When the air starts to get a little crisp, I get in the mood to eat heartier food. And on Wednesdays when I have class at night, I look for easy, healthy foods my family can eat. The slow cooker helps me put together a meal that's ready to serve when everyone gets home. And who doesn't love coming home to the aroma of dinner?
2 tbsp. canola or olive oil, divided
2 1/2 to 3 pound boneless pork roast, trimmed (mine was 2 1/2)
Salt and pepper
1 large (~2 1/2 cups) sweet onion, peeled and vertically sliced thickly
3 large garlic cloves, peeled
3 cups (~1 large) sweet potato, peeled and cut into thick chunks
2 cups (~1 medium) parsnip, peeled and cut vertically into thick sticks
2 cups (~3 medium) carrots, peeled and cut vertically into thick sticks
1 cup 100% apple juice or cider
1 (3-inch) cinnamon stick
2 tsp. fresh thyme (or ~3/4 tsp. dried)
Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Lightly sprinkle salt and pepper on all sides of pork roast. Add pork roast to skillet and brown on all sides, about 10-15 minutes; remove from skillet and place in 4- or 6-quart slow cooker. Reduce heat on skillet to medium, add remaining 1 tablespoon oil and sweet onion, and saute for 5 minutes. Add garlic cloves and saute 1 minute more. Place onion and garlic in slow cooker along with sweet potatoes, parsnip, and carrots. Pour apple juice over vegetables and pork, add the cinnamon stick, and sprinkle with thyme. Cover with lid and cook on LOW for at least 6 hours or until done as desired. Serve with cooking liquid.
Servings: about 6 servings (~5 ounces pork* and a heaping cup of vegetables)
*Note: if you don't like eating as much meat, you could get almost 8 (4-ounce) servings or 10 (3-ounce) servings so you'd have a few servings to save for another meal or put in the freezer.
Nutrition Info (per serving size listed):
478 calories, 37 grams carbohydrate (7 grams fiber), 46 grams protein, 16 grams fat (4 grams saturated). This meal is an excellent source of B vitamins (thiamin, niacin, B6, B12) and a good source of magnesium, potassium, and zinc.
Written by Michelle Baglio of Optimal Nutrition and Health (Google+). All recipes, unless otherwise noted, are created and tested in my home kitchen. Any resemblance to other recipes available in print or online is purely coincidental. The use of particular brands and/or products is sometimes noted because of their quality and the use of other products, while similar, may affect the outcome of the finished dish. Please do not reprint this recipe for distribution without my permission. To feature this recipe on your website, please link to this post as the original source.
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