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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    January 27th, 2014adminItalian, Lunch, pork, Soups

    Minestrone meets Stracciatella in this soup full of beans, spinach, cheese and yummy sausage ! To make this a dinner serving instead, just add some pasta or rice to bring it up to 400 calories.

    Sausage Soup

    Sausage Soup

    4 servings
    264 calories per serving

    10 oz. sweet sausage
    Pam
    1 c chopped shallot (onion will do if you do not have shallots)
    2 t minced garlic
    ½ c water
    15 oz. cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
    14.5 oz. can diced tomatoes
    24 oz. can fat free chicken broth
    2 c baby spinach
    1 T fresh basil or parsley, chopped
    2 T grated parmesan cheese
    Salt and pepper to taste

    Remove casing from sausage (or buy it without the casing). Spray pan with Pam and cook sausage on high heat until brown stirring to break up the pieces well. Add shallot and garlic and cook 2 more minutes. Stir in water, beans, tomatoes, broth, salt and pepper and cover and bring to a boil. Uncover and cook 4 minutes or until it has thickened up a little bit. Remove from heat and stir in spinach and basil and then place in bowls and sprinkle with cheese.

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    December 11th, 2012adminAsian, chicken, Kid Friendly, Lunch, Soups

    I love making wontons – you fill them with just about anything and drop in broth and they make a great meal. But this one goes far beyond – the flavors of the ginger, lemon and vegetables mingle so beautifully ! You’ll want to make this one again and again.

    Chicken Wontons in Broth

    Chicken Wontons in Broth

    6 servings
    395 calories per serving

    7 cups fat free broth (chicken, beef or a mixture of both)
    4 c water
    3 T soy sauce
    1 T lemon juice
    24 wonton wrappers
    1 large shallot, finely chopped
    ½ pound ground chicken
    ¾ c bok choy, finely chopped
    ½ c finely chopped mushrooms
    Salt and pepper to taste
    1 T soy sauce
    1 t garlic powder
    2 t minced fresh ginger
    2 t grated lemon rind
    1 t dark sesame oil
    Dash of hot sauce

    Prepare wontons (see below). Bring broth to a boil. Add 3 T soy, salt and pepper. Add wontons and cook 3 minutes or until done. Add lemon juice right at the end.

    Wonton preparation:
    Spray pan with Pam and cook shallot 3 minutes. Add water if it starts to get dry. Add ground meat and cook until done. Make sure you break it up into little pieces as it cooks. Let cool. Add in bok choy, mushrooms, soy sauce, salt, pepper, garlic powder, ginger, lemon zest, sesame oil, and hot sauce. Fill wontons (click below for a short video tutorial if you are not familiar with wonton preparation).

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    May 26th, 2012adminSides, Summer, Vegetables

    Cooking the potatoes and peppers in a foil packet basically steams them and they come out a wonderful consistency and packed with flavor. Serve alongside 3 oz. of broiled steak or a 4 oz. chicken cutlet for a meal balanced with protein, veggies and that all mighty carb that keeps you feeling more full :)

    Foiled O'Brien

    Foiled O'Brien

    4 servings
    155 calories per serving

    1 lb. red potatoes, washed and sliced thinly
    2 c red bell pepper slices
    2 c yellow bell pepper slices
    6 T sliced shallot (regular onion will work here too)
    Pam
    2 cloves garlic, mashed
    3 T chopped parsley
    ½ t onion powder
    Salt and pepper to taste

    Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Take 4 sheets of aluminum foil, each about 12 inches by 12 inches (about 1 inch longer and 4 inches wider than a sheet of paper) and place them on a flat surface. Spray each with a little bit of Pam. Divide the potatoes, peppers and shallots evenly among the foil sheets. Sprinkle with the minced garlic, parsley, onion powder, salt and pepper.

    Create a packet out of each by folding the foil sides up to make a tent and folding the edges over 2 times – then take each side and fold (roll) over twice and seal firmly so that the packet will say sealed keeping all the steam inside.

    Place packets on a baking sheet and place in oven. Bake ½ hour to 45 minutes. Open packets and transfer contents to plates. Be careful opening packets as they will be full of steam.

