26 High-Protein, 400-Calorie Dinners You Can Make in a Slow Cooker
It’s easy to get a high-protein dinner on the table when you use a slow cooker. These dinners feature proteins like beef, chicken and turkey for at least 15 grams of protein per serving and 400 calories or fewer. Recipes like Curried Shrimp with Cauliflower and Chickpeas and Slow-Cooker Carne Picada Tacos with Avocado Salsa are healthy and delicious.
Slow-Cooker Braised Beef with Carrots & Turnips
The spice blend in this healthy beef stew recipe--cinnamon, allspice and cloves--may conjure images of apple pie, but the combo is a great fit in savory applications too. Serve over creamy polenta or buttered whole-wheat egg noodles.
Slow-Cooked Ranch Chicken and Vegetables
This creamy, veggie-packed chicken dinner comes together easily in your slow-cooker-and makes enough for another night's casserole (see associated recipe)!
Slow-Cooker Carne Picada Tacos with Avocado Salsa
Loosely translated as "minced meat," the traditional texture of carne picada ranges from finely chopped to ground. Here we start with brisket, which becomes nice and tender in the slow cooker, then shred and chop the meat before serving. The seasoning is flavorful but not too spicy. Blistered jalapeños added at the end will satisfy the heat-lovers in the family. Pile the brisket into warmed corn tortillas, with lettuce, the jalapeños, cheese and avocado salsa for a healthy dinner that'll wake up your taco night routine.
Slow-Cooker Beef Stroganoff
This slow-cooker Beef Stroganoff recipe brings together tender beef and fresh mushrooms served over hot noodles with a creamy sauce.
Curried Shrimp with Cauliflower and Chickpeas
In this delicious main dish, cauliflower is slow-cooked with curry powder and aromatic vegetables, and shrimp and chickpeas are added in towards the end of the cooking time. Served over brown basmati rice and sprinkled with cilantro and peanuts, this dish will get a thumbs up from anyone eating it!
Slow-Cooker Mediterranean Chicken & Orzo
Perk up basic chicken breast and whole-wheat orzo with the vibrant flavors of the Mediterranean, like lemon and olives. This load-and-go recipe makes a complete and satisfying meal; just add a green salad.
Slow-Cooker Turkey Chili with Butternut Squash
The sweetness of the butternut squash tames the kick from cayenne in this healthy turkey chili, making this easy crock pot chili just right for kids and adults alike, whether for weeknight dinners or tailgating parties. For those who prefer a spicier chili, just pass hot sauce at the table. This chili also freezes well, so save leftovers for hearty and healthy dinners and lunches for weeks to come.
Pasta Puttanesca with Beef
This easy slow cooker ground beef and pasta recipe makes a great meal any night of the week.
This hearty jambalaya is bursting with chicken, smoked turkey sausage, and shrimp. It takes just 25 minutes to prep in the morning and then your slow cooker will work its magic and deliver a tasty meal at the end of the day.
Slow-Cooker Sweet & Sour Scallops
This recipe for slow-cooker scallops is sure to become a tried-and-true favorite for any seafood lover. Tender scallops quickly poach in a sweet and spicy sauce that has been cooking for hours. Brown rice completes the meal.
Dijon Turkey with Apple-Sage Wheat Berries
The turkey tenderloin in this recipe marinates in a Dijon mustard and sage mixture while the wheat berries cook in the slow cooker. Then they're both combined with apple wedges and cooked just a bit longer with the marinade. Delicious!
Corn Bread-Topped Chicken Enchilada Casserole
For a twist on the classic chicken enchilada casserole, this slow cooker recipe is topped with homemade corn bread.
Slow-Cooked Beef with Carrots & Cabbage
In this main-dish recipe, the pot roast is slow-cooked with carrots and low-sodium beef broth. Toward the end of the cooking time, shredded cabbage is added in to round out the meal. Each of the two servings has just 215 calories.
Moroccan Lamb Tagine
A tagine is a Moroccan stew that is named after the earthenware dish it is cooked in. We use a slow cooker for this tasty version, which features lamb, sweet potatoes, dates and olives.
Mediterranean Shrimp and Pasta
This dish is bursting with flavor thanks to the long, low-temperature cooking. Simply combine all ingredients in a slow cooker and all your dinner work is done for you!
Spicy Chicken Lasagna
Instead of spending hours at the stove making an Italian tomato sauce for your lasagna, let your slow cooker do the work. Your family will love the chicken and mushrooms in this makeover recipe of traditional lasagna.
Slow-Cooker Cod with Tomato-Balsamic Jam
Mellow, slightly sweet and devoid of the overt fishy flavor that's polarizing for so many, this slow-cooker cod is perfect for pairing with a show-stopping sauce like this tomato-balsamic jam. Diced pancetta provides a salty counterpart to the sweet onion, tomatoes, vinegar and honey and gives the jam complexity. Garnish with fresh thyme sprigs, if desired.
Turkey and Pasta Primavera
Lean turkey and colorful, tasty vegetables star in this easy slow-cooked pasta dish.
Chicken & Cornmeal Dumplings
This version of chicken and dumplings provides plenty of vegetables with 5 grams of fiber per serving. Dumplings are made with 1 part flour and 1 part cornmeal to make them standout from a traditional flour dumpling. This hearty dinner option is the perfect comfort meal.
This Mexican-inspired meal is an easy crowd-pleaser. Savory pulled pork is served atop crisp corn tortillas and topped with sour cream and salsa in this simple slow-cooker recipe.
Layered Brisket Dinner with Tangy Mustard Sauce
Perfectly seasoned red potatoes and baby carrots accompany this filling brisket dish.
Mustard-Maple Chicken with Wild Rice Pilaf
This slow-cooker meal is simple to prepare and will elicit rave reviews from everyone at your table. The wild rice pilaf is started early in the slow cooker and followed up by the chicken and sweet and tangy maple-mustard sauce. It's a mouthwatering combination!
Lamb & Rice
The sauce in this recipe is a heavenly mixture of tomatoes, spices, herbs and mustard. It provides amazing flavor to the lamb as they spend up to 12 hours together in the slow cooker.
Asian Broccoli and Beef
Skip the high-sodium take-out meal and make this flavorful slow-cooker broccoli and beef dish.
Weeknight Honey-Orange Chicken with Butternut Squash
Combine orange juice, cornstarch, soy sauce, honey, ginger, garlic, salt and crushed red pepper with chicken and butternut squash in this delicious slow-cooker recipe. Serve over high-protein quinoa, which contains all nine essential amino acids.
Veggies, Turkey, and Pasta
Smother pasta with this slow cooker vegetable and turkey sauce for an easy and satisfying meal.