A slow cooker is your new best friend if you don’t have the time or energy to make dinner.
Crisp and sweet, asparagus is packed with numerous health benefits. It contains antioxidants that fight free-radical damage and folate, which boosts brain health. And instead of the typical heavy cream or butter that’s typically used in this soup, our vegan version uses fiber-rich potatoes for creaminess.
Vegetable “Pasta” Lasagna
For this recipe, a mandolin really comes in handy. This vegetable “pasta” lasagna features thin sheets of zucchini layered with garlic, tomato sauce and Parmesan. Low in calories, zucchinis are an excellent source of antioxidants and vitamin C. And instead of the usual ground meat, we’re swapping in crushed pistachios for heart health.
Moussaka is traditionally layered with minced meat and — at least in Greek versions — topped with bechamel sauce, which consists of butter, flour and milk. But for our recipe bulgur wheat replaces the minced meat and a cauliflower puree is substituted for the bechamel. An excellent source of plant-based protein, bulgur wheat bursts with manganese, magnesium and iron.
Beef shank is a high-protein cut that’s typically too tough for many other preparations, but it’s ideal for this kind of low-and-slow cooking. Begin by searing the meat to caramelize it, and then add seasoning, stock and crushed tomatoes. You’ll end up with a robust stew that’s infused with rich flavors, and the meat will be fall-off-the-bone tender. If you wind up with too much liquid at the end of the cooking process, simply turn the slow cooker up to its highest setting and reduce the sauce to your desired consistency.
Craving Mexican food for dinner? Make a batch of these savory, slow-cooked fajitas. Our vegetarian recipe features black beans along with onions, tomatoes and peppers that all get sauteed directly in the cooker. Black beans provide digestion-promoting fiber, while tomatoes offer immunity-boosting vitamin C.
Salmon With Lemon and Parsnips
For this recipe we’re pairing sweet parsnips with salmon. A root vegetable that’s closely related to carrots, parsnips are rich in potassium, which can help lower blood pressure. And besides being a high-quality protein, salmon also contains omega-3 fatty acids that decrease inflammation and improve arterial function. And take care when removing the fillet; use a fish spatula so that it doesn’t fall apart.
|Read on: 9 Simple Slow Cooker Recipes for When You Can't Even|