As a busy mom, I find it hard to always prepare healthy home-cooked meals for my family. And with the cooler weather approaching, comfort meals start to sound appealing. But I have found ways to incorporate healthy “comfort” meals using the ease of my slow cooker. Slow-cooked meals are ideal for making ahead and reheating. A slow cooker also provides advantages for healthy cooking by stretching smaller portions of meat (or skipping the meat all together) with abundant amounts of vegetables. Here are a few of my favorite recipes for Fall.

Slow Cooker Chili

Adapted from:

Slow Cooker Chili1 lb 93% lean ground beef, browned and drained
1 onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels
1 zucchini, diced
2 15-ounce cans diced tomatoes
2 15-ounce cans low-sodium or no-salt-added kidney beans
1 cup water
2 tbsp chili powder
2 tsp cumin
½ tsp oregano
Dash of hot sauce or to taste

Combine all ingredients in a crock pot. Cover and cook on low for 7 hours.
Tip: You could also substitute 8 ounces of sliced mushrooms instead of ground beef for a vegetarian chili.

Seasoned Chicken, Potatoes, & Green Beans


Seasoned Chicken With Green Beans and Potatoes1.5-2lbs Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts
½ lb. fresh green beans, trimmed (about 2.5 cups)
1.25 lb. diced red potatoes (about 4 cups)
1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
¼ cup olive oil
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp salt
¼ tsp. pepper
¼ tsp. onion powder
2 garlic cloves, minced

Place the chicken in a 6-quart slow cooker, in the center. Next add the greens beans on one side. Then for the potatoes, you will need to mound them high off to the other side.
In a medium sized bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, olive oil, oregano, salt, pepper, onion powder, and garlic cloves.
Pour this mixture evenly over the chicken, green beans, and potatoes.
Cover and cook on HIGH for 4 hours.