Clean Turkey Chili

It’s cold. Everywhere. The holidays are over and normal activity has returned. Here is a super simple recipe to make for a winter’s night meal that will not get you off track of your clean-eating meal plan. Start it early and let it cook while you go to the gym!

Clean Turkey Chili

Brown 1 lb Extra Lean ground turkey and 1/2 white onion in skillet.

In a slow cooker combine:

1 can no salt kidney beans

1 can no salt crushed tomatoes

1 can no salt tomato sauce

Add browned meat/onion mixture

Stir in:

2 Tbs Chili powder

1 Tbs Cumin

1 Tbs Garlic Granules

Dash red pepper flakes, black pepper

Cook on high 3 hours. To cook longer (for more gym time) set to low.

Serve topped with plain greek yogurt if desired, or spoon over brown rice or quinoa for more complex carbs.

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Coconut Cauliflower with Chickpeas

I was inspired to make this after a shopping trip led me to a cauliflower sale. I wanted something warming, grounding, and full of protein. I’ve been craving plant-based protein lately, not meat. I always follow my body’s signals without question and right now it’s not into chicken or beef for some reason.

I started out with this big crisp head of cauliflower, onion and garlic.

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I sauteed the onion/garlic in the slow-cooker with some coconut oil.

Then I added the chopped up cauliflower and sprinkled with  curry, tumeric and red pepper flakes

100_2114I poured in a can of coconut milk and let it cook on high for an hour while I went to the gym.

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When the cauliflower was softened, I added a can of garbanzo beans (chickpeas)

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I saw some baby carrots in the fridge so I tossed those in as well.  This was becoming a nice indian inspired vegetable stew

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It was a little thin so I added some split red lentils knowing they cook very fast and become mushy which creates a thickness to the broth

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I still wasn’t satisfied with the texture so I plopped in a spoonful of peanut butter to give it a nutty smooth flavor

100_2122I let the whole thing cook on high for about another hour.

Served over quinoa, it was the perfect meal for a winter night. I sauteed some kale on the side which went nicely with it.

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Sweet Slo-Co Chicken

Slow Cooker Sweet Coconut Chicken….It was Sunday and I had out the slow cooker. I had no idea what it was going to be but I started with what I know: Protein and Coconut. I LOVE coconut- coconut oil, coconut milk, coconut juice, coconut water, lotion, cake…you get the idea

In the slow cooker I combined 1 yellow onion and 4 garlic cloves in some coconut oil.  I then browned some chicken thigh meat in coconut oil in a skillet. I sprinkled with red pepper flakes and a curry powder blend.

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I cut up sweet potatoes and added those with baby carrots, which , by the way, are not really babies but cut up big carrots, I can’t let that go…..

White sweet potatoes are much sweeter than orange yams

White sweet potatoes are much sweeter than orange yams

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I gently stirred the ingredients to make sure all were covered with the liquid

I placed the browned chicken thigh meat on top and added a can of coconut milk, salt, chicken broth and more curry powder.

I let it all cook on high for about 4 hours.

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I then scooped out most of the baby carrots and put in the blender until they were creamy and placed back in the slow cooker. I added a can of chickpeas after blending half of those as well to a creamy texture.

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I served over brown rice and it was amazing- sweet, spicy and filling. Next time I will add in green peas or edamame for a little green color and texture.

Slow Cooked Black Beans

I like to keep cooked black beans in my freezer at all times. Not because I am preparing for armageddon, but because they are a cheap, easy, versatile source of protein. And they freeze really well. I cook them in big batches and then divide them up into single servings for convenience. I started with approximately $2.00 worth of dried black beans (aka turtle beans) and various ingredients from my cabinet.

Soak beans overnight in water

You can chop fresh garlic or use dried. I felt lazy that day.

I put beans in slowcooker and barely covered with water, garlic and a bit of chicken stock.

I love how purple they get

Add in cumin, chili powder, red pepper and salsa

upside down yellow heart?

I let this all cook for 8 hours on low

If you’d like the beans to become more of a soup, add more liquid and puree cooked beans in blender- easy black bean soup!

I served mine over short grain brown rice with fresh toppings.

That’s greek yogurt, not sour cream

I use individual plastic baggies to freeze them in for easy storage.

Ready for fast meals!

So I got about 6+ meals out of my $2.00 worth of beans and a small amount of seasonings. It is a protein bargain! I use black beans in: wraps, over rice, in soups, or with scrambled eggs.

Spicy Pumpkin Chicken n Vegetables

Slow cooker season is here! Yay!!! Nothing makes cooking easier than a slow cooker. Putting together ingredients in the morning before leaving the house and then coming home to a great hot meal is so satisfying and so little work.

I experimented with a half a can of pumpkin puree leftover from some muffins. I put 2 chicken breasts in the slow cooker with chopped onion, garlic and coconut oil.

They’re so cute when they’re young….

I let them cook about an hour and then combined the pumpkin puree mixed with salsa, peanut butter, honey, red pepper flakes and water.

I poured it over the chicken, stirring well to mix with the juices on the bottom.

After that I tucked in some baby carrots and potatoes.

Happy Family

I let this all cook on high for about 4 hours because I had to leave. I really would rather have let it cook on Low for about 7-8 hours which I will do next time. I was trying to rush a slow cooker….not very productive.

I served with Brown Rice

A couple lessons learned:

#1 Pumpkin puree is a great ingredient to add to thicken soups, stews, or to cook with meats. It is not limited to pie filling.

#2 Don’t be afraid to experiment with flavors in your cabinets- adding peanut butter and honey gave it sweetness while the salsa and red pepper flakes added spice.

#3 Most important- You can’t, and shouldn’t, rush a slow cooker no matter how badly you are ready to eat….