The slow cooker. The most time freeing invention since the washing machine.
Well, that’s my view anyway.
I don't know where I'd be without my slow cooker.
Well, probably in the kitchen cooking my dinner.
But as it is, my dinner has been slowly cooking since this morning, freeing up my time to write this post for you lovely people. I'm having Spanish Chicken Stew, by the way.
They really do make healthy eating easier. Saving time and money.
Just chuck the ingredients into the cooker, turn it on, and go to work. You'll be welcomed home to mouth wateringly, delicious smelling food.
If you think they're just for stews and soups and such, you'd be wrong.
You can cook anything in them. Whole joints of meat, risotto and even baked potatoes.
Cooking meat slowly makes it really tender and juicy, so you can use cheaper cuts of meats. That makes them really cost effective as well.
Win, win in my book.
And if you’re stuck for ideas try one of these easy healthy slow cooker recipes.
I love Bolognese.
It is so easy to make, and really versatile.
To make it healthier, and go a lot further, fill it out with lots of vegetables. The recipe below calls for carrots, onions and courgettes, but feel free to use whatever vegetables you like. Mushrooms, peppers, tomatoes, peas, aubergines, they all work really well.
You can also use this as a meal prep recipe.
Chop the vegetables, mix the mince beef with can of tomatoes and mixed herbs and put them all in a freezer food bag.
When you’re ready to eat it, defrost and pop in the slow cooker.
What to serve it with?
Spaghetti is the obvious option but not the only one.
You can use it to make a French bread pizza. Cut a French stick in half, top with the Bolognese sauce and grated cheese and pop in the oven (about 180) until the cheese is melted.
Or, you could use it to stuff peppers.
Remove the core and seeds from the pepper. You can either leave it whole or cut it in half. Fill with Bolognese and pop in the oven, again at about 180, until the pepper is soft. You can also top with grated cheese if you fancy.
The grated cheese, in all of these suggestions, is optional.
Add everything to a slow cooker and mix together.
Cover and cook on low for 6 hours or high for 4 hours, stirring regularly.
If there is too much liquid for you either cook spaghetti in with the Bolognese, or, uncover for the last hour.
For the sauce:
In a large bowl, mix together all the sauce ingredients and stir well to combine.
Place the beef in the slow cooker and cover with the sauce mixture. Place the lid on the slow cooker and cook on a low heat for 8 hours or on a high heat for 4 hours.
Once the beef has finished cooking, mix the corn starch and ¼ cup water and stir into the slow cooker to thicken the sauce.
Cover and cook on high heat for another 30 minutes, or until the sauce has thickened.
Serve immediately, garnished with green onions and sesame seeds.
Place all ingredients into the base of a slow cooker, with the exception of the balsamic vinegar and the frozen peas. Stir to combine.
Cook on high setting for 4 hours (or low for 6 hours).
Once cooked, stir in the balsamic vinegar and frozen peas. Cover and cook for a further 5 minutes. Serve immediately.
For the pork:
Place the sliced red onion on the bottom of the slow cooker, add the pork tenderloin and top with sweet potato chunks.
In a small bowl, whisk together the chicken broth, balsamic vinegar, coconut sugar and garlic. Pour over the pork and sweet potatoes, place the lid on the slow cooker and cook on a low heat for 6 hours.
In the meantime, dice the strawberries and combine with the onion, then set aside in the refrigerator until needed.
Once the pork has finished cooking, remove the sweet potato from the slow cooker, and place into a large bowl. Mash the potato with a potato masher, add the Greek yogurt and mix well. Taste and season with salt and pepper.
Slice the pork tenderloin and serve alongside the mashed sweet potato and strawberry salsa.
If you haven't got a slow cooker, I'd urge you to invest in one.
They make it so easy to eat a healthy diet. And the slow cooking really packs the meals with flavour.
I truly love mine.
What's your favourite slow cooker recipe.
© e-Slimmer 2021
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