Easy One-Pot Winter Meals for Seniors

winter one pot recipes

There is nothing like a hearty meal of comfort food on a cold winter night. It’s even better if that delicious food can be cooked in one pot, as you have much less to clean up when the cooking is done. These recipes provide the satisfying meals you want with the convenience you love.

These recipes are easy, but that doesn’t mean you can let your guard down about being safe in the kitchen. According to Consumer Reports, lacerations from knives injured more than 350,000 people in 2012 – and that’s just the number that was reported, which means the incidence of more minor knife injuries was certainly higher. The National Fire Protection Association tells us that there are 172,900 home structure fires on average each year that start when someone is cooking. In most cases, the main reason for the fire is a dish left unattended on the stove.

No matter what you’re making in the kitchen, Alert1 can help you stay safe. A medical alert pendant puts help right at your fingertips. If you suffer from any sort of accident in the kitchen, you can simply press the button and speak to a friendly agent who can assess the situation and help you get the assistance you need. Every day of the year, an emergency response solution can provide peace of mind while you make these delicious one-pot meals.

Apple Cider Chicken and Dumplings

Harness the tasty power of apple cider with this delicious one-pot meal sure to warm you up on a cold night. Though you can use apple juice as an alternative, you won’t get as rich of a flavor. You’ll need an oven-safe Dutch oven for this recipe.

·         8 bone-in chicken thighs

·         2 tbsps. butter

·         1 red onion, chopped fine

·         1 celery rib, chopped fine

·         2 tbsps. fresh parsley, minced

·         3 tbsps. all-purpose flour

·         3 cups chicken broth

·         1 cup apple cider

For the Dumplings:

·         2 cups all-purpose flour

·         1 tbsp. baking powder

·         ½ tsp. salt

·         1 tsp. butter, very cold

·         1 large egg, lightly beaten

·         2/3 cup milk of your choice

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. In the Dutch oven on the stovetop, brown the chicken in butter, then remove it and set aside to rest. Don’t remove the butter! In the same pan, brown the onion, celery, and parsley until tender. Add salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle the mixture with flour and mix it quickly and well. Add the broth and cider, then bring to a boil. Allow it to boil until thickened, stirring constantly.

Add the chicken to the pot. Cover with the lid of the Dutch oven and bake for 45 minutes while you make the dumplings.

To make the dumplings, combine the flour, baking powder, and salt in a bowl. Using a pastry cutter, cut in the butter until the mixture resembles fine crumbs. Stir the egg and milk into the mixture until just moist.

Increase the oven’s heat to 425 degrees Fahrenheit and carefully remove the Dutch oven. Drop the dumplings into the hot broth, one tablespoon at a time. There should be 12 generous tablespoons of dough.

Return the pan to the oven and bake uncovered for 20 minutes or so, until a toothpick inserted into a dumpling comes out clean.

Scalloped Potatoes and Ham

This is one of the easiest recipes you can make in one pan. The ham is a lean meat that provides a great deal of protein as well as the nine essential amino acids necessary for the body’s growth and repair[1]. And it uses Velveeta cheese for a nostalgic flavor.

·         4 large potatoes, peeled and sliced into thin rounds

·         2 tbsps. butter

·         ½ cup water

·         ½ cup milk

·         3 tbsps. dry onion soup mix

·         2 tbsps. minced parsley

·         1 cup Velveeta cheese, cut into cubes

·         1 cup fully cooked ham, cut into cubes

Cook the potatoes in the butter in a large skillet. You want them to be somewhat tender and lightly browned. Add the water and bring the potatoes to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and let them cook, covered, for about 10 minutes or until the potatoes are tender.

In a small bowl, combine the milk, soup mix, and parsley. Blend in the cheese. Pour the mixture over the potatoes. Add the ham on top. Cook, stirring gently, until the sauce is melted and bubbly.

Spanish Rice Platter

This is another fast and easy comfort food that brings just a touch of spice to a cold winter evening. This recipe calls for ground beef, but you can substitute ground pork, chicken, turkey, or a mixture. Using brown rice in this dish ensures that you get a healthy dose of magnesium, selenium, fiber, B vitamins, and manganese[2].

·         1 lb. ground beef

·         1 medium onion, chopped fine

·         1 green pepper, chopped

·         1 garlic clove, minced

·         1 tbsp. chili powder

·         ½ tsp. roasted cumin

·         32 oz. tomato or vegetable juice

·         1 cup uncooked brown rice

Cook the meat in a skillet until it is no longer pink. Crumble it well into small bits. Blend in the onion, green pepper, garlic, chili powder, and cumin. Cook until the vegetables are tender, then stir in all remaining ingredients and bring to a boil.

