Butternut Squash Soup in the Slow Cooker

One of my favorite autumn soups is rich butternut squash!  The prepping of the squash is the only thing that takes up any time so you might want to give yourself ample time (guesstimate about a 10-30 minutes per squash) to peel and cube it.  And don’t forget to save the seeds for roasting!

Ingredients:
1 butternut squash med-large (roughly 3-4 lbs)
1/2 teaspoon marjoram
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 cup applesauce or 1 large apple peeled, cored and cubed
1/4 cup margarine or similar
3 cups broth (vegetable is good but chicken is fine if you aren’t vegan, beef is a not a good choice here)
2 Tablespoons brown sugar
1 cinnamon stick 3 inches long (removed when done cooking)
1 cup pumpkin puree
1/4 teaspoon fresh ginger
8 oz cream cheese (or coconut cream as a vegan option)
Sour cream (or vegan equivalent)

Instructions:

  1. Peel and grate your ginger (this is how I always have fresh ginger on hand).
  2. Peel, de-seed and cube your butternut squash.
  3. Peel, core and cube your apple if you are not using applesauce.
  4. Add everything to your cooker except your cream cheese and sour cream.
  5. Add enough broth or water to cover ingredients if your 3 cups aren’t enough.
  6. Put on high and find something fun to do for the next 4-5 hours (you can put this on low and cook it for 6-8 hours while you’re at work).
  7. Your soup is done once everything has liquified. You can help this along by stirring the soup every once in a while during cooking.
  8. Once it’s done, cut up cream cheese and allow it to melt in the soup.  As it melts, whisk briskly to help incorporate it and break up any squash chunks.
  9. Ladle into bowls, add a dollop of sour cream (this REALLY brings out the taste and makes the dish) and serve!
This soup freezes well though leave plenty of room for it to expand in the freezer.  When thawed, heat and whisk it back into the consistency it was previously.  Yes, you CAN freeze it with the cream cheese in it.  You can freeze cream cheese by itself though it doesn’t always have the best consistency once thawed so it’s best used for baking or soups such as this.  Enjoy!
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Creamy Leek & Potato Soup (aka Creamy Irish Root Soup)

Quite some time ago, we had a delivery from Portland’s OrganicsToYou filled with the biggest leeks you’ve ever set your eyes on!  I was quite happy to learn they could be frozen (sealed air tight as they will stink up your freezer and all your food in it otherwise!) and knew that I would be testing out some soup recipes later in the summer.  Well… it’s later in the summer and the perfect time to create a new recipe.  Of course “new” means I sort of threw it together without measuring anything so most of the measurements below are guesstimates except for the Bisquick because I happen to use a measuring cup to scoop it out.

Ingredients (6 quart slow cooker measurements):

  • 2 cups chopped leeks (I used both white and green portions of leeks)
  • 4 cups chopped raw potatoes (I had quite a few golden potatoes that really made this dish!)
  • 2 tablespoons chopped carrot greens (I freeze these whenever we get carrots specifically for stews)
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery or 1/2 tablespoon celery salt
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic in olive oil (again, I simply throw fresh garlic in the food processor and store in the fridge with olive oil in a jar)
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 6 beef bouillon cubes
  • 1 cup chicken stock (yup, mine is from my freezer after making my whole chicken in the slow cooker)
  • 1 tablespoon or 1 packet beef stew mix
  • Water
  • 1 cup Bisquick
  • heavy cream (optional)

Directions:

  1. Add all of the ingredient except the Bisquick and heavy cream into your slow cooker.
  2. Fill with water until ingredients are covered.
  3. Set your slow cooker on high for four hours.
  4. Go enjoy a few chapters of your favorite book.
  5. Come back after four hours and ladle out a few cups of water, whisk the Bisquick into the water until it’s thoroughly incorporated.  Add thickened stock back into the slow cooker.
  6. Check potatoes for tenderness.  If they are not fully cooked, set for another hour on high and check again.
  7. Turn off the cooker and let sit until ready to serve.
  8. When you’re ready to serve, ladle into a bowl and add heavy cream to taste/consistency.  Stir thoroughly.
  9. Sprinkle with grated cheese for garnish and enjoy!

