December 18, 2013
Healthy & Warm Slow Cooker Recipes, Part 2

Last week's list featured 3 recipes sure to please a chilly family during the winter season. Here are 3 more recipes using your slow cooker that will help you stay cozy!

Pumpkin Chili (Stage 7)

Recipe adapted from the inventive


  • 1 cup diced white onion
  • 1 tbsp. minced garlic
  • 1 lb. ground lean beef, turkey or chicken
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 1 habanero pepper, seeds removed and diced (optional) 
  • 1 cup diced carrot
  • 1 can reduced sodium cannellini beans
  • 1 can reduced sodium black beans
  • 1 14.5 oz. can pumpkin puree
  • 3 teaspoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons cumin powder
  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon allspice
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • Dash nutmeg
  • Water   
  • Black Pepper, to taste


  1. Cook onion, garlic and lean meat on medium-high on the stovetop until done through.
  2. Drain the beans and pour them, along with all the vegetables and meat/onion mix, into the slow cooker bowl. Add in the spices and pumpkin puree- and add enough water to fill the crock pot, and cook on low for 6-8 hours.
  3. Turn the cooker off when you’re ready to eat.
  4. Add ~1 c. hot water to thin the chili consistency, as desired. Add ground pepper to taste

Yields: 4 servings

Nutritional Information, per serving (using extra lean ground beef): 310calories, 5g fat, 520mg sodium, 47g carb, 15g fiber, 28g protein

Prep time: 20 minutes. Cook time: 6-8 hours.


Slow-Cooker Apple Cider Pulled Chicken Sandwiches (Stage 7)

 Adapted from  


  • 1 large apple, peeled and sliced
  • 1 large sweet onion, sliced
  • 2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 2 tsp. pepper
  • 2 tsp. paprika
  • 1 tbsp. dry mustard
  • ¾ cup apple cider
  • ¾ cup apple cider vinegar
  • 16 slices, ~50-60 calories each, of whole-grain bread or baguette (such as Dave’s brand)
  • 8 oz. reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese (such as Cabot brand 75% less fat)


  1. Place the onion and apple slices on the bottom of your slow cooker.
  2. Lay the chicken breasts on top of the apples and onions, and sprinkle on the salt, pepper, paprika, and mustard. Pour the cider over the top.
  3. Cook on low for 6-8 hours, or until chicken is cooked through and shreds easily.
  4. Remove the chicken from the slow cooker, shred with two forks, and return to the slow cooker.
  5. Using tongs, toss together the chicken, apples, onions and cooking liquid until evenly distributed.
  6. Top one slice of bread with the shredded chicken mixture, 1 oz. cheddar, and top with the other slice of bread.

Yields: 8 servings

Nutritional Information, per serving: 345 calories, 8.5g fat, 645mg sodium, 36g carbohydrate, 7g fiber, 39g protein

Prep time: 15 minutes, Cook time: 6-8 hours


Slow Cooker Wet Chicken Burritos (Stage 7)

Adapted from


  • 15 oz. can no-salt-added tomato sauce (such as Muir Glen)
  • 1 tbsp. taco seasoning
  • 4 oz. can diced green chilies
  • 2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • ½ c. dry instant brown rice
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • ½ c. cilantro, minced
  • 8, 100 calorie, large whole-grain burritos (such as La Tortilla Factory Smart & Delicious)
  • ¾ c. part-skim pepper jack or mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • ¾ c. diced tomato
  • 3 c. lettuce


  1. In a slow cooker, combine sauce, taco seasoning and green chilies. Stir. Add chicken and turn to coat in the sauce. Cook on low for 6-8 hours.
  2. Preheat oven to 400F.
  3. Shred chicken from slow cooker with two forks, transfer to a large bowl and top with 3-4 tbsp. sauce from slow cooker, and put the rest of the sauce in a separate bowl.
  4. Cook rice according to package directions.
  5. Add lime and cilantro to rice, cover to keep warm.
  6. Add ¼ c. cooked rice to each burrito. Divide shredded chicken evenly into each burrito. Roll (folding sides in) and place seam side down on baking sheet. Bake for 5-7 minutes or until slightly browned.
  7. Divide remaining sauce from slow cooker among top of the cooked burritos. Top with 1/8 c. shredded cheese, 1/8 c. diced tomato and ½ c. lettuce. Serve with a serving of steamed or fresh vegetables, or green salad for a complete meal. Enjoy!

Optional: serve lettuce-wrapped and use cauliflower rice for a stage 3 entrée. Or use lean
ground beef or turkey vs. chicken for variety.

Yields 8 servings.

Nutritional information, per serving: 340 calories, 9.5g fat, 580mg sodium, 35g carb, 14g fiber, 37g protein

Prep time: 15 minutes, cook time: 6-8 hours



Slow cookers can make whole, family-friendly meals easy and extra flavorful. I hope you enjoy some of my favorite slow cooker recipes!


Image courtesy of:

Written by Erika Brown

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