Category Archives: slow cooker

Slow Cooker Creamy Herb Chicken

Hello, Blog! I remember you!

I haven’t gone this long without blogging before. But, you see, I have a very good reason. A Big Announcement. The thing is… and if you know my husband, you know what a big deal this is…

We Got Cable.

For reals. Cable tv. In my house. I’m still reeling. Sometimes I wake up in the middle of the night and go downstairs to turn on the tv, just to make sure I wasn’t dreaming.

I don’t really do that. But I am super excited.

I know for a fact that we aren’t the last people on Earth to get on board the Cable Train. But I know we’re pretty darn close to the caboose.

Anyway, there’s no time for blogging when there’s SO MUCH tv to watch!

So I’d like to share with you some things that you may already know, but that I’m just learning about cable tv:

  1. Frasier is on 87,000 times a day.
  2. MTV is nothing like it was when I was a kid. VH1 Totally 80’s is way better.
  3. iCarly is pretty annoying, but Good Luck Charlie is kind of cute (actually I kind of like it) (actually I don’t kind of like it, I do like it).
  4. The History Channel is not nearly as much fun as I thought it would be. Is there any actual history on that channel?
  5. Turner Classic Movies is as much fun as I thought it would be.
  6. Cupcakes are really popular. Especially red velvet ones.
  7. The Wonder Pets are just as annoying on cable as they are on DVD. Seriously, Ming-Ming. It’s called speech therapy. Go get some.
  8. I still love The Waltons.
  9. I don’t have nearly enough kids yet to get a reality tv show. I mean, four is nothing, when you could instead raise a small army. I’m looking at you, Duggars.
  10. Man vs. Food is gross. Just gross.
  11. There is absolutely nothing real about any of the Real Housewives. Seriously, Bravo. Where’s the sweatpants that have been worn one too many times before washing? The spit-up stained t-shirts? The Cheerios that are forming their own colony under the couch cushions? The mountain of laundry on every available square inch of space? Real Housewives? Real, my foot.

So those are just a few of the things I’ve learned. But with my new channel line-up I’m sure I will continue to learn new things each and every day! I haven’t even touched on infomercials yet!

When you spend so much time watching t.v., it’s good to have some quick, easy dinners that you can just throw into the crockpot in the morning, before Gilmore Girls comes on, that will be finished cooking by the time The Brady Bunch airs. This one is super duper fast and easy.

Slow Cooker Creamy Italian Herb Chicken

  • 3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 10-oz package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
  • 1 container Philadelphia Italian Cheese & Herb Cooking Creme
  • crushed red pepper for serving

Directions:

  1. Spray slow cooker insert with cooking spray. Seriously, do it! You’ll thank me later!
  2. Place chicken breasts into slow cooker. Cover with spinach.
  3. Add cooking creme, and stir it up a bit. Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high 3-4 hours.
  4. Remove chicken from slow cooker. Shred,* return to cooker, and give it a good stir. Serve over pasta with a nice sprinkling of red pepper.

Click here for printable version.

*If you prefer, you can cube the chicken before cooking it, or even leave and serve it whole. I like the shredded chicken over pasta, but that’s my preference.

Slow Cooker Creamy Herb Chicken

Creamy Herb Chicken over pasta

Wow, really bad pictures. See what happens when you don’t blog in over a month?

I thought this meal was delicious! I thought it was, “You better learn to like it, kids, because Mommy’s gonna be making this a LOT!” good. Let’s see what The Critics thought:

Don Corleone: I love it!

Sarah Crewe: It’s really good, Mommy!

Batman: I don’t really like it. Then later: Actually I think I do like it.

Curious George: I don’t really like it either. Later: I like it mixed with the pasta.

Elmo: I don’t like this dinner. Me: How do you know? Did you taste it? Elmo: No. But I looked at it, and it was spicy.

Oh well, it wasn’t a huge success. But it wasn’t a huge failure, either. I’m definitely making this one again!

Crockpot Buffalo Chicken Soup

This is going to be a quick one. It’s 5:24 a.m. and I’m supposed to go for a run in 6 minutes. And that’s all I have to say about that.

