Slow Cooker Chicken and Artichokes

I’m obsessed with my multi cooker now that is is fall. This dish is simple and oh so good. You can eat the lemon slices – they taste great.

Ingredients:
3 lb chicken thighs
1 tbsp olive oil
1 jar of marinated artichoke hearts
1 can of artichokes in water
1 c castelvetrano olives
1 head of garlic, halved crosswise
1 lemon thinly sliced
6 thyme sprigs
1 c chicken stock
1/2 c dry sherry
1 tbsp asian fish sauce

Season chicken with salt and pepper. Heat oil in multicooker over medium sauté, add chicke and brown. Remove from pot.

Add brine from marinated Artichokes, stock, sherry and fish sauce, bring to boil. Add the chicken and remaining ingredients. Cover and cook for 4 hours on low. 

Discard the thyme. Serve.

Serves 6 – 8.

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Korean Short Rib Tacos


These tasty taco are so easy ans tasty! Serve with ab asian inspired coleslaw in your favorite tortillas.

1/2 c soy sauce
1/4 c sake
3 tbsp toasted sesame oil
2 tbsp ginger, grated
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbsp toasted sesame seeds
1 onion, sliced thin
1 Asian pear, cores and sliced thin
Salt and pepper
1 1/2 lbs  boneless pork ribs

Combine all ingredients in a ziplock bag and marinate overnight, turning several times.

Remove the meat from the bag, sear on all sides. In a slow cooker add the marinade and cook for 8 hours on slow.

Use two forks to shred meat and serve.

Serves 6 – 8.

Slow Cooker Chana Masala

Another winner from Skinny Taste! I upped the spice quite a bit and served it with Trader Joe’s fresh garlic naan.

Ingredients:
1/2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic
2 tbsp ginger, minced
4 hot green chile peppers, chopped
2 tbsp coriander
2 tbsp cumin
3 tsp tumeric
2 tsp garam masala
1 tsp ground cardamom
3 cans chickpeas, rinsed
1 c petite diced tomatoes
1 tbsp tomato paste
Juice of one lemon
1/3 c cilantro, chopped

Turn your slow cooker to sauté, add the oil, onions, garlic, ginger and chilis, cook stirring until softened, about 5 min. Stir in spices and cook, stirring until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add chickpeas, 2 c water, tomatoes, and tomato paste. 

Cover and cook on high for 3 hours or low for 6 hours. When done stir in lemon and Cilantro.

Serves 8.

Slow Cooker Italian Soup

This was inspired by Skinny Taste’s recipe. I used a combo of hot and sweet sausage, kicked up the heat and used kale. If you slow cooker does not have a sauté option – use a skillet on your stove to sauté the sausage and mirepoix, then add to the slow cooker.

Ingredients:
1 lb pf hot and sweet italian sausage
1/2 c chopped onion
1/2 c chopped carrot
1/2 c chopped celery
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp red pepper flakes
3 c chicken broth
1 can crushed tomatoes
1 can cannellini beans, rinsed
2 bay leaves
4 c chopped dinosaur kale
1/4 c pecorino cheese, grated

Turn your Cooker on sauté add sausage and cook until brown, breaking it up as it cooks. Add the onions, carrots, celery, red pepper flakes and garlic and cook until softened. Add broth, tomatoes, beans, bay leave and black pepper to taste.

Cover and cook on high for 4 hours or low for 8. Discard bay leaf, add kale and cook for 30 minutes longer on low.

Serve topped with cheese.

Serves 6.

Slow Cooker Beef Chili

Another winner from Skinny Taste, with a few modifications. My slow cooker is my BFF now that our weekends involve so many activities. 

Ingredients:
2 lb beef
Salt and pepper to taste
1 tbsp tomato paste
1 onion, chopped
1 bell pepper, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 cans black beans, rinsed
1 15 oz can diced tomToes with mild chiles
1 15 oz can tomato sauce
2 tsp chili powder
2 tsp paprika
1 tsp garlic powder
2 bay leaves
Grated cheese
Sliced japalenos
Sliced green onions

Turn the slow cooker on sauté, add the meat and cook, breaking up until browned, add onions, bell peppers and garlic and cook until softened, about 4 minutes. Add black beans, tomatoes, tomato sauce, spices and bay leaf. Cook on night 5 hours, low on 8 – 10.

Serve with jalapeños,  cheese, onions and whatever else you like on your chili.

Serves 8.

Pepper Spaghetti Squash

My favorite pasta dish sans the pasta. Be sure to use fresh pepper in this dish – it really makes a difference. If your Squash is large you can freeze 1/2 and use for a future meal.

