Tuesday, May 30, 2017

One Pot Italian Chicken and Orzo

Are you looking for a quick and easy weeknight meal that can be made in 30 minutes? Well, I have the recipe for you! This Skillet Italian Chicken is not only easy, but healthy and can be made in under 30 minutes. A win/win in my book!

One Pot Italian Chicken and Orzo
Makes 8 Cups
Cal 158.1, Carbs 13.6, Fat 4, Fiber 2.1, Protein 16.6

16 oz. boneless skinless chicken cut into chunks
2 tsp. dry italian seasoning blend
1 can italian diced tomatoes
2 cups italian style broccoli (I used Green Giant)
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
2 cups orzo pasta

Season chicken with Italian seasoning,

Spray a large pan with cooking spray and over medium high heat saute chicken until browned. Remove from pan and set aside.

Add the orzo and chicken broth to the pan. Return chicken to pan along with tomatoes and broccoli. Turn heat to high and bring to a boil. Once boiling reduce heat to low. Cover and cook 8-10 minutes or until orzo is cooked through and most of the liquid is absorbed. Season with salt and top with shredded mozzarella. Cover and cook until cheese is melted. Enjoy!

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Kung Pao Chicken

Both my husband and I were in the mood for Asian tonight for dinner and year I tried a Crock Pot Kung Pao Chicken that was really good and pretty easy. I decided to use that same recipe but instead of the crock pot I made it into a stove top version. It was delish! If you like Asian Inspired dishes  then you will have to give this a try! Easy and so much healthier than the traditional take out version!

Kung Pao Chicken 
Serves 4
Cal 194, Carbs 23.2, Fat 1.7, Protein 24

1lb. Chicken Tenderloins, cut into chunks
2 tsp. chili garlic paste
1 green pepper, cut into chunks
1 red bell pepper, cut into chunks
1/4 cup Hoisin Sauce
2 tbsp. low sodium soy sauce
1 tsp. sesame oil
2 gloves garlic, chopped
2 tbsp. rice wine vinegar
2 tbsp. honey
1 tsp. red pepper flakes
2 green onions, sliced
8 dried red chilis

In a large bowl whisk together garlic paste, hoisin, soy, sesame oil, rice wine vinegar, and honey together. Set aside.

Heat a large sauce pan or wok with one tbsp. oil. Add chicken and saute 2-3 minutes or until lightly browned. Add in the peppers and saute another 2-3 minutes. Add dried chilies and garlic. Continue cooking another 1-2 minutes and then add in the sauce. Stirring often until thickened.

Remove and serve over rice. Top with sliced green onion and chopped peanuts or water chestnuts if desired. Enjoy!

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Baked Jambalaya

I'm over these grey and windy days! I'm waiting for sunshine and warm weather. In the meantime I'm going to continue cooking my winter favorites as I impatiently wait for Summer. We love Jambalaya in my house and thought this baked version would be a fun change from the traditional. It's hearty, healthy, and topped with a cheesy crust. Cold weather comfort food at it's finest!

Baked Jambalaya
Serves 6
Cal 272.5, Carbs 33.1, Fat 9.3, Fiber 1, Protein 13.8

1 tbsp. olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
14 oz. cajun chicken smoked sausage, cut into slices
1 can petite diced tomatoes, undrained
1 cup chicken broth
1 medium green pepper, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 medium onion, diced
1-1/2 cups uncooked instant rice
1 tbsp. Cajun seasoning
1 cup reduced fat cheddar jack cheese

Pre-Heat oven to 425.

Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a large skillet, cook veggies until soft. Add the garlic, sausage, tomatoes, and broth. Bring to a boil. Stir in the rice and cajun seasoning. Remove from heat; cover and let stand for 5 minutes.

Once liquid is absorbed transfer to a casserole dish and top with cheese. Bake for 10-15 minutes or until cheese is melted and bubbly. Enjoy!

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Baked Green Chile Cream Cheese Chicken Taquitos

That title was a mouthful! I wanted to mix things up for Taco Tuesday and I thought why not taquitos? I love them but rarely make them for dinner. This version is made with salsa verde, chopped green chiles, cream cheese, and chicken. I bake them to lighten them up a bit and serve with additional salsa for dipping. They were a hit!

