Slow Cooker Stuffed Pepper Soup #SundaySupper

Packed with veggies, lean ground beef and topped with rice, Slow Cooker Stuffed Pepper Soup will quickly become a favorite meal for busy weeknights.

Slow Cooker Stuffed Pepper Soup

Can you believe that school starts up in a few weeks? Or maybe, school has already started where you live… it’s nuts! I feel like this summer flew by in the blink of an eye.

This month features lots of recipes on the blog as well as on the Books n’ Cooks Facebook page for heading back to school. In particular, this weekend, the #SundaySupper crew have come together to bring you some great Back-to-School dinners, to help deal with those crazy hectic weeknights. From slow cooker and Instant Pot meals to skillet and sheet pan dinners, the #SundaySupper tastemakers have a great set of recipes to make school nights easier. You can find the list of those recipes at the bottom of this post.

Slow Cooker Stuffed Pepper Soup

It feels a bit weird to be posting a soup recipe when it’s 90-100F out, but I’ve really been enjoying this soup for both lunch and dinner this summer. I love that it’s packed with vegetables and even thought my hubby doesn’t like any of those vegetables, he does like this soup. I also love that it makes enough for leftovers for our family, making weekday lunches a bit easier. In fact, most frequently, I make a batch of this soup on Sunday morning, let it cook throughout the day, and then package it up for lunch for the week. Can’t go wrong with that. But for dinner, with a little prep ahead, it’s a life saver. I prep everything the night (or sometimes weekend) before and let the soup simmer away in the slow cooker all day. I love coming home to a meal that’s pretty much ready to plate!

Recipe Notes: 

  • Instead of using canned tomatoes, I have also made this with fresh tomatoes. If you have tomatoes on hand, dice 4-6 small to medium tomatoes (by weight, mine were about 18 ounces, diced). The result is a slightly sweeter soup.
  • I added an extra cup of chicken broth to this recipe, in part because I do make and portion this out for a week’s worth of lunches. I find that the rice soaks up some of the liquid when it sits in my fridge and is reheated, so 3 cups is necessary, instead of the 2 cups that the recipe originally calls for.
  • This recipe was written to make in the slow cooker, however, I’d imagine that it would do just fine simmering away on the stove for an hour or two if you prefer.
  • Prep Ahead: I have prepped everything the night before – everything before actually turning on the slow cooker – and stuck the slow cooker pot in the fridge for the night. Then returned to the slow cooker to cook the following morning. Everything worked out great and dinner was ready when I came home from work that evening.

Slow Cooker Stuffed Pepper Soup

Adapted from SkinnyTaste Fast and Slow (p. 50)

Serves 6

Ingredients: 

  • 1 lb. 93% lean ground beef
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 3 c. reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 2-14.5 oz. cans petite diced tomatoes
  • 1 3/4 c. canned tomato sauce
  • 1 Tbs. dried Italian seasoning
  • 3/4 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 c. cooked white or brown rice (whatever you prefer)

In a large skillet set over medium heat. Stirring and breaking into small pieces every few minutes. When completely cooked, drain fat and transfer beef to a slow cooker. Return skillet to the stove and saute onions, bell peppers, and garlic until vegetables are translucent. Transfer to slow cooker. Add chicken broth, tomatoes, tomato sauce, Italian seasoning, salt and black pepper to slow cooker and stir to combine.

Cook on high for 4 hours or on low for 8 hours.

Serve hot with 1/2 cup of rice.

Slow Cooker Stuffed Pepper Soup by Books n Cooks

More Back to School Dinners

Beef and Pork

Pastas, Soups, Rice and Stews

Poultry

Sunday Supper MovementJoin the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. To get more great Sunday Supper Recipes, visit our website or check out our Pinterest board. Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

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Slow Cooker Beef Tacos with Salsa Verde

Slow Cooker Beef Tacos with Salsa Verde are an easy, flavorful dinner for busy weeknights.

Slow Cooker Beef Tacos with Salsa Verde are an easy, flavorful dinner for busy weeknights.

Welcome to Farmer’s Mark Week, hosted by Cynthia at Feeding Big and Christie at A Kitchen Hoor’s Adventures! This week, a group of bloggers will be sharing recipes inspired by what we find at our local farmer’s markets, or for those with a green thumb, in our gardens. You can find recipes here on Books n’ Cooks today and Wednesday, but be sure to search social media for #FarmersMarketWeek for more great recipes!

The past couple of weeks have been absolutely horrible at work. For the past two weeks, I came home with stress headaches every day and was just absolutely exhausted. I’d come home almost every day craving quiet and wine and the ability to zone out from the world. I wanted to forget about the people who thought it was ok to send insulting and counterproductive emails to me, when in fact, they were struggling to do their own job. And we won’t talk about how I’m to blame for them not having not any common sense or basic communication skills.

