Crock pots, also known as slow cookers, are wonder cooking instruments. You can cook almost all vegetables and fruits in these pots, retaining their nutritional value. The secret behind the scrumptiousness of healthy slow cooker recipes lies in the fact that the ingredients stay in the crock pot for quite long, letting the flavor absorb thoroughly and generate a heavenly taste.
Recipes prepared in crock pots are based on the formula of slow cooking and low heat. As the food starts to cook, the steam rises and circulates inside the pot evenly.
Hot Tip: Do not lift the lid of the crock pot while the food is cooking. Lifting the lid lets the steam escape. This drops the temperature of the pot, which may increase the cooking time and disrupt the cooking process.
Slow Cooker Crockpot Recipes
Recipe #1: Mushroom and Barley Casserole with Nuts
INGREDIENTS: a cup of mushrooms, chopped; a cup of pearl barley, uncooked; an onion, chopped; 3 minced garlic cloves; 1 chopped red bell pepper; two-and-a-half cups of vegetable broth; half cup tomato juice, plain or seasoned; 1 tbsp olive oil; half tsp each of dried oregano and thyme leaves; ¼ tsp each of salt and white pepper; 1/3 cup pine nuts, toasted
METHOD: First of all, microwave a mixture of onion and garlic in olive oil for a couple of minutes until tender. Thereafter, except pine nuts, mix all ingredients in a slow cooker, which is preferably 3 quart in size. Cover it. Cook on low heat for 6 hours until the vegetables and barley become tender. Once the dish is ready, sprinkle the nuts on it. Serve.
This is one of the healthy slow cooker recipes that can serve as the main or side dish in vegetarian menu.
Recipe #2: White Beans with Tomatoes and Cheese
INGREDIENTS: 2 cups sorted white beans; ¾ cup tomatoes, sun-dried, chopped, and drained with oil; 3 minced garlic cloves; a chopped onion; 3 cups each of water and vegetable broth; one cup Havarti cheese, shredded and half cup Parmesan cheese, grated; 1 tsp each of salt and dried thyme leaves; half tsp Herbs de Provence; a can (4 ounces) of sliced and drained black olives
METHOD: Except for olives, cheeses, and tomatoes, mix all other ingredients in a 3-4 quart crock pot. Cover it. Cook on high heat for 5 to 6 hours, until the beans get tender. Thicken the mixture in the crock pot by mashing some beans. Now, add olives and tomatoes and stir the mixture. Cook for 10 minutes more. Mix both cheeses in the dish. Serve.
Although this recipe contains cheese and looks creamy, it is a low-fat recipe, exuding the flavors directly from Southern France.
There is also a delicious recipe for broccoli potato soup. You can use these vegetarian and healthy slow cooker recipes as the main or side dishes.
The slow cooking formula has also been appreciated by chefs. One of the advantages is that it saves time. You can carry out your entire day’s work while your dinner gets ready in the crock pot. The best thing is that these are healthy slow cooker recipes that serve the entire family. Try them!