Monday Mashup: Adventures with a Slow Cooker

Hello friends, 

As much as I try to be a positive go-getter, Mondays get the best of me! 


I washed all of my bedding yesterday and was adamant about not letting Kingston and Lulu in my freshly laundered bed. But while Sean and I were getting ready for work this morning, these two jumped in and snuggled could I make them leave?!

Needless to say, they were NOT happy when I told them they had to go to their own room (yes, they have their own bedroom) because it was back to work time! 

What did I do this weekend?


Well, I spent Saturday relaxing and binge watching Narcos on Netflix! Have you seen it yet? Ohmygosh, one of my new faves!

 I think this baby is going through a growth spurt because I've been super tired this past week and decided to treat myself to a day of rest! ;) #treatyoself


But don't worry, Sean is keeping me active. Yesterday, he made me wake up and take a 2 hour walk around North Park Lake! Even though I've been exercising almost everyday for the past 7 months, walking in the heat wore me out! 

After our walk, we went grocery shopping at Whole Foods and began our meal prep for the week!

I'm trying to use my slow cooker more this week because as much as I love to cook, I am so exhausted when I get home from work that I don't feel like chopping, sautéing, and cleaning up. But I rarely have luck with the slow cooker. Neither Sean or I like stew, chili, roast, and those classic comfort food crockpot meals. So we've had countless Pinterest fails! 

Plus, I have a few other complaints about slow cookers:
1. My major beef with slow cooker recipes is that even on low, they only take around 6 hours...and I'm gone for over 8 hours, leaving the highly anticipated meal either mush or dried out by the time I get home. Ughh. But since I live less than 10 minutes from work, I'm going to run home at lunch time and throw everything in the magic contraption so that it cooks for the proper amount of time. Fingers crossed!

2. A LOT of recipes require pre-cooking! What is the point of a slow cooker if I have to pre-cook the meat and dirty a pan?! Am I right?

But I'm committed to giving this thing a try this week...despite ALL the prep work!

So what's on the menu?

Salads: Spring mix, cherry tomatoes, carrot shreds, cucumber slices, baked tofu, and baby potatoes with a lemon basil vinaigrette. >>>


I'm going to tweak each of these recipes to lighten them up and add my own flare! ;) 

Monday: Zuppa Toscano Soup
Tuesday: Brisket and Brie Quesadillas 
Wednesday: Pappardelle with Cauliflower Alfredo Sauce and Grilled Chicken
Thursday: Cashew Chicken and Brown Rice
Friday: Dining out!

I'll let you know how these meals turn out, so stay tuned!

*Update: Here's my lightened up version of Zuppa Toscana soup! 

Tell me, what are your go-to slow cooker recipes? Help a girl out!