Meal Plan Monday: Slow Cooker Edition {With Recipes}


Since there have been some good deals on chicken this past summer and fall, I have been buying extra for the freezer. 

Now it's time to clean out the freezer in order to make room for the turkey, so I'm getting out my trusty slow cooker this week to help me make some great meals!

Here's what's cooking in my kitchen this week:



Monday:  Melt In Your Mouth Meatloaf {Thanks to Melissa's Bargain Blog for sharing this recipe}
Served with Veggies

What you need:
2 eggs
3/4 cup milk
2/3 cup seasoned bread crumbs
2 tsp. dried, minced onion {I like to grate an onion with a hand grater}
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. rubbed sage
1 1/2 lbs. ground beef or turkey
1/4 cup ketchup
2 tbs. ground mustard {I don't usually buy this...whenever a recipe calls for this, I just squeeze some mustard in}
1/2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce

Directions:
  1. In a large bowl, combine the first six ingredients.  Crumble meat over mixture and mix well {mixture will be moist}.  Shape into a round loaf; place in a 5-qt. slow cooker.  Cover and cook on low for 5-6 hours or until a meat thermometer reads 160 degrees F.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk the ketchup, brown sugar, mustard and Worcestershire sauce.  Spoon over the meat loaf.  Cook 15 minutes longer or until heated through.  Let stand for 10-15 minutes before cutting.
UPDATE:  This was amazing.  Even my picky eater ate this {the only "meat" he will eat are hot dogs and chicken nuggets}!  I am definitely keeping this recipe in my recipe book.
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Tuesday:  Cranberry Chicken {This is the first time I have tried this in the slow cooker.}
Served with veggies and rice

What you need:
1 1/2 - 2 lbs. chicken breasts or thighs, skin and extra fat removed
1 can whole berry cranberry sauce
1 package onion soup mix
1 {8 oz.} bottle French dressing

Directions:
  1. Mix cranberry sauce, soup mix, and French dressing together.  
  2. Put chicken in slow cooker and cover with sauce.
  3. I am going to try cooking this on low for about 3-4 hours {I'm using thighs}.  If you are using larger peices of chicken you would probably want to cook this on low for 6-8 hours or on high for 3-4 hours.
Notes: The sauce may sound like a strange combination, but it is really very good.  It tastes like sweet and sour and is really good served over rice.
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Wednesday:  Awefully Easy Chicken {from Fix-It and Forget-It Cookbook}
Served with veggies and mashed potato

What you need:
1/2 cup water
4-lb. chicken legs and thighs
14-oz. bottle barbecue sauce
3 large onions, quartered or sliced {optional}

Directions:
  1. Place 3 large onions, quartered or sliced, in bottom of slow cooker. {optional}
  2. Place water in bottom of slow cooker.  Add chicken.  Pour barbecue sauce over top.
  3. Cover. Cook on low 8 hours.
Notes:  I usually halve the recipe and cook on low for 3-4 hours.  The extra sauce can also be served over mashed potato.
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Thursday:  Macaroni and Cheese
Served With Leftover Chicken and Veggies

What you need:
1 (16 oz.) package of macaroni and cheese
1/2 stick butter, melted
2 eggs, beaten
1 (12 oz.) can evaporated milk
1 (10 3/4 oz.) can condensed cheese soup, undiluted
1 cup milk
4 cups shredded cheddar cheese, divided
1/3 tsp. paprika

Directions:
  1. Put cooked macaroni in a 5-qt. slow cooker; add butter.
  2. In a bowl, combine eggs, evaporated milk, soup, milk, and 3 cups cheese.  Pour over macaroni mixture; stir to combine.
  3. Cover and cook on low for 4 hours.  Sprinkle with remaining cheese.
  4. Cook 15 minutes longer or until cheese is melted.  Sprinkle with paprika.
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Friday:  Bacon Teriyaki Chicken
Served with veggies and leftover mac & cheese

What you need:
1 1/2 - 2 lbs. chicken breast or thighs
2-3 slices bacon, cooked and chopped
about 1/2 bottle teriyaki sauce

Directions:
  1. Place chicken in slow cooker.  Sprinkle with bacon.
  2. Pour small amount of teriyaki sauce on each chicken.
  3. Cover.  Cook on low for 4-6 hours or high for 3-4 hours.
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Saturday:  Leftovers

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Sunday:  BLTs or Salad

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2 comments :

angie b said...

I'm wondering how the cranberry chicken worked out in the crockpot. I need to start using mine more to make sure we are eating at home more than out on the nights we are out for kid activities. It sounds delicious but would love to be able to do it in the crockpot

Vanessa said...

Hi Angie! The crockpot is perfect for busy nights! The cranberry chicken worked well. The only thing I might change next time is to try and thicken the sauce. The sauce was very good over rice, but it turned out very thin.

Next time I might try taking the chicken out and putting a corn starch and water mixture into the sauce and letting it cook for 15 minutes or so to thicken it just a bit.

Our favorite meal this week was the meatloaf. I used ground turkey and used spices that I had on hand and grated a little onion in it. It was definitely a big hit at our house. :)

I really enjoyed using the crock pot this week. They even have crock pot liners now that you can buy to make clean-up super easy!