Crockpot Buffalo Chicken Soup

Adapted from A Year of Slow Cooking

  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 3 celery stalks, chopped
  • 2 cups cooked and cubed (or shredded) chicken
  • 3/4 cup chicken broth
  • 2 cups fat free milk (or no higher than 2%)
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 cup hot wing sauce
  • 4 oz Velveeta, cubed

Directions:

  1. Melt the butter in a small saucepan over low heat. Whisk in the flour. Set aside.
  2. Put the chopped onion and celery into the slow cooker. Add the chicken, broth, and milk. Sprinkle the garlic powder on top. (Note: The original recipe calls for celery salt and garlic salt. I don’t like to add much salt to soups when I’m cooking (and as the recipe states, the cheese and broth have enough salt on their own), so I leave it out. But feel free to add it if you like salty soups)
  3. Stir in the flour and butter mixture. Add hot sauce.
  4. Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours, or on hight for 3-4 hours. Stir in Velveeta 20 minutes before serving.

Buffalo Chicken Soup

 Click here for printable

Wow this is good soup. This is “Cook it for lunch and then “forget” to tell your husband that you made it so you can eat the rest by yourself all week” good.

The soup thickens the next day, and it’s fun to dip tortilla chips into it, but still eat it with a spoon, so it counts as a meal.
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Don Corleone and I love this soup. I don’t give the little Critics any. I think it would be too spicy for them, plus then I’d have to share.
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And in case you were curious, here’s an update on my morning. Between 5:24 when I started this post and 7:00 or so (or whenever I get around to publishing), my kids woke up at 5:30, I ran one mile and it took 13 minutes, my 5-year-old (Curious George) drank two cups of milk and then puked it up all over the carpet (and me), I couldn’t figure out a formatting problem with this post (hence the random periods after each paragraph), and I posted a recipe.
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And that’s all I have to say about that.

This is not a real post.

This is a not a real post. And you are not really reading it. In fact, you’re not even here. You’re on an island in the Carribean, sitting on the beach, watching the waves crashing on the shore. The sun is warm, the water’s cool, and that cute young cabana boy is bringing you a daiquiri. And perhaps that’s not all he’s bringing you…

Hey! Stop it! This blog is G-rated, thank you very much. Get up, you have to make dinner!

I’ve told you about this chicken before, maybe more than once. And I’ve pestered encouraged people (like my sister) to make it. It has become my absolute favorite slow cooker meal. I make it so often that I’m pretty sure my family will feel the need to have an intervention soon.

I got the recipe from Stephanie O’Dea’s A Year of Slow Cooking blog. It’s so easy. You just take chicken breasts, Philadelphia cooking creme (Santa Fe blend), and a can of diced tomatoes. Dump them in your crockpot, and cook in low for 4-5 hours, shredding the chicken in the last hour. Then serve on taco shells. That’s it. Click here to see the full recipe laid out all nice and pretty, and a nice picture.

My kids love it, although I found out last night they like it better on soft tortillas than on crunchy taco shells.

I don’t have a picture (which is why this isn’t a real post), because I’m on vacation, and I’m supposed to be taking a blog break, anyway.

My favorite part of this recipe? The leftovers are fantastic cold, on a Triscuit. Maybe with a daiquiri. On a beach. In the Carribean. Or your living room. Whatever.

More Summer Crock Pot Meals

I promised more summer slow cooker recipes, and I never break a promise. Unless I promise you we can get a dog when you turn seven. Then all bets are off.

I haven’t tried any of these recipes yet, but I’m adding them to the list, and I’ll be trying them soon! If you try one, let me know how it turns out. Or if you have a great summer crockpot recipe to share, please do so!

