A shower. Pee breaks. Sleep. Nothing luxurious. But to a brand new mother, these small segments of time are worth celebrating. Every single one.
And with a newborn in arms, nourishing homemade meals are about as realistic as lazy days spent poolside.
Enter the slow cooker.
Slow cookers cook food at a low temperature over several hours. They are a set-it-and-forget-it fix that will give you all the nutrients you need for postpartum recovery—with minimal effort.
If possible, I recommend preparing the stock and vegetables while you are pregnant. Cooking becomes as simple as opening up bags and turning on the slow cooker.
Store quart-sized portions of stock in your freezer and pull out as needed.
Chop the vegetables and store with the chicken in a separate freezer bag.
Every herb and vegetable in this soup has a purpose. For example, hawthorn berry and saffron move blood and encourage the healing process. While chicken, winter squash, green beans, and raisins boost energy.
Fenugreek, fennel seed, and dill seed support the production of milk. Chicken meat and chicken stock will also encourage lactation
Postpartum Chicken Stock:
2 lbs Chicken Bones (use leftover bones, chicken backs, or chicken feet)
2 tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
2 tbsp raisins
2 tbsp hawthorn berries
1 tbsp coriander
1 tbsp dill seed
1 tbsp fennel seed
1 tbsp fenugreek
Place all ingredients in your slow cooker and add 4 quarts of water.* Cover and cook on the lowest setting for 12 hours. Strain bones and herbs out before storing in the freezer.
* If you don’t have every herb on hand or cannot find it, skip it. Each one helps, but isn’t mandatory.
Medium-Sized Winter Squash (any starchy vegetable will do, like potato, sweet potato, yam, or butternut squash)
5 – 6 Carrots
3/4 lb Green Beans
5 – 6 Green Onions
1 Whole Chicken Leg
Pinch of Saffron
Salt and Ground Pepper, to taste
Roughly chop your vegetables. Put everything into the slow cooker and cover with stock, using roughly 3 cups to a quart. Set on low and cook for 6 – 8 hours.
Before eating, be sure to pull out the bones from the chicken leg. Each leg has 3 bones. And one is tiny and pointy!
About Megan Garcia
Simple. Safe. And effective. This is my mantra. And it matters most when working with babies. I believe that baby wellness begins before conception and is guided by more than diet. And being excessively geeky, I talk about baby wellness on Instagram, Twitter, and my website (which is FULL of free loot), which is dedicated to supporting mothers and their babes.