Vegan Slow Cooker Picky Eater’s Soup

You know the drill, and I’m sure you’ve all heard the protests of “what’s that in my food?!” Picky little ones often grow up to be picky adults. And while I’m kid-less, I still hear about texture issues and fight the good veggie fight all the time. This one worked really good, she even asked to have it again.

This soup has green peppers, chickpeas, and butternut squash, but pureed it looks like plain old tomato soup – only with tons more flavor and nutrition. My picky eater loved it, but she didn’t see it before it was pureed. I would suggest not letting your picky eater see it either. Sometimes it’s better if they just don’t know.

Slow Cooker Picky Eater’s Soup

  • 2 cups butternut squash, can be precooked, frozen, or raw (peeled and seeded of course)
  • 1 14 oz can chickpeas
  • 1 14 oz can organic crushed tomatoes (diced or stewed works fine too)
  • 1 cups bell pepper strips
  • 1 cloves garlic
  • 1 Tbl. Better than Bouillon
  • 5 cups filtered water (or use veg broth and leave out the bouillon)
  • 1 Tbl. port wine (optional)
  • 1/2 cup sauteed mushrooms (optional – use any little bits of leftover veggies you have)
  • 1 tsp. marjoram
  • 1 Tbl. Trader Joe’s Pasta Seasoning Blend (it’s a mix of Onion, Garlic, Basil, Lemon Peel, Paprika, Fennel, Oregano, Black Pepper, Ginger, Thyme and Lemon Oil)
    or Italian seasoning blend

Throw everything in the slow cooker and cook on low 6 – 10 hours.  Puree with an immersion blender or in a food processor before serving. You may need to add more filtered water to get it to the consistency that you like. Serve with oyster crackers.

I keep little baggies of leftover veggies in the freezer. This soup is perfect to add those to, or the little bits in the fridge that aren’t enough for a proper side dish. Yummy and frugal – my dream has come true!

Slow Cooker Thursday

It’s slow cooker Thursday!
See other great recipes at Diary of a SAHM

Slow Cooker Cajun 16 Bean Soup

I love soup and I can be lazy. So it should come as no surprise how easy it is to make this soup. I had a bag of 16 bean mix and was craving something more texturally adventurous than split pea soup.

For a long time I avoided buying the 16 bean mix because it always say ham flavoring. Well it’s like raman noodles, the ham flavoring is in a sealed package and can easily be tossed out. I’m not so sure you would want powdered ham flavoring even if you did eat meat, but that may just be me.

If you have the time and/or patience, saute the onion, garlic and green pepper before you put it in the slow cooker. You can even do this as late as 1 hour before serving.

Slow Cooker Cajun 16 Bean Soup

  • 1 package 16 bean mix (or 16 oz. your own mix of beans that you have on hand)
  • 2 Bay leaves
  • 6 – 8 cups Filtered water
  • 1 heaping Tbl Better than Bouillon Not-Chicken Flavor
  • 1 Tbl Cajun Seasoning Blend – no or low sodium if possible (make your own with these recipes)
  • 1 tsp. Liquid Smoke
  • 1 tsp. Garlic Tabasco (It’ s not as hot as the regular one, so you can use more)
  • 2 Large carrots cut into half moons
  • 1 12 oz can Muir Glenn fire roasted crushed tomatoes (you can also use diced if you prefer)
  • 2 Cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 Onion, minced
  • 1 Bell pepper, diced

The night before you want to have this for dinner, add first 3 ingredients into the slow cooker. Cook on low over night.

You could also get all Martha Stewart and prepare the rest of the ingredients to add in the morning . If you do this, try to saute the last 3 ingredients. Add the rest of the ingridents into a bowl, cover and put in the fridge.

Wake up, smell the beans cooking, and remember that you have to add some more stuff so you can have dinner later. Empty your premade bowl of stuff into the slow cooker with the cooking beans. (Or prepare them now, and then add…)

Add more water if seems low, or you would like a thinner soup. Leave on low all day (8 – 12 hours). Eat with lightly toasted hunk of whole grain bread and congratulate yourself for eating so healthy!

It’s slow cooker Thursday, so make sure to check out more recipes at Diary of a stay at home Mom.

slowthursday

Slow Cooker Vegan Lentil Parsnip Soup

Another super simple recipe that everyone loves. I made it for my New Year’s Eve party, and I’m looking forward to my leftovers lunch tomorrow too!

