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Tag Archives: bison

Healthy Slow Cooker Meat Sauce


Dennis and I have been eating out a lot now that I work through the dinner hour.  I finally got fed up with the unhealthy food and the weight gain we’re both experiencing, and decided to cook up enough real homemade food on my days off to last us for the week.  This meat sauce was the first thing I threw together, and Dennis was in heaven!

https://i0.wp.com/a4.l3-images.myspacecdn.com/images02/106/e4b697be95db4cacb0b570413a915d69/l.jpg

This is an old picture from 2009 but I had to include it. Dennis eats everything with chopsticks-he's obsessed!

I’m not completely back on the healthy bandwagon, but this meal is a good start. The sauce is hearty, flavorful & robust, and very low in fat. I chose to sweeten the sauce mainly with carrots, and you may find this balances the acidity of the tomatoes enough for your taste, but I decided to add some agave nectar to mine to sweeten it a little more. You could also try upping the carrots to 2 cups.

Serve this over whole wheat pasta along with a salad and you’ve got a nutritious, delicious meal!

Healthy Slow Cooker Meat Sauce

Printable recipe
Printable recipe with picture

1 pound bison, venison, or lean ground beef
2 links mild Italian turkey sausage, casings removed
1 onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
3 (14.5 ounce) cans fire-roasted diced tomatoes
1 ½ cups finely shredded carrots (about 4 medium carrots)
2 (8 ounce) cans tomato paste
2 tablespoons agave nectar or sugar
1 tablespoon oregano
1 tablespoon basil
1 tablespoon garlic salt
3 bay leaves
1 teaspoon garlic powder
¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
¼ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
Salt to taste

In a large skillet, cook the meat and onions until the meat is brown and the onions are tender. Add the minced garlic and cook another minute. Do not drain unless you used meat with a higher fat content. If you used the suggested meat, you will have a little broth in the pan with only a tiny amount of fat, which I like to leave for flavor.

Meanwhile, add the undrained tomatoes and carrots to a 4-quart (or larger) slow-cooker and puree using an immersion blender (if you don’t have an immersion blender, do this with your regular blender). Stir in the tomato paste, agave nectar, oregano, basil, garlic salt, bay leaves, garlic powder, red pepper flakes, and pepper. Stir in the meat mixture and cover.

Cook on high for 5-6 hours, or low for 10-12 hours, stirring caramelized sides back into the sauce. When complete, stir well, fishing out the bay leaves, and add salt to taste. Serve on top of your favorite pasta.

Recipe source: inspired by The Cooking Photographer

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Rosemary Sage Burgers with Chive Mayo

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I first made these burgers last year with bison meat from the farmer’s market and I’ve been dreaming about them ever since.  I’ve been itching to make them again for an entire year and I finally fulfilled my fantasy on Memorial Day.  I used lean ground beef this time and have to say although still delicious, bison does improve the flavor substantially.  Here in Wichita it is available at the farmer’s markets and in the freezer section in health-food stores.  If it is available where you are, try it–it is actually healthier than most meat, even chicken!  Click here to find out why.

If you do choose to use bison, you’ll need to add a tablespoon of oil when you mix in the herbs because it’s virtually fat-free and doesn’t stick together well without it.

Rosemary Sage Burgers with Chive Mayo

Printable recipe
Printable recipe with picture

Burgers
1 lb. lean ground beef
2 tablespoons chopped fresh sage
2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary
1/4 teaspoon salt
4 buns (I made these and they were perfect!)
1 cup baby spinach leaves
4 large tomato slices

Chive Mayo
1/2 cup mayonnaise (here’s an easy homemade recipe)
3 tabelspoons chopped fresh chives

Combine the ground beef, rosemary, sage and salt in a bowl and mush together with your hands until well incorporated. Form into patties and grill 4 minutes on each side or until juices run clear. Meanwhile, mix together the mayonnaise and chives. Toast the buns and spread each top with mayo.  Arrange spinach leaves on bottom buns, put on the burgers, tomato slices, and cover with top bun.

Serves 4.

Recipe source: adapted from Self.com

I served this with a side of Watermelon & Tomato Salad – so good!

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