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Crock pot recipes and fast, healthy meals

Apr 03, 2011 - 39 comments

Can you guys help me out? Since I started back to work full time I'm struggling to find time to make healthy meals since most take awhile to cook. I've never been much of a cook to begin with, either! I find myself buying ready made foods that heat up fast or fast food on the nights I'm tired, have hungry people to feed, and no time to cook. I know that's not the healthiest or most cost efficient way to provide meals for my family.

Can you guys give me some recipies for quick, healthy meals or meals I can throw in the crock pot in the mornings before I go to work?

Thanks so much! :)

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Avatar universal
by bbxx, Apr 03, 2011
Hi there. You can do soups. They are easy and yummy and nutritious. There are things like a one pot meal that is beans and hamburg and stuff. I will try to think of more. If you are interesting in the bean/hamburg one or need actual soup ones let me know.

Avatar universal
by bbxx, Apr 03, 2011
I happen to think. It would help us if you would tell us the types of meat you do or dont eat and some info that way.

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by April2, Apr 03, 2011
I do soups sometimes, mostly bean or chicken. I also do chili or spaghetti.
I'm not crazy about ham but will have it occasionally in soups, etc. My oldest doesn't like chicken noodle but will eat chicken and dumplings.
We eat a lot of chicken, some fish and some beef.
I do a veggie stir fry sometimes with tofu and throw it over rice.
I just can't think of any other recipes to try that everyone will est.

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by crackerjack4u2, Apr 03, 2011
Hello here's a couple for you.  This one is delicious but takes a little more prep time.  Take Frozen boneless pork chops(if they are going to cook all day or thawed if just cooking them a few hours).  Wet them in water and batter dip in flour.  Fry them Real Quickly in a skillet of oil on high heat to (brown the flour Only) not cook the chops.  Put chops in slow cooker with 2 cans of cream of mushroom or cream of chicken soup and 2 cans of water let them cook on low heat all day and YUMMY.  

Also I take Country Style Ribs remove any bones, and put them in the slow cook in water and cook them on high all day (make sure you put enough water in them that they don't boil dry.)  Come home Drain the water off them and add KC style BarBQ sauce.

I also always cook my roasts in a slow cooker.(just cook the roast all day long and add carrots, potatoes, and onions  when you get home and allow to cook on high about 45 mins or until tender.     Banquet I think is who it is sells a couple of crock pot classics in the freezer sections of the stores.  One is Pot Roast and the other is Chicken and Dumplings both of them are good too.  You still have to add the pot and carrots after you get home or they boil down to mush LOL.  

Good luck and God Bless Brenda

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by melimeli, Apr 03, 2011
my whole family loves this even the kids,
boneless skinless chicken breasts
2 cans garbanzo beans juice and all
1 can diced tomatoes
1 jar roasted red peppers
1 chopped up sauteed onion
salt and pepper
3T dried parsley

add all ingredients put on low and when you get home eat over rice!  yummy

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by krichar, Apr 03, 2011
We do chili, spaghetti sauce, lasagna, soups, roast and potatoes, hams in pineapple juice... I love my crockpot!! You can also google recipes, one of my favorite sites is all recipes. They have everything on there!! I always prepare it the night before and stick the pot in the fridge so all I have to do in the morning is turn it on!

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by melimeli, Apr 03, 2011
meatballs for sub sandwiches!

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by turkee23, Apr 03, 2011
we do a turkey breast in the crock pot....add a little water and season how ever you want....salt pepper garlic..lemon pepper.....put on in mthe the time you get home you have GREAT juicy turkey, add some gravy if you like (best from the bottom of crock pot)....any veggies for a side....

we also do some kind of pork or some beef (not sure what cut but will find out, i like the beef better)....put in there with salt pepper and bbq sauce..... by the time you get home you get shredded beef with bbq sauce, great for sanwhiches or alone with cole slaw!.......

hope i was of some help

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by RockRose, Apr 03, 2011
April,  this is SO interesting you ask this.  I kind of feel like this is my calling - Cheap Quick Healthy Delicious meals.  CQHD.  Ready made foods in the grocery store are SO AWFUL,  fast food and restaurant food is also so awful,  so full of fat and salt and sugar that once you finish reading all the ingredients you just want to hurl.  

