Confessions of an Unintentional Domestic Goddess

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Slow cooker Chicken Tortilla Soup

Can you keep a secret? What am I saying, of course you can! I am having an affair. Yes, my husband knows all about it and he’s ok with it. In fact, we tag team occasionally. The object of my latest love affair? My slow cooker. It’s been cold and my husband and I both work full-time so we’ve been working together to get dinner on. I’ll get it prepped and he’ll assemble and turn it on. We make great partners! You’ve seen my many slow cooker recipes: beef stew, chicken and wild rice soup, chicken and dumplings, creamy Italian chicken, and those are only the ones I can think of right off. I’ve been sort of MIA lately, but I’m here to share with you another delish slow cooker soup recipe. It’s different, it’s healthy, and it’s very flavorful. You can spice it up or down, whatever you like. And the best part? It’s ridiculously easy. I mean really, can it get any better? Well, ok, if it would clean up after itself, that would be pretty amazing, but in the absence of that, I’ll be making this regularly!

Slow Cooker Chicken Tortilla Soup

1lb boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 can roasted tomatoes undrained
1 can chopped green chilis
1 can medium enchilada sauce
1 can corn with green & red peppers drained
1 onion chopped
2 C water
3/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1-1/2 C chicken broth
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp ground cumin
chopped cilantro (optional)
crushed tortilla chips (optional)
cayenne pepper (optional)

1. place all ingredients except cilantro and tortilla chips in a 4qt slow cooker. Turn on high for 4 hours or low for 8 hours.
2. remove chicken breasts from slow cooker and use two forks to shred meat.
3. Put chicken back into slow cooker and allow it to cook for an additional 15-30 minutes.
4. Ladle into bowls and top with cilantro if desired. Sprinkle crushed tortilla chips on top if desired.
If you want spicier soup, add 1/2 tsp cayenne or you can use hot enchilada sauce, and increase the chili powder.
If you want a milder soup, you can use mild enchilada sauce and cut the chili powder in half.
This is just such a flavorful soup, with many different layers and textures.
And once again, no pics, sorry friends, it was just too good! (and I totally forgot ūüė¶ sorry!)

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It’s a New Recipe And…..

Urgh. Well, I guess we can’t win them all. I get lots of emails w/recipes, tips and ideas for entertaining and fun stuff. I bet you do too. Do you ever try any of the recipes in those emails or magazines? I still actually get real, live magazines in the mail! Yes, I know, so 1999 of me. Oh well, I like to see the pictures and fold down the corners. Yes, I use my laptop in the kitchen too, but I get much less upset over spilled broth on a magazine than my computer, I’m sure you can imagine.

Anywhoo, I got a new mag last week and in thumbing through, found several interesting ones that I wanted to torture my kids with try. One in particular sounded fabulous, Slow Cooker Meatball Stew. Hmmm, it’s cold out and my slow cooker is my bff, so, why not? My kids are always asking me why I don’t do spaghetti and meatballs. Well, because I don’t make meatballs, or buy them, that’s pretty much why. I’m not Italian (sigh) and I don’t know how, although I have tried and failed miserably, to make meatballs. Off the rails, anyway, this stew sounded great. I bought the ingredients and put it all together and let it go while I was working.

There’s just nothing like walking in the door after a long day working and getting a whiff of dinner, that will require not much more attention before putting it on the table. Yeah, that’s pretty much where it ended. The result was not quite as spectacular as it looked in print. So not what I was hoping for. The meatballs were nasty & mushy, and the sauce tasted like it came from a can of Chef Boyardee’s reject little brother. Underwhelming to say the least. And guess who let me hear all about it. Yep, the short ones.

Which leads me to the title of this post. I have a standard disclaimer that you may not have heard. Please feel free to use it when necessary.
Ready? Here goes:
“It’s a new recipe, if it sucks, it’s not my fault.”
There you go. I use it often, as I’m prone to trying out new stuff fairly frequently. Good luck! Have a great week! Now, to find the next great recipe. I’ll keep you posted!

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Green Chicken Chili 2 Ways

I know, ‘green’ and ‘chili’ in the same sentence can be taken a few ways. But, if you like spicy, even just a little spice, I think you’ll like this recipe. I say ‘2 ways’ because it can be prepared stove top or in your slow cooker. Have I mentioned how much I ‚̧ my slow cooker? I had this on my menu and really wanted to watch my favorite football team & #W2B¬†play #OSUvsUT. The game was going to be over about dinner time, which would leave me scrambling to get dinner ready. Hmmm, I wonder if I can put this in the slow cooker. The answer? YES! Since you can do it either way, I’ll include instructions for both. Enjoy!

Green Chicken Chili 2 Ways

1 lb chicken cut into bite sized pieces

1 poblano pepper, membranes & seeds removed, and chopped

1/2 medium sized onion chopped

2 cloves garlic pressed or minced

1tsp cumin

2 cans chicken broth 14.5 oz each

2 cans pinto beans drained and rinsed 15oz each

1 bottle salsa verde, 16oz

4 corn tortillas grated w/cheese grater or food processor

SLOW COOKER DIRECTIONS

1. saute onions, pepper and garlic just until softened.

