The slow cooker is a favorite kitchen tool for getting dinner on the table, but the comfort food dishes it helps to prepare can make for some heavy eating.
Now, Better Homes and Gardens is out with a new cookbook of more than 150 calorie-smart recipes for the slow cooker.
Better Homes and Gardens Skinny Slow Cooker ($19.99, softcover, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt) shows how to lighten up those slow-cooker favorites, like this recipe for Sassy Pork Chops that has just 215 calories per serving.
Sassy Pork Chops
2 medium red, green and/or yellow sweet peppers, cut into strips
1 cup thinly sliced celery (2 stalks)
1/2 cup chopped onion (1 medium)
8 pork loin chops, with bone, cut 3/4-inch thick
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/4 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
1/4 cup orange juice
1 tablespoon chopped chipotle chile peppers in adobo sauce
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
LAYER sweet peppers, celery, and onion in a 4- to 5-quart slow cooker. Season chops with garlic salt and black pepper. In a very large skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Cook chops, half at a time, until brown on both sides. Add chops to cooker. In a small bowl combine broth, orange juice, chipotle peppers, and oregano. Pour over the chops in cooker.
COVER and cook on low-heat setting for 6 to 7 hours or on high-heat setting for 3 to 3 1/2 hours.
USING a slotted spoon, transfer chops and vegetables to a serving platter, discarding cooking liquid.
Yield: 8 servings.