Crock Pot Favorites
    Sausage and Bean Stew (Crock Pot)

    Sausage and Bean Stew (Crock Pot)

    What a great appetizer or lunch. The sausage, beans and garlic make a perfect stew. Served with cheese toast, this makes a great dish to serve to guests. Even with the bread, this dish comes in under 400 calories !! 6 servings 350 calories per serving 2 t oil 3 ...

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    Hamburger Soup (Crock Pot)

    Hamburger Soup (Crock Pot)

    This is so tasty – it’s something I have made many times and everyone who eats it is always delighted with the great heartiness and warmth. Beings this is a crock pot recipe, you can start this one before work, come home, drop in the noodles and in ...

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    Chinese Pulled Pork

    Chinese Pulled Pork (Crock Pot)

    This recipe was really interesting. Usually when you think of pulled pork, you expect a spicy Southwest flavor. But this one has an awesome Chinese sauce that is mellow and mild and is perfect with pulled pork. 8 servings 227 calories per serving 1/4 c soy sauce 1/4 c ...

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    Get the ’400 Calories or Less’ App and eBooks now !

    Get the '400 Calories or Less' App and eBooks now !

    I'm so very pleased to announce the 400 Calorie or Less App and eBooks ! The eBooks are now available for the Nook and the Kindle. There are 4 eBooks and they each host 40+ recipes to help you lose weight while eating the foods you love and ...

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    Easy Pork Carnitas

    Easy Pork Carnitas

    This is another great authentic recipe that cooks all day in the crock pot - it turns out a fantastically tender and juicy meat that is easily shredded and tastes great with a bit of lime and avocado. 4 servings 208 calories per serving 1 teaspoon salt 1 teaspoon garlic powder 1 teaspoon ground ...

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    Black Bean Chili (Crock Pot)

    Black Bean Chili (Crock Pot)

    This is one of the most awesome chili recipes I have ever made ! The depth of flavor was amazing. This is a truly authentic, rich, aromatic and spicy chili that is just plain PERFECT. Don’t forget the squirt of lime just before serving – it actually ...

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    Chicken Tortellini Stew (Crock Pot)

    Chicken Tortellini Stew (Crock Pot)

    This is a soupy stew or a thick soup :) Whatever it is, it's absolutely delicious. The sweet fennel adds just the little something different that makes this meal one of a kind. 6 servings 380 calories per serving 2 carrots, sliced 2 cloves garlic, minced 1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breast cut ...

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    Lasagna (Crock Pot)

    Lasagna (Crock Pot)

    Even traditional lasagna lovers like this one - and it is nice and easy to do. Start it at lunch time and have dinner ready 4 hours later. Take a look at my video below for instructions on how to layer it in your crock. 8 servings 275 calories per ...

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    December 31st, 2009adminSalads, Vegetables

    This one is high in calories as salads go – but I can’t skimp on the egg or bacon or it just does not feel like a TRUE spinach salad to me. So I pair it with some really low cal seafood like Cajun Seafood Mix and it makes a great meal.

    Spinach Salad

    Spinach Salad

    1 serving
    250 calories per serving

    2 cups baby spinach leaves
    1 hardboiled egg, sliced
    3 sliced bacon, cooked, cooled and crumbled
    1 c sliced mushrooms
    2 T fat free thousand island dressing

    Lay spinach on a plate. Top with egg, bacon and mushrooms. Spoon dressing over the salad.

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    December 31st, 2009adminCajun, Dinner, Fish

    Very spicy. Very low calories. Very high in protein. All good things :)

    This one is truly not for the feint of heart – the Cajun spice definitely leaves your mouth burning and I always pair this with something that will help cool it down; a spinach salad, fresh cranberry relish, citrus slices, etc.

    Cajun Seafood Mix

    Cajun Seafood Mix

    4 servings
    80 calories per serving

    16 large raw shrimp, peeled and cleaned
    12 large raw scallops, cleaned
    Cajun seasoning mix (available at all food markets)
    Parsley for garnish
    Pam

    Place a good amount of Cajun seasoning in a bowl and dredge each piece of fish to full coat it. Alternately, you can place the spice in a zip love bag with the fish and shake, shake, shake until all are coated. But I find you get a thicker coating with the dredging method.

    Heat a pan on medium high heat. Remove from heat and spray with Pam. Return to heat and place scallops and in the pan. Typically large scallops are cooked 7-9 minutes total, but I like mine more well done so I go 11-13 minutes (about 6 minutes per side). You can be sure they are done by poking them – if they are soft and squishy, they are not done. You need them to have a little bounce and be firm – then they are done.

