Delicious and Easy Crock Pot Chili

I made my tried-and-true favorite crock pot chili the other night, since our oven has been broken and we’ve had to be creative. Sometimes I will saute the onions, peppers, and garlic with the meat to brown it, but since I couldn’t this time I just threw it all in the crock pot and set on low for about 8-9 hours. Feel free to switch up the type of meat, add more or less beans, and add any additional veggies. Chili is such a versatile but yummy dish and has always been one of my favorite comfort foods!

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Crock Pot Chili

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 onion, minced
  • 1 green/red pepper, diced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 cup frozen corn
  • 1 packet chili seasoning
  • 1 lb ground turkey/beef
  • 1-3 cans beans, drained
  • 1 (14.5 oz) can stewed/diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 12 oz tomato sauce
  • 12 oz tomato paste
  • 1 can beer (I usually use Bud Light/some other beer I wouldn’t drink ūüėČ )
  • 4-8 oz water (depending how thick/thin you want it)
  • 4 oz green chilies, diced (optional)
  • Seasonings, to taste (I use red pepper flakes, cumin, garlic powder, Italian seasoning)

Directions:

1.) In crock pot, add beer and chili seasoning and let sit for a few minutes.

2.) Saute onions, peppers, and garlic in olive oil. Add meat and cook until brown. Then, add meat, onions, peppers, and garlic to the crock pot. Or simply throw it all in crock pot raw if you don’t have time to saute!

3.) Add the rest of the ingredients and stir. Cook on low for 3-4 hours (if meat is browned) or about 8 hours if meat is raw.

Nutrition Info (Per serving, without cheese, from Fitbit):

Calories 340
Fat 6.6 g
Fiber 9.2 g
Carbs 43.9 g
Sodium 809.1 mg
Protein 25.3 g

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Paleo Spaghetti and Meatballs

I decided to do a Paleo version of one of my favorites – spaghetti and meatballs! I had bought a spaghetti squash recently, had some fresh tomatoes, and decided I just needed to make some meatballs to go with it. I sort of made this recipe up, but it came out delicious and my boyfriend loved the meatballs (so they are man-approved as well). I also used the most phenomenal sauce I’ve ever tried: Newman’s Own “Sockarooni”. It has peppers, mushrooms, and tons of flavor. I know jar spaghetti sauces aren’t technically Paleo, but I tend to make things that are easy (because by the time I make dinner, I’m usually already hungry). I also baked the spaghetti squash the night before so that I only had to wait for the meatballs to cook. I’m too busy to sit around and make fancy dishes, but this one certainly tasted like I had slaved over it. Enjoy!

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Paleo Spaghetti and Meatballs

  • Servings: 5-6 (makes about 2 dozen meatballs)
  • Print

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 spaghetti squash (I baked one new squash and had spaghetti from half of one frozen)
  • 2 lbs. ground meat (I used 1 lb. lean ground turkey and 1 lb. ground Italian sausage)
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tbsp. almond meal/flour
  • 2-3 large tomatoes, diced
  • 1 jar pasta sauce (about 24 oz.)
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 tbsp. minced garlic
  • Paprika (to taste)
  • Garlic powder (to taste)
  • Italian seasoning (to taste)
  • Cumin (to taste)
  • Salt and pepper (to taste)

Directions:

1.) Bake spaghetti squash (see step by step instructions here) and scrape “spaghetti” out of shells. Place onto paper towels on a colander/bowl and set aside.

2.) Combine ground meat, eggs, almond meal, and spices in a large bowl and mix by hand. Then roll into balls.

3.) Over medium heat, heat the olive oil and garlic in a large skillet. Then add the diced tomatoes and let simmer for a few minutes. My sauce came out a little watery (but thickened after standing), so maybe drain some of the tomato juices before cooking.

4.) Transfer the tomatoes to a large sauce pan or dutch oven over medium heat, leaving some of the olive oil/juices in the skillet. Add the jar of sauce to the pan/dutch oven and cover.

5.) Start adding the meatballs to the skillet to brown them. Flip them over when they start to get brown. You don’t want to cook them all the way through, just enough so that they keep their shape. You may have to do this in batches! Once browned, add them to the sauce pan/dutch oven.

6.) Let meatballs simmer in sauce for about 20 minutes, or until fully cooked. Ladle sauce and meatballs over spaghetti squash and enjoy! If I wasn’t eating Paleo I would top with Parmesan or mozzarella ūüôā

Paleo Apple Cinnamon Muffins

I didn’t want to eat eggs every morning¬†for my 30 days of paleo, so I was excited when I found this recipe for paleo muffins! It requires almond and coconut flour, so it’s a good gluten-free¬†recipe as well. I was able to find these flours at Trader Joe’s. The muffins came out awesome and I don’t think anyone would be able to tell that they aren’t made with regular flour (although I haven’t shared any of them yet…) This recipe¬†made 7 muffins and they came right out of the pan with just coconut oil spray!¬†Can’t wait to try some of the other paleo muffins I have been pinning (pumpkin, gingerbread…) ūüôā

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Paleo Apple Cinnamon Muffins

Adapted from: Ultimate Paleo Guide

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup almond flour/almond meal
  • 3 tablespoons coconut flour
  • 1 apple, diced (with skin)
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 1/4 cup¬†honey
  • 1-2 tablespoons cinnamon (depending on how much you like cinnamon)
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda

Directions:

1.) Heat oven to 350 degrees.

2.) In a large mixing bowl add flours, cinnamon, and baking soda. Mix.

3.) Once mixed, add apples, eggs, honey, and coconut oil to mixture and mix well again.

4.) Prepare muffin tin with liners or coconut oil spray and add batter.

5.) Bake for 30 minutes or until done.

Nutrition Info (Per muffin, from My Fitness Pal):

Calories 281
Fat 17 g (9 g saturated)
Fiber 5 g
Carbs 21 g
Sugars 14 g
Protein 8 g

Veggie Pesto Pizza

Earlier this week I needed to make dinner, but wanted something relatively quick. I had bought frozen organic pizza crusts from Trader Joe’s awhile back, so I decided to make one for dinner! I had veggies and cheese, then added¬†some pesto when I cooked the veggies to boost the flavor. The crusts are about 10″ around, so they are personal sized. I had half for dinner and ate the rest for lunch the next day. It was just as delicious reheated!

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Veggie Pesto Pizza

Ingredients:

  • Personal-sized pizza crust (I used Trader Joe’s organic)
  • Pasta/marinara sauce
  • Mozzarella balls
  • Onions, peppers, cherry tomatoes (and any other veggies!)
  • Shredded Italian cheese
  • Pesto (I used sun-dried tomato basil)

Directions:

1.) First, let crust thaw per package instructions (about 15 minutes). Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

2.) While the crust is thawing, cut cherry tomatoes and mozzarella balls in half.

3.) Next, saute onions and peppers until cooked. Add in cherry tomato halves and pesto and cook until soft.

4.) Put a thin layer of pasta sauce on pizza crust and top with shredded cheese.

5.) Then add in the pesto veggies and top with mozzarella balls and more shredded cheese, if desired.

6.) Bake for 12-15 minutes until toppings look bubbly. The crust was a little soft on the bottom of mine, so I probably could have cooked it a little longer. It may have been because I had a lot of toppings!