If you compile a list of recipes your family loves,  you can spend one Saturday or Sunday a month making them,  and freeze individual portions that you pull out of the freezer in the morning to thaw on the counter.  

My mom has cancer,  and I made 2 months worth of meals for my parents and it took me a very long evening.  They loved it,  it was great,  and so convenient.

Start at     Sign up  for the recipe of the day.  They're great,  they only send ones people love.  

Pick out stuff your own family likes,   make it ahead,  and you're done for a month if you cook all day on a weekend.

One thing my family LOVES,  and if freezes well:

Chicken Pot Pie

3 cups cooked shredded chicken
2 cups thawed frozen peas
2 cups chopped boiled carrots
2 cans mushroom soup
1 pkg pie crust - containing two raw pie crusts
Pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 375.

Place one pie crust in a deep dish pie pan.   Combine all other ingredients. Spoon into pie pan.  Cover with other crust,  and crimp edges together.  Cut 6 slits in top of pie crust.

Bake until pie crust looks done,  or until your house smells so good you can't stand it anymore.   Cool 15 minutes before serving.  

Another favorite that freezes well:  

Yum Yum Cornbread

(Your kids will ask,  OH, great,  are you making CORNBREAD?)

2 boxes of Jiffy Corn Muffin Mix    (don't try to use a different brand,  doesn't work)
About  1 1/2 cups frozen corn
2 eggs
About 2/3 cup milk
About  3/4 cup  of sour cream
About 2/3 cup sugar

These ingredients are estimates - I just kind of throw it together and don't measure.  

Spray 9 X 12 pyrex glass cooking dish with cooking spray.     Pour batter in,  bake at 375 until the top looks done - probably about 25 minutes

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by RockRose, Apr 03, 2011
Another one that's really good,  easy, although you have to do it on a weekend.  It takes 3 hours in the oven,  but it's easy.

No Peek Beef Tips

2 pounds stew meat
1/2 package of onion soup mix
1 cup ginger ale
4 oz can mushrooms with liquid
1 can cream of mushroom soup

Mix all ingredients together and cook in a tightly covered casserole dish at 300 degrees for 3 hours.  DO NOT UNCOVER during this time.  You can serve this with noodles,  rice,  or mashed potatoes (easily made from Idaho flakes).  REMEMBER:  No peeking while cooking.

I have to say,  I've made this recipe innumerable times in the last 10 years since I got it from a friend.  If you use good quality meat it's absolutely delicious,  and the gravy it makes is wonderful.  I don't know why you can't peek at it,  but I never have,  so I don't know what evil might befall anyone who opens the lid to peek during cooking time.


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by adgal, Apr 03, 2011
April I face the same dilemma on days I work.  Hope you don't mind but I have pulled out a pad of paper and pen and am writing all these down as well.  Some great ideas here!  Great journal April!!

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by RockRose, Apr 03, 2011
This recipe can be cooked ahead of time, and frozen for later use.     This one should be served with rice,  or Idaho potato flakes,  or delicious bread because it's a little bit spicy,  but even little kids like it.  

Miracle Chicken  (a miracle because all of our kids will eat it cheerfully)

One whole chicken cut in pieces,  or the equivalent of chicken parts you prefer


1/3 cup trappey's Red Devil Cayenne Pepper Sauce
1/4 cup sesame oil
1/4 cup soy sauce
4 tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon garlic powder or one clove minced garlic

Arrange chicken pieces in pyrex 9 X 13 dish.   Mix sauce,  and pour it over chicken.  Cook uncovered at 375 for one hour or until done.  Baste chicken occasionally as it cooks.  

If you're placing this in freezer ziplox,  don't discard the sauce in the pyrex dish - divide it evenly in the portions you freeze.  It flavors the rice or potatoes really nicely.

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by RockRose, Apr 03, 2011
Betsy's Meatloaf

Most kids hate meatloaf.  Not THIS meatloaf!  Delicious fresh out of the oven or in frozen portions.

1 1/2 pounds fresh ground beef
2 slices of bread,  cut in small cubes
2 eggs, beaten
1 1/2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 cup ketchup
pepper to taste

Mix all ingredients well (if you just take your rings of and get your hands in there and mix it up like bread dough,  the better).    

