A Chicken in Every Crockpot!

Karen's Kitchen Adventures

Peas and Carrot Soup April 9, 2011

Filed under: eat your vegetables,soup and stew — frappqueen @ 7:49 am
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This recipe came from a recent Rachel Ray magazine…Mike picked it out and I must admit, I was skeptical! BUT…not only is it very simple to make, but it is amazingly delicious! Who knew!? We liked it so much I’ve made it like three times since! It tastes a bit like pot pie filling but without the meat. It could easily be made vegetarian by swapping out the chicken stock for vegetable stock. The dumplings give it enough body to make it a meal.


Peas and Carrot Soup

2 tablespoons EVOO (extra-virgin olive oil)
3 tablespoons butter
3 carrots—peeled, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced
1 rib celery, chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
Salt and pepper
1 fresh bay leaf
2 rounded tablespoons flour
One 32-ounce container (4 cups) chicken or vegetable stock (I used Chicken)
1 rounded tablespoon dijon mustard
1 cup frozen peas
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh tarragon, dill or parsley
One 8-ounce box biscuit mix (about 2 cups), such as Jiffy Buttermilk Biscuit Mix, batter prepared according to package directions (I used low fat biscquick)


Heat a couple of tablespoons EVOO, 2 turns of the pan, over medium-high heat in a large soup pot or dutch oven. Add the butter to melt, then add the carrots, celery and onion; season with salt, pepper and the bay leaf. Cover the pot and cook, stirring occasionally, until the carrots soften, 7 to 8 minutes. Sprinkle the flour on the vegetables and stir for a minute, then whisk in the chicken (or vegetable) stock until thickened. Stir in the mustard and peas. For a thinner soup, add 1 to 1 1/2 cups water with the stock.

Add the chopped fresh herbs to the biscuit batter and combine. When the soup is bubbling, form the batter into small dumplings using 2 spoons, then drop onto the surface of the soup. Cover the pot with a tight-fitting lid and cook the dumplings, gently stirring, until just firm, 8 to 10 minutes. Transfer the soup and dumplings to shallow bowls; discard the bay leaf.


Summer Squash and Corn Chowder September 9, 2010

Filed under: one dish,soup and stew — frappqueen @ 8:35 pm
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I made this soup on a VERY hot day. That was a very dumb idea. Sure, it was tasty, and sure it wasn’t too hard to make. But uh, eating SOUP when it is about 100 degrees in your house is not fun. It makes you sweatier and then it makes you want to pass out because you are 7 1/2 months pregnant and so hot you feel like you might die! Whoops! So, it might be good to make this NOW when it is lovely and fall-like and more like 65 in the evenings. Just a thought. You can totally still get yellow squash at your local place of produce, and if not, I bet butternut squash would be delightful in it’s place!

Summer Squash and Corn Chowder (from Cooking Light, August 2010)

2  slices applewood-smoked bacon
3/4  cup  sliced green onions, divided
1/4  cup  chopped celery
1  pound  yellow summer squash, chopped
1  pound  frozen white and yellow baby corn kernels, thawed and divided
2 1/4  cups  1% low-fat milk, divided
1  teaspoon  chopped fresh thyme
1/2  teaspoon  salt
1/4  teaspoon  freshly ground black pepper
1/8  teaspoon  salt
1/4  cup  (1 ounce) shredded extra-sharp cheddar cheese


Cook bacon in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat until crisp. Remove bacon from pan, reserving 2 teaspoons drippings in pan. Crumble bacon, and set aside. Add 1/2 cup onions, celery, and squash to drippings in pan; sauté 8 minutes or until vegetables are tender.

Reserve 1 cup corn; set aside. Place the remaining corn and 1 cup milk in a blender; process until smooth (I used my handy dandy Magic Bullet, it is my best friend!).  Add remaining 1 1/4 cups milk, thyme, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and pepper to blender; process just until combined. Add pureed mixture and reserved 1 cup corn to pan. Reduce heat to medium; cook 5 minutes or until thoroughly heated, stirring constantly. Stir in 1/8 teaspoon salt. Ladle about 1 1/2 cups soup into each of 4 bowls; top each serving with about 1 tablespoon bacon, 1 tablespoon remaining onions, and 1 tablespoon cheese.

Please eat in air conditioning, or else avoid during a heat wave. Enjoy!


Crock Pot Week! Chicken Noodle Soup March 24, 2010

Filed under: crock pot,poultry,soup and stew — frappqueen @ 5:35 pm
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This one is also from the 365 Blog. The thing that made it awesome is the dash of balsamic vinegar that they say to add. Genius! It made it have a really nice extra zing that was hard to identify. Fantastic! I used a lot of pre-cut veggies from the grocery store, which made it even easier to chuck in the crock. Try it!

