Roxanna Hoffman is a mother of six — and five of her kids came as a combo package. Yes, she gave birth to quintuplets 10 months ago, and has an 8-year-old son to boot.
Her husband, Michael Hoffman, is a staff sergeant in the United States Air Force. He works 12 to 17 hour days and is frequently out of the area for long periods of time. This leaves just Roxanna to care for the babies and her older son.
With so many young children, Roxanna found that slow-cooker meals were an easy way to save time while still maintaining a healthy, home-cooked diet. And she's sharing some of her favorite slower-cooker recipes with TODAY.
"I like being able to put dinner together in the slow cooker before the babies wake up early in the morning. When that happens, I set the cooker on 'low," she explained. "If they get up before I do, I can put the meals together quickly later in the day during their nap time and set the machine on 'high."
To make matters even easier, she suggested prepping a week's worth of food every Sunday.
"This includes cutting vegetables, putting together seasonings and cooking meats if required," she explained. "I put them in large Ziploc bags, label and freeze them. Then I take them out whenever I need to serve that specific meal."
Here are Roxanna's favorite recipes to whip up for her family:
Low-sodium turkey chili
- 1.5 lbs lean ground turkey
- 4 cans low sodium kidney beans
- 4 cans low sodium diced tomatoes
- 1 chopped onion
- 1 whole green pepper chopped
- 2 tbsp chili powder or one packet of McCormick chili seasonings
Brown meat in a skillet over medium heat. Warm one tablespoon of vegetable or olive oil. Add the turkey and cook until browned, about 10 minutes, breaking up the meat with a spoon as it cooks. As it is browning, prepare all the other items and place in slow cooker. Add browned turkey and stir well. Let slow cook 7-9 hours on low setting. May be served with shredded cheese, light sour cream and crackers.
Chicken, vegetable, and wild rice stew
- 2 pounds of raw, whole, organic, boneless, skinless chicken breast
- 2 cups chopped carrots, celery, green beans and green peppers
- 1/8 cup diced cilantro leaves
- 1 chopped medium onion
- 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 2 boxes wild rice or brown rice
- 1 cup of water
Add all ingredients to slow cooker. Cook in slow cooker for 5-8 hours over low heat and enjoy.