2. place all ingredients into 4qt slow cooker.

3. cook on low for 6 to 8 hrs, or high for 4 hours.

STOVE TOP DIRECTIONS

1. cook chicken in large pot in 1 tbsp oil approx 5 min.

2. remove chicken from pan and cook onion, peppers and garlic for 3 min.

3. add the rest of the ingredients, including grated tortillas, into the pot, bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer uncovered 15 minutes.

Serve with tortilla chips and fresh cilantro if desired. If you like it spicier, I suppose you could leave in the seeds from the pepper, I don’t know how spicy poblanos are, but w/o the seeds and the green salsa, it’s got a nice warmth to it w/o being painful. Yum! And it’s healthy to boot!

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Slow Cooker Chicken and Wild Rice Soup

Over the summer, my slow cooker is my best friend. In cooler weather, it’s my friend too! I’ve got several delicious recipes I like to use it for. Our summer ended rather abruptly this year <NO, I”m not complaining!> so rather than waiting for October to make soups & stews, I get to do it now! One of my husband’s favorites is this one I’m getting ready to share. I got this from¬†my husband’s twin sister. Thanks Kim!¬†I will tell you , I didn’t take any pictures of it, it doesn’t photograph well, but it’s super easy and delicious! It’s warm and hearty, without being really heavy.

Slow Cooker Chicken and Wild Rice Soup

1/2C wild rice

5-1/2C water

2 stalks celery sliced thin

2 carrots peeled and sliced

1 medium onion chopped

2 tbsp chicken boullion crystals or 3 chicken bullion cubes crushed

2 cans chicken breast

2 tbsp flour

1C heavy cream or half & half

1. rinse wild rice. Place first¬†6 ingredients in slow cooker. Set to high and cook for 4 to 5 hours, or until rice is tender. (if not cooked long enough, the rice is crunchy….gross!)

2. pour undrained cans of chicken in crockpot. Mix flour and cream/half & half and pour into crock pot. Cook another hour or so.

Serve with crusty bread. Delicious and you hardly had to do a thing! If you need to, I think you could totally cook this on low all day, and then add the chicken/cream when¬†you get home from work and give it time to finish cooking. My children grumble and don’t like it, but hey, that’s more for us, right? ūüėÄ Enjoy!

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New: Slow Cooker Beef Stew

Before you ask, yes, I posted a similar recipe last year, but this one turned out much better, hence the ‘New’ at the beginning! I’m loving my slow cooker these days. Running wild and crazy trying to keep up with two kids at different schools and different calendars. Plus soccer and soon there will be basketball in the mix as well. I try to keep several slow cooker recipes handy. This is a new fave. Oh, sorry, no pics for this one either, it didn’t last long and I didn’t think about it til all that was left was dirty dishes. And, well, those aren’t very attractive!

Slow Cooker Beef Stew

1-2 lb stew meat in chunks

2 celery stalks sliced

1 medium onion chopped

2 carrots peeled and sliced

2 medium potatoes peeled and cubed

1C frozen mixed vegetables

1 can beef broth

12oz V8

1 can tomato sauce

1/4 C red wine

2 tbsp Worcestershire

5 to 6 whole peeled garlic cloves

3 bay leaves

1/2 tsp dried thyme

salt and pepper

1. Put all ingredients, except frozen vegetables, in large slow cooker. Cook on high 7-8 hours.

2. 30 min to 1hr before you are ready to eat, add in the frozen veggies.

***Hint: when I made this, I didn’t parboil the potatoes and carrots and after 4hrs on high and 3 on low, the potatoes and carrots ¬†were still not completely cooked and a bit on the crunchy side. You could cook it on a lower temp if you parboil the potatoes & carrots for 5 to 10 min before putting them in the slow cooker.

To parboil you place the veggies you are cooking in boiling water and cook them for a short time, they’re not cooked, but only beginning the cooking process, then you finish the cooking process in whatever your method is for the recipe, slow cooker, oven, etc.

I will definitely parboil next time around.

This recipe is more liquid than my first, which makes me like it a bit more. Maybe I should call it ‘Stoup’.¬†If you want to thicken it up, you can mix 2tbsp cornstarch and 1 tbsp cold water and add it to the stew 30 min prior to eating.

Remove the bay leaves, ladle into bowl and enjoy with some crusty bread or biscuits. YUM!

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Cheaters Chicken and Dumplings

I love me some chicken and dumplings, but have never attempted making it. The only times I’ve ever had it, it’s been prepared by¬†a little old¬†lady and I know for a fact, these little ladies take hours to boil the chicken, bone the chicken, make the dumplings-by hand-from scratch. And I’m also pretty certain there’s no real recipe involved. One main reason I have not attempted, I am impatient to the 10th degree, so there is no way I am going to undertake a recipe that will take me that long. Imagine my joy coming across a recipe, which I immediately altered, that would yield the delicious, golden comfort food in my crock pot! AAAAAAHHHH a choir of angels singing in the back ground! So, here is my version, which turned out incredibly well. So well in fact I will be making this again, with one minor alteration: more chicken broth. I used all I had, but another can I think would’ve made it perfect.

