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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    March 28th, 2010adminDinner, Italian, pasta

    Wow – this is a great filling meal for only 220 calories and if you have a low cal side dish, you can up the amount of shells you eat and still stay under 400 calories. The mushrooms and spinach really bulk up the meal and you feel like you are cheating, but you’re not :)

    Stuffed Shells Florentine

    Stuffed Shells Florentine

    8 servings
    220 calories per serving

    1 c coarsely chopped mushrooms
    ½ c chopped onion
    1 clove garlic, minced
    ½ t garlic powder
    ½ t onion powder
    ½ t parsley flakes
    ¼ t pepper
    ¼ t salt
    16 oz. fat free cottage cheese
    10 oz. frozen spinach, thawed and well drained
    ½ c Egg Beaters
    24 jumbo shells
    15 oz. marinara sauce
    Pam

    Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cook pasta according to package instructions. Saute mushrooms, garlic, onion, and seasonings in a skillet sprayed with Pam. Remove from heat and stir in cottage cheese, spinach and eggs. Spoon the mix into the shells. Spread ½ c of sauce into the bottom of a 13×9 baking dish and place the shells in the dish. Top with the rest of the sauce and bake 35-40 minutes. You can make these well ahead and keep refrigerated and then just slip into the oven 40 minutes before it’s time to eat – that makes it a great convenient meal and a great one for entertaining.

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    March 25th, 2010adminAppetizers, Lunch, Vegetables

    Stuffed mushrooms usually come in 2 varieties, those stuffed a sausage or bacon mix and those stuffed with a chopped mushroom stem mix (usually including cheese). These stuffed mushrooms are a great third variety packed with flavor and an unexpected ingredient…carrot. The carrot and cream cheese mix together perfectly and make for a nice low cal appetizer. At only 54 calories for 6 mushrooms – - eat up !

    Stuffed Mushrooms

    Stuffed Mushrooms

    4 servings
    54 calories per serving

    24 fresh mushrooms
    1 grated carrot
    3 oz. fat free cream cheese, softened
    2 T chopped fresh chives
    1 t dried minced onion
    Salt and pepper to taste

    Preheat broiler. Discard mushroom caps. Combine cream cheese, chives, onion and mix well then stuff each cap and place on an ungreased sheet , sprinkle with salt and pepper, and broil 8 minutes or until done.

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    March 24th, 2010adminDinner, Sides, Vegetables

    Stuffed zucchinis are a great side dish. You can change up what you ‘stuff’ them with and that makes it easy to pick complementary flavors. This one is great next to Italian flavors and Italian inspired dishes.

    Stuffed Zucchini

    Stuffed Zucchini

    4 servings
    162 calories per serving

    2 medium zucchini
    ½ c onion, diced finely
    1 clove garlic, minced
    1 t oil
    ½ c chopped green bell pepper
    ½ c chopped peeled eggplant
    ½ c chopped tomato
    ¼ c Egg Beaters
    1 t basil flakes
    Salt and pepper to taste
    20 Ritz crackers, divided
    2 T grated parmesan cheese
    Pam
    I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter Spray

    Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Slice zucchini in half lengthwise and scoop out the centers leaving just a shell. Reserve 1 c of the insides and chop it up. Heat a skillet and add oil and sauté onion and garlic 4 minutes. Add pepper, eggplant, tomato and zucchini and cook 5 minutes or so. Remove from heat and stir in basil, salt and pepper, and eggs.

    Break 15 crackers and stir into the veggie mix and then spoon the mix into the zucchini shells and place on a baking sheet sprayed with Pam. Crush the other 5 crackers and mix with the parmesan and sprinkle over the zucchini boats. Spray the crumbs on top of each of the zucchinis with the butter spray so that they brown a bit. Bake 25 minutes or until hot.

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    March 16th, 2010adminSalads, Sides, Summer, Vegetables

    Cucumbers done in a white vinegar dressing is a dish in many cultures…they are just meant to be paired. At only 20 calories per serving, this zesty side salad is a definite ‘go-to’ recipe of mine !

    Cucumbers and Onions

    Cucumbers and Onions

    4 servings
    20 calories per serving

    2 cucumbers
    ½ onion, sliced thin (try red onions for their mellower flavor)
    ½ c white vinegar
    Salt and pepper to taste

    Peel the cucumbers and then slice in half lengthwise. Using a spoon, scoop out the seeds (or use English cucumbers which are pretty much seedless) and then slice very thin. Place in a bowl with the rest of the ingredients and let marinate in the refrigerator at least one hour.

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    March 15th, 2010adminchicken, Dinner, Kid Friendly, Lunch, Soups

    This soup is prepared a day ahead and refrigerated so that the flavors really mingle. If you want to serve the same day you make it, that works too :)

    Chicken and Pasta Soup

    Chicken and Pasta Soup

    6 servings
    265 calories per serving

    1/2 c cannellini beans
    1 lb. chicken breasts, cubed
    6 bay leaves
    7 c water
    1 onion, halved and sliced
    1 carrot, sliced thinly
    3 ribs celery, sliced thin
    Leaves from the tops of the celery stalks
    28 oz. diced tomatoes
    2 T tomato paste
    2 T minced garlic
    ½ t onion powder
    2 t basil flakes
    8 oz. FiberGourmet pasta (short alfredo, elbows or rotini)

    In a soup pot combine chicken, bay leaves and water. Bring to a boil. Add onions, carrots, celery, celery leaves, tomatoes, tomato paste, onion powder, garlic and basil. Return to a boil and then lower heat and simmer 1 hour. Add beans and remove bay leaves. Refrigerate overnight. The next day heat the broth and cook pasta according to package instructions. Drain and place in soup bowl and ladle soup into each bowl.

