Crockpot Hamburger Soup

As promised in my previous run-on post aptly titled "Cooking Tangent" here is the recipe I pieced together yesterday!
*Disclaimer* Not my photo!  I forgot to snap one!

Crockpot Hamburger Soup


1 lb ground beef
2 cloves minced garlic (I use the pre-minced stuff in the jar, so about 1 tsp)
1/2 large onion, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 can stewed tomatoes
1 can tomato sauce
1 cup corn (I used frozen, but canned, etc. works just as well!)
2 cups vegetable broth
Salt & pepper to taste


Put the hamburger in a frying pan along with the garlic and onion and brown thoroughly.  I have been told that you can put hamburger in the slow cooker raw, but that just makes me nervous! So I brown ahead of time, plus then more of the garlic and onion flavor goes into it.

Once done, add to the crock pot with remaining ingredients and cook on low for 6-8 hours or high for 3-4 (Yes, it really is that easy!!)


I am on a very low carb diet, so I ate this exactly as it's described and thought it was wonderful, very filling!  However, my menfolk can eat all they want, so I did throw in a cup or two of some pre-cooked noodles about half an hour before serving it to them to "bulk it up!"

Cooking Tangent!

I officially feel like a crazy person.  It's a quarter to 11 in the morning, and I am making our lunch (which will not be eaten until around one) and our supper is already prepped and going in the crock pot.  Yesterday I had the meatloaf we had for lunch prepped for the oven and in the fridge the night before and supper in the crock pot by the same time.

Why so early you ask?  (Or at least for the purpose of furthering this blog post, I'm going to say that you do.)  Well, as I mentioned in my last post, cooking and cleaning with a toddler beneath my feet has become a challenge second only to diaper changes, which now resemble something like Olympic hog tying.  My solution, at least for now, is to be waaaaaay over prepared!

I am a big fan of planning out meals in advance (see my Go, Go Grocery Mom! post), but this month for some reason I set aside my calendar and sort of just went with the flow.  When getting my groceries I just basically made sure I had the ingredients to make every meal on my list.  Even so, I've been doing a good amount of improvising day to day.  While the improv can be entertaining and has led to some good new recipes, I find that I desperately miss being better prepared and so intend to return to my trusty meal planning in September!

Sorry, went on a bit of a tangent there, my original point:  Preparation, yay!  I have been particularly motivated this week (no idea why, just enjoying it!) and so I have been preemptively striking at our meals.  The crock pot is officially my favorite appliance eeevveeeerr!  I can whip together whatever we are having for supper that evening during Baby J's morning nap and remove one of the larger stresses from my day.  Lunch is a bit trickier because the timing between nap and lunch don't allow for crock cooking.  The exception being if I get everything together the night before and turn it on about breakfast time, but, since we just have the one pot, I generally prefer to fix and forget supper!  So, for lunches, I have been trying to do everything but the baking (if it's an oven dish) the night before.  Then about an hour before lunch time, just preheat and toss it in!  No worries about Baby in the kitchen while I cook!  

For non-oven meals, I simply try to get any of the major cooking out of the way ahead of time.  A week or two ago, I boiled all the wild rice and noodles we had in the house, divvied them up into meal sized bags and threw them in the freezer.  Now I just have to pull one out in the morning to thaw and heat it up with the rest of our goodies nearer to meal time (seems like it doesn't take long to just boil noodles, but seriously, this really does save me so much time and headache!).  Another example is for BLTs for lunch today, I went ahead and cooked all the bacon during nap, so at meal time, we will just pull out the sandwich fixings and dig in!

I am looking back at this post and remembering again how much I can chatter on!  The original reason I had for starting this was wanting to share a new recipe I semi-created yesterday!  Since this has become a run-on post, I will save future readers the pain of working their way all the way through this just for the recipe, so look for it in a separate segment, coming immediately!


The real reason I never seem to blog...

It's been horribly quiet around these halls lately and in my last post I tried to give a rundown of all the exciting events in my life that kept pulling me away and that I hoped to be more frequent.  Well, that obviously didn't happen!  The other day I was thinking about how much I'd like to blog and suddenly realized why it was that I didn't/couldn't/hadn't.

The truth is, my son went from a sweet (mainly sedentary) little sitter to a wild and crazy crawler, soon to be walker!  I went from being able to tidy the house, throw together quick meals, or even turn on the computer to jot down a quick note, to devoting his every awake moment to ensuring his safety and development.

It is insanely awesome to watch how much more he learns to do every day, but it does mean that all my daily cleaning is jammed into the one to two hours he naps in the morning (generally don't even have those afternoon naps, since the Mr. is home and we always seem to have one thing or another that needs to be done)!  Add that to the fact that if I dare to turn the computer on in his awake presence, I am in for a plethora of mashed buttons and "up! up! up!"s and we have a recipe for no-blogginess!

During my usual free hours in the evening, I have been admittedly exhausted from all the running after all menfolk in my home!  Today I went insane with cleaning all day and was rewarded with a sparkling kitchen, a good deal of laundry folded and put away, some delicious meals for both lunch and supper! (The crowd goes wiiiilllddd!!)  So!  Here I am actually making a mention of my life in text, aaaaaaand now I'm off to whip together a meatloaf and maybe something for the crock pot for tomorrow to keep my "I'm ahead of my own game" roll going!  No rest for the wicked, right?! ;)