Thursday, January 22, 2015

Winter: Slow Cooker Time

Stepping into the house from church Sunday mornings, guests in tow, is always an act of faith! Can I smell lunch or did I forget to turn on the slow cooker?

I think my fears come mostly from our days in South America when the electricity could go off at anytime without warning. In fact, we used to joke that if they warned us that the power or water would be off we were safe! (I always filled every pan in the house with water when they said it would be cut, even though I never needed it when they told me I would. Twenty four years in South America was not beat by twenty-four years growing up in the states!)

I have to admit that I'm pretty proud of myself when I manage to get a meal into a slow cooker before I head out of the house and come home to the satisfying smells of a meal ready to eat (far better than military MREs!)

And somehow when it's cold outside, those slow cooker meals seem even more appropriate. Since we are in that season in the northern hemisphere, I thought I'd do a collection of slow cooker recipes (in alphabetical order) that our family enjoys to help you with your meal planning.

Beef Daube Provan├žal -- I think that's French for "beef stew" except stew never tasted this good! I've made it both in the slow cooker and the oven and it is always appreciated. Sometimes I serve it with rice instead of egg noodles.

Coconut Chicken and Veggies -- I at least double the spices in this recipe and love the sophisticated taste. (It's already on next week's menu!)

Cranberry Chicken -- This is just too easy. I serve it with brown rice, roasted veggies, and a harvest salad.

Chicken Parmesan Soup -- How can you think "slow cooker" without thinking "soup"?

Chicken Taco Soup -- Spice and Texture!

Chicken Fajita Soup -- are you seeing a pattern here? Our family loves what my 4 year old son once called "tasteable" food!

French Onion Soup -- With a salad this makes a whole meal.

Mac'n'Cheese -- Quick and a favorite with kids. Don't let it cook too long!

Pork Tenderloin -- Easy and delicious! I live in pork country and since it's the cheapest meat around, it's often what I feed my Sunday noon crowd.

Pot Roast -- My only complaint is the price of chuck roasts. But I've made it with rump roast when it's on sale and it's just as good! I love her side suggestions, too.

Sloppy Joes (hot and spicy) -- find the recipe below! I like to double this because it freezes well. Then later I get a day off from cooking!

Spicy Meatballs and Spaghetti Sauce -- Even my Korean guests enjoyed this truly non-Asian meal!

Vegetarian Chili - warm and full of comfort, even the meat lovers in your home will enjoy this hearty meal.

Hot and Spicy Sloppy Joes

2 pounds ground turkey
4 medium onions, chopped
1 large green pepper, cut into short strips
1 medium red pepper, cut into short strips
2 6-oz. cans tomato paste
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1 Tablespoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes (or to taste)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
10-12 hoagie rolls

In large skillet, cook and stir to break up ground beef and onion until meat is no longer pink at all.

In a 5 - 6 quart slow cooker, combine everything except the rolls. Cover and cook on low for 8-10 hours or on high for 4-5. Serve on toasted rolls.

Serve with: apple slices and dip.

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  1. It's nice meeting you through Crafty Spices Follow Friday hook up. Your Spicy Sloppy Joe recipe sounds good. I'm definitely going to give this a whirl. Soups in the cooler months are a cozy welcome meal to fight against the cold. It's nice meeting you via Crafty Spices Follow Friday. I'm now following you. Have a good weekend! ;)

    1. Hi Cathy, Thanks for stopping by! I hope you enjoy the Sloppy Joe recipe. We're going to use it for a potluck at church in a few weeks!

  2. I love a good slow cooker recipe! Thank you (:

    Visiting from



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