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So you finally got a slow cooker after becoming convinced it is an essential kitchen appliance. What now?
True, the slow cooker has been hailed by many as a great time saver in their meal-prep routines. It’s both easy and quick. It doesn’t require you to be a sentinel over your pot roast or pull-apart bread. In the morning, you could simply assemble your ingredients in the pot, cover it, turn the switch to your desired setting, and leave. Your dinner will cook itself to perfection while you attend to more important tasks at hand.
Another advantage is the fact that meals become more affordable when prepared this way. You can substitute recipes that require expensive cuts of meat for, say, shanks or casserole cuts. You could also maximize the use of beans, lentils, and other pulses for extra nutrients and fiber in the dish.
Despite what the Pearsons underwent in “This Is Us”, a slow cooker is safe to use and consumes less electricity than a microwave or an electric oven.
And considering that you are now the proud owner of this appliance with so much potential, why not start cooking healthy meals? You can save time and money plus be in better health.
In this post, I’ve rounded up 51 healthy slow cooker recipes for you to try in the weeks to come. The dishes suggested here had been chosen not only for their nutritional value but also for their flavors, affordability, and ease of preparation.
The recipes are grouped according to meal category for easy reference.
What You Will Learn
- Side Dishes
- Soups, Stews, and Chili
- 7. Chicken Potato Soup
- 8. Kare Kare
- 9. Smoky Beanless Chili
- 10. Anti-Inflammatory Broccoli, Ginger, and Turmeric Soup
- 11. White Chicken Chili
- 12. Three-Bean Chili
- 13. Simple Yellow Dal
- 14. Lemony Lentil Soup
- 15. Butternut Cauliflower Soup
- 16. Meatball Sweet Potato Kale Soup
- 17. Tortellini Chicken Noodle Soup
- 18. Black Bean Soup
- 19. Beef Barley Soup
- 20. Homemade Minestrone Soup
- 21. Creamy Turkey Rice Soup
- 22. Parmesan Sweet Potatoes
- 23. Broccoli Rice Casserole
- Main Dishes
- 24. Paleo Meatballs
- 25. Thai Chicken with Peanut Sauce
- 26. Mongolian Chicken
- 27. Jambalaya
- 28. Pork Tacos in Green Goddess Dressing
- 29. Beef and Broccoli
- 30. Chicken Marsala
- 31. Beef Lo Mein
- 32. Chicken Enchilada Quinoa
- 33. Spaghetti Bolognese
- 34. Pork Gyros with Tzatziki
- 35. Cabbage Roll Casserole
- 36. Fresh Herb Chicken Mushroom Leek Casserole
- 37. Low-Carb Mexican Lasagna Casserole
- 38. Cheeseburger Casserole
- 39. Chicken Curry with Coconut Milk
- 40. Italian Zucchini Casserole
- Desserts and Snacks
- Begin Cooking Healthy Today
1. Quinoa Black Bean Crockpot Stuffed Peppers
via Pinch Of Yum
It's not only vegetarians who will enjoy this recipe, but meat lovers may have this as one of their favorite slow-cooking dishes once tried. It's packed in nutrients and vitamins, plus some of the ingredients are considered superfoods.
2. Creamed Corn
via Damn Delicious
This creamed corn has a rich texture that makes it an instant favorite side dish. Making this from scratch allows you to reap the healthy goodness that comes from corn.
3. Buttermilk Mashed Potatoes
This is the ultimate comfort food and can be enjoyed any time of the day. It does not hurt that potatoes are a good source of vitamins C and B6, good components for heart health.
4. Green Beans and Potatoes
via Daily Appetite
Enjoy a comforting dish with this recipe. It's perfect when you need something to warm you up on a chilly day.
5. Milk and Honey Corn on the Cob
Savor the sweet-buttery flavor of this corn on the cob. The coconut milk gives added vitamins that fight infection, a hint of sweetness, and a stand-out flavor.
Take advantage of seasonal vegetables and include them in preparing this dish. It is fresh, exploding with flavors and loaded with nutritious benefits from all the vitamins and minerals provided by the produce.
Soups, Stews, and Chili
7. Chicken Potato Soup
The richness of this hearty soup belies how healthy it truly is. Made with chicken and loads of root vegetables, this dish packs nutrients as well as a delightful flavor.
8. Kare Kare
via The Skinny Pot
If you are up for some Southeast Asian cuisine, try serving this Filipino peanut stew for your next dinner. This dish is hearty and has the deliciously nutty and earthy taste of peanut combined with bok choy and other vegetables.
9. Smoky Beanless Chili
If you're on Whole30, the Paleo Diet, or needing a completely healthy gluten-free meal, try this recipe. This savory dish is full of flavor and densely packed with nutrients.
