzarella cheese

In a crockpot or slow cooker, combine the rice, pizza sauce, water, mushrooms, and pepperoni slices, stirring to combine well.  Place lid on cooker and cook on low 4 to 6 hours or in high 4 to 5 hours.

Before serving, sprinkle with the mozzarella cheese.


White or Brown Rice?  I suggest always using brown rice.  It is so good, you will hardly notice a difference and brown rice is a whole-grain making it much better for you.  White rice is refined rice.

Friday, October 19, 2012

APPLE CHICKEN

1 1/2 lbs boneless skinless chicken breasts, large diced
1 1/2 cups whole-grain croutons
1/2 cup no-sugar-added apple juice
1 tsp salt
1 tsp coarsely ground black pepper
1/4 tsp paprika
1 1/2 tsp curry powder
1 large garlic clove, minced
3/4 cup sliced celery
1/2 cup golden raisins
1 large Granny Smith apple, cored and diced
1 small onion, chopped
1/2 tablespoon brown sugar*

Combine all ingredients in a large mixing bowl and toss to mix well.  Transfer to a crockpot or slow cooker.  Place lid on cooker and cook on low approximately 8 hours or on high 3 1/2 hours.

Suggestion: Serve with brown rice and a green salad.

* Use 1 1/2 teaspoons of Splenda Brown Sugar Blend for a diabetic-friendly recipe.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

CROCKPOT OLD-FASHION GINGERBREAD

4 tbsp butter, softened
6 tbsp granulated sugar
1 egg
1 cup light molasses
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp ground cinnamon
2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup hot water

Grease and flour a 2-lb metal coffee can; set aside.

Cream together the butter, and sugar.  Add the egg and molasses; mix together well.

Stir in the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, and salt; mix together well.

Add the hot water while beating well.

Pour the batter into the coffee can.  Place the can inside the cooker and cover the top of the can with 6 to 8 paper towels, depending on thickness.  Place lid on cooker and cook for 2 1/2 to 3 hours on high.

Good served with warm applesauce or with whipped cream dusted with a sprinkling of nutmeg or cinnamon.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

EASY SLOW COOKED BEEF STROGANOFF

1 lb round steak, fat trimmed and cut into cubes
1 envelope dry onion soup mix
1 can (4-oz) mushroom stems and pieces, drained
1 can cream of celery soup
1 con cream of mushroom soup
1/2 cup sour cream
cooked noodles for serving

Place the steak in a crock pot or slow cooker and sprinkle the mushroom stems and pieces over the steak.  In a mixing bowl, using a wire whisk, combine the cream of celery soup, cream of mushroom soup, and the dry onion soup mix until blended; pour over the meat and mushrooms.

Place lid on cooker and cook 6 to 8 hours on low.

Before serving, stir in the sour cream, blending well.  Serve stroganoff over hot cooked noodles.


Yield: Approximately 6 servings

Saturday, October 13, 2012

BACON CABBAGE WITH APPLES

6 sliced bacon, fried, drained on paper towels, crumbled into large pieces
1 head(approx. 2 lbs) cabbage, sliced
1 yellow onion, chopped
3 Granny Smith apples, cored, quartered
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp coarsely ground black pepper
1 cup hot water
1 tbsp sugar
1/3 cup cider vinegar
1 1/2 tbsp of the bacon drippings

Layer ingredients in a slow cooker or crockpot in the following order: cabbage, bacon, onion, salt, apples, pepper, sugar, vinegar, bacon drippings, and water.

Place lid on cooker and cook on low approximately 8 hours or on high about 3 hours until cabbage is tender.  Stir well before serving.
I prefer this type of cooker for this recipe but to each his own.  I like these ingredients spread out in layers rather than so stacked.
Yield: approximately 6 servings

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

CROCKIN' GIRLS PINEAPPLE UPSIDE DOWN CAKE

This recipe makes a great cake so I wanted to share it with you.  It is from the Crockin' Girls.

1 box of pineapple cake mix (prepare according to box)
2-3 eggs (will be listed on the box)
vegetable oil (will be listed on the box)
Milk (use instead of water on the box)
1 Can of pineapple rings or 1 fresh pineapple cut into 8 rings
1 Can of maraschino cherries
1 small bag brown sugar
  
Spray 6-quart slow cooker with bakers joy or spray and flour lightly.
 
Lightly coat the bottom of the slow cooker with brown sugar.
 
Place pineapple rings of pineapple on top of the brown sugar. Insert one cherry in the middle of each pineapple ring.
 
