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Frugal foodie: Crockpot bean recipes

corn-soupAs the temperature begins to cool, the price of produce often begins to rise in grocery stores while your own garden is being put to bed for the winter.

One of the best ways to stay healthy and watch your food dollar is to break out the slow cooker and start eating more delicious, healthy beans!

Beans provide important fiber and protein, and they’re perfect to throw into a variety of slow-cooker recipes.

Simply toss the ingredients in the cooker before leaving for your shift; when you return, your home will be filled with the aroma of a home-cooked meal. All you have to do is grab a bowl and enjoy!

Black Bean and Corn Soup

  • 2¼ cups dry black beans (1 pound)
  • 1 10-ounce package frozen whole kernel corn
  • 1 cup chopped onion (1 large)
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • ¼ to ½ teaspoon bottled hot pepper sauce
  • 4 cups boiling water
  • 1 14½-ounce can Mexican-style stewed tomatoes, undrained
  • ¼ cup of chopped green onion (optional)

Directions:

Rinse beans; place in a large saucepan. Add enough water to cover beans by two inches. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, uncovered, for ten minutes. Remove from heat. Cover; let stand for one hour. Drain and rinse beans.

In a 3½- or 4-quart crockery cooker, combine the beans, corn, onion, garlic, cumin, salt, coriander and hot pepper sauce. Pour boiling water over all.

Cover and cook on the low-heat setting for eight to ten hours, or on the high-heat setting for four to five hours. To serve, mash beans slightly to thicken. Stir in undrained tomatoes and sprinkle with chopped green onion.

Shopping list for Black Bean and Corn Soup:

  • 1 pound dry black beans
  • 1 10-ounce package frozen whole kernel corn
  • 1 large onion
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • Small container ground cumin
  • Salt
  • Small container ground coriander
  • Small bottle hot pepper sauce
  • 1 14½-ounce can Mexican-style stewed tomatoes, undrained
  • Green onion

White Chili Soup

  • 3 15- to 15½-ounce cans great northern, pinto or white kidney (cannellini) beans, rinsed and drained
  • 2½ cups chopped cooked chicken
  • 1 cup chopped onion (1 large)
  • 1½ cups chopped red, green and/or yellow sweet pepper (2 medium)
  • 2 fresh jalapeño chile peppers, seeded and chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano, crushed
  • 3½ cups chicken broth
  • Shredded Monterey Jack cheese (optional)
  • Broken tortilla chips (optional)

Directions:

In a 3½- or 4-quart crockery cooker, combine the drained beans, chicken, onion, sweet pepper, jalapeño peppers, garlic, cumin, salt and oregano. Stir in chicken broth.

Cover and cook on low-heat setting for eight to ten hours, or on high-heat setting for four to five hours. Ladle soup into bowls. If desired, top each serving with some shredded cheese and tortilla chips.

Shopping list for White Chili Soup:

  • 3 15- to 15½-ounce cans great northern, pinto or white kidney (cannellini) beans
  • Cooked chicken
  • 1 large onion
  • 2 medium red, green and/or yellow sweet pepper
  • 2 jalapeño chile peppers
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 small container ground cumin
  • Salt
  • 1 small container dried oregano
  • 24 ounces chicken broth
  • 1 small package shredded Monterey Jack cheese (optional)
  • 1 small package tortilla chips (optional)

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Anita Bruzzese

Anita Bruzzese is an award-winning journalist. Her book, 45 Things You Do That Drive Your Boss Crazy...And How to Avoid Them, was named one of the top 10 most notable business books by the New York Post in 2007. For more information, visit her Website at 45things.com.
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