Cheesy Chicken Tator Tot Casserole

chickentatortothotdish 014

Chicken, Cheese, Bacon, Tator Tots, repeat. How can that be bad? There is also some milk that you pour over every thing in the crock pot, but I’m also wondering what some cream of chicken soup mixed in with the milk would taste like? The whole entire recipe would probably be a lot creamier that is for sure. I thought it could also have used some type of seasoning. Maybe some Lawry’s Seasoning Salt or some sriracha? It’s up to you to decide. Ben just said this recipe was ok. He likes the Bubble Up Enchilada casserole recipe the best. :)

Note: You do not need to make this recipe in the crock pot like it calls for. You can also layer everything in a baking dish like I did. Just make sure you cook the chicken previously, because it takes a little bit longer to bake in the oven if you throw it in there raw. (which is ok)

chickentatortothotdish 006

Recipe from The Country Cook

Ingredients:

1 (32 oz.) bag frozen tater tots
1 (3 oz.)bag bacon pieces
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, diced
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
3/4 cup milk
salt & pepper, to taste

Directions:

Spray slow cooker with nonstick cooking spray.

Layer half of the frozen tater tots on the bottom of the slow cooker.

Sprinkle with 1/3 of the bacon pieces.

Add diced chicken on top. Season with salt & pepper.

Now add 1/3 of the bacon pieces and another 1/3 of shredded cheese.

Put the rest of the frozen tater tots on top.

Finish with the remaining 1/3 cheddar cheese and remaining 1/3 of bacon pieces.

Pour 3/4 cup milk all over the top.

Cover and cook on low about 4-6 hours.
Please note: Some slow cookers run at different temperatures. If you are using an older slow cooker (older than about 6 years old), your cooking time may take longer. Newer models run a bit hotter so keep an eye on this around the 4 hour mark. You want to make sure the chicken is cooked thoroughly (to 165F degrees).

Weight Watchers – Slow Cooked Jerk Pork with Caribbean Salsa

jerkpork 014

Man, I think this has been the tastiest thing I’ve ever made in the Slow Cooker for a long time! I got to use my jerk spice seasoning that I got when the husband and I went to Jamaica. The jerk seasoning I got, wasn’t too hot though, I would have liked it on that side a little bit more. I tried it before serving the pork, and decided to throw in an extra tablespoon of the jerk seasoning. If you’ve never had jerk seasoning before it’s a mixture of allspice, cinnamon, cloves, cumin, brown sugar, and red pepper flakes. I’d like to try a wet jerk marinade in the slow cooker one time. That uses habenero peppers and would be a lot more spicier! Jerk is kind of a funny name for a spice mixture, isn’t it?

I can never find decent ripe mangoes where I live, so I used a pineapple instead. I think the Caribbean salsa was the best part. Instead of rice, I served this over orzo pasta. I would definitely make this again.

jerkpork 010

Recipe and Nutrition Info from Skinnytaste.com

Servings: 10

Calories: 265, Fat: 15g, Protein: 21.4g, Carbs: 11.5g, Fiber 2g

Points Plus: 7

 

Slow Cooked Jerk Pork with Caribbean Salsa

Ingredients

  • 3 pounds pork shoulder roast
  • 6 cloves garlic
  • 2-3 tablespoons jerk seasoning
  • 1 lime (squeezed)
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 1 large avocado
  • 2 mangoes (ripe)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons red onion (chopped)
  • 1-2 tablespoons cilantro
  • 2-3 tablespoons lime juice
  • salt and pepper (to taste)

Directions

Step 1
Using a sharp knife, cut slits into the pork and stuff holes with half of the crushed garlic. Combine the remaining garlic, jerk seasoning, and salt, rub all over pork (you may want to wear gloves). Place in a large container, pour the lime and orange juice over the pork; cover and refrigerate 5 hours or overnight, turning pork occasionally so the marinade covers all of pork.
Step 2
The next morning, put everything in the crock pot and cook on LOW for 9 hours.
Step 3
After 9 hours, remove pork and shred using two forks.
Step 4
Remove liquid from crock pot and reserve. Add shredded pork back to the slow cooker. Add about 1 cup of the liquid back into the crock pot and taste for salt and pepper. Let it cook an additional 15 minutes.
Step 5
Meanwhile make the Caribbean salsa: combine all the ingredients in a bowl, season to taste with salt and pepper. refrigerate salsa until ready to serve.

Crock Pot Teriyaki Chicken

It’s a snow day here! I’ve been super lazy too….

teriyaki 004

With snow days comes lazy meals. Lazy as in crock pot meals. If you were really lazy like me, you could just buy a whole bottle of teriyaki sauce at the grocery store and just dump that into the crock pot with some chicken. I almost wish I would have done that too. This sauce wasn’t very thick when the chicken broth was added. It cooked down in the crock pot a little but not to the consistency I would have liked it. If I make this again I’d make some major changes to the recipe. Found the recipe on pinterest. Served some brown rice with it.

teriyaki 006

If you like shredded chicken, cubed chicken or the chicken left whole like Ben does do whatever you want with it. I left mine whole.