I’d come home with so little energy that several nights, I couldn’t even bother to season meat and veggies for my hubby to grill. Pathetic, right?

Slow Cooker Beef Tacos with Salsa Verde are an easy, flavorful dinner for busy weeknights.

After one week of that, I finally got my act together to make life a little easier for myself, at least at home. This slow cooker beef tacos was a life saver last week. I’ve made it several times before. It truly requires minimal effort. Slice those onions and peppers from your farmers market or garden (or grocery store – for the really crazy weeks, buy two packages of presliced fajita veggies and skip the slicing all together), dump into the slow cooker and walk out the door for work. Shredding the beef only takes a minute when you get home before you can serve, and likely have some for leftovers. The salsa verde gives the beef and vegetables a bright, slightly sweet flavor and has just a hint of a bite. (If you like things spicier, I bet you could throw a few sliced jalapenos in here as well).

The other reason I really like this meal is that it’s so easy to customize to what’s in season and to individual tastes. I’ve made this with all colors of bell peppers as well as both red and white onions. You can even do all onions or peppers, if someone in your house has an aversion to one or the other. Same goes for toppings. I favor a little more fresh produce, the tomato and avocado (or guacamole) that you see above but my hubby adds more salsa, cheese, and even a bit of sour cream to his tacos. The options are endless.

Slow Cooker Beef Tacos with Salsa Verde

Enjoy this dish now while farmers markets and gardens are producing tons of produce, or bookmark it for a busy weeknight for later. And don’t forget to check out the other recipes featuring farmers market produce at the bottom of this post! Bon appetit!

Prep Ahead: Slice onions and peppers the night before (or even a couple nights before), and store in an airtight container for easy prep the morning you want to make this.

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Slow Cooker Beef Tacos with Salsa Verde

Slow Cooker Beef Tacos with Peppers, Onions & Salsa Verde

Slow Cooker Beef Tacos with Salsa Verde are an easy, flavorful dinner for busy weeknights.
Course Main Course
Cuisine Mexican
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 hours
Total Time 10 hours 10 minutes
Servings 6
Calories 351 kcal
Author Liz

Ingredients

  • 2 medium to large onions white, red, or a combination of the two, cut into thin strips
  • 2 large bell peppers any color, cut into thin strips
  • 1.5-2 lb. lean flank steak trimmed of fat if necessary
  • 16-20 oz. salsa verde
  • tortillas
  • Toppings of choice: additional salsa diced tomato, cheese, avocado/guacamole, sour cream, etc.

Instructions

  1. Place sliced peppers and onions in the bottom of the slow cooker. Place flank steak on top of vegetables. Top with salsa.
  2. Cook on low for for 10 hours.
  3. Shred beef and return to slow cooker.
  4. Serve hot with the onions and peppers in salsa verde, in a tortilla with toppings of your choice.

Recipe Notes

Nutrition calculated based on the larger quantities noted for the beef, vegetables and salsa. It does not include tortillas and toppings.

A Books n’ Cooks Original recipe.

Looking for a side dish to accompany these tacos? Try my Cilantro Lime Rice.

Slow Cooker Beef Tacos with Salsa Verde are an easy, flavorful dinner for busy weeknights.

Slow Cooker Beef Tacos with Salsa Verde on Books n Cooks

#FarmersMarketWeek - A week of #FarmFresh recipes

#FarmersMarketWeek Monday Recipes

Aunt Mary’s Refrigerator Bread & Butter Pickles by Corn, Beans, Pigs & Kids
BBQ Corn on the Cob with dilled butter by Red Cottage Chronicles
Beef Tacos with Peppers, Onions & Salsa Verde by Books n’ Cooks
Blistered Tomato Dutch Baby by A Kitchen Hoor’s Adventures
Blueberry Crisp for Two by Family Around The Table
Blueberry Scones by The Freshman Cook
Cherry Stout Jam by The Redhead Baker
Farmer’s Market Breakfast Casserole by New South Charm
Freshly Dug Potato Salad by Culinary Adventures with Camilla
Intro post by Bear & Bug Eats
Israeli Salad by Caroline’s Cooking
Marinated Mozzarella and Tomato Appetizers by Jolene’s Recipe Journal
Peach and Blueberry Overnight Oats by Simple and Savory
Peach Bourbon Jam by Feeding Big
Peaches and Cream Overnight Oats by Cooking with Carlee
Strawberry Mango Jam by Palatable Pastime
Summer Veggies & Kielbasa Sheet Pan Dinner by Tip Garden

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Beef Tacos #MexicanRecipes

Today kicks off a weeks worth of #MexicanRecipes. Below is a handful of recipes to help inspire you for next weekend’s Cinco de Mayo festivities, followed by what’s currently my favorite recipe for Beef Tacos – easy to make, easy to scale for entertaining.