    The shrimp will cook in 7-9 minutes, so place in the pan just before you are ready for the scallops to be flipped. Shrimp are done when they are pink and firm. Remove to a plate and garnish with parsley before serving.

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    December 30th, 2009adminbeef, Dinner

    This crock pot meal is easier than easy ! Leftover meat, a couple cans and a little bit of chopping means only a 10 minute prep.

    Beef and Black Bean Stew

    Beef and Black Bean Stew


    4 servings
    232 calories per serving

    8 oz. leftover grilled lean sirloin beef (grill an extra steak one night and freeze the left over portion to save it for this meal)
    15.5 oz. can of black beans, drained and rinsed
    14.5 oz. can of fire roasted diced tomatoes
    1 medium green bell pepper, diced
    1 small onion, diced
    1 T cumin
    1 T chili powder
    Salt and pepper to taste

    4 T sour cream

    Place all except the sour cream in a crock pot. Mix well and cook on low for 4 hours.
    Place a dollop of sour cream on each bowl before serving.

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    December 29th, 2009adminchicken, Dinner

    A great recipe that is as tasty as my original ‘non diet’ version of this dish. It takes 5 minutes to throw it together and then it cooks for 6 hours in a crock pot leaving you time to blog while your dinner cooks :) Serve with Rice and Pasta with Parmesan Cheese and Sauteed Spinach with Garlic for a great complete meal under 400 calories.


    Crock Pot 20 Clove Chicken

    Crock Pot 20 Clove Chicken





    6 servings
    170 calories per serving

    6 boneless skinless chicken breasts (120 calories each – 4 ounces each)
    ¼ c white cooking wine or dry white wine
    20 cloves whole garlic
    4 stalks of celery, sliced
    2 T basil flakes
    2 t parsley flakes
    1/8 t red pepper flakes
    ¼ c white wine
    Salt and pepper to taste
    Juice of one lemon
    Zest of one lemon (just the yellow, not the bitter white)
    Pam

    Zesting Lemons, Limes and Oranges is a snap with this tool. I have a whole set of Microplane graters from fine to coarse and they never fail to get the job done easily and quickly.

    In a small bowl, mix the wine with the basil, parsley and red pepper flakes. Spray a skillet with a small amount of Pam and heat on high for a few moments. Quickly brown the chicken on both sides and remove from pan so they do not cook too much. Add the garlic and celery to the wine mix and stir around to coat well. Place the garlic mix in the bottom of the crock pot.

    Place browned chicken breasts atop the garlic mix. Squirt the juice of one lemon over the chicken. Put the zest of one lemon over the chicken. Add salt and pepper. Cover the crock and cook on low 6 hours.

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    December 29th, 2009adminItalian, Kid Friendly, pasta, Sides

    Tasty, Tasty, Tasty !  This beats the pants off a 300+ calorie serving of Rice a Roni.  Serve with Sauteed Spinach with Garlic and Crock Pot 20 Clove Chicken for a great complete meal under 400 calories.


    Rice and Pasta with Parmesan Cheese

    Rice and Pasta with Parmesan Cheese




    6 servings
    166 calories per serving (serving = 2/3 cup)

    2 T oil
    ½ c vermicelli broken into very small pieces
    1 c white rice
    1 ¼ c hot vegetable or chicken stock or broth (Emeril’s is great !)
    ¼ t pepper
    Salt to taste
    2 bay leaves
    1 t parsley flakes
    2 T parmesan or romano cheese

    Heat oil in a large skillet. Add vermicelli and sauté until golden brown, about 3 minutes. Add in rice, broth and water along with salt and pepper, bay leaves and parsley. Cover and simmer on medium low 20 minutes or until most of the liquid is absorbed. Turn off heat and let stand covered 5 minutes.

    Remove the bay leaves. Sprinkle on the parmesan cheese and serve immediately.

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    December 29th, 2009adminSides, Vegetables

    This literally takes 5 minutes to cook and just a couple to prepare, especially if you have a handy dandy garlic chopper.

    Garlic chopper

    The spinach wilts in no time and you can make this as mild or as spicy as you wish by adjusting the amount of red pepper flakes. Serve with Rice and Pasta with Parmesan Cheese and Crock Pot 20 Clove Chicken for a great complete meal under 400 calories.

    sauteed spinach

    Sauteed Spinach

    3 servings
    58 calories per serving

    2 t olive oil
    Pam
    3 garlic cloves, minced
    2 bags prewashed baby spinach leaves
    Salt and pepper to taste
    ¼ t red pepper flakes
    ¼ t garlic powder

    Heat the Pam and oil in a large skillet. Stir in minced garlic and sauté a minute or two on medium heat. Do not let the garlic brown or it will taste bitter. Pour in the 2 bags of spinach. It seems like a HUGE amount, but it will cook down to nothing in no time. Add all the spices and continue to sauté on medium heat, 2-3 minutes or until leaves are all wilted.

