I feel like I’ve been advertising the fact that Christmas break was almost over for weeks now to you guys. Pictures of puppies left and right. Forgive me, I was just trying to savor the last few days being home all day with my little fur-baby.
Now that school is back in full swing I’m back to being more crunched for time. I always strive for balance between school, work, and my little family. As well as sneaking a little me time in every now and again. Since my days are short, my meal prep also needs to shrink. In comes my crock pot. I feel like I use it every now and again, when I think of it, but every time I do I’m so excited to come home to warm cooked meal.
The genius, Julie, recently posted a Crock Pot Challenge where she suggested people use their slow cookers 10 times by the end of February. I LOVE this idea! I feel like I just don’t have a good recipe box for my crock pot so I always make the same things. Hopefully doing this challenge will take me outside my comfort zone a little and give me more ideas that I can make quick meals any night of the week.
My first crock pot recipe was inspired by soup that I had at a local restaurant. I loved the creamy, warm spice that it had. Pretty sure I’ve been thinking about the soup since I first had it back in November. Well, what’s better for a crock pot than soup?
I went out on a limb with the spices, dumped them in, and crossed my fingers that it would end up remotely close to the original. For once in my life, I matched it! The soup had some definite heat to it, but also had a warm savory flavor, with a ever-so-slight hint of cinnamon.
While it’s not the most beautiful thing to look at (come on, crock pot cooking isn’t exactly glamorous) it is one of the best tasting things to come out of this kitchen, possibly ever. That’s a bold statement.
So who wants to take part in the crock pot challenge with me? I dare you! 10 meals by the end of February. And if you don’t get 10, no big deal. Just break that puppy out of the back of your cupboard, brush off the dust, and get slow cookin’.
And if you have any great crock pot recipes of your own, share them in the comments below!
Curried Butternut Squash Soup in a Crock Pot
Prep Time: 2 minutes
Cook Time: 8 hours
Keywords: slow-cooker soup/stew
Ingredients (8 servings)
- 32 oz cubed butternut squash (about 1 large squash, peeled, and cubed)
- 32 oz chicken stock (or vegetable)
- 1 large onion, minced
- half of a 4 oz. can of diced jalapenos
- 1 T curry powder
- 1/2 T garlic powder
- 1/2 t cumin
- 1 t sea salt
- 1/2 t ginger
- a dash of cinnamon
- 4 oz Neufchatel cheese (or cream cheese)
- fresh cilantro (optional)
Add all ingredients besides cream cheese to a crock pot
Stir to combine
Cover and set to low
Cook 7-8 hours
Carefully blend soup until creamy, either in a blender, or with an immersion blender
Add cream cheese to blended soup
Turn heat on the crock pot to high to melt the cheese, stir in until there are no chunks of cream cheese
Serve, garnishing bowls with fresh cilantro