Kathy Hester lives in Durham, NC with her 2 cats who would rather not live together, a cute dog with a belly rub addiction, her very own picky eater, a kitchen garden, and more slow cookers than any one person should own. Her first cookbook, The Vegan Slow Cooker, is being published the fall of 2011 by Fair Winds Press (http://www.qbookshop.com/products/193950/9781592334643/The-Vegan-Slow-Cooker.html). She writes 2 blogs Healthy Slow Cooking (http://healthyslowcooking.wordpress.com/) and Busy Vegan (http://busyvegan.blogspot.com/).
Website URL: http://healthyslowcooking.wordpress.com/
Everyone loves waking up to breakfast and with breakfast casseroles even Moms can sleep in a bit too! Below are breakfasts that let you do most of the work the night before. Some of these recipes you can cook the night before and heat up in the morning while others you make ahead and cook in the morning as you’re reading the paper.
Savory Breakfast Casseroles
- Potato and Bacon Breakfast Casserole (step by step pictorial)
- Breakfast Casserole Muffins Recipe
- Sausage Mushroom Breakfast Casserole
- Baked Oven Omelet
- Spanish-Style Breakfast Casserole
- Broccoli & Leek Breakfast Casserole
- Breakfast Casserole with Millet Recipe
- Sausage Apple Overnight Breakfast Casserole
- Roasted Green Bell Pepper and Roasted Tomato Breakfast Casserole with Feta and Oregano
- Fiesta Breakfast Casserole
- Cheesy Breakfast Hash-brown Casserole (small for 2 or 3 people)
- Breakfast Casserole with Spinach, Leeks, Cottage Cheese, and Goat Cheese
- Breakfast Casserole
- Zucchini and Green Chile Egg Breakfast Casserole
- Breakfast Winter Squash Bean Casserole (vegan)
- Italian Sausage & Red Pepper Strata
- Karyn's Breakfast Casserole with Artichokes, Canadian Bacon, and Goat Cheese
- Green Chili Breakfast Casserole
- Breakfast Casserole Recipe with Sweet Italian Sausage, Mushrooms, and Cheese
- Roasted Green Bell Pepper and Roasted Tomato Breakfast Casserole with Feta and Oregano
- Bacon Spinach Casserole
Sweet Breakfast Casseroles
- Lightened Up Crème Brûlée French Toast
- Ricotta, Cinnamon and Honey Breakfast Casserole
- Sweet Potato Oatmeal Breakfast Casserole
- Apple Baked French Toast
- Overnight Blueberry French Toast with Blueberry Syrup
- Overnight Peaches and Cream French Toast
- Blueberry Banana Overnight Oats
- Traditional Overnight Oats
- Strawberry Banana Overnight Oats
Slow Cooker Breakfasts
- Overnight Oats
- Crockpot Eggs Florentine
- Breakfast Risotto
- Crockpot Broccoli Cheese Quiche
- Slow Cooker Make-Ahead Sausage and Mushroom Scrambled Eggs
- Apple Breakfast Casserole
- Crockpot Whole Grain Breakfast Cereal
- Slow Cooker French Toast
- Italian Breakfast Burritos
- Rice Breakfast
- Tator Tot Casserole
- Hash-brown Casserole
Start Your Day with Tea
Make a switch from your normal coffee to a nice cup of tea. You can choose black or green tea, both have polyphenols and flavonoids which fight off free radicals.
Barley and Oats Put You Ahead of the Game
Both barley and oats have beta glucans which has antioxidant and antimicrobial properties. They are also high in vitamins A, C, and E which all add up to a healthier you.
- Strawberry Barley Scones with Maple Cream
- Roasted Pumpkin and Pearl Barley Risotto
- Barley and Bean Soup
- Miso barley risotto with Tempeh and Tofu
- Slow Cooker Apple Pie Oatmeal
- Pecan Oatmeal Waffles
- Baked Oatmeal
No Time for a Hot Breakfast? Grab A Yogurt
Your schedule (or your child’s mood) might not always allow for making a hot breakfast. Yogurt has good bacteria that has antioxidant and antimicrobial properties that up you white blood cell count. Make sure to buy yogurt with live cultures. On a dairy-free diet? Try some of the new yogurts that are based on soy or coconut milk.
This is the only ingredient in this article that you don’t want to cook. Heat kills the friendly bacteria before they can work their magic on you.
- Chickpea and Spinach Salad with Yogurt Dressing
- Peanut Butter Yogurt Dip
- Orange Yogurt
- Maple and Cardamom Spiced Pears with Pecans
Vitamin C to the Rescue
Orange and Grapefruit are wonderful ways to get some vitamin C and flavonoids into you and your kids. Both increase immune system. Simply cut them into wedges that are manageable even for little hands. These are perfect snacks to put in a lunch box and you can store the pre-cut wedges in the fridge for a ready to go snack.
- Broiled Grapefruit with Brown Sugar and Ginger
- Grapefruit and Avocado Salad
- Fennel and Orange Salad
- Citrus & Pomegranate Salad with Rose Water-Vanilla Syrup
Hate citrus fruit? Add in some green peppers instead, they are also full of vitamin C.
Eat Your Mushrooms
You may not realize it but mushrooms are a powerhouse of nutrition. They contain beta glucans, selenium, riboflavin and niacin all of which contributes to a healthy immune system and help prevent infections. Include shitake and maitake mushroom in addition to button and portabella.