Recipe from Pinterest Healthy Recipes

Nutrition Info: Calories: 391, Fat: 11.92g, Carbs: 20.82, Fiber 1g

Points Plus: 10

Servings: 6

Crock Pot Teriyaki Chicken

Ingredients

  • 1 pound boneless chicken breasts
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1/2 cup teriyaki sauce
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 3 cloves garlic

Directions

Step 1
Mix together all the ingredients besides the chicken in a small bowl. Place the chicken in the slow cooker and then add the sauce. Cook on low for 6 hours. I didn't shred my chicken or cut it into cubes but go ahead and do so if you like.

Crock Pot Roast w/ Gravy

potroast 015

I’ve tried making a couple pot roasts in my life. One of the recipes I tried, required searing the roast until it comes brown on both sides and cooking it in a dutch oven at low temp for a certain amount of time.  I was able to get that right once and the roast was so tender. After using that recipe a couple times the roast has never been tender since. I don’t get it!

Since this is a crock pot recipe, the meat becomes sooooooooo tender. This is another one of those recipes where  all you use is a can of condensed soup and a package of seasoning mix. The meat when it cooks in the crock pot makes the best gravy ever.

Just look at how tender this roast is. I’m never cooking my roasts in the oven again. Just a crock pot.

potroast 019

Crock Pot Roast w/ Gravy

Ingredients

  • 2 cans cream of mushroom soup
  • 1 package Onion Soup Mix
  • 3 pound roast beef chuck roast

Directions

Step 1
In your slow cooker, mix the two cans of cream of mushroom soup and one envelop of dry onion soup mix. Season the chuck roast with salt (go easy since the soups have a lot of sodium in them already), pepper and garlic powder, and add to slow cooker.

Cook the pot roast on low for 9 - 10 hours, until the meat is tender and falling apart.

Slow Cooker Chocolate Candy

slowcookercandies 012

This recipe intrigued me because I never had tried making candy in my crock pot before. I read some of the reviews on Food Network’s website and decided to change a few things. 1. Check the chocolate every hour and 2. I used only 1 pound of peanuts.

I learned that your crock pot can be a good way to temper chocolate. However, this recipe can be made in about 20 minutes on the stove top. I don’t have one of those fancy crock pots where you can set the timer to however long the recipe takes. I think it’s time to upgrade my crock pot. Mine only has 4 settings: Keep Warm, Low, High, and Off. Is there crock pots out there where you can set the temperature of it? Best Buy has a crock pot with 7 different settings on it for $80.00 and it had a timer.  That would be really nice to have.

The recipe states that this chocolate takes 3 hours to melt in the crock pot. That is WAY to long. My chocolate was done melting in an 1hr and 30 minutes. It’s a pretty easy recipe too, just chocolate and peanuts. Next time, I may try adding other ingredients to it or try different chocolate.

slowcookercandies 013

Slow Cooker Chocolate Candy recipe from Trisha Yearwood

Slow Cooker Chocolate Candy

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds dry roasted salted peanuts
  • 4 ounces german sweet chocolate
  • 12 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 2 1/2 pounds almond bark

Directions

Step 1
Put the peanuts in the bottom of a 4-quart slow cooker. Layer the chocolate over the peanuts, beginning with the sweet chocolate, followed by the chocolate chips and then the almond bark. Set the temperature on low and cook for 3 hours. Do not stir the mixture.
Step 2
After 3 hours, stir the mixture with a wooden spoon until smooth. Drop the candy into cupcake pan liners using about 2 tablespoons per liner. Allow the candy to cool completely before removing the cupcake liners.

Spicy Pop Pulled Pork

You can never go wrong with one of Ree’s recipes. Every recipe I’ve tried of her’s, I just love. This one was so super simple and I threw everything into a slow cooker instead of a dutch oven. The pork roast cooked on high for 4-5 hours and it was ready. The meat was just falling apart when I shredded it and it was so tender. I served mine on some fresh sandwich buns that I got at Hornbacher’s grocery store here in town. Tomorrow I want to try this meat inside some quesadilllas.

If you’re on a diet, you can go ahead and use a can of diet soda. Make sure to remove all the fat. There was a really big piece of it that just fell off when it was done cooking and I just threw that away. 1 serving of this pork is about 8 points.  I used coke because that is the drink of choice in our house. It’s not too spicy either with the can of chipotle peppers in there. I’d definitely make this recipe again.

P.S. I’ve got to stop watching Food Network…. Instead of having my website be recipe-diaries.com I should just change my name to The Food Network Cooking Blog or something dumb like that. Yesterday I made Alton Brown’s fudge, today was Ree’s pulled pork, and tomorrow I’m going to make the peanut butter balls featured on Trisha Yearwood’s show. Am I addicted?

This isn’t the prettiest picture sorry. Just trying to show how tender it was. :)

Recipe from The Pioneer Woman

Spicy Dr. Pepper Shredded Pork

Ingredients

  • 1 large onion
  • 1 whole pork shoulder roast (5-7 pounds)
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 can Chipotle peppers in adobe sauce
  • 1 can Dr. Pepper ((I used Coke))

Directions

Step 1
Preheat oven to 300 degrees.