Slow Cooker Seafood Bisque

Kindly ignore the fact that the image says “chowder” and not bisque.  I had edited this image late at night and was very tired. LOL

 

DISCLAIMER: This is NOT a health conscious soup!  This is one of my guilty pleasures in life.  It is rich, creamy and very decedent.  Try at your own risk!
Ingredients (6 quart cooker):
  • 8 cups water
  • 4 cups heavy cream
  • 1/3 cup butter/margarine
  • 1/3 cup Bisquick mix
  • 8 chicken bouillon cubes (or substitute chicken broth for the water)
  • 12 oz. small cooked shrimp without tails
  • 24 oz. imitation crab meat
  • 1/2 cup chopped sun dried tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
Directions:
  1. Everything goes in the slow cooker!
  2. Set temperature for low.
  3. Set timer for 4 hours.
Hint: To thicken this soup, extract some of the hot broth and slowly whisk in more Bisquick until desired thickness.

Slow Cooked Corn Chowder

This is a GREAT recipe for the winter months or rainy days.  It’s also freezes well, so you can store this in cup size containers to serve whenever the mood strikes you!
Ingredients:
  • 16 oz. bag of frozen corn
  • 15 oz. can of whole corn
  • 8 oz. or 1 cup of cream cheese
  • 1 qt. chicken broth
  • 2 cups shredded Colby & Monterey Jack cheese
  • 1 tsp Celery salt
  • 1 tsp Garlic powder
  • 1 tsp Onion powder
  • Pepper to taste
Directions:
  1. In a food processor, empty your can of corn and 1/3 of your bag of frozen corn with enough chicken broth to help it liquefy better.
  2. Hit the power button and let it run for a minute or two.  It doesn’t have to be pure liquid but more like a tapioca pudding looking consistency.
  3. Pour your liquefied concoction as well as all other ingredients into your slow cooker.
  4. Set temperature of low.
  5. Set timer for 6 hours.
  6. You know the drill.
  7. Come back and serve with a dash of pepper and/or a dollop of sour cream.
Note: Sampling during the cooking process may be bland but if by the last hour of cooking, you feel it “needs something”, add it then!  A can of creamed potato or celery is a good option!  Also, try adding some bacon pieces to it.  Have fun!

Slow Cooker Lentils

Ingredients:
  • 1 bag of lentils
  • Water
  • 2 packets of French Onion Dip
  • Options: If you want to add meat to this, I suggest a pre-cooked sweet sausage such as chicken apple sausage or something similar.  Simply add after the lentils have finished cooking and you’ve turned the cooker off but the soup hasn’t cooled yet.  Otherwise, the soup can leach the meat of its taste and leave it rather bland.
Directions:
  1. Empty the bag of lentils into a strainer and rinse with cool/lukewarm water.  Drain.
  2. Dump lentils into your cooker.
  3. Add enough water to cover the lentils completely plus about two inches.
  4. Add 2 packets of French Onion Dip mix.
  5. Stir.
  6. Put the cooker on high and go find something to do.
  7. Return periodically to stir lentils.
  8. When lentils are done, they float.
  9. Turn off the cooker.
  10. Add any of your cooked meats here.
  11. Allow to cool and enjoy!
Yup… its that easy!

Turkey Taco Soup

My wife loves Spanish/Mexican food.  I’m not very experienced in cooking it.  Not that I don’t like it, because I do, but it’s never really come across my stove top other than the real basics.  So when I found a recipe to make what looked like a tasty Mexican style soup, I was all over it.  I say “style” because I don’t recall any Spanish person in my life using this recipe as a stew, soup or even taco filling!  But… it ended up quite tasty and I’m dubbing it a total success!  So here’s my first Mexican style dish:
Ingredients:
  • 1-2 lbs ground turkey, browned (or bite size chicken is great too!)
  • 2 cans whole corn
  • 1 can diced tomatoes
  • 2 cans pinto beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 cans kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 packet taco seasoning
  • 1 packet ranch dressing seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 3 cups homemade chicken broth/concentrate (if you don’t have this, regular chicken broth will do just use enough to cover the other ingredients)
Directions:
  1. Toss everything in your slow cooker.
  2. Set the temperature level to high.
  3. Set the timer for: 4 hours for a non-spicy but flavorful soup, 5 hours for a mildly spicy soup, 6 or more hours depending on your tastes
  4. You know the drill by now…
  5. Come back after 6 hours and serve with shredded cheese and a dollop of sour cream on top with a side of tortilla chips.