Making the switch from feasting over the holidays to cold-turkey dieting can be a tough line to tow. Isn’t that why resolutions are so hard to keep? Whether you’ve decided to lose baby weight, vow to fit into a new pair of jeans, or are adopting a new diet for the New Year, you likely aren’t alone.
It’s time to join a gym and head to Harris Teeter for some healthy pantry staples. While you’re there, grab the ingredients for these lighter and diet-friendly* versions of some favorite comfort foods.
Even better? We’re saving time in the kitchen by using the slow cooker. Prep your meal in the morning and come home to the aroma of a fabulous dinner. Use the time saved to get in an extra workout, hang with the family, or sneak in a little me-time. You deserve it!
Your favorite Indian recipe is getting a vegan and Paleo diet makeover. Cooked in the slow cooker, it’s a breeze to make. Bonus: It’s even better the next day!
Combine all vegetables (except the peas) in the bowl of the slow cooker.
In a large bowl, add coconut milk, curry powder, salt and garam masala and almond flour. Beat with a hand mixer or large wooden spoon until smooth.
Pour coconut mixture over vegetables. Cook on low for 8 hours, or until mixture is thick and vegetables are tender. Add the peas, turn the slow cooker to high and cook for an additional 30 minutes.
Serve this spicy slow cooker chicken in sweet potatoes or lettuce wraps. Be sure to make the dairy-free ranch for a real treat!
Buffalo Chicken Ingredients:
Combine all ranch dressing ingredients and mix until smooth. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
In a medium skillet, warm hot sauce, ghee, garlic powder, salt and pepper. Mix until ghee has melted and the sauce is smooth.
Place chicken in the bowl of the slow cooker and pour hot sauce mixture over top. Toss to coat. Cook on low for 4-6 hours. Remove chicken from the slow cooker and shred with two forks. Return the meat to the slow cooker and keep on warm until ready to eat.
Stuff chicken in sweet potatoes or lettuce wraps and top with homemade ranch dressing.
This hearty beef stew with fork-tender meat and fresh veggies is the perfect go-to dinner when craving comfort food on a diet!
Preheat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add olive oil. Working in batches, add beef to the pan and cook, browning on all sides. Remove beef to the slow cooker, and continue with the remaining beef cubes.
Once you’ve finished browning the meat, turn off the heat and add the lemon juice to the pan. Using a wooden spoon, scrape up the brown bits from the bottom of the skillet. Pour the juice and collected “bits” from the skillet into the slow cooker.
Add the onions, potatoes, carrots, broth, tomato paste, garlic, bay leaves and thyme. Stir to incorporate. Cook on low for 6-7 hours or until beef is fork-tender.
In a small bowl, whisk together the tapioca starch and water. Pour into the slow cooker and increase the heat to high. Cook for an additional 30 minutes, or until bubbling and slightly thickened.
*Be sure to refer to your diet’s approved foods prior to shopping and cooking.
Katie Harding is the publisher of Forks and Folly . A self-taught cook and die-hard foodie, Katie lives in Charlotte with her husband and three boys. Besides cooking and eating, she loves craft beers, running, and napping.