Peel the onion and cut it into wedges. Lay them in the bottom of a large dutch oven.

Generously salt and pepper the pork roast, then set it on top of the onions in the pan.

Pour the can of chipotle peppers over the pork (include the sauce.) Pour in both cans of Dr Pepper. Add brown sugar to the juice and stir in.
Step 2
Place lid tightly on pot, then set pot in the oven. Cook for at least six hours, turning roast two or three times during the cooking process. Check meat after six hours; it should be absolutely falling apart (use two forks to test.) If it's not falling apart, return to the oven for another hour.
Step 3
Remove meat from pot and place on a cutting board or other work surface. Use two forks to shred meat, discarding large pieces of fat. Strain as much of the fat off the top of the cooking liquid as you can and discard it. Return the shredded meat to the cooking liquid, and keep warm until ready to serve. (You can also refrigerate the meat and liquid separately, then remove hardened fat once it's cold. Then heat up the liquid on the stovetop and return the meat to the liquid to warm up.

Serve on warm flour tortillas. Top with shredded lettuce, diced tomatoes, grated cheese, avocado slices, salsa, and whatever else you'd like.

Slow Cooker Meatball Subs

I’m just going to say, I wasn’t a fan of Subway’s Meatball sandwich. It just wasn’t good to me. One of the girls at work brought meatball subs for treat day one time and they were just fantastic and changed mind. I made this recipe really simple.And yes, you can have a turkey meatball sub and still stay on track!

Go to the store, pick up a bag of 24 oz Turkey meatballs from Jeanie-0. There are a couple brands out there that do make lean turkey meatballs like Foster Farms. I couldn’t find them at all. Or if you’re feeling ambitious make your own turkey meatballs at home.  Come home, turn on the slow cooker. Dump the marinara sauce into the slow cooker and meatballs. This is best to do on the weekends since they only take about 4 to 5 hours to cook. If you come home during the lunch hour like I do, then by all means do it then. I’m not stopping you. :) When the meatballs are done, place 4 of them with the sauce on top of some bread and some cheese. Turn on the boiler and toast the bread until they’re brown and the cheese is melted. Don’t walk away from your boiler too, or else you may have some burnt meatball subs when you come back. Enjoy!

Servings:8 (3 Meatballs per sub)

Points Plus: 11

This was hard trying to figure out points plus for. fatsecret and weight watchers are giving me two different points plus for this.

 

Slow Cooker Meatball Subs

Ingredients

  • 1 bag 24 oz Turkey Meatballs
  • 1 jar Marinara sauce (your favorite)
  • 1 loaf french baguette
  • 8 ounces part skim mozzarella cheese

Directions

Step 1
Place the marinara sauce and frozen meatballs into a slow cooker. Cook on low for 4 to 5 hours.
Step 2
Preheat broiler.
Step 3
While the boiler is preheating, cut equal slices of the french bread and once down the middle of it. Place 4 meatballs and sauce on the bread and top with about 1 to 2 tablespoons of mozzarella cheese.
Step 4
The meatball subs are done when the cheese is melted and the bread is slightly brown on top.

Crock Pot Apple Cider

Today is the perfect Fall day for apple cider. Cool, crisp, and a little breeze outside. Apple cider in the crock pot is really easy too. Just tie up some whole spices and throw in some cinnamon sticks. Let it cook for 3 hours before a party. Throw in some rum if you’re feeling a little fiesty at the time too. This could be served warm or cool.

Did you know that apple cider and apple juice that you buy at the store are pretty much the same thing? They both say water, apples, and concentrate with some kind of sugar on the ingredients list. Alton Brown taught me that. He teaches me a lot. Wish his show was still on.

I was going to attempt to make my own apple cider this year. Our poor tree had a branch break on it, or the trunk did one weekend when we were both away. We didn’t know how that happened either. There was no major wind or storm that came through when we were gone either. Bummer. Next Spring, we plan on planting a new one and it will probably take away to grow back to the way it was again.

Crock Pot Apple Cider from Food.com

Servings: 12 to 15

Calories 30.2:, Carbs: 6.9g, Fiber: 0.5g, Protein: 0.1g, Fat: 0.3g

Crock Pot Apple Cider

Ingredients

  • 4 quarts apple cider
  • 2 whole nutmegs
  • 3-4 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 orange
  • 1/2 apple
  • 20-25 whole cloves
  • 3-4 pieces of crystalized ginger
  • 1/4 brown sugar

Directions

Step 1
Pour enough cider to fill crock pot to ¾ full. Add brown sugar. Stick whole cloves into skin of orange and apple wedges. Place apple, orange and all remaining ingredients into cheese cloth, tie with string and drop into crock pot. Bring to a boil, about 2 to 2 ½ hours on high.

Step 2
Once the cider is boiling, reduce setting to low. Keep on low for 2 hours or more before serving. Replenish with additional cider when needed; if cider is cold, return setting to high until heated.
Step 3
Serve or have guests serve themselves from the crock pot. If desired, leave a bottle of spiced rum nearby.