Arrange in a long thin loaf shape in a pyrex dish.   Bake at 375 for about 40 minutes,  or until you can slice through the middle and there is no pink.  

Offer ketchup when you serve it with salad,  bread,  potatoes,  etc.  

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by chantal21, Apr 03, 2011
We made a whole chicken in the crock pot today, and it was a hit! We put 1 lemon and 2 garlic cloves in the cavity of the chicken, sprinkled salt, pepper, any seasonings you want on it. Then we put maybe 1/2 cup of white wine in the crock pot, and put the chicken in. Then quarted 3-4 large potatoes and put them around the chicken. Drizzle everything with a bit of olive oil. Set on low or high for about 6-8 hours. It was sooo tender and flavorful! :)

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by melimeli, Apr 03, 2011
ok shepards pie is always great tooo because you just use left over meat and frozen veggies and powdered potatos... my kids like a little stuffing on the bottom.

Also I use the rotisserie chicken from the store for so many recipes enchiladas, tacos, the chicken for soups

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by frank_noahsmommy, Apr 03, 2011
I cook some great beans(pinto) in the crock pot, then make bean and cheese burritos. I just fill the crockpot with water add the beans, about 4 tblsns of chicken bouillon, and let it cook all day.

Like Chantal did a whole chicken is great!!! I usually add salt pepper and some garlic along with 2 bay leafs and let that cook all day then serve with rice and yummy!!!!

I also have some more fattening recipes for pork or beef for tacos, taquitos, tostatads, if you like those shoot me a pm and I will sen you those.

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by chantal21, Apr 03, 2011
quartered*  not quarted  lol

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by trh0819, Apr 04, 2011
If you eat pork, this one is delicious and super easy. Put frozen boneless chops in pot. Thicker chops are best. Add two sliced apples and sprinkle with brown sugar and cinnamon. Let it simmer and enjoy. So yummy!

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by MH Community Mgr, Apr 04, 2011

We did a search and here's some helpful recipes for you!

Pot Roast:


Pepsi Roast:

Healthy Recipes Slideshow:

Good Luck !


MH community Mgr

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by Mom2four85, Apr 04, 2011
My very dear friend made this potato salad that was devine! I got the recipe from her and it can be made say on Sunday and mixed/served during the week.  I know it's the last thing you want to do on a wknd, but it's so good it's worth it.

5 lbs bag of red potatoes but you can use what ever ones you would like. Yukon gold are also good.
16 eggs hard boiled
4 scallions
1 lrg bag of sharp thick shredded cheddar cheese
1 package of thick cut bacon
1 Tbsp dry mustard
1 lrg container of mayonnaise (Duke's or Hellmans)
1/2 stick butter
Garlic power, salt and pepper

Set oven at 450 degrees.
Wash and cut potatoes into wedges put them in large mixing bowel.
Melt butter add it to the potatoes add garlic, salt and pepper and mix.
That will be all the seasoning you need, add possibly a Tbs of garlic powered, about the same for salt and pepper at your discretion.
Bake on a cookie sheet spread out, flip potatoes when they just start getting golden brown and bake a little longer. Usually about 30 min.
Remove from oven when golden brown and let cool.
Cut eggs, scallions and bacon into chunks.
When potatoes are cool place them in a large mixing bowel add the the mayo, eggs, bacon, dry mustard, scallions, and cheese.

I have a ton of other quick easy recipes that I have used while my 4 children were growing that I've passed along to my daughter and nieces; I'm trying to find my link now.

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by Ashelen, Apr 04, 2011
I didn't see if anyone mentioned it, but there's something called (don't quote me on the number LOL) 13 Bean Soup that can b e made in the crockpot....go pick out a bag of dry, mixed beans at the grocery store and it should have the recipe on it...I can try to look it up if you're interested. Usually I add chicken broth and's really delicious and super healthy, and easy as pie. It was the first group meal I ever tackled in college...can you student, crock pot, 7 starving college students waiting for dinner...I was so nervous, but it was so tasty LOL. I jumped right from that into leg of lamb roast and haven't looked back since (i cook every single night, and it's always some ridiculously complicated recipe)...but the bean soup was my humble beginning! my parents both have professional chef training so I've got a bit of a background, but the soup was my first attempt to cook for many others.

