Slow Cooker Sunday: Vegetarian Chili

For today’s Slow Cooker Sunday dish I bring you one that is great for all you vegetarians who like a little kick to your dishes and also for you meat lovers who want the heartiness of your typical beef chili but want to take a break from the meat… A Slow Cooker Vegetarian Chili that has butternut squash, beans and corn as its main ingredients.

To begin I diced a red bell pepper and yellow onion. I opted to go the easy route and bought the butternut squash already chopped. You really don’t want your butternut squash to be chopped too small as it will break apart while in the slow cooker.

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Next, I added the diced vegetables along with kidney beans, vegetable broth, corn, fire roasted diced tomatoes, garlic and the following spices; cumin, chili powder, smoked paprika, oregano, salt and pepper. I also added in two minced chipotle peppers in adobo. If you want to turn down the heat on this dish you can omit the chipotle peppers.

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I set my slow cooker to low for 8 hours. Truthfully this chili was probably done closer to 7 hours, but, I didn’t mind the texture of the veggies due to the extra cooking time.

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Can I just say I love butternut squash and how sweet it gets once cooked. In this dish the sweetness was a perfect balance to the heat!

 

Slow Cooker Vegetarian Chili

Ingredients:

1 medium yellow onion, diced

1 red pepper, diced

14 oz. can fire roasted diced tomatoes

14 oz. kidney beans, drain and rinsed

4 cups (2 lbs.) butternut squash, peel and diced

2 cups low sodium vegetable or chicken broth

1 cup corn, fresh or frozen

3 garlic cloves, minced

2 chipotle pepper in adobo, minced (remove the seeds to lower the heat)

2 tablespoons cumin

1 tablespoon chili powder

1 tablespoon smoked paprika

1 teaspoon oregano

salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

Place all ingredients in the bowl of a 5 -to- 6 quart slow cooker and cook on low for 7 to 8 hours or on high for 4 hours.

Recipe from The Lemon Bowl

Slow Cooker Sunday: Butternut Squash Soup

Slow Cooker Sunday is back! Granted I will put the disclaimer in that I may not be posting every Sunday though. Thankfully I am covered for the next few Sunday’s as I have two recipes in my blog queue that I never posted. It’s a good thing recipes don’t expire! LOL! So, in honor of my first Slow Cooker Sunday post in a quite a few months and since its Fall I bring you a Butternut Squash Soup that’s super easy, super quick and super delicious!

Truthfully this soup couldn’t get any easier… I placed all the ingredients – butternut squash, chicken broth, coconut milk, chopped onion, brown sugar, soy sauce and crushed red pepper – in my slow cooker…

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And set it cook on low for 4 hours. Granted the before cooking and after cooking are pretty much the same, but, trust me this was 4 hours later.

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I then transferred the soup to a pot and used an immersion blender to blend all the ingredients together until it was smooth. And then finally I stirred in lime juice, which really took the flavor of the soup up another notch. Citrus really does have a way of bringing out and bringing together different flavors. And that was it!

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Butternut Squash Soup

Ingredients:

2 pounds butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into 1-inch pieces

2 cups chicken broth

1 14-ounce can unsweetened coconut milk

1/2 cup finely chopped yellow onion

1 tablespoon light brown sugar

1 tablespoon soy sauce

1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper

2 tablespoon lime juice

Directions:

In a 3 1/2 to 4 quart slow cooker, combine all ingredients except for the lime juice.

Cover and cook on low-heat setting for 4 to 5 hours or on high-heat setting for 2 to 21/2 hours.

Use an immersion blender, food processor or blender to blend soup until smooth. Stir in lime juice and enjoy.

Slightly adapted from Better Homes & Gardens

Slow Cooker Sunday: Moroccan Spiced Butternut Squash and Beef Stew

For this week’s Slow Cooker Sunday meal I’m bringing you a dish with flavors from North Africa, specifically Morocco. Spices are used extensively in Moroccan food… Hence bringing together a multitude of wonderful flavors. So, it’s no surprise that this week’s Moroccan Spiced Butternut Squash and Beef Stew is full of flavor.

To begin I placed 2lbs. of cubed beef chuck in the bottom of my slow cooker.

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After mixing together ground ginger, turmeric, paprika, cinnamon, salt and pepper in a small bowl, I sprinkled it over the beef and tossed it to coat the meat.

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Next I added in a small diced onion and a can of peeled whole tomatoes (with the liquid) and crushed the tomatoes with my hands.

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And finally I put butternut squash chunks on top of everything and sprinkled salt over it and added water. If you cannot find fresh butternut squash use frozen instead.

