TODAY   |  January 27, 2014

Recipes for cooking once and eating all week

Nutritionist Ellie Krieger walks TODAY through easy recipes to whip up in your slow cooker that will last all week, including southwestern chicken, which she says you can eat the first night and then cleverly use the leftovers as the base for several more dinners.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> well, before you head to the supermarket, we've got a deal for you. how would you like to cook once this week and feed the family all five days?

>> i like it. the author of "weeknight

wonders: delicious healthy dinners in 30 minutes or less." great to see you as always.

>> great to see you.

>> how does this work? you cook once and break it all down for the week?

>> one of the best things you can do for your health, for your family's health is cook more. and life is crazy. here's a way of literally cooking once and literally having meals for the rest of all the weekdays.

>> and start off with a crock pot , of course. i love this. i just bought one.

>> it's a 6-quart slow cooker . we're going to make this fabulous southwest chicken in there. and it's so easy and fun, actually. and the flavors are fabulous.

>> i have to ask you, you pick chicken because it will taste good for the rest of the week? because not everything tastes yummy three days later.

>> it depends on what kind of cut of meat you can use. but you can use -- it's really designed for chicken . i've done lots of stuff. a beef stew or something like that. this is chile powder , and basically, i like to when i'm doing slow cooker stuff, and if you want to, you can do this, sprinkle it on here.

>> i'll do it for you.

>> thank you.

>> you can put -- exactly. you kind of coat that. and in the slow cooker goes some onions. i like to layer the onions and garlic and if you want to --

>> and garlic.

>> and peppers in there. sorry. and get those in there. okay.

>> beautiful, now our chicken 's all coated. the chicken goes on top.

>> do you need oil?

>> no, you don't even need oil.

>> okay.

>> exactly. it's very low cal. i'll put a few pieces in so you get the idea. and on top of there goes can of tomatoes, no salt added, diced tomatoes . and some corn, frozen corn. this is all like no-fuss ingredients. lots of veggies, though. right before you serve, i put the zucchini in.

>> very nice. got it slow cooking .

>> four hours.

>> you have a fabulous, southwest flavored chicken soup , you have your vegetables, i like to serve it over rice.

>> that's your first meal.

>> meal number one.

>> from that, you take chicken out and you shred it up and toss it with salsa.

>> okay.

>> and you make these fabulous tacos. and my family loves taco night. put avocado and shredded lettuce.

>> we had taco night two nights ago.

>> meal number three?

>> meal number three. now pulling some more chicken . there's enough chicken in there to do all of this for the week. mix it with a little bit of sauce and hot sauce , and make these pulled chicken sandwiches, whole grain bun, this is a healthier slaw, as well. and this is a salad, a radish and avocado and orange salad. taking advantage of local produce, seasonal produce.

>> and chicken that you originally started with in the crock pot .

>> and it's all enough in that original crock pot dish to slice up some at the end. this is all like sort of --

>> and a salad.

>> and this is from "weeknight wonders." it's really fast.

>> and lastly, the last meal.

>> now the chicken 's done. we've used all the chicken but still left with this fabulous mixture of vegetables and tomatoes in this wonderful sauce. and the days it's been in there, it's getting more tasty. mix it with some chicken broth , a can of beans for protein and you have this great tortilla soup .

>> incredible.

>> and this is so yummy.

>> this is maybe one of my favorite meals of the week to be honest.

>> pays to have a slow cooker .

>> i think it's worth the investment. it's all the rage now.

>> very cool. thanks so much. great ideas. for more slow cooker recipes, head to

>>> after a week long court mandated separation --