Here’s a slow cooker classic…

Grandma’s Sloppy Joe’s from Finding Joy in My Kitchen

or, for something a little different…

Sloppy Chicken Joes

Sloppy Chicken Joes from Better Homes and Gardens

I really want to try this…

Cedar Planked Salmon from A Year of Slow Cooking

I’m making this one tomorrow…

Chile Lime Chicken Tostadas from Real Mom Kitchen

or maybe this one (isn’t the picture fantastic?)…

Pineapple and Green Chili Pork Tacos also from Real Mom Kitchen

and of course, we mustn’t forget dessert…

Step 7, 369

Black and Blue Cobbler from Fix-It and Forget-It

and another summer fruit cobbler…

Slow Cooker Peach Cobbler from 4 Hats and Frugal

I love using the crockpot in the summer because it’s less heat in the kitchen. And you know what they say… “If you can’t stand the heat, have someone else make dinner.”

Yeah, that doesn’t work at my house, either. So I stick to my slow cooker!

Happy Summer Cooking!

Crockpot Hawaiian Chicken Drumsticks

We are home from our beach vacation, and a good time was had by all. The kids love the ocean, and it was a lot of fun to see them splashing around in the water, and building things in the sand.

Now that we’re home, and I’ve had time to reflect, I’ve put together a list of tips for vacationing with little ones:

Things You Should Know Before Taking Small Children on Vacation:

  1. There is no such thing as too many bottles of sunscreen.
  2. Someone will drop their ice cream cone on the ground.
  3. Seagulls have bad manners.
  4. It doesn’t matter how many times you tell the grandparents, “Oh, my kids never eat______.” If it is served on vacation, your kids will gobble it up as if they haven’t eaten in a week, proving you to be a liar.
  5. It doesn’t matter how many times you tell the grandparents, “Oh, my kids love to eat ______.” If it is served on vacation, your kids will look at it as if it is the most repulsive thing on the planet, proving you to be a liar.
  6. When you get home, you will discover that you inadvertently brought half the beach home with you, at the bottom of the bag that you designated a “sand free zone.”
  7. Sand will get into creases on your 2-year-old that you never knew were there.
  8. If your 4-year-old accidentally walks in on you while you’re putting on your bathing suit, he might ask why “your bagpipes are so big.”
  9. Swim diapers aren’t that great at holding in poop.
  10. Uncovered electrical outlets are toddler magnets.
  11. When you get home and unpack, the dirty laundry will create a mountain of such magnitude even Marvin Gaye wouldn’t cross it.
  12. When you realize you are the one responsible for cleaning Mt. Washmore, you might cry.
  13. When you look at the pictures of the little ones on their vacation, and you hear them talk about their favorite parts, your heart will swell. (And then you’ll resume crying over the laundry).

Of course when you are home from vacation, life goes on, and you must cook dinner. I promised I would try this recipe, and I did:

Crockpot Hawaiian Chicken Drumsticks

This recipe comes from the blog Thirty and Thrifty. I retyped it here to show a few changes that I made, mostly because of what we had in the house.

  • 12 chicken drumsticks (mine were frozen)
  • 3/4 cup ketchup
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 20-oz can pineapple chunks, undrained

Directions:

  1. Place chicken in the crockpot.
  2. Combine the rest of the ingredients and pour over chicken.
  3. Cook on low for about eight hours, moving chicken around every few hours if some aren’t covered by the liquid.

Crockpot Hawaiian Drumsticks

I served this with rice and a fresh can of pineapple chunks. It was just as wonderful as I hoped it would be! My Critics loved it. In fact, they were so busy gobbling it all up, that the most I got out of them for a comment is, “It’s sooo good!” Except for Batman, who said, “Don’t write that I said ‘It’s good,’ because that would be a lie. Write that I said, ‘I LOVE IT!!!!'”

Always so happy when a recipe is enjoyed by all 🙂

Summer Crock Pot Recipes

It’s hot.

I mean really, really hot. I think the temperature today reached eight-hundred million degrees. Roughly.

Of course, I’m a whiny baby when it comes to hot weather. Anything above 80˚ is hot to me. Once the temperature reaches 90˚, forget it. I’m done for.

I’ve had a stuffed peppers recipe that I’ve been meaning to share, but it’s been too hot to even think about using the oven. So instead, I’d like to share some summertime slow cooker recipes I’ve been collecting. Some of these I’ve tried and love, and others I will be trying very soon.