    For more instructions folding, Reynold’s says:
    For each foil packet, bring up the two sides of the foil and double fold with about 1-inch wide folds. Leave room for heat circulation inside the packet as the food cooks. Double fold each end to form the foil packet.

    And the Scouts site has a nice diagram.

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    July 31st, 2011adminDinner, Sides

    So different from your typical stuffed pepper – this is a great vegetarian recipe. These make a great dinner with a side salad. Or serve half a portion (1/2 a pepper) as a side.

    Vegetarian Stuffed Peppers

    Vegetarian Stuffed Peppers


    4 servings
    324 calories per serving

    4 yellow bell peppers
    1/2 c orzo
    15 oz. can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
    Pam
    1 large shallot, chopped
    6 oz. baby spinach, chopped coarsely
    1 t oregano flakes
    1 t garlic powder
    1/2 c crumbled feta cheese
    ½ c shredded low fat mozzarella cheese
    1/4 c sun dried tomatoes, (dehydrated, not the ones in oil), chopped
    1 T sherry vinegar
    Salt and pepper to taste

    Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Take the peppers and cut them in half lengthwise. Leave the stems on. Clean out the insides (seeds and membranes) and set aside. Cook orzo according to package instructions. Heat a skillet and spray with Pam. Saute shallot for 3 minutes adding a tablespoon or 2 of water if they start to dry out. Take ¾’s of the chickpeas and roughly mash them. Add spinach to shallots and cook another minute. Add orzo, chickpeas, oregano, garlic, tomatoes, salt and pepper and heat through. Add cheese and vinegar and stir well. Spoon mix into the pepper shells. Spray a baking dish with Pam and place peppers in pan. Sprinkle with mozzarella, cover and bake 30 minutes.

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    June 24th, 2011adminDinner, Sides, Vegetables

    B A C O N. Bacon makes everything better and this is no exception. So tasty !

    Brussel Sprouts Gratin

    Brussel Sprouts Gratin

    6 servings
    133 calories per serving

    2 slices hickory smoke bacon (or use regular bacon and ad a drop of ‘smoke’ flavor seasoning)
    4 shallots, thinly sliced
    2 lb. brussel sprouts, halved
    1 c water
    ½ t kosher salt
    ¼ t pepper
    Pam
    2 oz bread crumbs
    3 T butter

    Preheat broiler. Cook bacon until crisp then remove from pan, cool and crumble. Add shallots to bacon drippings and sauté 4 minutes. Add sprouts and 1 c water and bring to a boil then cover pan loosely with some foil and continue cooking 6 minutes or until tender. Add salt and pepper and mix. Melt butter in a small pan and add breadcrumbs and some salt and sauté to toast the crumbs. Add bacon crumbles to breadcrumbs. Turn sprouts into a baking dish sprayed with Pam and sprinkle with the breadcrumb mix. Broil 3 minutes.

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    January 17th, 2011adminAppetizers, Snacks

    Savory umami goodness all in a nice little puff pastry package. These make great appetizers, sides, and snacks. The gruyere cheese is a perfect complement to the shallot and mushroom. This is a crowd pleaser !

    Mushroom Tarts

    Mushroom Tarts

    9 servings
    185 calories per serving

    2 sheets frozen puff pastry, thawed and cut into 18 rounds
    1 T oil
    1 shallot, diced
    1 lb. sliced mushrooms
    Kosher salt to taste
    Pepper to taste
    2 T chopped basil or parsley
    ¾ c grated Gruyere cheese (use sharp cheddar instead if you wish)
    Pam

    Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Keep pastry rounds in the frig on a baking sheet so they remain cold. Heat oil and cook shallot 4 minutes. Add mushrooms and cook 10 minutes then season with salt, pepper and herbs. A baking sheet with Pam and place 9 rounds on the sheet. Divide mushrooms onto the rounds. Then top with cheese and then with a pastry round. Bake 25 minutes.

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    December 7th, 2010adminAsian, Dinner, Kid Friendly, Sides

    This is a great recipe to use up leftover rice from the Chinese food take out order. Just place it in a colander and place the colander over a pot of steaming water for 5-6 minutes. That brings it back to life nicely :) The veggies look like little jewels in a sea of rice. It’s a very pretty side dish !