Baked Green Chile Cream Cheese Chicken Taquitos
Makes 10 Taquitos
Cal 161, Carbs 18.8, Fat 4.6, Fiber 2, Protein 12

3 cups cooked and shredded chicken (I used chicken tenderloins)
1/2 tsp. chili powder
1/2 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup green chile salsa verde
1 can chopped green chiles
1/3 cup reduced fat sharp cheddar
4 oz. reduced fat cream cheese
10 taco size flour tortillas

Pre-Heat oven to 350.

Meanwhile in a large bowl combine remaining ingredients (except for tortillas)

To Assemble: Working with one tortilla at a time add 2 heaping tablespoons of the chicken mixture off center and spread out. Roll up and set seam side down on a lightly greased baking sheet. Repeat until all the tortillas are filled and rolled.

Spray the tops of the taquitos with cooking spray and bake for 15-20 minutes or until lightly browned. Enjoy!

Monday, May 22, 2017

Roasted Garlic Chicken Alfredo and Bowtie Pasta

Every once in a while I like to splurge and when it's a splurge day I like to go Big! Roasted Garlic Chicken Alfredo. Doesn't get better than this in my opinion when I'm talking about a splurge day food. Cheesy, creamy, garlicky goodness combined with my favorite pasta. Bowtie. It was worth every calorie laden bite! Easy to make as well which makes it a great weeknight meal!

Roasted Garlic Chicken Alfredo and Bowtie Pasta
Serves 6

16 oz. chicken tenderloins cut into pieces
12 oz. box bowtie pasta, cooked to al dente
1.25 cups half/half
1/2 cup butter
1 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 tbsp. roasted garlic paste ( you can make your own or buy it pre made)
Chopped Parsley for Garnish

Season chicken with dried Italian seasoning. Cook over medium high heat until no longer pink.

Remove from pan and set aside. Reduce heat to medium. Place butter in pan, once melted whisk in roasted garlic paste and cream. Let simmer five minutes. Slowly whisk in grated parmesan. Continue cooking until smooth and bubbly. Toss with chicken and cooked pasta. Garnish with chopped parsley. Enjoy!

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Honey Sesame Teriyaki Chicken Bowls

Is it Thursday already? It's been a hectic one for me this week and only the second recipe I've posted since last Thursday. I've been in the mood for stir fry lately so I decided on this healthy family favorite. Honey Sesame Teriyaki Chicken Bowls. Super tasty and super healthy.

Honey Sesame Teriyaki Chicken Bowls
Serves 4
WW PP=10
Cal 376, Carbs 62, Fat 2, Fiber 4, Protein 29.7

16 oz. boneless skinless chicken tenderloins
1 cup Teriyaki Sauce, divided (I like LaChoy)
1 tsp. sriracha
1 tsp. sesame oil
1 tsp. honey
1 clove garlic, minced
3 green onions, sliced
1 red bell pepper, sliced
2 cups broccoli, chopped
4 cups cooked brown rice (I used white today since that is what I had on hand)
1 tsp. sesame seeds

Whisk teriyaki sauce, sriracha, sesame oil, and garlic together. Take half of the sauce and brush over chicken.

Saute chicken over medium-high heat for about 8 minutes or so, Toss in the veggies and continue t cook for another 3 minutes or until tender crisp. Add remaining sauce to the chicken and veggies. Toss well.

To Assemble Bowls-Evenly divide chicken and steamed veggies and serve over one cup rice. Top with sliced onions and sesame seeds.  Enjoy!

Monday, May 15, 2017

Caribbean Jerk Grilled Chicken Salad

When the weather is beautiful a salad for dinner is a must! Since we love all things spicy in my house making this Caribbean Jerk Grilled Chicken Salad for dinner was a must! Sweet and Spicy and tossed with all things tropical this salad was an absolute hit!