#MexicanRecipes
Happy #MexicanRecipes
Let’s have a fiesta of Cinco de Mayo inspired recipes all week long!

Check back each and every day for new recipes by following along with the hashtag #MexicanRecipes on social media.

Are you a food blogger interested in posting within our blogging community? Find out more by joining us online: Holiday Fun with Our Blog Friends.

Over the past couple of years, my husband has gotten really into dorky board games. The kind that take a while to set up, a long time to read and learn the rules, and sometimes a long time to play. I enjoy some of the games (I love playing Pandemic Legacy with friends, and am really into the collaborative version of Orleans) but I don’t play often enough to want to learn a lot of new games. My hubby is the opposite and would play a different game every night if he could.

My hubby has been getting his fill of board games with twice monthly board game nights. We host about half of the time, and the group that is coming seems to get larger every time. It’s made entertaining a bit of a challenge – a large group on a work night. I need something that can either be made a day before and reheated or is crazy quick to prepare in large quantities. With the warmer weather, chili no longer seems like the best choice. We’ve been grilling some, but these beef tacos are great for the spring rainy nights. The meat mixture is easy to make, easy to scale, can be made ahead and reheated the day of on the stove or in the slow cooker, and can be frozen or reused in other Mexican recipes (burritos, burrito bowls, and quesadillas) during the week if we have leftovers. We love the flavor (not spicy at all) and I love the hidden bell pepper for a little extra veggie.

Beef Tacos

Adapted from SkinnyTaste Fast and Slow (p. 139)

Serves 4

Ingredients for the Taco Meat:

  • 1 lb. lean ground beef
  • 1/2 onion, finely chopped
  • 1/2 bell pepper, finely chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • 1/2 tsp. dried oregano
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp. black pepper
  • 1/2 c. tomato sauce

Tacos:

  • Hard or soft taco shells
  • Choice of toppings: shredded lettuce, tomatoes, cheese, salsa (we like homemade salsa), sour cream, guacamole

Make the Taco Meat: In a large skillet over medium heat, brown ground beef, breaking it up into small pieces. When mostly browned, drain out extra fat at the bottom of the pan. Return to stove and add onion, bell pepper and garlic. Cooking until remaining beef is browned and vegetables are softened, about 5 minutes.

Add remaining ingredients – herbs, spices, and tomato sauce. Stir well. Lower heat and cook, stirring occasionally, on low for 15-20 minutes, until warmed throughout.

Serve hot with desired taco shells and toppings. Or, use in burritos, burrito bowls, or quesadillas.

Recipe Notes: Taco meat may be frozen for use later. It can also cook throughout the day in a slow cooker (6-8 hours on low, or 3 on high) if prepared in the morning, or is being reheated.

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Slow Cooker Beef Stew

We’re having unseasonably warm weather this year, but that doesn’t mean that I’m not craving your typical winter comfort foods, like pastas and stews. A very busy month has had me looking towards recipes that require little extra work from me and meals that make large quantities so that we’re set for leftovers for a couple days (or in this case, almost the entire week). This stew recipe, heavily adapted from my uncle’s recipe, fits that bill. It makes 14 HUGE, filling servings and with the exception of a few minutes chopping of some veggies, the dish can be set and forget to cook all day long.

I know I’ll be making this recipe a couple times over the next two months. Not just because we enjoy it, but because this week, both my hubby and I got hit with some craziness at work. Over the next 6 weeks, we each have a week of training, which tends to equate to long days with the other parent doing the majority of the kid-duties. Add that to a looming deadline for me on a huge project at work… life is going to be busy and a bit rough until mid-March.

I plan to do my best and continue posting as much as possible, but please forgive me if there’s a lack of posts on here or on social media. Please send positive thoughts that everything goes smoothly!

Slow Cooker Beef Stew

By Books n’ Cooks

Makes 14 2-Cup Servings

Add the following to a 7-quart (or larger) slow cooker and whisk to combine.

  • 32 oz. low-sodium beef broth
  • 32 oz. low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 6 oz. tomato paste
  • 6 Tbs. homemade stew seasoning (or 2 packets, if purchasing store-bought)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 Tbs. Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp. sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • 1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

Then add the meat, potatoes, and vegetables:

  • 8 oz. sliced white button mushrooms
  • 7-8 oz. frozen peas
  • 1/2 an onion, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 lbs. lean stew meat, cut into 1-inch pieces (trimmed of fat, if needed)
  • 6 medium carrots, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 3 medium potatoes, cut into 1-inch pieces

Stir to combine. Cover and cook on low for 9-10 hours, until potatoes are soft and meat is tender.