    Jeweled Rice

    Jeweled Rice

    6 servings
    183 calories

    1 c basmati rice (stickier than regular long grain rice)
    2 c water
    1/4 c roasted peanuts
    1 shallot, sliced
    2 T water
    1 t minced fresh ginger root
    3/4 c grated carrots
    ½ c corn
    Salt to taste
    ¼ t cayenne pepper (double this if you like it spicy !)
    3 T chopped cilantro

    Add rice to water and bring to a boil on high heat then lower to a simmer, cover and cook 20 minutes or until water is absorbed (or use steamed leftover rice as mentioned above). Mash peanuts finely or puree in a blender. Heat a skillet and sauté shallots in a couple of tablespoons of hot water. Saute 5 minutes. Add more water if needed to keep them moist. Then add ginger, carrots, corn and salt. Turn to low and cook 5 minutes then stir in rice, pepper, cilantro and peanuts.

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    November 20th, 2010adminAppetizers

    What a perfect flavor ! This can be served on toast points as an appetizer, or you use can use it as an addition or topping to other foods. The flavor is FANTASTIC !

    Mushroom Shallot Spread

    Mushroom Shallot Spread

    4 servings
    68 calories per serving

    1 lb. coarsely chopped mushrooms
    6 shallots, chopped
    4 cloves garlic, chopped
    3 T oil
    Salt

    Chop the ingredients pretty finely in a food processor to get a nice consistency. Heat oil in a skillet and cook shallots 7 minutes. Add garlic and mushrooms and cook until all the water is released from the mushrooms (about 10 minutes) then season with salt and continue cooking, stirring frequently, until the water is dried up and the mushrooms are dry (about another 10 minutes. Spread on toast points, use in scrambled eggs, or soup, serve aside grilled steaks – or even try spreading this on rolls and make mini pizzas (recipe to be posted soon !).

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    November 6th, 2010adminchicken, Dinner, Product Reviews

    What a fun way to make chicken – the Pom reduction gives this dish a very distinctive flavor.

    Saute of Chicken in Pom Reduction

    Saute of Chicken in Pom Reduction

    4 servings
    233 calories per serving

    4 4 oz. boneless skinless chicken breasts
    1 T oil
    ½ t garlic powder
    Salt and pepper to taste
    1 t oil
    1 shallot, sliced thinly
    ½ c sliced green onions
    1 13.25 oz. can sliced mushrooms
    1 c Pom Wonderful pomegranate juice
    1 t Kitchen Bouquet (browning sauce)
    4 T pomegranate seeds for garnish

    Heat 1 T oil in skillet. Sprinkle chicken with salt, pepper and garlic powder and sauté 4 minutes each side or until browned and chicken is done. Set aside and keep warm. Add 1 t oil to skillet and sauté shallots and onions 5 minutes. If the onions get too dry, add a teaspoon or so of hot water to the pan. Add mushrooms and sauté another 3 minutes. Add Pom Wonderful and Kitchen Bouquet and bring to a boil the reduce heat and simmer 5-7 minutes to thicken sauce. Serve mushroom sauce over chicken and garnish with pomegranate seeds.

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    September 3rd, 2010adminAppetizers, Lunch, Vegetables

    This is an excellent quiche – no one would ever know you never even opened the oven ! The Swiss cheese is just perfect with the spinach and mushrooms. And the crust is so much more flavorful than a regular crust. You’ll definitely make this one again and again.

    Quiche with Rice Crust

    Quiche with Rice Crust


    8 servings
    116 calories per serving

    1 ½ c cooked brown rice
    1 c shredded low fat swiss cheese
    ¾ c Egg Beaters
    ¼ t curry powder
    10 oz. package of frozen spinach, thawed and pressed dry in a colander
    ¾ c evaporated skim milk
    ½ c sliced mushrooms
    2 T chopped shallots
    ¼ t garlic powder
    ¼ t onion powder
    ¼ t salt
    1/8 t pepper

    Combine rice, ½ c cheese, ¼ c Egg Beaters and curry and press into the bottom of a 9” glass pie plate. Microwave 4 minutes or until firm. Combine spinach, milk, mushrooms, onion, spices, ½ c cheese and ½ c Egg Beaters and mix well then pour into the crust and microwave on 50% power 20 minutes (rotate it every 5 minutes or so if your microwave does not have a turntable) or until a knife inserted comes out clean.

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