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I cooked it on low for 7 hours and the aroma was amazing when I uncovered it.

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I served it over white rice and while it was delicious the first day it was even more so the following day as the flavors continued to develop.

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Slow Cooker Moroccan Spiced Butternut Squash and Beef Stew

Ingredients:

2 teaspoons ground ginger

2 teaspoons ground turmeric

1 1/2 teaspoons sweet paprika

1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 tablespoon and 1 teaspoon Kosher salt, divided

1 teaspoon black pepper

2 pounds beef chuck, cut into 1 1/2 inch cubes

1 small onion, diced

1 28oz. can peeled whole tomatoes (with liquid)

1 butternut squash (about 2lbs.) peeled and cut unto 1 1/2 cubes

 

Directions:

Place the beef in the slow cooker.

In a small bowl mix together the ginger, turmeric, paprika, cinnamon, 1 tablespoon salt, and black pepper. Sprinkle over the beef and toss to coat well.

Add the onion and tomatoes with their liquid and crush the tomatoes with your hand.

Place the butternut squash chunks on top and sprinkle with remaining teaspoon of salt and 1 1/2 cups water.

Cover and cook on low for about 7 hours, until the beef is tender. Serve over rice.

 

From Food Network Magazine, October 2015. Reynolds Slow-Cooker Favorites

Roasted Butternut Squash & Sweet Potato Soup

The temperatures have begun to drop and it’s the perfect excuse to make warm and hearty soups, albeit I made this soup last week on a rainy day, which as we all know is also a perfect day for soup. I’ve actually made this soup a few times before after coming across it on a fellow blogger’s blog last year, but, this was the first time that I made the soup by roasting a whole butternut squash as opposed to the prepackaged chopped ones you sometimes see in the produce area and as crazy as it sounds, it made such a difference in the flavor.

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Luckily the butternut squash wasn’t as difficult to slice as the pumpkins were for the homemade puree I made. Granted the two slices weren’t perfectly equal but they were close enough. After I sliced them I cleaned out all of the pulp and seeds and placed the two halves on a baking sheet and drizzled them with olive oil and a pinch of salt and pepper. I roasted them in a 425 F preheated oven for just shy of an hour, until they were fork tender.

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Along with the butternut squash I also roasted a large sweet potato which I peeled and cubed, the roasting time for the potato was considerably less, about 20 minutes. Once the butternut squashed cooled I removed the peel and chopped it into cubes as well. Of course I couldn’t help but trying a piece and it was absolutely delish. Roasting vegetables really brings out their inner sweetness.

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I then gathered all of the ingredients I needed for the soup along with the squash and sweet potato; 2 diced onions, minced ginger, coconut milk and vegetable stock.

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Now on to making the actual soup… I began by sautéing the onion and ginger until the onions were translucent. I then added in the cubed squash and sweet potato and finally the vegetable stock. Once I brought it to a boil over medium heat I reduced the heat to low and let the soup simmer for 20 minutes.

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And finally using a handheld blender (immersion blender) I pureed the soup until it was smooth and then stirred in the coconut milk.

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I cannot say enough good things about this soup… There is sweetness from roasting the squash and the sweet potato and a hint of ginger that makes this soup so delicious. Another plus, it’s great for many who follow different types of diets… Its vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free and all around healthy. Even those of you who are not keen on veggies will find this soup tasty!

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Roasted Butternut Squash & Sweet Potato Soup – adapted from here

Ingredients:

1 butternut squash sliced in half and pulp and seeds removed

1 large sweet potato, peeled and cubed

2 medium-sized onions, peeled and diced

2-inch piece of ginger, peeled and minced

4 cups vegetable stock

3/4 cup coconut milk

Kosher salt and fresh ground pepper

Olive oil

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 425 F.

2. Drizzle olive oil over squash and sweet potato; add a pinch of salt and pepper. Place squash cut side down onto a baking sheet. On another baking sheet lay out the sweet potatoes. Cook the sweet potatoes for about 20 minutes, or until fork tender. Cook the squash for about 50 minutes, once again until fork tender. Remove from the oven and let cool for a few minutes.

3. In a large pot, heat a tablespoon olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and ginger and sauté for 5 minutes, or until the onions are translucent.

4. Remove the peel from the squash and roughly cut it into large cubes and add it to the pot with the onions and ginger along with the sweet potato.

5. Add the vegetable stock and bring to a boil. Lower heat and let the soup simmer for 20 minutes, making sure the squash is tender.

6. Using a handheld blender, puree the soup. Add the coconut milk and stir.