Do you ever get home from work/school/university and think to yourself, “I just really can’t be f**ked to cook”?
Don’t get me wrong, most days I LOVE being in the kitchen. I even have a set of speakers in my kitchen for cooking time. I usually put on some music or a podcast when I prepare my deliciously healthy meals. I can (and often do) spend hours in there.
Other days, I can’t think of anything worse. Like at the moment, it’s the middle of summer in Sydney. For the last few days, I’ve just been ducking into the kitchen to make a smoothie or a salad and leaving as soon as I can. Just the thought of turning the oven or stove on fills my top lip with sweat.
But one can only be sustained by salads and smoothies for so long. Last night, I was craving a hearty, cooked meal. Then I remembered my all time favourite appliance – the slow cooker.
Many people mistakenly think that slow cookers are for winter. But they use much less electricity than ovens and stove tops – and put out much less heat. What could be more perfect for summer cooking?
I decided to put together this delicious set-and-forget stuffed chicken recipe before diving into a few nutrition assignments. It was wonderful to emerge from a few hours of study to have a healthy dinner ready. I had enough to meal prep dinner for the rest of the week and even froze a few portions for a rainy day.
If summer has you avoiding the kitchen or you need an effortless meal prep dinner recipe, try this cheese and spinach stuffed chicken in tomato sauce recipe.
- 1 onion, diced (100g)
- 2 cloves glaric, finely chopped (20g)
- 1 Tbsp oil
- 800g can diced tomatos
- 2 tspn dried Italian herb mix
- 1 tspn fresh oregano, chopped (optional)
- Salt to taste
- 3 large chicken breasts (1kg)
- 3 cups of baby spinach, wilted or 1 cup frozen chopped spinach
- 1 cup ricotta cheese (250g)
- 1/4 cup parmesan cheese (30g)
- 1 garlic clove, crushed (optional)
- Pepper to taste
- Mix sauce ingredients together in slow cooker and turn on high.
- In a separate bowl, combine spinach, ricotta, parmesan, garlic and pepper with a spoon.
- Butterfly chicken breast (slice through the middle, almost until the end), taking care to leave intact.
- Spoon 1/3rd of the mixture into each sliced chicken breast and tightly wrap meat around stuffing.
- Place breasts in sauce in the slow cooker.
- Cook for 3-4 hours on high, depending on slow cooker.
- Cut each breast in half to portion and check they're cooked all the way through.
- Serve stuffed chicken with sauce.
- If the tomato sauce is too watery, remove chicken breast and finish sauce on the stove to evaporate excess liquid. You can also add flour or starch to thicken. This recipe freezes well.