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    December 28th, 2009adminSides, Vegetables

    This recipe makes oft boring broccoli taste much more special, but only take a few minutes to whip up. Add more lemon and garlic if you want it zestier…it adds basically no extra calories.

    broccoli with lemon

    Broccoli with Lemon and Garlic

    4 servings
    96 calories per serving

    6 cups broccoli florets
    1 t oil
    2 t minced garlic
    1 lemon, cut into slices
    2 t lemon juice
    1 t buttery spread
    Salt and pepper
    1 T grated lemon peel

    Fill 3 quart saucepan ¾ with water and bring to boil. Add broccoli florets and lemon slices. Keep at a low boil and cook for 5-8 minutes, depending on how crispy or soft you like the broccoli.

    While the broccoli is cooking on low heat sauté the garlic in the onion and lemon juice. When soft, add butter to melt and set aside.

    Drain the broccoli. Stir in the garlic mix. Add salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle the grated lemon peel over the top and serve immediately.

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    December 24th, 2009adminSnacks

    I have a set of ‘GO TO’ snacks so that when I am hungry, I don’t dig into something that will tip the calorie scale for the day. Make a list, keep them around the house, keep them front and center on your snack shelves !

    Almonds – raw, unsalted – - great for also getting in your good fats for the day
    Sunflower seeds – high on the calorie scale but if you eat them individually, you’ll be tired by time you come to the end of 1/4 cup :)
    Low fat string cheese – only 50-70 calories per stick and very satisfying
    Turkey Pepperoni – pair it up with the string cheese !
    Fiber One 50 calorie cups of yogurt
    Pretzels
    Celery sticks – cut them up on Sunday and keep them in a container ready to go all week (dip in Tzatziki) or eat with a Light Laughing Cow cheese
    Light Laughing Cow cheese wedge – only 35 calories – WOW!
    Pop Chips – these AWESOME 100 calorie chips are real potatoes, they are just popped instead of fried or baked. They come in many flavors and you can get them in single serve bags and the come out to less than a dollar a bag

    Semi Sweet Chocolate Chips – eaten a few at a time, a tablespoon or 2 can keep you busy for a while
    Jax (cheese doodles) – lots of curls for 130 calories
    Ricola chewy breath mints – very minty – and after mint, I don’t want anything else for a while
    Coffee – not a snack when it is just coffee, but by the time I am done with flavorings and toppings, it is more like a low cal dessert :) I will get a few of these recipes up soon

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    December 22nd, 2009adminBreakfast, Kid Friendly

    I mix and match this one all week long. Sometimes Canadian bacon slices are substituted, sometimes shredded low fat cheddar, sometimes mushrooms – pretty much anything you would throw into an omelette works well here.

    1 serving
    348 calories per serving

    1 Smart Delicious Wrap (100 calorie version)
    Pam spray
    ½ cup Egg Beaters
    3 slices lean turkey bacon
    1 Light Laughing Cow cheese wedge
    2 T salsa
    ¼ c avocado slices
    Salt and pepper to taste

    Heat the wrap in the microwave for 15 seconds if they have been refrigerated – this helps them to roll better. Cook turkey bacon according to package instructions and set aside. Heat a small frying pan on med high heat. Remove from heat and spray with Pam. Return to heat and add the Egg Beaters to the pan. Add salt and pepper. Reduce heat to medium. Scramble eggs until set.

    Lay the wrap on a plate and spread the cheese evenly over the wrap. Lay the three slices of bacon in the center (be sure to leave a little room at the bottom for folding). Add the eggs in a strip down the center. Spoon the salsa over the eggs. Fold one side over, fold up a bit of the bottom, then fold the other side over to make a wrapped burrito. Serve avocado slices on the side.

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    December 22nd, 2009adminExercise

    What plan for weight loss and good health doesn’t include exercise? Unfortunately, not many ! I used to cringe at the thought of exercising but I now actually look forward to it.

    These walking dvds help me get off my butt and get moving. The moves are not hard and not too repetitive – and the fitness instructors are not too annoying ;) I have interspersed these workouts into my weekly routine for years and they never get boring.

    While they go beyond just walking (like you get with the Leslie Sansone workouts), they are not so hard that you give up quickly. They even have different levels on each dvd and my bad knee can handle up to the middle levels on both.

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