Slow Cooker Vegan Lentil Parsnip Soup

  • 2 cups French Lentils
  • 6 cups Filtered Water
  • 1/2 Onion, minced
  • 2 Cloves Garlic, minced
  • 1 Tbl. Better than Bouillon no chicken flavor
  • 2 Parsnips, minced
  • 3 Bay Leaves
  • 2 tsp. Thyme, dried
  • 2 tsp. Tarragon, dried
  • Salt and Pepper to taste – add right before serving

Optional Step: In a saute pan add 1 tsp. olive oil and cook onions until translucent over medium-low heat, add garlic and saute 1 minute more. You can skip this step and put raw onion and garlic straight into the slow cooker if you’re running short on time. Sauteing as a nice mellow flavor if you have the chance to do it.

Throw everything except salt and pepper into the crockpot and cook on low for 8 – 10 hours.  Add salt and pepper before serving.

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Happy New Year Vegan Sausage Mushroom Ragu

I just had the nicest New Year’s Eve dinner party. 8 of our friends came over for a dinner of lentil soup, spinach salad, and Gimme Lean Sausage and mushroom ragu over baked polenta. It turned out well enough for me to pass the recipe on to you. Plus I promised a recipe this week and I want to start the year off right.

Happy New Year to all of you – I wish you only the best this year!

Vegan Sausage Mushroom Ragu

  • 1 Tbl. olive oil
  • 1 onion, minced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 package Gimme Lean Sausage
  • 2- 28 oz cans of organic crushed tomatoes with basil
  • 16 oz crimini mushrooms, chopped
  • 2 large portabella mushrooms, chopped
  • extra basil to taste (I used 1 ice cube of basil that I froze from the summer)
  • 1 Tbl. Italian seasoning
  • Fresh ground pepper to taste
  • 1 Tbl. balsamic vinegar (optional)
  • 2 – 3 Tbl red wine (optional)

Heat olive oil over medium heat in a large skillet. Add onions and saute until translucent and add garlic.

In a very large pot add tomatoes and turn heat to medium. Add onions and garlic from skillet. Add chopped mushrooms and cover.

In the same skillet that you cooked the onions, now cook the package of Gimme Lean. Chop it with a large spatula as you cook to break it up into sausage crumbles. Once it begins to brown add to tomato mixture.

Simmer covered for 1 – 3 hours on the stove. You could use a slow cooker and cook it all day if you prefer.

Add water if the sauce becomes too thick, but it is a thick chunky sauce. Serve over pasta, polenta, or use in a lasagna.

Slow Cooker Split Pea Soup

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Still not feeling great and craving comfort food. I’m also cutting down on my daily calories and that makes things even harder when you don’t feel up to making a meal from scratch. So today’s recipe is a simple one, but it makes a ton and it also freezes well.

The slow cooker saves me in so many ways – and when I’m sick it cooks for me while I take a much needed nap. I love my slow cooker…

Slow Cooker Split Pea Soup – serves about 8

  • 1 bag of split peas (I think it’s about 2 -3 cups)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 potato, chopped
  • 3 carrots, chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 Tb dried thyme
  • 1 tsp liquid smoke
  • about 7 cups filtered water – make sure there is at least two inches of water over the other ingredients.

Throw everything in the slow cooker and cook on low for 8 – 10 hours. Puree with an immersion blender and serve with homemade croutons on top. Yum!

My Sleepy Mistake

Last night I decided to be a good housewife and make some hot cereal in the slow cooker for breakfast. Even better, I thought I’d be extra nutritious and use quinoa instead of my usual steel cut oats.

A great idea, and if I hadn’t been half asleep when I did it I would’ve had the best breakfast this morning. Instead I had a pot of bitter nastiness. Why? I forgot to rinse the quinoa. It’s used like a grain but it’s actually a seed. You have to make sure you rinse it well, to get rid of the bitter tasting saponins that surround the seed.

So don’t make the same mistake I did, rinse and rinse it again. My compost pile is happy and well fed at least!

Slow Cooker Breakfast Qunioa – serves 2

  • 1/2 cup quinoa – thoroughly rinsed!!
  • 1 1/2 cup filtered water
  • 1 apple, peeled and chopped
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp clove
  • dash of freshly grated nutmeg

This is the perfect opportunity to use your little dipper slow cooker. Again, don’t be like me – rinse your quinoa well, and combine everything in the slow cooker and cook on low overnight. Add some honey or brown sugar when serving.

Let me know how it turns out for you!

Slow Cooker Citrus Black Bean Soup

This is on of the recipes I made for my dinner party last weekend. I thought it turned out pretty well, but I was a little heavy on the garlic. I’ve corrected that in the recipe below.

You could also make a flavored sour cream by mixing in salsa verde  or even a single spice like chipotle powder.