Cheaters Chicken and Dumplings

1lb boneless skinless chicken cut into 1″ pieces

2 cans cream of chicken soup

1 can chicken broth

1 can water

1 onion finely chopped

2 tsp pepper (if desired)

1 can refrigerated biscuits (10 count) torn

Step 1.  place everything into a 4 qt slow cooker and mix.

Step 2. cook on high 4 to 5 hours (or low 6 to 8 hours-while you’re at work), or until chicken is cooked through. Stir after 2 to 3 hours.

Step 3.¬†thirty min prior to eating, put torn biscuits into the crock pot and stir to make sure biscuits don’t stick together.

Step 4. ladle into bowls and serve with biscuits or crusty bread.

Soup is very creamy, if you like it to be a bit thinner, add a second can of chicken broth (I will next time). To cut some calories, next time I will use the reduced fat version of cream of chicken soup and reduced fat biscuits. That will cut some of the guilt, but not much of the flavor.

MMMMM perfect for a busy work day and cold weather. Yum-o-rama!

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Another slow cooker recipe: French Onion Soup! Mai oui!

Love me some French onion soup on a cold day, so imagine my delight when I came across this recipe (which I immediately modified)! I will share it with you as it mostly was originally and tell you next time I will not add quite so many onions, I’ll use half as many as it called for, it was very oniony, good, but oniony.

Slow cooker French onion soup

6 cans beef broth

6 medium onions chopped (I’ll use 3 next time)

3 bay leaves

3 tbsp butter

1-1/2 tsp worcestershire sauce

2tsp onion salt

3 tsp garlic salt

2 tbsp Kosher salt

5 to6 whole garlic cloves peeled (if desired)

French Bread sliced approximately 1″ thick and toasted

shredded parmesan/mozzarella/asiago cheese

1. Saute onions in butter until onions are crisp tender.

2. Put all ingredients except french bread and cheese in 4 qt slow cooker. Cook for 5 to 7 hrs or until onions are tender.

3. Remove bay leaves and  ladle into bowls and top with toasted French bread and a sprinkle of cheese. 

This is one of those recipes that makes a big batch and could easily be halved. It’s so delicious on a cold night without being too heavy. Enjoy!

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Slow Cooker Beef Stew

Oh man. This was so delicious and so easy, I had to share. It was perfect for this cold weather we’ve been having. ¬†And I didn’t have to mess with it all day long, what could be better?

YUMMMMMM

Slow Cooker Beef Stew

1 lb stew meat

1 medium onion chopped

4 medium sized red potatoes, peeled and cubed

4 to 5 carrots peeled and sliced

1 bag (12oz) frozen mixed vegetables (corn, carrots, peas, green beans)

1 can tomato sauce (8 oz)

2 bay leaves

1/4 C dry red wine

5 tbsp beef broth

2 C water

1 tsp salt

1 tsp pepper

2 tsp Italian seasoning

1. brown stew meat and onion in a skillet. Drain.

2. Parboil fresh potatoes and carrots until partially cooked. Drain.

3. microwave frozen vegetables according to pkg directions.

4. In 4 qt slow cooker, place all ingredients and stir to blend. Cook on high for 7 hrs, then turn to low until meat is tender and all veggies are cooked. Remove bay leaves. Serve with crusty bread or biscuits.

Wanna bite? Come on over!

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Awesome no-heat chicken!

So right now, in my little corner of the world, the temps get down to the bone chilling 80 at night and we have a heat index in the triple-digit teens. Needless to say, the grill, microwave and crockpot are my best friends right now. I pulled this recipe out of my archive and wanted to share. It’s really good, easy, and healthy to boot! Oh yeah, and it won’t heat up your kitchen, YAY!

Creamy Italian Chicken

4 to 6 boneless skinless chicken breasts

1 pkg dry Italian dressing mix

1 can (4oz) sliced mushrooms

1 pkg (8oz) reduced fat cream cheese, softened

1 can reduced fat & sodium cream of mushroom soup

1/4C water

1 to 2 cloves of garlic, pressed

2 C cooked brown rice

1. Place chicken in slow-cooker (I like to cut my pieces in half, easier for serving & quicker cooking)

2. Mix water and dressing mix and pour over chicken.

3. Place lid on slow cooker and cook 3 hours on low.

4. Combine cream cheese, cream of mushroom soup and garlic until well blended. Spread over chicken, sprinkle mushrooms on top.

5. Replace lid and cook 1 hour longer.

6. Stir to blend sauce and serve over rice.

Add some veggies steamed in the microwave and a¬†green salad and you’ve got a nice dinner, all without heating your kitchen! YAY! Enjoy!

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