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    March 14th, 2010adminbeef, crock pot, Dinner, Kid Friendly

    This is a very hearty meal – and like so many crock pot meals, a great way to put something together, be able to run errands for a few hours – - and then come home to a hot cooked meal. This is reminiscent of a stew with the nice mushroom gravy flavor :)

    10 Layer Beef Hash (Crock Pot)

    10 Layer Beef Hash (Crock Pot)

    8 servings
    370 calories per serving

    1 ½ lb. lean ground beef
    6 medium potatoes thinly sliced
    1 medium onion thinly sliced
    ½ t salt
    ½ t pepper
    15 oz. can of corn, undrained
    15 oz. can of peas, undrained
    ¼ c water
    1 can fat free cream of mushroom soup.

    Brown the meat in a skillet and drain. Layer the ingredients in the crock in this order:
    ¼ of the potatoes
    ¼ the onions
    ¼ the salt and pepper
    ½ the corn
    ¼ the potatoes
    ½ the peas
    ¼ the potatoes
    ¼ the onions
    ¼ the salt and pepper
    ½ the corn
    ¼ the potatoes
    ½ the peas
    All the water
    All the meat
    All the soup

    Cover and cook on high 4 hours. Be sure to give each person a serving that contains some of each layer.

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    March 9th, 2010adminLunch, Sides, Soups

    This is a great stand alone lunch with some Cheesy Bread on the side. Or it is a nice side to a lower cal chicken or fish dinner. The hint of cayenne adds a nice unexpected flavor dimension to the chowder.

    Corn Chowder

    Corn Chowder

    6 servings
    155 calories per serving

    1 c chopped onion
    1 leek, cleaned and chopped
    5 c frozen corn
    28 oz. chicken broth
    1 medium red bell pepper, chopped
    ¼ t cayenne pepper
    Salt and pepper to taste
    Snipped chives for garnish
    Pam

    Spray a Dutch oven with Pam and heat on medium and cook onion and leek 5 minutes or until tender. If the onions start to get dry or crispy, add up to 3T of hot water to make sure they stay nice and moist. Then add corn and cook 5-6 minutes. Add half the broth and heat to boiling then reduce heat, cover and simmer 20 minutes. Remove from heat and cool slightly. Transfer half the corn mix to a blender and process until smooth. Return to the pan and add the rest of the broth, peppers, black pepper, cayenne pepper, and salt and heat through. Garnish with chives.

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    March 7th, 2010adminLunch, Soups

    This is so lemony and refreshing and is easy, easy to prepare. It’s a great addition to a lunch time wrap or sandwich.

    Lemon Soup

    Lemon Soup



    2 servings
    37 calories per serving

    2 c chicken broth
    3 t lemon juice
    ¼ t thyme
    1/8 t salt
    4 leaves spinach, torn
    1 green onion (green part only) thinly sliced
    Lemon slices for garnish

    Combine all except spinach and onions and bring to a boil on high heat. Place spinach in bowls. Spoon soup over spinach and top with sliced green onions.

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    February 16th, 2010adminbeef, Dinner, pork

    Another day. Another meatloaf :) There are so many variations and I just have to try them all :) So far my favorite is still Good and Healthy Meatloaf. But this one works too – it does not look so full of veggies, so it might do better with kids :)

    Mushroom Meatloaf

    Mushroom Meatloaf

    6 servings
    265 calories per serving

    8 oz. assorted mushrooms (or all button mushrooms is fine too)
    1 T oil
    1 t garlic clove, minced
    ½ c parsley, chopped
    ½ c pureed diced tomatoes (canned)
    8 oz. lean ground beef
    8 oz. ground pork
    1 c quick oats
    ½ medium onion
    ¼ c Egg Beaters
    1 T Worcestershire sauce
    1 t kosher salt
    ½ c ketchup
    Pam

    Preheat oven to 350 degrees and coat a baking dish with Pam. In a food processor, pulse the onion until minced and then add the mushrooms and process until minced and then sauté them in a hot pan with the oil about 5 minutes. If they remain wet, drain the liquid out of the pan. Add garlic, parsley and tomatoes and then set aside.

    Mix meats, oats, egg, Worcestershire, and salt into the mushroom mix. Shape into a loaf and set in baking dish or a loaf pan. Spread ketchup over the top and bake an hour or until done. Let rest 5-10 minutes before slicing.

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    February 2nd, 2010adminDinner, pork

    Super savory and very easy to make. The topping has such a burst of lemony flavor that you don’t want to stop eating !

    Lemon Parsley Pork Chops

    Lemon Parsley Pork Chops

    4 servings
    208 calories per serving

    1 T oil
    Pam
    4 boneless pork chops (3 ounces each)
    1/2 onion, sliced
    Salt and pepper to taste
    3 cloves garlic, minced
    1/2 c hot water
    4 T parsley, chopped
    Zest of 1 lemon
    Juice of one half lemon

    Heat oil and Pam in skillet on medium high heat. Saute the onion for 3-4 minutes. Salt and pepper both sides of the pork chops and then add to pan. Cook 3 minutes. Turn meat over and add garlic and continue cooking another 3 minutes. Add water. Reduce heat to medium low, cover and cook 10 minutes.

    Uncover and cook 5 more minutes. Remove chops to a plate and keep warm. Add parsley and lemon zest to pan. Cook down for about 2 minutes on high. Squeeze in lemon juice and cook down 30 seconds more. Spoon this mix over the chops and serve immediately.

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