In a separate bowl, make box cake according to the package directions and pour batter into the slow cooker.
 
Cook on HIGH for 2-3 hours or until toothpick inserted comes out clean.
 
Remove crock from the base & let cake cool for about 10-15 minutes.
 
Place a platter over the top of the crock and flip crock over, letting the cake fall onto the platter. Serve as is or top with fresh pineapple and cool whip.         
 
             

Monday, October 8, 2012

SLOW COOKER MEATLOAF FROM COOKING LIGHT

I love meatloaf and I love mushrooms so I was immediately drawn to this recipe and I thought some of you might like to have it, too.  I won't touch poultry so I will make mine all beef but I'm sure most of you will enjoy it just as listed.

Slow-Cooker Meat Loaf with Shiitake Mushrooms
Photography: Photography: Karry Hosford;

Because no evaporation takes place, the crockpot makes an especially moist and tender meat loaf. The mushrooms add moisture as well.
Servings:6 servings (serving size: 4 ounces) Prep Time:n/a Cook Time:n/a

Nutritional Info

Ingredients

  • 2 (1-ounce) slices whole wheat bread
  • 3/4 pound ground round
  • 3/4 pound ground turkey
  • 1 1/2 cups sliced shiitake mushrooms
  • 1/2 cup grated fresh onion
  • 1 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 tablespoons ketchup
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
Amount Per Serving
  • mono fat:5.1 g
  • saturated fat:4.2 g
  • fiber:1.9 g
  • sodium:545 mg
  • iron:3 mg
  • calories:265
  • protein:25.2 g
  • calcium:41 mg
  • poly fat:1.7 g
  • carbohydrate:12.7 g
  • cholesterol:152 mg
  • calories from fat:43 %
  • fat:12.7 g

directions

    Place bread in a food processor, and pulse 10 times or until crumbs measure 1 1/3 cups. Combine the crumbs, beef, and next 7 ingredients (beef through garlic) in a large bowl, and shape meat mixture into a 9 x 6-inch loaf. Place loaf in an electric slow cooker.
    Combine ketchup, mustard, and pepper in a small bowl, stirring with a fork. Spread ketchup mixture evenly over top of loaf. Cover with lid; cook on LOW for 5 hours.

MUSHROOM AND WINE BEEF STEW

1 lb sirloin, cut into cubes
2 tbsp whole-wheat flour
1 tbsp canola oil

Heat the oil in a large skilllet.
Place flour in a shallow bowl or pie plate and dredge sirloin through the flour, place in slow cooker or crockpot. 

1 large yellow onion, chopped
2 large garlic cloves, minced
1/2 lb fresh sliced mushrooms

Add the onion, cloves, and mushrooms to the skillet where the sirloin was browned, cooking just until turning soft.  Add to the meat in the cooker.

2 celery ribs, sliced
3 large carrots, sliced
4 large potatoes, cubed
2 tsp seasoned salt
1 can (14.5-oz) beef broth or stock
3/4 cup red cooking wine

Add the celery, carrots, potatoes, salt, broth, and wine to the cooker.  Place lid on cooker and cook on low for approximately 6 to 8 hours.

Yield: 8 to 10 servings.

Note: This is also a diabetic-friendly recipe.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Slow Cooker Winter Spiced Beef and Apple Stew

This recipe is a Kraft Foods/McCormick Seasonings Recipe which is why it calls for McCormick seasonings.  Normally I do not list ingredients by brand but since this is their recipe, used with permission, I will leave their name in the ingredients.  This is a great Fall dish so I thought you would probably enjoy having the recipe.  The picture is theirs, too.

4 teaspoons McCormick® Gourmet Collection Cumin Seed
1 1/2 pounds lean beef stew meat, cut into 1-inch cubes
3 tablespoons flour
1 tablespoon oil
1 3/4 cups Kitchen Basics® Beef Stock
1 can (6 ounces) frozen apple juice concentrate, undiluted
1 1/2 teaspoons McCormick® Gourmet Collection Thyme Leaves
1/2 teaspoon McCormick® Gourmet Collection Allspice, Ground
1/2 teaspoon McCormick® Gourmet Collection Black Pepper, Coarse Grind
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled, cut into 1-inch chunks
2 medium firm red cooking apples, peeled, cored and cut into 1 1/2-inch chunks

1. Heat small skillet on medium heat. Add cumin seed; cook and stir about 2 minutes or until fragrant. Immediately pour out of hot pan to avoid over-toasting. Set aside.