Ingedients:
1 spaghetti squash
2 – 3 tbsp freshly ground black pepper
4 tbsp butter
2 tbsp olive oil
3/4 c parmigiano, grated
1/4 c pecerino, grated

Preheat oven to 350 and roast the squash for 45 minutes. Allow to cool. Cut in half, scoop out the seeds and use a fork to loosen the squash from the skin. 

In a 12 inch skillet, add the pepper and toast over medium heat, about 3 minutes, until fragrant. Add butter and oil, add squash and toss to coat and heat through. Stir in the cheese and serve.

Serves 4.

Pumpkin Cheesecake

Because it’s that time of year!

Ingredients:
8 oz softened reduced-fat cream cheese
¾ c sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs
1 can pumpkin
2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
24 graham crackers
6 tbsp butter, melted

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a food processor, process the gramah crackers until finely chopped, add butter and process until well combined. Press into a 10 inch pie pan. Bake 10 minutes and allow to cool.

Wipe out the food processor bowl. Add cream cheese, sugar and vanilla, pulse until combined. Add eggs, one at a time; blend well after each. Mix in pumpkin and spices. Pour into graham cracker crust.
Bake 55 minutes or until filling is set. Run knife around edge of pan. Cool to room temperature; chill at least 4 hours.

Slow Cooker Tomato Soup

This recipe is from the new cookbook from Skinny Taste – a collection of quick and slow cooker recipes – perfect for fall! This is the first one I cooked and it does not disappoint. I made some cheesy garlic bread to go along with it -perfect for a rainy night. Quick tip – when yiu get to rind of uiur parm cheese, toss it in a ziplock and store in the freezer to use when cooking soup, you will thank me for this one.

Ingredients:
1 tbsp olive oil
1 c diced celery
1 c diced carrots
1 c diced onions
28 oz can whole plum tomatoes, with juice
1 – 2 sprigs thyme
1/2 c fresh basil
3 1/2 c vegetable broth
Parmesan or Romano cheese rind
1 bay leaf
2 tbsp unsalted butter
2 tbsp flour
1/3 c grated Pecorino Romano cheese
1 3/4 c milk, warmed
Salt and pepper, to taste

Turn on saute mode on your slow cooker, then add the oil, celery, carrots and onions; cook 5 to 6 minutes, or until golden. Add tomato, thyme, basil, broth, rind and bay leaf. Cover and cook on low for 6 hours. Then puree with an immersion blender. Or cool slightly and use a regular blender. Return to pot.

Warm your milk over low heat. Heat the butter in a large skillet over low heat. Whisk in the flour and keep whisking until till it starts to turn golden, about 5 minutes, add the milk 1/2 c at a time and whisk until incorporated. Stir into the soup along with the cheese. Cook for 30 minutes. 

Garnish with basil and cheese at serving time.

Serves 6.

Slow Cooker Pork Tacos

This recipe is so easy and so tasty! Everything you need for taco Tuesday!

Ingredients:

2 lbs trimmed, boneless pork loin
2 tsp salt
black pepper, to taste
6 cloves garlic, cut into sliver
1 1/2 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp dry oregano
1/2 tsp garlic powder
3/4 c chicken broth
2-3 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
2 bay leaves

Brown pork on all sides.

Combine salt, pepper, cumin, oregano and garlic powder in a small bowl.

Spread spice mixture on pork and place in a slow cooker. Add broth, pepper and bay leaves. Cook on low for 8 hours.

Shred pork and serve with your favorite taco fixings.

Serves 6 – 8.

Zucchini Lasagna

This one is worth all the work! It takes about 40 min plus baking time. 

Ingredients:
1 lb ground beef
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 (28 oz can) crushed tomatoes
2 tbsp chopped fresh basil
Pepper
4- 5 medium (8 ounces each) zucchini, sliced 1/8″ thick
1 1/2 c part-skim ricotta
1/4 c Parmigiano Reggiano, grated
1 large egg
16 oz mozzarella cheese, shredded or sliced thin

In a medium sauce pan, brown meat and season with salt. When cooked drain in colander to remove any fat. Add olive oil to the pan and saute garlic and onions about 2 minutes. Return the meat to the pan, add tomatoes, basil, salt and pepper. Simmer on low for at least 30-40minutes, covered. Do not add extra water, the sauce should be thick.

Heat a grill over medium heat, grill zucchini about 2 minutes per side.

Combine the ricotta, parm and egg in a bowl and set aside.

For assembly, put 1/3 of the tomato sauce in the bottom of your baking pan, cover with a layer of zucchini, 1/2 of the ricotta mixture, 1/3 of the mozzarella, repeat. reserve 1/3 of the mozzarella.

Bake at 375 covered for 30 min. Remove cover, top with remaining mozzarella and bake 25 – 30 min until brown and bubbly.

Serves 8 – 10.