Traditional Hoppin’ John recipes are served on New Year’s Day to bring you fortune in the year to come. It’s a shame that people only eat authentic Hoppin’ John recipes on the first day of the year, because this Healthy Slow Cooker Hoppin' John recipe should be enjoyed year ‘round since it’s so easy to make in your Crock-Pot!
Hoppin’ John is a combination of two staples of Southern food – black eyed peas and collard greens. But it’s also packed with nutrition. According to Self Nutrition Data, black eyed peas are low in saturated fat, cholesterol and sodium and a good source of fiber, protein, folate, thiamin, iron, magnesium, phosphorus and copper.
Collard greens are low in saturated fat, very low in cholesterol, and a good source of fiber, protein, and many vitamins and minerals.
How I turned a Southern Hoppin’ John recipe into Healthy Slow Cooker Hoppin’ John
Traditional Hoppin’ John can be high in calories since traditionally it’s cooked up with a lot of pork and pork fat. So I was looking for a way to make a recipe for Hoppin’ John that was not only easier to make but lower in calories and healthier, too. That's why I was so excited to find a recipe for Hoppin’ John Vegetarian Black Eyed Peas that was cooked in a slow cooker at Kristi Arnold’s blog Veggie Converter, my assigned blog during a recipe challenge from the Secret Recipe Club.
Kristi’s vegetarian Hoppin’ John recipe is already very wholesome. However, since I’m not a vegetarian, I decided to add smoked turkey sausage after consulting Kristi’s original sources. (Traditionally, smoked ham hocks are used.) I kept the sausage whole instead of chopping them up, so you can decide how much sausage you want to eat and can keep a better eye on portion size.
I also used canned black eyed peas in this easy hoppin’ john recipe instead of dried peas to make the recipe even more convenient for busy folks. (You can also use frozen black eyed peas!) I served it on quinoa, but feel free to use rice – brown, of course – which is used in more traditional hoppin’ john recipes.
Bush's Blackeye PeasEden Organic Black Eyed Peas, No Salt AddedGlory Foods, Seasoned, Blackeye Peas
The Bacon Salt that Kristi recommends? Awesome stuff! I love how it added bacon flavor – and no calories and saturated fat – to my Healthy Slow Cooker Hoppin’ John recipe. Enjoy!
J&D's Bacon Salt, Original, 2 OunceJ&D's Bacon Salt, Hickory, 2 OunceJ&D's Bacon Salt, Applewood, 2.5 Ounce
Healthy Crockpot Hoppin' John
Note: you can health up this recipe even more by using vegetable broth, cutting back on the sea salt, and adding more tomatoes, onions and collard greens. While I loved the addition of quinoa, it can be eliminated, too, if you're watching your calorie count. And the sausage? Feed it to your skinny friends or the dog!
- 4 (15.5 ounce) cans black eyed peas, drained and rinsed
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 1 (13.5 ounce) package smoked turkey sausage, keep whole
- 1 (14.5 ounce) can diced petite tomatoes and diced green chilies
- 1 medium onion, chopped (about 3/4 cup)
- 1 bunch collard greens, rinsed chopped and ribbed
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon Bacon Salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 2 cups cooked quinoa