Slow Cooker Citrus Black Bean Soup

  • 1 lb dried black beans (or use canned and skip overnight cooking)
  • 1 15 oz canned tomato puree or diced tomatoes (roasted if you can find them)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 Tb. Jerk Seasoning
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp chipotle powder or other chili powder
  • 1 Tb. Liquid Smoke
  • 1 tsp garlic Tabasco
  • 1 lime juiced
  • 1 orange juiced
  • 1 Tb cilantro, chopped

The night before you want to eat the soup, put the dried beans in the slow cooker and add water until the beans are covered by 3 or 4 inches. Cook on high overnight.

In the morning add the rest of the ingredients and cook on low 5 – 9 hours.  Serve with a dollop of sour cream and a few baked tortilla chips.

Slow Cooker Thursday

It’s slow cooker Thursday!
See other great recipes at Diary of a SAHM

Yet Another Vegan Slow Cooker Chili

In my world there is no such thing as too many chili recipes. I love a hearty stew once there’s a chill in the air. When I first became a vegetarian (about 25 years ago), I was just learning how to cook and found Fantastic Foods Vegetarian Chili mix and I was sold. A couple of cans of beans and a can of tomatoes and dinner for a week!

So it goes without saying, even though I am saying it, that I have a soft spot for chili with tvp (textured vegetable protein) in it.  It’s not expensive or hard to work with. And believe it or not, this was the first time I ever made tvp chili from scratch. I reached for the box, looked at the price and realized it was too much money for spices and tvp. Especially when I have some of the best chili powder at home!

‘Meaty’ Slow Cooker Chili

  • 4 cups veggie broth or filtered water
  • 1 1/2 cups dried tvp (You can get it in the bulk aisle at Whole Foods)
  • 1 cup corn (I used frozen organic)
  • 1 1/2 cups cooked beans (I used kidney beans, but pintos, black)
  • 2 cups diced heirloom tomatoes, diced (or 2 – 14 oz can diced tomatoes)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 onion, minced
  • 2 Tb. tomato paste
  • 1 Tb good chili powder
  • 1 tsp. chipotle powder
  • 1 tsp. oregano
  • 1 Tb liquid smoke
  • 1 tsp garlic Tabasco
  • chopped cilantro for garnish

Mix all the ingredients in your slow cooker and cook on low 6 – 9 hours. Serve topped with chopped cilantro.

Slow Cooker Thursday

It’s slow cooker Thursday!
See other great recipes at Diary of a SAHM

Slow Cooker Stuffed Acorn Squash

I made another fall recipe for Slow Cooking Thursday. I’m working on another stew for next week – so stay tuned! Yesterday was World Vegetarian Day, so jump on the bandwagon, and make a veggie slow cooker meal this week!

Slow Cooker Stuffed Acorn Squash

  • 1 Acorn Squash, cut in half lengthwise and seeded
  • 1 cup Rice, precooked (brown is good, wild rice would be nice too)
  • 1 Tb. Dried Cranberries, chopped
  • 1 Tb. Pecans, chopped
  • 4 Meatless Sausage Links, cooked and chopped (you can use a veggie burger if you have one around instead)
  • 1 Clove Garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp. Rosemary, chopped
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

Mix everything (except for the squash silly!) in a bowl. You can add a few Tb. of water if the mixture is too dry.

Crumple some aluminum foil into the bottom of your slow cooker. This is to keep the acorn squash from tipping over and spilling out the stuffing. If your squash plays nice, you can skip this. I seem to get uneven ones, so I always do it.

Stuff the squash half with the mixture and set inside the slow cooker on top of the crumpled foil. Cook on low 8 – 10 hours.

A few links if you want to try making your own Vegetarian Sausage:

Slow Cooker Pear Delicata Squash Soup

I’m adding another fall recipe into the mix for Slow Cooking Thursday. I love everything about fall, the coolness at night, the leaves turning colors, and especially the lack of mosquitoes! Plus fall has a great abundance of veggies that are super tasty. I love winter squash, greens of all kinds, and root veggies.

Other than being obsessed with making paninis this week, I have been thinking about new soups to make. And yes, I have had a different panini for dinner every night this week. And I have friends coming over tonight for – you guessed it – paninis!

What are some of your fav veggie soups for fall? I’d love some new ones.

Slow Cooker Pear Delicata Squash Soup

  • 1 delicata squash, peeled and cubed (you can use butternut squash if you can’t find a delicata)
  • 2 pears, peeled and cored then cubed
  • 1 small onion, minced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 4 cups vegetable stock (or filtered water with Vegetarian Better Than Bouillon no-chicken, or another vegetarian chicken-like bouillon cube)
  • 1 Tb Port (or red wine)
  • sprig of fresh thyme
  • salt and pepper

Throw everything into the slow cooker and cook on low 6 – 10 hours. Remove the thyme spring and use a hand blender to puree everything together. Taste and adjust salt and pepper to taste. Top with sage pesto, or finely chopped pistachios.

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