Old Fashioned Chicken Noodle Soup

1 1/2 cups already cooked chicken meat
6 cups water
1 or 2 sweet potatoes, peeled and chunked
2 teaspoons chicken bouillon granules (check for gluten, this was clearly labeled gluten free)
1 cup broccoli florets
1 small onion, diced
1 tablespoon, plus 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
kosher salt to taste (probably a good 1 teaspoon, since the base is water)
50-cent piece size, or so, handful of raw spaghetti noodles to add at the end (I used Trader Joe’s brown rice)
1 large handful raw spinach leaves to add at the end
Parmesan and Asiago cheese, optional garnish


Toss everything into the crock up until the kosher salt. Let cook on low for 8 hours or more until sweet potatoes are tender. 15 minutes before serving add in the spaghetti and spinach ( I ended up leaving the spinach out as I had somehow miscalculated all of my ingredients and there was no way it was fitting in that pot!) Serve with some crusty bread or crackers and enjoy!


Pasta e Fagioli March 4, 2010

Filed under: soup and stew — frappqueen @ 9:54 pm

Otherwise referred to as Pasta Fazool, this is so yummy and simple to make. It is one of the best soups to make when you want to eat something warm and cozy on short notice, it takes maybe 20 minutes from start to finish. I try to keep the ingredients on hand at all times, just in case I need a fix!

Pasta e Fagioli courtesy of Giada DeLaurentis

4 sprigs fresh thyme
1 large sprig fresh rosemary
1 bay leaf
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
1 cup chopped onion
3 ounces pancetta, chopped
2 teaspoons minced garlic
5 3/4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
2 (14.5-ounce) cans red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
3/4 cup elbow macaroni
Freshly ground black pepper
Pinch red pepper flakes, optional
1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

*I add an 8 ounce can of tomato sauce…real italians I think generally do not eat this as a red soup, but well, i’m Irish! And I think the touch of tomato makes it perfect!


Wrap the thyme, rosemary, and bay leaf in a piece of cheesecloth and secure closed with kitchen twine. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil and butter in a heavy large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion, pancetta, and garlic and saute until the onion is tender, about 3 minutes. Add the broth, beans, and sachet of herbs. Cover and bring to a boil over high heat, then decrease the heat to medium and simmer until the vegetables are very tender, about 10 minutes. Discard the sachet. Puree 1 cup of the bean mixture in a blender until smooth. Before putting the puree back into the soup, add the macaroni (and the tomato sauce if you are adding it) and boil with the lid on until it is tender but still firm to the bite, about 8 minutes. Return the puree to the remaining soup in the saucepan and stir well. Season the soup with ground black pepper and red pepper flakes.

Ladle the soup into bowls. Sprinkle with some Parmesan and drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil just before serving.

Serve with crusty italian bread, or some homemade focaccia!

*Recipe from Foodtv.com!


Turkey Chili February 25, 2010

Filed under: one dish,poultry,soup and stew — frappqueen @ 7:42 pm
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This is one of our standard go-to recipes for weeknight dinners. It’s quick, easy, decently healthy and really tasty! I use the same general recipe that I stole from a Rachel Ray cookbook, plus I add a few of my own ingredients.  It calls for a can of diced tomatoes and what’s fun with that, is that you can switch it up a little bit. Sometimes I just use regular diced, sometimes if I can find fire roasted, I use those. This last time I used a can of Rotel- you know, the kind with diced tomatoes and little bits of chili peppers. It gave a nice extra kick of zest!

Turkey Chili

package of ground turkey (about 1.5 lbs)

2 tbsp olive oil

1 red bell pepper, chopped

1 onion, chopped (I use a red onion, it makes it prettier!)

2 cloves of garlic, minced

1 1/2 c. frozen corn kernels

1 can (32 oz) diced tomatoes (any kind will do!)

3 scallions, chopped

1 tsp. poultry seasoning

1 1/2 tbsp. chili powder (I don’t ever use that much!)

1 tbsp. ground cumin

1 8 oz. can tomato sauce

1 chili packet (you can find it by the taco stuff or by the packetted spices- I use the low salt kind)

salt and pepper to taste

shredded cheese, tortilla chips and sour cream for toppin’


In a deep saucepot over medium high heat, saute onion in oil for 3 to 5 minutes.

Add garlic and cook 1 minute more. Add turkey and brown, about five minutes. Add bell pepper, corn , tomato sauce and diced tomatoes, as well as the spices. Bring to a bubble, stir in the scallions and reduce heat to a simmer. Cook about 10 minutes, though I can never wait that long, I usually make it to 8 minutes or so! Top with cheese, sour cream and crunchy tortilla chips. Dig in!