- Mushroom Bruschetta
- White Truffled Grilled Cheese
- Wild Mushroom Soup
- Warm Maitake Pasta with Citrus Soy Dressing
- Spinach and Shitake Mushroom Soup with Crispy Baked Tofu Croutons Recipe
- Polenta with chard and mushrooms
Color Lunch (or Dinner) Orange
Carrots, sweet potatoes, and winter squash are some of my favorite foods. They are cheap and plentiful through the winter too. It’s an amazing bonus that they are also chock full vitamin A and the antioxidant beta-carotene which boost T-cell count and fights free radicals.
- Butternut Squash and Leek Latkes
- Quinoa, Squash & Leek Pilaf with Runny Eggs
- Moroccan Carrot Soup
- Veggie Mash
- Purple Sweet Potato Chiffon Cake
- Sweet Potato Chips
Don’t Forget to Add Some Green
From a simple spinach salad that contains folate that helps your body create new cells to a simple steamed broccoli which is full of phytonutrients, vitamin A and E, they are all perfect additions to any dinner.
- Detox Green Soup
- Spinach Manicotti
- Boiled Spinach with Soy and Sesame
- General’s Broccoli and Tofu
- Warm Millet and Broccoli
- Broccoli Soup with Sauteed Mushrooms
The holidays are great for foodies. However, most people get tired of the leftover monotony every night after a great dinner party. That is if you don't throw them out before you actually finish!I'm a big believer in using leftovers. I take the stance that they can be re-invented into something no one will realize came from a holiday dinner. Traditions can make it a little harder to think out of the box. But if you do, you can make your re-dos a little healthier too. Below I'm using turkey as an example (my family's favorite), but they would work as well with ham, roast beef, goose - even tofurky! Every family has it's December's favorites.
Take some filo dough (or puff pastry) and wrap some leftovers together for a hand pie that's great as a meal or a snack. Try using green bean casserole with shredded turkey, sweet potato and cranberry, or turkey and mixed vegetables. Invent new combos by trying out a mixed bite until you find one you like. If you need a wetter mixture, try adding a touch of leftover gravy or milk into your mix.
If you had mashed potatoes, try making a turkey Shepard's pie. Grease a Pyrex container, put a layer of turkey, another of veggies, and top with gravy. I like to add a little goat cheese or fresh herbs to the leftover potatoes. Spread the potatoes in an even layer on top of the casserole. Cover it and cook, or and go ahead and pop it into the freezer for a ready made dinner for another night. You can also make mini ones that you can pack in lunches over the next few weeks. Try making a Shepard's pie variation using mashed sweet potatoes as a topping. It's a great vegetarian dish if you leave out the turkey and use mushroom gravy instead of the turkey gravy.
Stock up on a few pre-made pie crusts and you can easily make a few full size quiches, or tons of single serving ones. Quiche is a perfect way to use up bits and pieces. Add fresh herbs if you can. Bake the quiche about 15 minutes less and then freeze them to heat up for a brunch party later in December. It makes a perfect no-work way to have friends over during the busiest time of the year. A few interesting combos are turkey and leftover spinach artichoke dip, leftover cheese cubes and roasted veggies, or leftover greens with sweet potato. Make sure to serve up these leftover remixes on your best Noritake Colorwave dishes. The beautiful plates will dress up your leftovers so much people are even less likely to notice.
Try making a mashed potato crust for your quiche. It needs to be fairly thick and cooked for about 20 minutes before you add the quiche filling. This year I want to try out using leftover stuffing to make a crust. I'll probably need to add an egg to bind it, and cook it before as well. It is experimental at this point, so try at you own risk!
If you are super ambitious, you could make a few of the things above as you clean up and put away food on the night of your party. You could send all your guests home with dinner for the next day. The only problem will be that you'll become the designated host for years to come!
Once in a while you need to make a dish that you can enjoy. This stew is perfect for a fall romantic dinner while the kids are at the babysitter, or just to have a simple grown up dinner while still feeding the little ones something they will eat too. You get this started in the morning so you won’t feel like you are cooking two meals right at dinner time.
This is a great last minute sauce that gets made with pantry ingredients. All you need is some frozen or canned pumpkin, tomato paste, water and a few dried spices. This is also an easy treat on a snow day when you don’t feel like going to the store.
Fall is one of my favorite seasons. I love the way the leaves turn the landscape into a brilliant patchwork quilt, the nights turn cooler, and Winter squash, leafy greens and root veggies take center stage on the dinner table. Pumpkins are much more than a porch decoration. They are one of my favorite Winter squashes. The smaller pie or sugar pumpkins are the ones to buy to make a cheap and easy DIY pumpkin puree. I bought a pie pumpkin that will make 3 to 4 cans worth of puree for the same price as 1 can!
Halloween is right around the corner and kids love spooky food. Use that to your advantage and sneak some beets into them! This is a perfect protein packed meal and can be served with baked blue corn chips, raw veggies, or even rolled up in a whole wheat tortilla for a wrap. After a yummy dinner like this you can send your kids out to get candy with a clear conscience.
Cooler weather brings visions of Halloween and pumpkin in everything! Pumpkin brownies, pumpkin cookies, even pumpkin soup are the norm, so why not mix a little of that winter squash into your nutritious bowl of oats?
Nothing is better than a good bowl of soup for dinner. This is soup fills you up with nutritious red lentils and tons of veggies. Serve it with a thick slice of toasted whole grain bread for a super easy weeknight meal. It’s a great dish to make the day before you go to the grocery because it uses pantry staples.
With more people choosing to go meatless on Mondays and even beyond, you want a few vegetarian lunch ideas in your arsenal. Since everyone is telling us to eat more grains, fruits, and veggies it also makes sense to pack some of that in the lunches that you send your children off to school with.