Slow Cooker Pulled Pork Sooooo good! My whole family loves this. I don’t use pork tenderloin, as suggested, though. I usually use whatever kind of pork roast-type thing is on sale. You can even take it right from your freezer without defrosting (but you might have to cook it longer). Really tasty topped with cole slaw.

Easy and Tasty Barbecue Chicken Sandwiches Almost the same thing as above, but with chicken. Easy. Tasty.

Chicken Tacos We love tacos. I like this recipe because you can just take the filling out of the crock pot, put it in a tortilla, and call it a taco. Extra toppings are nice, but not necessary. For example, if you don’t have any sour cream because when you were standing in the dairy aisle at the store thinking ‘Do we have sour cream at home?’ and finally decided that yes, you do remember seeing some sour cream at the back of the fridge, but then when taco night rolled around and you removed said sour cream from the back of the fridge you realized  it expired three weeks ago, well, it’s okay. Skip the sour cream. It’s still good. Oh, and when your husband says, “Do we have any sour cream?” don’t yell at him. It’s not his fault.

I am also excited to try Creamy Chicken Tacos. The best part is, it has cream cheese in it, so there’s no need for any of that rabble-rouser sour cream.

John McCain’s Rib Recipe (in the crock pot) Haven’t tried this one yet. But I’ve been thinking about ribs A LOT  lately. Don Corleone isn’t a big fan of ribs, unlike the complete carnivore that he married. But I think he’ll just have to deal with it one night. Or maybe two:

Barbecue Beef Ribs Haven’t tried this one yet, either. But I will, I tell you. I will indeed!

Hawaiian Chicken Drumsticks. Oooooh…. I’m so excited to try this one! I love when the word “Hawaiian” is included in the title of a recipe. Even though Hawaii is hot.

I will continue to share summer crock pot recipes as I try them, and if you have any favorites, please share 🙂

Hope you’re enjoying the weather, wherever you are!

Crockpot Teriyaki Pork Chops

U.S.A.!! U.S.A.!!

Two major events that will go down in history happened in the last two days. One, Osama bin Laden was killed by US Navy Seals. And two, I made a dinner that every member of my family enjoyed.

I do realize that one is significantly more important than the other (but I won’t say which one).

Whenever the leader of a major terrorist organization is captured and killed by Navy Seals, you should make teriyaki pork chops in your slow cooker. That’s just good sense.

Crock Pot Teriyaki Pork Chops

  • 4-5 boneless pork loin chops
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/3 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup pineapple juice
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • 2 tsp water

Directions:

  1. Heat olive oil in a large pan over medium-high heat. Add pork chops and brown both sides (about 2-3 minutes per side). Put chops in slow cooker.
  2. Combine remaining ingredients (except cornstarch and water) in a small bowl. Pour over chops. Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high for 4-5 hours.
  3. Remove chops from pot and keep warm. Combine cornstarch and water in a small bowl. Add to sauce in the slow cooker and cook on high for 30 minutes to thicken the sauce. Serve over rice.

Teriyaki Pork Chops


Do you believe every single Critic loved these chops?

Don Vito Corleone: It’s delicious!

Sarah Crewe picked up her chop with her hands and ate it like a barbarian. She was afraid if she cut it on her plate, some of it might touch her applesauce. But, she said: I like it!

Batman: This is really good!

Curious George: I like it! 

Elmo: Yes. Chicken. 

The Navy Seals rock! They know how to whack a bad guy when they find one. Here are some movies where the villain also gets his/her comeuppance:

The Wizard of Oz:

"I'm melting! Melting!"

Die Hard:

Bye-bye, Hans!

Raiders of the Lost Ark:

Ewwww... that's just gross. But deserved.

Saturday Night Live It’s a Wonderful Life Lost Ending:

Mr. Potter getting his butt kicked

Tombstone:

"You tell 'em I'm coming! And Hell's coming with me!"

Inglorious Basterds:

Re-writing history

Terminator 2:

"Hasta la Vista, Baby"

Charles Bronson, in any movie:

"Goodbye"

This is so not my area of expertise, so VC had to help me!

And now I leave you with this last thought:

“The most important thing is for us to find Osama bin Laden. It is our number one priority and we will not rest until we find him.” -George W. Bush