I’m a meal planner; have been for quite some time. As a working mom with a working husband with kids in a couple of activities each, I find that meal planning is necessary for our lives to run semi-smoothly. On those occasions when I’ve let the meal-planning slide, meal times become chaos, and we end up having unhealthier, less tasty meals, spend more time at the grocery store, and waste time looking through the freezer and pantry trying to come up with something to make.
The way things work in our household is that I usually plan a week’s worth of suppers (planning is not my husband’s strength in any way), make a shopping list for the week (including items we need for lunches), and do the grocery shopping. My husband will frequently do the cooking, since he’s often home before I am, and I’m usually the one to put together the slow-cooker and weekend meals.
I used to plan lunches but found that a lot of food went to waste. Now, we eat leftovers, sandwiches, soups, and salads for lunches during the week and will often eat eggs and leftovers for lunches on the weekend. Occasionally, we find ourselves rummaging through the pantry and fridge, trying to figure out what to have, but we just wing it.
During the winter months, when we’re busier with activities and our evenings feel so rushed due to the short days, I tend to avoid trying out new recipes, preferring to make what’s familiar because it’s most efficient. I also love to use my slow cooker, but have struggled to find tasty recipes that require minimal prep. I want recipes that let me dump a bunch of stuff into the slow cooker, without chopping ten different things and browning stuff first. I understand that the pre-slow cooker prep often is meant to add more flavour, but I am looking for easy-peasy, not gourmet.
Yesterday, I spent some time looking up new slow cooker recipes on Pinterest, focusing on finding dump-and-cook style meals. I wasn’t really assessing the recipes in terms of how healthy they are: this was all about spending less time on meal prep. I thought I’d share the links to the recipes I found, because everyone I know loves their slow cookers.
Super Simple Peachy Barbecue Chicken from Midwest Living
Slow Cooker Taco Chicken Bowls from Budget Bytes
Slow Cooker Garlic and Brown Sugar Chicken from Six Sisters’ Stuff
Slow Cooker Coconut Curry Chicken from Sweet Treats & More
Crockpot Lasagna (No Precooking Needed) from BentoLunch.net
Slow Cooker BBQ Chicken and Ranch Potatoes from The Magical Slow Cooker
Honey Garlic Crockpot Meatballs from Family Fresh Meals
Slow Cooker Sesame Chicken from Family Fresh Meals
Slow Cooker Quinoa Tex Mex from Chelsea’s Messy Apron
The Best Crockpot BBQ Chicken from Family Fresh Meals
5 Chicken Dump Recipes from The Chaos and the Clutter
5 More Chicken Dump Recipes from The Chaos and the Clutter
Do you love your slow cooker?