A couple tablespoons at a time, whisk in:

  • 1/4 c. all-purpose flour

and allow stew to cook and thicken with the lid cracked another 15-30 minutes.

Serve hot, with a side salad and/or dinner roll.

Beef & Sausage Lasagna

November was supposed to be a quiet month for me. October was crazy but November was completely open. It was supposed to be a chance for me to relax and recharge before the Christmas holiday season kicked into gear.

As hard as I tried to keep the month open, my plan didn’t really work out. I’m not even completely sure how the month got so busy, or what, exactly, we did. We had a houseguest for a couple days, that we didn’t previously plan, but I think that other than that, it was just very busy with some long days (including weekends) at work, a week of sick kiddos, and struggling to keep up with housework. As the month ended, I ended up feeling more exhausted than refreshed.

beef-sausage-lasaga

The crazy month is why this recipe has taken a bit longer than I wanted to post. This lasagna is a go-to recipe for me, particularly for cooler weather and large-scale entertaining. While it is a good bit of work (it probably takes an hour or so to put together), it has 3 qualities that make it a favorite.

1) It can be made in advance and refrigerated or frozen.
2) It makes a huge dish and can easily serve 8-12 people. Or, it makes a lot of leftovers for weekday lunches or busy weeks when leftovers are all that we have for dinner.
3) Everyone loves it.

Unlike a lot of other lasagnas, it’s light on the cheese and full of meat. Also a little different from other recipes, I added a few extra layers – for a total of 4 layers of noodles – as we like a nice, thick slice.

This recipe has been heavily adapted from my mom’s old Good Housekeeping cookbook, Step by Step.

Make Ahead: This recipe can be made in advance, wrapped tightly in plastic wrap, and frozen for at least a couple of months. Lasagna should be allowed to defrost completely (about 2 days in the fridge) before baking according the the instructions below. If lasagna isn’t completely thawed, keep covered and bake until lasagna is hot throughout, before removing foil and cooking uncovered for the last 15 minutes.

beef-sausage-lasaga

Beef & Sausage Lasagna

Makes one large (9×13) lasagna

Serves 10

Ingredients:

  • 1-16 oz. package lasagna noodles
  • 1/2 lb. lean ground beef
  • 1/2 lb. spicy Italian sausage, casings removed
  • 1/2 lb. mild Italian sausage, casings removed
  • 1 medium onion, small dice
  • 1 Tbs. minced or crushed garlic
  • 1 28-oz. can crushed tomatoes
  • 2 Tbs. tomato paste
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 tsp. granulated sugar
  • 1 Tbs. Italian seasoning
  • 2 Tbs. dried basil
  • 1-15 oz. container part-skim ricotta cheese
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 c. fresh Italian parsley
  • 2 c. (8 oz.) shredded part-skim mozzarella
  • 1/4 c. grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 375F.

Make the Meat Sauce: In a large skillet over medium heat, brown ground beef and both sausages, using a wooden spoon to break up any large chunks. Add onion and garlic, and continue to cook until translucent. Discard any excess fat, and add crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, kosher salt, sugar, Italian seasoning, and basil. Stir to combine. Bring to a boil and lower heat, simmering for 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, cook noodles according to package. When done, use tongs to remove noodles from water and lay noodles flat on a clean dishtowel on the counter. Allow to cool until you’re able to handle them with your hands.

Make the Ricotta Layer: In a medium bowl, combine ricotta, egg and parsley.

Assemble the Lasagna: On a clean countertop, line up meat sauce, lasagna noodles on the towel, ricotta, a small bowl filled with the shredded mozzarella, and a large (9×13 at least) baking dish. It will make assembly easier and cleaner if everything is in one single work area.

First, spread a couple of spoonfuls of the sauce (I like to avoid the meat chunks for the bottom later) across the bottom of the baking dish, so that lasagna noodles don’t stick. Next, add a layer of lasagna noodles, followed by one-third of the ricotta, about 1/2 c. of the mozzarella, and about a quarter of the meat sauce. Do this two more times, so that you have 3 complete layers.

Add the final layer of lasagna noodles. If you have extra ricotta, you can add it here. Otherwise, top with remaining meat sauce, remaining mozzarella, and the grated Parmesan cheese. Feel free to add a little extra of either or both cheeses, if lasagna is not sufficiently covered.

Bake in preheated oven covered with aluminum foil for 30 minutes. Remove foil and bake for another 15 minutes, until sauce is bubbly and cheese is melted and starting to brown. Remove from oven and allow to stand for 15 minutes before serving.

Serve hot with a side salad and your favorite fresh bread or garlic bread.

beef-sausage-lasagna-from-books-n-cooks

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