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The ingredients must have come to me in my sleep. The more I use my slow cooker, the more I love it.

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Cedar Planked Salmon with Cayenne Lime Butter

This salmon is so delicious on it's own. I decided to cedar plank the salmon on the grill, and drizzle it with some cayenne lime butter.

Slow Cooker Chipotle Chicken Tacos
Slow Cooker Chipotle Chicken Tacos

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Avocado Chicken Salad Sandwich
Avocado Chicken Salad Sandwich

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Broccoli and Cheese Soup

Broccoli Cheese Soup

I love broccoli and cheese soup, and because I adapted this recipe from Cooking Light it makes me feel a little bit better about eating a bowl full of cheesy deliciousness. Besides tasting really good and being a little lighter, it's also super easy to make. A great weeknight meal and the leftovers make for a lunch that will definitely improve your workday!

The original Cooking Light recipe calls for Velveeta cheese and it turned out well, but I know some people cringe at the thought of Velveeta so I figured I'd share a version that uses another type of cheese. If you shred some sharp cheddar yourself it will improve the flavor and I also added in some pepper jack cheese to mix it up a bit.  Feel free to try out different cheese combinations or use already shredded cheese, but you are going to get stronger flavors if you shred it yourself. Also, you can of course always use Velveeta as the original recipe calls for. Another change I make is adding in some carrots to add some more nutritional value. Keep reading for the recipe I adapted from Cooking Light.

2 teaspoons olive oil
1 cup chopped onion
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 cups low sodium chicken broth
1 16 oz package frozen broccoli florets
1 1/2 cups shredded carrots
2-1/2 cups 1% milk
1/3 cup flour
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
5 oz sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
3 oz pepper jack cheese, shredded

Heat olive oil in a large stovetop pan over medium high heat. Add onion and garlic and cook for about 5 minutes. Add broth, broccoli, and carrots. Cover and bring to boil, cooking for about 10-12 minutes, until broccoli is tender.

Whisk together flour and milk and pour into broccoli mixture. Cook until it thickens, about 5 minutes and constantly stirring. 

Remove from heat and stir in pepper and cheese, stirring until the cheese melts.

Place about 1/2 of the soup in the blender (more if you like it smoother, less if you like more broccoli chunks). Blend until smooth and stir back into the pan. 

If desired garnish with black pepper, shredded cheese or crushed red peppers.


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