CrockPot Turkey Chili Stew

Yep…you read that title correct!  I make Turkey Chili Stew.   I used to call it chili, but when I would describe it to people, it was decided that it was more of a stew because of all the vegetables that are in it.  Call it chili, call it stew…doesn’t matter because it is so tasty!

 

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound ground turkey
  • 1c raw onion
  • 1/2c diced red bell peppers
  • 3 stalks of celery diced
  • 1 cup spinach
  • 1 can of kidney beans, drained (optional)
  • 1 can (14.5oz) of diced tomatoes
  • 1 can (6oz) tomato puree
  • 2.5 Tbsp chili powder
  • 1 Tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 Tbsp crushed black pepper

 

First brown the turkey in a pan.   Then you can line your crockpot with a crockpot liner.   Add all of the ingredients to the crock pot except spinach.  Add spices to the mixture.

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Now add the spinach on top.

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Cook on low for 7 hours.  Stirring occasionally.

Seven hours later….your house smells like chili.  It’s the perfect comfort food on a cold day.

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Unfortunately, the picture does not do it justice.  I know that it isn’t very pretty, but it is delicious and very healthy!

 

Quinoa Stuffed Bell Peppers

For the past week, I have been apart of a weight loss challenge group.  For the most part, I eat really healthy.  But like everyone can relate to, I have been slacking on my diet and putting on weight.  Now, it wouldn’t be so bad, but not only have I slacked off on my diet, but I have not been working out.  Not eating right and not going to the gym is the recipe to gain weight!

After a friend on Facebook posted her before and after pictures of her weight loss journey, I thought that I would try this out and see if I could get results.  The formula is simple, eat the right type of foods in the right portions and workout.  It’s that simple.  Easy, no.   Life makes it hard.  You have work, kids, and chores.  Things get in your way.  But you have to stick with it.

Going through this challenge has been hard on me because I have not been able to make some of my favorite meals because of being on calorie restriction.   Although one of the first things I am making will be my sweet potato pizza!  While Paleo, it is higher in calories because of the sweet potato and almond flour, but it is great for a post workout meal!  Over the past few days, I have pretty much been eating the same thing over and over again.  Grilled chicken, sauteed or roasted vegetables, an approved carb option, fruit, yogurt, and my protein shake.   But after a while, you want something different.  Which is why tonight I am having quinoa stuffed bell peppers!  It isn’t pizza, but it is super tasty!

Ingredients:

  • 2 bell peppers (red is my favorite bell pepper, but you can pick an color you like)
  • 1/2 lb ground turkey (or beef if you prefer)
  • 1/4c chopped onions
  • 1 chopped celery stalk
  • handful of baby spinach
  • 1/4c yellow or green squash (or both!)
  • 1/4c cooked quinoa
  • 1/3c salsa (the salsa is to flavor your cooked quinoa)
  • 1/4c of your favorite cheese

 

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.   While your oven is heating, you need to take the tops off of the bell peppers and make sure that all of the seeds are out.   Once the seeds are out, place the bell pepper in a pot of boiling water.   Cook the peppers for 8 minutes.  Make sure about halfway through you rotate the peppers.  Once finished, dump the water out of the peppers and set aside.

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While the peppers are cooking, brown the ground meat (turkey or beef) in a tsp of olive oil.  I like to season the meat with garlic powder, ground pepper, and chipotle pepper.   Once it is ground, put in a bowl to cool while you cook your vegetables.  I like to cook mine in 1 tsp of olive oil.  I cook the onions, celery, and squash until the onions start to caramelize.  Add the spinach in last for 1-2 minutes until it is all wilted.

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Put your vegetables in with the cooked ground meat.

Mix the cooked quinoa with the salsa.  Combine the salsa quinoa with the vegetables and meat.  You can either mix your cheese in the entire mixture, or you can place it on top of the bell pepper mixture.  I like to mix mine in with the ingredients instead of put it on top.

 

Before cooking

Before cooking

 

Once the peppers are stuffed, bake them for 20 minutes.

After baking

After baking

 

Let the pepper cool, cut in half and begin eating!

Yum!

Yum!

 

This also makes a great leftover for lunch the next day!   Hope you enjoy this nutrient packed and gluten free dinner!