Caribbean Jerk Grilled Chicken Salad
Makes 8 Cups
Cal 127, Carbs 12.5, Fat 2.6, Fiber 4.1, Protein 12.8

14 oz. boneless skinless chicken grilled and sliced
1/3 cup Caribbean jerk marinade (I used Lawrys)
1/2 cup crumbled queso fresco cheese
1 cup mandarin orange slices
1 cup pineapple chunks
1 tomato chopped
1/2 red bell pepper, sliced
1/2 yellow bell pepper, sliced
1/4 cup lime tortilla strips
8 cups lettuce of your choice
1/3 cup dressing of your choice ( I used Kraft Zesty Lime Vinaigrette)

Combine chicken and marinade in a large ziplock bag. Place in fridge and marinate for at least 30 minutes.

Grill chicken for 5-7 minutes per side or until juices run clear.

To Assemble Salad-
Combine all ingredients together. Top with sliced chicken. Drizzle with lime dressing. Enjoy!

Thursday, May 11, 2017

French Onion Skillet Meatballs

I absolutely loved anything having to do with French Onion Soup so when I first made this recipe I knew it would be a keeper (for me at least) I wasn't so sure how my kiddo would feel about the recipe. As it turned out, he loved the meatballs and requested this meal for dinner tonight. I'm sharing it again on the blog and my version is healthier than the traditional so be sure to check it out!

French Onion Skillet Meatballs
Serves 5
Cal 290.6, Carbs 15, Fat 16.4, Fiber .3, Protein 21.6

30 pre-cooked turkey meatballs
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tbsp. worsterchire sauce
1 can french onion soup
1/2 cup water
4 slices swiss cheese
1/2 cup garlic croutons

In a large non stick skillet, brown meatballs. Add soup, garlic powder, Worcestershire sauce and water. Cover and simmer about 10 miunutes. Lay slices of swiss cheese over meatballs. Cover and continue cooking until cheese is melted. Top with croutons and serve over noodles or potatoes. Enjoy!

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Honey Mustard Cobb Salad

I love a good salad in the warmer months and today is finally a day where it hasn't been downright chilly. That calls for salad for dinner! My Honey Mustard Cobb Salad is easy and healthy. I marinate chicken breasts in honey mustard so the salad has a nice sweet and tangy kick. It goes great with a cobb salad. The perfect weeknight meal!

Honey Mustard Cobb Salad
Makes 10 Cups
WW PP=3 per cup
Cal 92.4 Carbs 10.3, Fat 3.6, Fiber 2.5 Protein 12.1

1/4 cup lite Honey Mustard Dressing, Divided
2 6oz. boneless skinless chicken breasts, grilled and sliced
2 hard boiled eggs, sliced
1 tomato, chopped
4 tbsp. blue cheese crumbles
1/3 cup crumbled bacon
10 cups lettuce (I used Fresh Express Iceberg)

Take half of the honey mustard and combine with chicken in a large Ziploc Bag. Place in fridge and let marinate for 30 minutes.

While chicken is marinating pre-heat grill. Over medium heat grill chicken for 5-6 minutes per side or until juices run clear. Use remaining honey mustard to baste over chicken.  Slice and prepare salad by laying chicken, eggs, blue cheese, bacon, and tomato over lettuce. Drizzle with additional honey mustard if desired. Enjoy!

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Chicken Fajita Cheesesteak Sandwiches

What's better than chicken fajitas? Chicken Fajita Cheesesteak Sandwiches! Yep, you read that correctly. What a fun way to mix things up. Enjoying fajitas in sandwich form and even better...they are healthy and easy to prepare. They were a hit in my house!

Chicken Fajita Cheesesteak Sandwiches
Serves 4
WW PP=11
Cal 443, Carbs 49.2, Fat 10, Fiber 2, Protein 34

16 oz. boneless skinless chicken, sliced
1 pkg. fajita seasoning mix
2 cups stir fry pepper/onion blend
1/2 cup reduced fat shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
4 hoagie/sub rolls (toasted)

In a large saucepan sauté chicken and veggies over medium high heat. Add in fajita seasoning and 1/2 cup water. Cover and simmer over low heat for about 10 minutes or until water is absorbed. Top chicken with shredded cheddar cheese. Cover until melted.