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by Gardezi, Apr 04, 2011
great posts many easy and tasty recipes...i just wanted to contribute a little...i dont know about crockpot as i never used it but lentil soup is something u can make in almost cooks so quickly and tastes great...we eat it with steamed rice. this is something i do when time is short and have to cook something really quickly...i add 1 cup of red lentils(split), add about 3-4 cups of water, 1 tsp minced garlic, some cayenne pepper (per taste), 1/4 tsp turmeric powder, 1/2 tsp corriander powder, 2 chicken stock cubes in a pressure cooker and let it cook on high till it starts ringing...then reduce the heat to medium and cook for about 5-7 mins...remove from heat, let the steam escape from cooker...heat about 1/4 cup vegetable oil in a frying pan, fry 1/4 cup thinly sliced onions till golden,then add 1/2 tsp roasted cumin seeds, 2-3 curry leaves, 2-3 dried red chillies, fry a lil..1-2 mins then add it to lentil soup. mix well...u can adjust the consistency of the lentils by adding more water or reducing it on high heat. serve on top of steamed rice with a dollop of yogurt.

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by specialmom, Apr 04, 2011
Okay, loving this journal.  Here is my go to crock pot recipe that is always something people eat with a smile . . . simple but good.  Take chicken breasts and place in crock pot.  Take barbeque sauce (we use Montgomery INN which might be a regional thing but it sure is good!) and pour on top.  Turn crock popt on.  When you get home, stir.  The chicken shreds and is mixed with the b que sauce--------- serve on hamberger buns as chicken sandwiches.  

I make mac and cheese in the crock pot too.  I use skim evap milk and the low fat cheddar cheese--------- I put in diced red pepper and sometimes green chilis if I want some spice.  Then I can add some turkey sausage or tuna or ham to it if I want to.  Much better than the box!

red beans and rice-----
1 lb. dried red beans
1/4 lb turkey sausage, thinly sliced
3 celery ribs, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
1 red pepper, chopped
1 onion, chopped
1 to 3 garlic cloves, minced
1 Tbsp creole seasoning
Combine first 8 ingredients and 7 cups water.  Cover and cook on high for 7 hours, serve over rice and pass the hot sauce.

I'm going to jot down some of the ideas here and see think of others.  Cooking is one of my "things" and I love it.  And I love to hear what other families are eating.  I'm excited to try some of these!

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by margypops, Apr 04, 2011
Curry dishes and Chilli are great in a crockpot ...also Brisket with veg...

Avatar universal
by bbxx, Apr 04, 2011
One Pot Bean Meal- Guys usually love this.
1 can of kidney beans drained and rinsed
1 can of canolini beans drained and rinsed
1 can of baked beans as is
1 pound of hamburg cooked first (you can do it the night before)
1 pound or less of pre-cooked bacon broken up (unless you want to cook your own)
1/2 chopped onion (optional)
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 cup of ketchup
2 tbsp barbeque sauce
1 tbsp of vinegar
Dump all this in a crock pot and leave on low for 8 hours. Stir if possible after 4 hours.

Avatar universal
by bbxx, Apr 04, 2011
Chicken Cattatori-
Boneless chicken breasts
6 ozcan of mushrooms in butter
32 oz tomato sauce
1 TBSP olive oil
chopped onion (optional)
2 teaspoons dried oregano, (crushed)
2 teaspoons dried thyme, (crushed)
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons pepper
2 teaspoons garlic, minced
1/4 cup dry red wine, (optional)
1 cup green pepper, coarsely chopped
cook on low in crockpot 7-8 hours.   serve with rice or whatever.

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by frank_noahsmommy, Apr 04, 2011
I am a crock pot fanatic I am going to have to copy all these recipes down!!!!

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by Mom2four85, Apr 04, 2011
I love doing chili or chicken n dumplings in my crock pot, as well as beef stew yummy - and it's so simple you just put your stew, seasoning, chopped veggies such as carrots and potatoes, cook all day on low then pop in some rolls in the oven - boil some minute rice and serve the stew over rice with it's own gravy =)

Here's some other simple recipes; because I'm too lazy to cook more complicated meals :P

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by 2ndBaby, Apr 04, 2011

The above site has a lot of good recipes!  I am addicted to the cheese and bacon chicken.  So yummy and easy!

