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Let Your Slow Cooker do the Work for you during the Cold-Weather Weeknights

Winter Minestrone

(Courtesy of Food Network)

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 carrots, peeled, chopped
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 3 ounces thinly sliced pancetta, coarsely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 pound Swiss chard, stems trimmed, leaves coarsely chopped
  • 1 russet potato, peeled, cubed
  • 1 (14 1/2-ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 1 fresh rosemary sprig
  • 1 (15-ounce) can cannellini beans, drained, rinsed
  • 2 (14-ounce) cans low-sodium beef broth
  • 1 ounce piece Parmesan cheese rind
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley leaves
  • Salt and pepper

Directions:

  1. Heat the oil in a heavy large pot over medium heat.
  2. Add the onion, carrots, celery, pancetta, and garlic. Saute until the onion is translucent, about 10 minutes.
  3. Add the Swiss chard and potato; saute for 2 minutes. Add the tomatoes and rosemary sprig. Simmer until the chard is wilted and the tomatoes break down, about 10 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, blend 3/4 cup of the beans with 1/4 cup of the broth in a processor until almost smooth. Add the pureed bean mixture, remaining broth, and Parmesan cheese rind to the vegetable mixture. Simmer until the potato pieces are tender, stirring occasionally, about 15 minutes. Stir in the whole beans and parsley.
  5. Simmer until the beans are heated through and the soup is thick, about 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
  6. Discard Parmesan rind and rosemary sprig (the leaves will have fallen off of the stem.)
  7. Ladle the soup into bowls and serve.

Nutritional Information:

SERVINGS: 4 (MAIN); Calories: 375; Total Fat: 15 grams; Saturated Fat: 4 grams; Protein: 19 grams; Total Carbohydrates: 43 grams; Sugar: 10 grams; Fiber: 10 grams; Cholesterol: 19 milligrams; Sodium: 1,391 milligrams

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Slow Cooker Lasagna

(Courtesy of Taste of Home)

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 can (29 ounces) tomato sauce
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 can (6 ounces) tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 package (8 ounces) no-cook lasagna noodles
  • 4 cups (16 ounces) shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
  • 1-1/2 cups (12 ounces) 4% cottage cheese
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Directions:

  1. In a skillet, cook beef and onion over medium heat until meat is no longer pink.
  2. Add garlic; cook 1 minute longer. Drain.
  3. Stir in the tomato sauce, water, tomato paste, salt and oregano.
  4. Spread a fourth of the meat sauce in an ungreased 5-qt. slow cooker.
  5. Arrange a third of the noodles over sauce (break the noodles to fit if necessary).
  6. Combine cheeses; spoon a third of the mixture over noodles. Repeat layers twice. Top with remaining meat sauce.
  7. Cover and cook on low for 4-5 hours or until noodles are tender. Yield: 6-8 servings.

Nutritional Information:

1 slice: 482 calories, 20g fat (11g saturated fat), 84mg cholesterol, 1317mg sodium, 36g carbohydrate (10g sugars, 4g fiber), 38g protein.

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Slow Cooker Chicken Fajita Stew

(Courtesy of Glory Foods)

Ingredients:

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 tbs. vegetable oil
  • 1 package Fajita mix
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 1 red pepper, chopped
  • 1 green pepper, chopped
  • 1 (15 oz.) can Glory Foods Skillet Corn
  • 1 (16 oz.) jar mild cilantro salsa, or 2 (8 oz.) cans diced tomatoes
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced, or to taste
  • 1 tsp. onion powder
  • 1 tbs. cilantro
  • 1 (15 oz.) can Glory Foods Sensibly Seasoned Black Beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 chicken bouillon cube (optional)
  • 1 bay leaf

Optional:

  • 1/2 cup rice, uncooked
  • shredded cheddar cheese
  • sour cream
  • flour tortilla shells
  1. Directions:
  2. Place all ingredients in a slow cooker and cook on low for 8 to 10 hours, or on high for 4 to 6 hours.
  3. Remove bay leaf and stir to break up chicken before serving.
  4. Top with cheddar cheese and sour cream, if desired. Or serve as a quesadilla by placing stew mixture in a flour tortilla shell with shredded cheese and sour cream.

For additional information on this recipe, click here.

 

MedicAlert Team Member