The recipe keeps very well in the freezer, so make a huge batch and stock up for when the craving hits.
10. Anti-Inflammatory Broccoli, Ginger, and Turmeric Soup
This tangy soup packs a wallop with its anti-inflammatory ingredients to fight aging and is so easy to prepare. Its high vitamin content makes this soup an ideal dish for boosting your immune system, especially during flu season.
11. White Chicken Chili
The absence of tomatoes in this chili makes for a white hearty fare with a flavorful kick. Top it with tortillas, avocados, and sour cream for a light, tasty meal.
12. Three-Bean Chili
This dish is high in fiber and protein without any added meat. It makes for a hearty, low-fat, and absolutely comforting meal.
13. Simple Yellow Dal
via The Picky Eater
Enjoy a high-fiber soup with this recipe. It is very filling and contains loads of antioxidants that protects the heart and fights skin aging.
14. Lemony Lentil Soup
via Gimme Some Oven
This soup has a tangy, refreshingly light flavor. Further, it is filled health-giving nutrients courtesy of the ingredients. Plus, it's naturally gluten free.
15. Butternut Cauliflower Soup
via Peas And Crayons
This versatile soup allows you to use your topping of choice for a healthier meal. It is low in carbohydrates, rich in antioxidants, and a good source of potassium.
16. Meatball Sweet Potato Kale Soup
via Smile Sandwich
This recipe features sweet potatoes, which is a good source of vitamin B6 that helps protect against heart attack. The soup is so easy to assemble in the slow cooker and is ready before you know it.
17. Tortellini Chicken Noodle Soup
This soup is loaded with vegetables. It is twist on a classic comfort food. To prevent the soup from getting mushy, make sure to add the tortellini 15 minutes before serving and not ealier.
18. Black Bean Soup
via Budget Bytes
This vegan soup will be an instant favorite, regardless if you follow a certain way of eating or not. It's filling, high in protein and fiber, and rich in vitamins and minerals.
19. Beef Barley Soup
You'll enjoy this soup more when you realize that it's made with ingredients that fight cholesterol and provide vitamins and minerals that support heart health.
20. Homemade Minestrone Soup
via Little Spice Jar
Here are three reasons why you should make this soup: 1) it is loaded with vegetables for that added nutrient boost; 2) it is high in fiber and protein for good digestion and muscle development; 3) it's so tasty and will probably be the best tasting soup you'll ever try.
21. Creamy Turkey Rice Soup
via Gather And Dine
This soup is a complete meal in itself. It is also extremely adaptable that you can add whatever vegetables you have on hand for the dish.
22. Parmesan Sweet Potatoes
Complement your main dish with this savory sweet potato. It is full of health-giving nutrients that are beneficial to the heart, the eyes, and digestion.
23. Broccoli Rice Casserole
Discover the perfect healthy side dish with this recipe. It's packed with fiber that aid proper digestion, plus vitamins essential for good health.
24. Paleo Meatballs
The saucy base of this tasty, low-carb recipe features tomatoes. When heated, tomatoes release lycopene – a powerful antioxidant that has been proven to reduce the risk of heart disease and certain cancers.
25. Thai Chicken with Peanut Sauce
via Five Heart Home
For those who are craving for pad thai but wish to avoid the fish sauce, eggs, or tofu, this dish is the best alternative. Serve over piping hot brown rice or as filling for lettuce leaf rolls.
26. Mongolian Chicken
Savor the multi-faceted flavor of this popular dish that you can make at home. Add steamed broccoli before serving for that extra texture and flavor.
This southern dish is rich in minerals that benefit the nervous system, fiber for good digestion, and antioxidants to prevent the risk of certain cancers and provide better heart health.
28. Pork Tacos in Green Goddess Dressing
This recipe makes mealtime prep easier. For the toppings, make sure to use the freshest ingredients to reap the full health benefits of the dish.
29. Beef and Broccoli
As a more nutritious version of the popular takeout, this is the only healthy slow cooker beef and broccoli recipe you’ll ever need. This dish is a good source of iron and other essential nutrients.
30. Chicken Marsala
Enjoy this creamy, delicious fare. It's a good source of calcium, courtesy of the mushrooms. Plus, it's low in saturated fats and provides high amounts of vitamins and minerals.
31. Beef Lo Mein
If you are having a hectic day but want to make sure that you're eating healthy, then this recipe fits the bill. It takes than less than half an hour to prepare this dish in the slow cooker and is full of flavor and health-giving nutrients.
32. Chicken Enchilada Quinoa
This dish is the answer to your craving for a healthy Mexican dish. It's so easy to make that it wouldn't be a challenge to cook up something healthy for yourself and for other members of your household.
