I try very hard to keep meal prep really easy on days when Michael goes into work (most days he can telecommute, but sometimes he has to go in, and when that happens, he isn't home until 8pm or later), or when we've got something to do after he's done working. With my hands, I have a very hard time with opening containers and with cutting some things - so if he's gone, anything like that could totally derail meal prep until he's home to do it for me.
On days when the evening is going to be busy, that means hauling out the slow cooker, so all the prep can happen in the morning, and eating can happen whenever we're ready for it.
This was one of those meals - we needed to grocery shop, and I was needing to use up some root veggies that had been sitting around for awhile. If I'd had onions, they've have gone into this, but I didn't, and it still tasted just fine. Use whatever veggies you have on hand, and whatever ground meat you have on hand. This isn't the sort of thing that you should get fussy or particular about.
Also, whether you regard this as a thick and hearty soup or a stew depends on your outlook - since I did nothing to thicken the broth, I sort of think it's a soup, but with strong stewlike tendencies.
Clean Out the Larder Meatball Stew/Soup (Slowcooker)
1 lb ground meat (I used pork)
seasoning blend of choice (I used a chorizo sausage blend from Spice House, which gave the meatballs a nice piquant flavor)
2 T. apple cider vinegar
Root Veggies as desired - mine were 3 red potatoes, 2 sweet potatoes and 3 carrots
Other veggies as available - I added a couple stalks of celery, chopped. Onions and mushrooms would have been great if I'd had them.
Salt and pepper to taste
Broth to cover (about 2 cups)
Combine ground meat with seasoning of choice and apple cider vinegar. Blend well with hands, and form into meatballs about 1" wide. Set balls into a baking dish and bake at 350 for 15-20 minutes, until well browned and mostly cooked.
While the meatballs are cooking, chop all your veggies and put into the slow cooker. Once the meatballs are cooked, add them to the slow cooker on top of the pot. Scrape off whatever fat and cooked bits are in the pan and add those to the slow cooker, too. Pour broth over all, making sure veggies are covered.
Cover and cook on low 8-10 hours, or start on high for an hour or two and then turn down until low for a couple more hours, or until ready to eat.
We had this with grain-free coconut flour biscuits after we got home from shopping. We probably would have bought less if we'd eaten before we shopped, though! (How many times will I need to learn that lesson??)
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