Halibut with Fennel, Capers, and Lemon
Serves 2 / Surprisingly, a slow cooker works well for some quick dinners, too; its even temperature is ideal for simmering fish. Serving tip: Accompany with brown basmati rice and a salad of chopped kale tossed with feta, walnuts, olive oil, and lemon juice.

Prep time: 8 1/2 minutes
Cook time: 20-30 minutes

3/4 cup dry white wine
2 6- to 8-ounce halibut fillets, or other white fish
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
2 small cloves garlic, minced
1/2 lemon, thinly sliced
1 small fennel bulb, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons capers, drained
1/4 cup chopped kalamata olives, rinsed and drained
1 sprig fresh rosemary

1. Place wine in a 4-quart slow cooker. Sprinkle fish fillets with salt and pepper and place in slow cooker. Top fish with garlic, lemon, and fennel; sprinkle with capers and olives. Add rosemary sprig. Cover and cook on high for 20-30 minutes, until fish is opaque and cooked through.

Nutrition Facts Per Serving:
Calories: 261 calories
% fat calories: 20
Fat: 6g
Saturated Fat: 1g
Cholesterol: 54mg
Protein: 38g
Carbohydrate: 14g
Fiber: 5g
Sodium: 780mg


Spicy Cajun Jambalaya
Serves 6 / Prep tips: For variety, add oysters or chicken sausage, or stir in chopped greens when you add the shrimp. If your slow cooker is an older model, use a slightly higher temp to be sure the rice cooks completely. Serving tip: Pair with garlic bread to sop up the hearty sauce.

Prep time: 16 minutes
Cook time: 4-8 hours

1 tablespoon olive oil
8 ounces boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces
1 large green bell pepper, cored and chopped
1 small red onion, chopped
2 stalks celery, diced
2 teaspoons bottled chopped garlic
1 28-ounce can diced tomatoes, with juice
1 8-ounce can no-salt-added tomato sauce
1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
2 bay leaves
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 -1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
3/4 cup brown rice
1 pound medium raw shrimp, (fresh or frozen and thawed) shelled and deveined
2 tablespoons finely chopped Italian parsley

1. Combine all ingredients except shrimp and parsley in a 4-quart slow cooker; stir to mix well. Cover and cook on high for 4 hours or low for 8 hours. Add shrimp and parsley, and cook for an additional 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

Nutrition Facts Per Serving:
Calories: 291 calories
% fat calories: 18
Fat: 6g
Saturated Fat: 1g
Cholesterol: 141mg
Protein: 30g
Carbohydrate: 30g
Fiber: 4g
Sodium: 455mg


Dried Fig and Plum Tagine
Serves 6 / Dried figs and prunes add vitamins, fiber, and zing to this Moroccan stew. Serving tip: Serve with whole-wheat couscous or polenta and lightly braised greens.

Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 2-6 hours

1/2 cup chopped dried apricots
1/4 cup raisins
1/4 cup chopped dried plums
1/2 cup chopped dried Turkish figs
2 15-ounce cans garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
1 medium yellow onion, sliced
3 medium carrots, finely chopped
1/2 cup whole raw almonds
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/8 teaspoon white pepper
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1-2 tablespoons unsalted butter
11/2 cups low-sodium vegetable broth

1. Place all ingredients in 4-quart slow cooker and stir to mix. Cover and cook on high for 2 hours or low for 4-6 hours. Season with salt and pepper.

Nutrition Facts Per Serving:
Calories: 330 calories
% fat calories: 29
Fat: 11g
Saturated Fat: 2g
Cholesterol: 5mg
Protein: 10g
Carbohydrate: 53g
Fiber: 11g
Sodium: 261mg