33. Spaghetti Bolognese
This meal is packed with lycopene, which protects the body from certain cancers and heart disease. But that shouldn't be the sole reason for you to love this recipe. According to its developer, the low setting on the slow cooker helps truly bring out the flavor of the sauce, enhancing its deliciousness to higher levels.
34. Pork Gyros with Tzatziki
The tzatziki sauce for this dish gives a light and refreshing accent to the pork. Top with shredded lettuce and sliced tomatoes for a truly delicious and healthy meal.
35. Cabbage Roll Casserole
This dish has Polish origins and is also known as halupkie. Cabbages has many amazing health benefits, such as treating stomach ulcers, improving skin conditions, and alleviating constipation.
36. Fresh Herb Chicken Mushroom Leek Casserole
Fresh herbs add a burst of flavor to this dish. It is a high-protein fare perfect for those wishing to lessen their carb consumption.
37. Low-Carb Mexican Lasagna Casserole
via Kalyn’s Kitchen
Make this dish into a high-protein fare by using low-carb tortillas. The substitution creates a meal that’s ideal for those monitoring their glycemic levels.
38. Cheeseburger Casserole
Satisfy your craving for cheeseburger without the hassle of firing up a grill with this recipe. This dish makes it to our healthy list because of the added veggies for that extra freshness and nutritional value.
39. Chicken Curry with Coconut Milk
via Evolving Table
This hearty dish might become your next go-to comfort food. A serving helps promote proper blood circulation and lowers inflammation.
40. Italian Zucchini Casserole
Introduce your family to vegetables with this superhealthy and delicious dish. Even kids will love this.
Desserts and Snacks
41. Bio Yogurt
via BBC Good Food
Strengthen your gut with a serving of this probiotic fare. Ideal for breakfast, you can combine it with fruits for a refreshingly healthy start of the day. Or have it for dessert as a wonderful conclusion to a meal.
42. Berry Cobbler
via Chef In Training
Don't be deceived by the decadent look of this dessert. The recipe calls for raspberries and blueberries, two of the greatest sources of heart-protecting antioxidants.
43. Peach Cobbler
Grab the opportunity to get fresh peaches off the produce aisle during summer to prepare this delicious dessert. The vitamins and minerals present in peaches are highly beneficial for heart health.
44. Pumpkin Pecan Pudding Cake
This gooey dessert is very easy to prepare and takes only about a couple of hours to cook in a crock pot. Pumpkin has twice the amount of Vitamin A that promotes better eyesight. Make this with freshly harvested pumpkins as fall approaches.
45. Clean Eating Crock Pot Brownies
via Mummy Deals
Whoa, this was made in a slow cooker? You bet! And it’s superhealthy, too.
If you're looking for a dessert that's not loaded with artificial ingredients and added sweeteners then you've got to try these brownies. The recipe calls for only natural ingredients, so you'll get a dessert healthier than the store-brought ones.
You can enjoy this yummy dessert without any guilt. The ingredients help improve heart health and actually prevent diseases. Compounds in dark chocolate prevent hypertension and keep blood sugar levels low. Plus coconut milk contains high amounts of vitamins to ward off infections.
47. Apple Crisp
via The Kitchn
Enjoy a classic dessert that's rich in fiber and essential vitamins and minerals. The best part of preparing this is that the recipe does not demand precise measurements of the ingredients, so you can put in that extra pinch of your favorite spices to match your exact taste.
48. Grain-Free Low-Carb Sugar-Free Granola
via Sugar-Free Mom
Enjoy this crunchy fare that's made healthier by being sugar free. You can make this as a nice finishing touch to a meal or store in single-serve packets for a yummy on-the-go snack.
49. Lemon Custard
This dessert practically cooks without much effort from you. It is ideal for those whose health concerns include high blood sugar levels, as this custard is totally low carb.
50. Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies
Cookies in the slow cooker? It’s possible. They are extremely healthy, too.
51. Spiced Nuts
Nuts are a great source of antioxidants that help the body rid itself of free radicals. The aroma wafting from the crock pot as you cook a batch of this recipe is very tempting. You might decide that making just a single batch won't do.
Begin Cooking Healthy Today
This is my challenge for you: Use your slow cooker this week to prepare at least three dishes using any of the recipes suggested above.
In the past, you might have been turned off from eating healthy meals because of the misconception that it’s too difficult to prepare, they don’t taste good, or the ingredients are super expensive.
With the healthy slow cooker recipes here, I hope you can see for yourself that eating nutritious foods can be easy on your budget and can also be a delicious experience.
Also, if you need some pointers on how to save time and money even further when it comes to food, this article on preparing simple freezer meals can help your with your goals.