Spaghetti and Butternut Squash Casserole

While working in triage….ok, so maybe I wasn’t working…I was daydreaming about what new things to make and this recipe just popped into my head.  Right now I am going through an obsession with squash.  It’s tasty and super low in calories….so why not?  And I love tomato sauce….so why not mix everything together?

Ingredients:

  • 1 cooked spaghetti squash
  • 1/4 of butternut squash shredded
  • 5c tomato sauce (I used this recipe from Nom Nom Paleo…one recipe made 5c after blending)
  • 2 chicken breasts diced and cooked
  • 1c diced red bell pepper
  • 1c chopped spinch
  • 1/2c chopped mushrooms (since I don’t really like mushrooms, we diced them up super fine)

 

First you need to cook your spaghetti squash.   Cut it in half and bake it rind side up at 375 degrees for 30-40 minutes.  You will know it’s ready when you can easily scrap out the strands.

While the squash is cooking, you can start making the tomato sauce.  I followed it exactly like the recipe on Nom Nom Paleo.   It does come out chunky like she said, so I blended it until it was a smoother consistency.   I can not say enough great things about this recipe.  I could not stop eating it with a spoon.  So good!

When the sauce was simmering, I prepared the rest of the ingredients.   I marinated the chicken in a fat free sun dried tomato marinade.   If you don’t want to marinate it, you can season it to your preference.

Once the spaghetti squash has been made into strands, I mixed everything together in one giant bowl.  Not going to lie….didn’t look like the most appetizing meal I ever cooked.  But I still had high hopes for this.  After mixing all the ingredients so that there was tomato sauce on everything, I put it in a 13×9 glass baking dish.   Then bake it in the oven at 375 degrees for about 40 minutes.  How I judged it on being done was by finding a piece of the shredded butternut squash and making sure it wasn’t very crunchy.

Let it cool for a few minutes and serve!

After baking

After baking

 

Even my boyfriend loved this dish!  If it gets his seal of approval, it has to be good!   It heats up well the next day in the oven or the microwave, so it is prefect for lunch the next day!

Spinach Chicken Rollups

Can you feel is?  Baseball season is beginning!  While my boyfriend is away at Spring Training, my mom has come up to stay with me.  🙂

We have continued our Mother-Daughter tradition of having waffles and bacon, and I got to make her my Paleo Pecan Waffles.   And it was a hit!  She couldn’t stop raving about them.  With that being a success, I had to make sure that I made something else to impress her.   Tonight I made my Spinach Chicken Rollups.    After one bite, she was hooked and you will be too!

Ingredients:

  • 4 small chicken breasts (or two large chicken breasts cut in half lengthwise)
  • 1c frozen spinach thawed out
  • 1/3c shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1 caramelized onion (if you don’t like onions you can omit this and it will still be tasty)
  • 1 egg
  • 1c panko bread crumbs (I used gluten free and seasoned it with salt and pepper)
  • 1c marina sauce
  • 1/2c shredded mozzarella cheese

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

First step is to pound out the chicken so it is easier to roll up.  I bought some chicken from Sprouts and they were gigantic.  So I cut them in half lengthwise and it worked out better than if I used it whole.

Gather three bowls to be used for the preparing of the chicken.  In the first bowl put the thawed out chicken with the 1/3c of mozzarella cheese.  The second bowl put the egg and mix it up.  And in the third bowl put the panko bread crumbs.

Spinach Chicken RollupsFirst put the spinach/mozzarella mixture and the caramelized onions in the flattened chicken breast and roll it up.  Secure it with toothpicks.  Then dip it into the egg mixture and once coated with the egg roll it in the Panko breadcrumbs.  Place rolled up chicken in a glass baking container.

Once you have finished rolling up all the chicken, spray with baking spray.

Spinach Chicken Rollups

Put into heated oven for 25 minutes.  Once that is finished, spread out the marinara sauce on top and put as much or as little cheese as you like.   Put back into the oven until the cheese is melted, about 5 minutes.

Spinach Chicken Rollups

I have made this with a side of broccoli, pasta, or over quinoa.  It is very versatile.

Spinach Chicken RollupsDinner was a great success, and now we are going to go and try my first attempt at homemade ice cream.  Hopefully it will be just as tasty!