2. Coat meat with flour. Heat oil in large saucepan or Dutch oven on medium-high heat. Add meat in batches; cook 5 minutes or until browned. Place meat and remaining ingredients in slow cooker; toss to coat well. Cover.

3. Cook 8 hours on LOW or 4 hours on HIGH.



Thicken with additional flour, if desired.

 

Friday, October 5, 2012

DUSTIN'S PORK CHOPS

As most of you know, several of my grandchildren love to cook.  Today I told my 19-year-old grandson I was going to put some pork chops in the slow cooker.  He immediately headed to the kitchen.  Here is the result and I must say they were juicy, tender, and tasty.  Thank you, Dustin!

4 bone-in pork chops
salt to taste
freshly ground black pepper to taste
garlic powder to taste
1/4 cup bottled barbecue sauce
1 tbsp water
1 large garlic clove, minced

Rinse chops and pat dry.  Season with salt, pepper, and garlic salt to suit your taste.  (Dustin loves garlic so we won't recommend the amount!)  Place chops in the cooker.

Pour the barbecue sauce over the chops then use the water to rinse out the measuring cup and pour over the chops.  Sprinkle the minced garlic over all.

Place lid on cooker and cook on high 2 to 4 hours until chops are tender and cooked through (or 4 to 6 hours on low.  Dustins were cooked on low about 2 1/2 to 3 hours and then on high for 1 hour.

 
For a stronger barbecue flavor, double the amount of barbecue sauce.

WEIGHT WATCHERS CATALAN SEAFOOD STEW

This is a Weight Watchers recipe.  I have never tried it as I don't touch seafood and I don't do Weight Watchers.  However, I get requests for both so here you go.

1 onion, sliced
2 garlic cloves, crushed through a press
1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
1 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
1 can (15-oz) kidney beans, rinsed & drained
1 can (15-oz) chickpeas, rinsed & drained
1 can (14.5-oz) fire-roasted diced tomatoes
1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
1 bell pepper (any color), cut into 1-inch chunks
2/3 cups brown rice
1/2 lb skinless halibut or cod fillet, cut into 1-inch chunks
1/2 lb large shrimp, peeled & deveined
1/2 cup fresh cilantro leaves

Spray a large nonstick skillet with nonstick spray and set over medium heat.  Add onion and cook until softened, about 5 minutes.  Stir in garlic, cumin, paprika, salt, and red pepper flakes.  Transfer onion mixture to a 5 or 6-quart slow cooker or crockpot.  Stir in beans, chickpeas, tomatoes, bell pepper, and broth.  Cover and cook until vegetables are fork-tender, 3-4 hours on high or 6-8 hours on low.

About 30-40 minutes before cooking time is up, cook rice according to package directions.

At end of the cooking time, stir fish and shrimp into the slow cooker.  Cover and cook on high until they are opaque in the center, about 8 to 10 minutes.

Divide the rice among 4 plates with rims and top with the stew.

Sprinkle the cilantro leaves over the tops of the plates.




Yield 4 servings of 1 cup stew over 1/3 cup rice = 297 calories, 3 g fat, 1 g sat fat, 0 g trans fat, 56 mg cholesterol, 470 mg sodium, 46 g carbs, 10 g fiber, 24 g protein, 101 mg calcium

Weight Watchers Points = 5

(Have a connection to WW that allows posting recipes as long as it states it is WW.)

Thursday, October 4, 2012

HOW TO COOK FROZEN MEATS IN A CROCKPOT OR SLOW COOKER

It is okay to put frozen meats directly into your slow cooker or crockpot, however it is best to make these changes to your recipe.
  • Before placing the meat into the cooker add a cup of warm liquid (broth, water, etc - whatever liquid your recipe calls for).
  • Do not preheat the cooker before adding frozen meat.
  • Cook the recipe for an additional 4 to 6 hours on low or 2 to 3 hours on high.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

GROUND BEEF & ITALIAN SAUSAGE SPAGHETTI SAUCE

1 lb ground beef
1 lb Italian sausage, sliced
2 cans (28 oz each) crushed tomatoes
3/4 of 1 of the tomato cans of water
2 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
2 tbsp minced parsley
2 tbsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried basil
2 cans (12-oz each) tomato paste
2 cans (12-oz each) tomato puree

Brown meats in a large skillet and drain well; transfer to a 4-quart slow cooker or crockpot.  Add the crushed tomatoes, water, garlic powder, pepper, parsley, and oregano.

Cover cooker and cook on high for 30 minutes.

Add the tomato paste and tomato puree to the cooker; replace lid and cook on low for 6 hours.