Reduce the heat and simmer for about 30 minutes, until the rice has become tender and absorbed most of the liquid.

Chili Macaroni Meal

This comfort food includes a healthy amount of pinto beans. Studies in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition show that pinto beans can reduce your risk of heart disease.  So if you really love them, add an extra can to this recipe.

·         1 lb. lean ground turkey or chicken

·         1 small onion, chopped fine

·         1 green pepper, chopped fine

·         1 tsp. olive oil

·         2 cups water

·         1 15-oz. can pinto beans, rinsed and drained

·         1 14.5 oz. can reduced-sodium beef or chicken broth

·         1 14.5 oz. can diced tomatoes with chilies (do not drain)

·         8 oz. can tomato sauce

·         2 ½ tsp. chili powder

·         1 tsp. roasted cumin

·         2 cups pasta of your choice

In a large pan, cook the ground meat, onion, and pepper in the olive oil until the meat is no longer pink. Drain the juices from the pan. Stir in all the other ingredients and bring to a slow boil. Cook for about 20 minutes or until the pasta is tender, taking care to stir occasionally to prevent sticking.

Serve this with sliced green onions, sour cream, cilantro, lime, and other condiments on the side.

Chicken Curry and Couscous

This versatile recipes uses whatever frozen vegetables you have in the freezer; if you have fresh veggies about to go bad, use those instead and reduce the cooking time a bit to compensate. If you want a flavor other than curry, choose the couscous that appeals most to you.

·         1 lb. boneless chicken breasts, cut into thin strips

·         1 tbsp. butter

·         1 16-oz. package frozen vegetables

·         1 cup water

·         1 package couscous mix, curry flavor

·         ½ cup golden raisins

In a heavy skillet, melt the butter and cook the chicken until it is no longer pink. Add the vegetables, water, and the seasoning packet for the couscous. Bring the mixture to a boil. Stir in the couscous and raisins.

Remove from the heat. Let the skillet stand, covered, until the couscous absorbs the water. Serve with pita bread.

Burgundy Beef Stew

This is a more involved recipe that requires a long cook time, but the classic flavor is worth it – you’ll remember what it was like to enjoy this on a cold winter evening when you were a kid. You won’t even notice that this has much lower sodium content than the traditional version!

·         1 ½ lbs. beef stew meat

·         3 tbsps. all-purpose flour

·         3 tsps. olive oil

·         2 tsps. beef bouillon granules

·         2 tsps. dried parsley

·         1 tsp. Italian seasoning

·         2 cups water

·         1 cup Burgundy wine (or use beef stock)

·         3 large potatoes, cut into large dice

·         1 cup button mushrooms

·         1 small onion, cut into wedges

·         1 cup baby carrots

·         2 celery ribs, cut into small pieces

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit

Coat the beef stew pieces with flour to lightly coat and shake away the excess. In an oven-safe Dutch oven, heat the oil and brown the beef in batches, adding additional oil if necessary. Remove the meat from the pan.

Add the bouillon, parsley, seasoning, water, and wine to the pan and bring it to a boil, stirring and scraping the bottom of the pan to loosen the browned bits. Add the beef back to the pan and return it to a boil.

Cover the pan and transfer it to the oven. Bake the meal, covered, for one hour.

Carefully remove the pan from the oven and add in the vegetables. If you need additional water to thin the sauce, add it now. Cover the pan and put it back in the oven for another hour, until the beef and vegetables are fork-tender.

Enjoy the Comfort of Good Food and Solid Safety

These one-pot winter meals are great for nutrition as well as a bit of relaxation. You don’t have to do as many dishes! The nostalgic flavors of many of these recipes can be just as warming for the heart as they are for the body.

Having strong peace of mind can enhance the comfort of these meals. Knowing that you are safe and healthy can make your winter season much more enjoyable. To that end, it might be a great time to consider medical alert technology. Whether it’s a medical alert watch that looks fashionable on your wrist or a classic medical alert pendant that makes you feel safe, having these personal emergency response systems can be a lifesaver.

If you choose to add fall detection to the mix, that’s even more peace of mind, knowing that if you fall and can’t press the emergency button alarm for any reason, the device itself will call for help on your behalf.

Let Alert1 medical alert systems make you much more comfortable for your next hearty winter meal and all year round!