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by blueeyedtabbycat, Apr 05, 2011
My friend gave me a recipe for cranberry chicken thats very yummy but I dont know the exact ingrediants. I will get that and let you know. I hope you dont mind but im writting down some of these recipes!!! I think im gonna try RockRose's chicken pot pie!!! My family is gonna love that im making something diffrerent:)

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by adgal, Apr 05, 2011
DH reminded me of one of mine he likes.  It's sooo yummy!

Night before boil baby back ribs in coke.  Yep, me on

Smother in bbq sauce, wrap in foil and refridgerate overnight.

In the morning throw ribs in crock pot, add more bbq sauce and put on lowest heat for several hours.  

Super tender, fall off the bone ribs.  I always make up a batch of cornbread to serve with, and steam some green beans.  DH and anyone else that has tried loves them!

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by LosingMyMindInGA, Apr 05, 2011
I am definately gonna be printing out this journal LOL.  I'm a BIG fan of the crock pot.  Even as a SAHM.  It's great for days when I know we'll need a quick dinner becuase of a band concert or softball/t-ball game etc.  

My kids also LOVE homemade tacos.  It's so easy and really pretty quick.

Spaghetti is also a big hit....doesn't have to be fancy.  I jjust use a jar of sgetti sauce like ragu or prego and add some more spices to our taste, boil the noodles and make some garlic bread (either premade and bought frozen or I make it myself with regular loaf bread)

Sub sandwiches are a hit around here too.  

Homemade chicken nuggets w/fries and a green veggie.

Homemade hamburgers with whatever sides you like.  These don't take long either.

Grilled cheese (or in DH's case grilled ham and cheese) w/salad

I would definately check out some of the crockpot recipe websites people have posted.  

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by trh0819, Apr 05, 2011
Adgal-- I'm trying the ribs. How much coke do you use to boil? Buy liters and fill pot as if it were water?

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by krichar, Apr 05, 2011
I am for sure going to try the ribs adgal... My boys LOVE ribs!!

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by adgal, Apr 05, 2011
yep, just as if you were boiling them in water.  You can also do these in the oven.  Same first steps, but instead of crockpot, keep them in foil wrapped packets and bake at 325 for 4 or 5 hours.  Sometimes we stick them on the bbq after ward for a couple of minutes. Yummy.  They are sooo tender.  I guess the boiling in coke breaks down the gristle or whatever can make them tough.

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by Mom2four85, Apr 05, 2011
oh me too, made my mouth water just thinking about doing the ribs in the cooker all day =) add the potato salad recipe I had up top, some good old baked beans with brown sugar an cinnamon yummy!

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by NicMom, Apr 05, 2011
I love Paula Deen's crock pot recipes. The mac and cheese is my fav! You can find all her recipes on the food network website or at

Avatar universal
by mamaofonetrying42, Apr 05, 2011

Its has a full list for crockpot recipes

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by April2, Apr 05, 2011
Wow! All of these are great! Thanks so much, everyone! I will print all this out and will definately check out the websites you all mentioned, probably over the weekend when I have more time. I haven't been online much anymore since I started working so I apologize for just now getting back to everyone. I really appreciate all of this.

Last night I made chicken pot pie for dinner. It's so easy if anyone wants the recipe! Tonight I made turkey burgers on the grill because it was such a nice day today, but we did eat later by the time everything was done. I just wanted some new, fresh ideas, especially for the crock pot because I do love using it but need more variety!  

I hadn't tried the chicken breasts in BBQ sauce but I have put a pork roast in and made shredded pork sandwiches. The chicken is probably healthier! I will have to try that.

I've done the 15 bean soup. I do tend to do soups in the winter, and chili.

LosingmymindinGA, how do you make the homemade chicken nuggets?

Adgal, those ribs sounds delicious! I will have to try those!

RockRose, your recipes sound great (especially those beef tips!) I'll have to try them on a weekend as I don't have time to cook something real long in the oven by the time I get home. That's why I'm wanting to use my crock pot more, just need some new, interesting recipes!
And these all sound great! Thanks so much, everyone! If you have any more, feel free to post them! Thanks again!

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