9 Simple Slow Cooker Recipes for When You Can't Even

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Don’t have the time or energy to make dinner? A slow cooker is your answer. Simply toss in your ingredients, let the cooker do its thing for several hours and — voila! — dinner is ready. You can even throw everything into the pot the night before and stash the whole thing in the fridge. The next morning, just plug in the slow cooker, go about the day’s business and return home to a full-flavored meal. And with just five main ingredients, these recipes are the definition of convenience.

Asparagus Soup

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Crisp and sweet, asparagus is packed with numerous health benefits. It contains antioxidants that fight free-radical damage and folate, which boosts brain health. And instead of the typical heavy cream or butter that’s typically used in this soup, our vegan version uses fiber-rich potatoes for creaminess.

Related: Slow Cooker Asparagus Soup Recipe

Vegetable “Pasta” Lasagna

credit: Arthur Bovino Arthur Bovino

For this recipe, a mandolin really comes in handy. This vegetable “pasta” lasagna features thin sheets of zucchini layered with garlic, tomato sauce and Parmesan. Low in calories, zucchinis are an excellent source of antioxidants and vitamin C. And instead of the usual ground meat, we’re swapping in crushed pistachios for heart health.

Related: Slow Cooker Vegetable "Pasta" Lasagna Recipe

Vegetarian Moussaka

credit: Arthur Bovino Arthur Bovino

Moussaka is traditionally layered with minced meat and — at least in Greek versions — topped with bechamel sauce, which consists of butter, flour and milk. But for our recipe bulgur wheat replaces the minced meat and a cauliflower puree is substituted for the bechamel. An excellent source of plant-based protein, bulgur wheat bursts with manganese, magnesium and iron.

Related: Slow Cooker Vegetarian Moussaka Recipe

Osso Bucco

credit: Arthur Bovino Arthur Bovino

Beef shank is a high-protein cut that’s typically too tough for many other preparations, but it’s ideal for this kind of low-and-slow cooking. Begin by searing the meat to caramelize it, and then add seasoning, stock and crushed tomatoes. You’ll end up with a robust stew that’s infused with rich flavors, and the meat will be fall-off-the-bone tender. If you wind up with too much liquid at the end of the cooking process, simply turn the slow cooker up to its highest setting and reduce the sauce to your desired consistency.

Related: Slow Cooker Osso Bucco Recipe

Vegetarian Fajitas

credit: Arthur Bovino Arthur Bovino

Craving Mexican food for dinner? Make a batch of these savory, slow-cooked fajitas. Our vegetarian recipe features black beans along with onions, tomatoes and peppers that all get sauteed directly in the cooker. Black beans provide digestion-promoting fiber, while tomatoes offer immunity-boosting vitamin C.

Related: Slow Cooker Vegetarian Fajitas Recipe

Salmon With Lemon and Parsnips

credit: Arthur Bovino Arthur Bovino

For this recipe we’re pairing sweet parsnips with salmon. A root vegetable that’s closely related to carrots, parsnips are rich in potassium, which can help lower blood pressure. And besides being a high-quality protein, salmon also contains omega-3 fatty acids that decrease inflammation and improve arterial function. And take care when removing the fillet; use a fish spatula so that it doesn’t fall apart.

Related: Slow Cooker Salmon With Lemon and Parsnips Recipe

Salsa Verde Chicken

credit: Arthur Bovino Arthur Bovino

Salsa verde is a mildly spicy green Mexican sauce that’s indispensable to dishes like chilaquiles, tacos and enchiladas. Tangy and slightly sweet, it goes with practically every protein, including fish, pork, steak and shrimp. The star ingredients are tomatillos and onions. Tomatillos contain digestion-promoting fiber and cancer-preventing antioxidants. And the sulfur compounds in onions help to lower blood pressure and decrease the risk of heart attack and stroke.

Related: Slow Cooker Salsa Verde Chicken Recipe

Veal Parm

credit: Arthur Bovino Arthur Bovino

This dish usually calls for veal cutlets to be dipped in flour, dredged in an egg batter, coated with breadcrumbs and then fried. You already have four ingredients before you’ve even started cooking or thinking about the sauce. But this five-ingredient version of the dish forgoes those calories and the extra steps for an easy weeknight Italian meal that will truly hit the spot.

Related: Slow Cooker Veal Parm Recipe

Octopus, Lemon and Potatoes

credit: Arthur Bovino Arthur Bovino

This recipe features tender octopus cooked slow with lemon wedges and fingerling potatoes. Once everything in the pot has finished cooking, you’ll thinly slice the octopus and potatoes and toss with olive oil and capers. It’s a tart and savory dish that’s good for you too. Low in calories, octopus is rich in protein, iron and vitamin B-12.

Related: Slow Cooker Octopus, Lemon & Potatoes Recipe

What Do YOU Think?

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Do you own a slow cooker? What’s your go-to slow cooker recipe? Which of these recipes do you plan to try? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!

Related: 10 Easy Clean-Eating Recipes

9 Simple 4-Ingredient Recipes for Easy Vegan Meals

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Overview

Don’t have the time or energy to make dinner? A slow cooker is your answer. Simply toss in your ingredients, let the cooker do its thing for several hours and — voila! — dinner is ready. You can even throw everything into the pot the night before and stash the whole thing in the fridge. The next morning, just plug in the slow cooker, go about the day’s business and return home to a full-flavored meal. And with just five main ingredients, these recipes are the definition of convenience.

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