Toasted Orzo Chicken Soup! February 23, 2010

Filed under: one dish,poultry,soup and stew — frappqueen @ 9:34 pm
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Sometimes, like when you are horribly congested for two weeks, and must take steroids to reduce the swelling and your throat hurts and you are sneezy and blowing your nose for forever…sometimes you just really want some nice comforting soup. Like chicken soup! And sometimes, you want some chicken soup that is a tad fancier and more interesting than regular kind. In case you haven’t figured it out, both these cases are referring to me! I am actually FINALLY feeling better, which is just lovely, but I had been rather miserable for awhile there. I made this soup on Sunday night and it really hit the spot. I also think it really helped me finish out being horribly sick, so I will consider it my super special cold ending soup as well as just plain delicious. It’s a Rachel Ray recipe, and the orzo is nice with all the veggies, but really its the lemon that gives it just a touch of extra fancy. It’s not too lemony, it’s just a surprising burst of flavor. Delicious!

soup's on!

I just had to post the above picture so everyone can drool and be envious of my favorite cast iron Martha Stewart pot. It’s ice blue! It matches my mixer! It would be more awesome if it were Le Creuset, but I’m not made of money you know!

Anyway, back to the soup!

Toasted Orzo Chicken Soup:

32-ounce container (4 cups) chicken stock
1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breast pieces or tenders
2 tablespoons butter
3/4 cup orzo pasta
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO)
1 small zucchini, finely chopped
1 carrot, finely chopped
1/2 small red bell pepper, finely chopped
2 shallots or 1 small onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
Salt and pepper

1 cup frozen peas
1/4 cup finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
2 teaspoons grated lemon peel


In a medium pot, bring the chicken stock and chicken to a simmer. Lower the heat and poach the chicken for 12 minutes.

Heat a dutch oven or soup pot over medium heat. Add the butter to melt. Add the orzo and cook, stirring, until deeply toasted, 3 to 5 minutes. Transfer to a plate or bowl

Add the oil, 2 turns of the pan, to the dutch oven. Add the zucchini, carrot, bell pepper, shallots and garlic; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are softened, 7 to 8 minutes. Return the orzo to the pot.

Remove the chicken from the stock. Skim and discard the fat from the stock; transfer the stock to the dutch oven. Chop, dice or shred the chicken and add to the soup with 2 cups water. Bring the soup to a boil and cook until the orzo is just tender, 5 minutes. Add the peas during the last minute of cooking. Turn off the heat; stir in the parsley and lemon peel. Serve immediately.


world’s best crockpot chicken tortilla soup January 15, 2010

Filed under: crock pot,one dish,poultry,soup and stew — frappqueen @ 6:19 pm
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Hooray! It’s Friday! That means tonight is Chinese food night in my house! No no, I’m not making it, we’re getting take out. But in the meantime, enjoy this recipe for chicken tortilla soup that we had on Wednesday!

soup does not look exciting here!

Mike and I LOVE chicken tortilla soup. We are obsessed with the chicken tortilla soup that Panera Bread had last winter and are crossing our fingers that it will be back soon! This recipe is still not quite like theirs, but its decent all the same. In fact, I’ve made at least 10 different variations on tortilla soup and this one is the best, plus it all goes in the crockpot so its super easy to make! The secret is in the enchilada sauce I think. Most recipes don’t ask for that and it is definitely what gives it that extra punch of flavor. yum!

Crockpot Chicken Tortilla Soup

1 1/2 pounds cooked, shredded chicken *

1 15 ounce can diced tomatoes (I use the kind with diced green chiles in it)

1 10 ounce can of enchilada sauce

1 10 ounce can of corn (if you can find the mexican corn blend, use it!)

1 medium onion, chopped

1 small can diced green chiles or jalapenos

1 box of low salt chicken broth

2 cloves of garlic, smashed

1 can of rinsed black beans (optional but we like it, makes the soup heartier)

salt and pepper to taste

cumin and chili powder to taste

1 envelope of taco seasoning


Put all the ingredients in the crockpot and cook it on low for 6-10 hours.

Serve with crushed tortilla chips over the top and mexican shredded cheese. You can also add a dollop of sour cream if you have the hankering! Mike and I eat two bowls each and there is enough leftover for our lunches the next day!

**for the shredded chicken: you can do it a few ways. My favorite two are a) lazy way- buy a rotisserie chicken that’s already cooked and shred it! or B) less lazy, low-fat way- put an inch of water in the bottom of a frying-type pan. It must come with a tight-fitting lid. Put the chicken in the pan and turn the stove on to medium heat. When it begins to boil, cover tightly and remove from heat. Let the chicken sit in the pan, untouched, for about 20 minutes or until the meat is cooked all the way through. Let it cool and shred!

with toppings, whoo hoo