Slow Cooker Cowboy Beans

Smoked paprika gives these cowboy beans a deep, woodsy flavor, but can you guess the secret ingredient?Summer is for entertaining, and when the crew gathers at my home,  I think about making a BIG pot of beans.  After all, they’re delicious, go with just about anything I dish up, are budget friendly, and usually help me uphold my reputation of putting out the healthiest of spreads! But then I remember the downside,  they take so darn  long to cook and when it’s 90+ degrees outside, I ask myself, “Do I really want to turn on the oven?”   After reading this month’s Recipe Redux theme:

Beat the Heat with the Slow Cooker /Instant Pot/Pressure Cooker   

I’m ready to prepare that pot o’ beans sans the oven, because any recipe that requires a prolonged cooking time has slow cooker potential! My original recipe, requiring 2 1/2 hours of baking time, now sounds promising.    Not only did I tinker  with the cooking method, I also made the recipe vegan using smoked paprika for a smokey taste without bacon.  It’s a little sweet and a little spicy with a secret ingredient that  unifies all the  earthy flavors ; can you guess the  ingredient? (Insert sound of drum roll please.)  A of a mug of black coffee left over from my morning pot. Surprised?

This side is not only delicious and easy to make without heating up the kitchen,  it’s also low in fat, high in protein, high in fiber and delivers 15% DV* of calcium , 25 % DV* iron.

Get out your slow cookers today and discover more ideas from my colleagues in the links below for delicious, healthy recipes to beat the heat.

*Daily Value based on a 2000 calorie diet.

 

 

Slow Cooker Cowboy Beans

by Diane Boyd

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 6 hours

Keywords: slow-cooker side vegan summer

Ingredients (serves 6)

  • 1 pound dried pinto or navy beans, washed and picked clean of debris
  • 10 cups water, divided
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 medium onion
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 1 cup strong coffee
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoons brown mustard
  • 1/2 cup barbecue sauce+2 tablespoons
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • dash of hot sauce
  • ground black pepper

Instructions

1. Soak beans in 6 cups of water overnight. Drain beans.

2. In a Dutchoven add oil and stir in onions ; cook over medium heat for 6 to 8 minutes until beginning to brown. Add garlic, and cook for 30 additional minutes.

3. Add beans,water, coffee, . Bring to simmer over high heat and cook for 10 minutes. Add brown sugar, mustard , 1/2 cup barbecue sauce, hot sauce and salt. Return to boil over high heat.

4. Remove from heat and pour contents of Dutch oven into a slow cooker. Cook on high for 6 hours. Add smoked paprika last 30 minutes of cooking. Before serving stir in remaining barbecue sauce, season to taste with black pepper. (Beans can be refrigerator in an airtight container for several days.)

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Smoky Quinoa Breakfast Bowl with Avocado

Boosting protein at breakfast can be as easy as adding two scrambled egg whites to a  delicious and trendy  plant-based  bowl.in-style I enjoyed seeing many of my registered dietitian (RD/RDN) friends in  Boston last weekend at the Food and Nutrition Conference and Expo (FNCE); all committed to staying abreast of the current  scientific research  in the field. Please take note: this is what makes registered dietitians your source for credible nutrition information. I hope in the coming weeks to share nuggets of knowledge learned and more yummy ways to  integrate that knowledge into your meals and snacks.

On the heels of my trip to Boston, is the October Recipe Redux. Here’s our challenge: Plant Protein Power Bowls: Packed with protein, fiber and color, plant protein bowls are trendy and delicious.

Today I share

 Using  the whole grain quinoa as a base (flavored with smokey paprika), I  slip in some high quality protein as egg whites  allowing me to  keep the calories low and still meet my protein needs early in the morning. Here’s a little fact that influences my food choices:  older adults need less calories, but NOT less protein.  To this high fiber,  lean protein base,  I add sauted grape tomatoes in olive oil and top with heart healthy avocado cubes. Tossing in some fresh oregano from the garden adds even more color and flavor. Please visit the links at the bottom of this post to see how my Recipe Redux colleagues are packing in protein, fiber and color into their trendy bowls.
Smoky Quinoa Breakfast Bowl with Avocado
Smoky Quinoa Breakfast Bowl with Avocado

by Diane Boyd, MBA, RD, LDN

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Ingredients (serves 4)

  • 2 teaspoons olive oil, divided
  • 1/3 cup chopped onion
  • 1 clove minced garlic
  • 3 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1 cup rinsed tricolor quinoa
  • 2 cups vegetable stock
  • 1 ripe avocado
  • 2 teaspoons lime juice
  • pinch of salt
  • 8 egg whites
  • 1 cup cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
  • fresh oregano

Instructions

1. Heat one teaspoon of oil in a saucepan. Add onion and cook over medium -low heat until soft, about 3 minutes.

2. Add minced garlic and cook 1 minute more. Add smoked paprika. Stir and cook 1 more minute. Add rinsed quinoa and stir to combine.

3. Add vegetable stock and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer 10-15 minutes.

4. Sprinkle the cubed avocado with lime juice and a pinch of salt. Mix and gently set aside.

5. Place egg whites to a microwave safe bowl, and microwave on high for 1 minute. Stir. Continue to microwave about 30 seconds longer or until egg whites are set.

6. In a separate saute pan, heat the remaining 1 teaspoon oil. Add halved tomatoes. Cook over medium heat until tomatoes soften and the skins begin to wrinkle, about 2 minutes.

7.Add quinoa and cooked egg whites to sauted tomatoes. Stir to combine. Spoon into serving bowls.

8. Top each bowl with cube avocado. Sprinkle with fresh oregano.

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