To assemble sandwiches-Evenly divide chicken/veggie mixture between the four.  Top with any other additional toppings if desired. (I like a little hot sauce) Enjoy!

Monday, May 8, 2017

One Pot Greek Chicken and Orzo

I love a good one pot meal. Don't you? Easy and with minimal clean up these type of meals are perfect for busy weeknights. This is also a versatile dish. Swap out Greek Chicken for BBQ or Cajun or Lemon. Either way it is sure to be a crowd pleaser!

One Pot Greek Chicken and Orzo
Makes 6 Cups
WW PP=4 per cup
Cal 181, Carbs 17.6, Fat 3, Fiber 3, Protein 20.3

16 oz. boneless skinless chicken tenderloins, cut into pieces
1 tsp. oregano
3 tsp. lemon pepper seasoning
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 cup diced tomatoes
1/2 cup diced red onion
2 cups orzo
2 cups chicken broth
Juice of one lemon
1/2 cup feta cheese crumbles

Sprinkle chicken with lemon pepper seasoning and oregano.

Spray a large pan with cooking spray and over medium high heat saute chicken, onion, and garlic until browned. Remove from pan and set aside.

Add the orzo, lemon juice, and chicken stock to the pan. Return chicken to pan along with diced tomatoes. Turn heat to high ad bring to a boil. Once boiling reduce heat to low. Cover and cook 8-10 minutes or until orzo is cooked through and most of the liquid is absorbed. Top with crumbled Feta. Enjoy!

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Cajun Chicken Mac and Cheese

I love love love mac and cheese. It's one of my favorite foods but unfortunately, my hips don't feel the same way! I do indulge every once in a while but it's a rarity. I've been craving mac and cheese like crazy lately so I decided to create my own lower cal/fat version. Toss in some spicy chicken for protein and you've got a delicious dinner!

Cajun Chicken Mac and Cheese
Serves 8
Cal 250, Carbs 36.1g, Fat 4.7g, Fiber 5.2g, Protein 16.6g

1 box elbow macaroni (I used Barilla Whole Grain)
2 4oz. chicken breasts cooked, chopped, and seasoned with 1 tsp. Cajun Seasoning
3 tbsp. reduced fat cream cheese
3/4 cup fat free milk
1 1/4 cup shredded reduced fat american cheese blend (I like Kraft)
2 tsp. Cajun Seasoning, divded
1 jalapeno seeded and finely chopped

Boil pasta according to package directions. Drain and set aside.

While Pasta is cooking, in a large saucepan over medium-high heat, melt cream cheese and milk. Whisk until smooth. Add in Cajun seasoning and shredded cheese. Once cheese is melted add in the jalapeno and cooked chicken. Stir and toss in the cooked macaroni. Serve immediately. Top with additional chopped jalapeno if desired. Enjoy!

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Chicken Tamale Bake

Confession....I've never had a tamale before. Don't get me wrong...they look amazing and I would eat one in a hot minute... but I want a real authentic one,  not one from a fast food joint or from the frozen section at the grocery store. In the meantime I'll pretend by eating this delicious Chicken Tamale Bake. Not sure why I am just discovering this recipe because it's been floating all over the internet. Wow, was this ever good! Going on my list of favorites!

Chicken Tamale Bake
Adapted from Food.Com
Makes 8 Slices
WW PP=6 per slice
Cal 233.2, Carbs 23.6, Fat 8.5, Fiber 1.2, Protein 12.7

1 14 oz. can creamed corn
1 box corn muffin mix (I used Jiffy)
1/3 cup skim milk
1 can enchilada sauce
1 can chopped green chiles
1/4 cup egg beaters
1 tsp. chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin
1 cup reduced fat shredded jack cheese
1/4 cup crumbled queso fresco
2 cups shredded cooked chicken 
3 green onions, sliced

Preheat oven to 400.

Spray a cooking dish with non stick cooking spray. (I used a pie plate but if you want a thinner crust use a larger dish.

In a bowl combine the chicken and enchilada sauce and set aside. In another bowl, combine the creamed corn, muffin mix, chiles, milk, egg beaters, chili powder, cumin, and ½ cup of the shredded cheese.

Bake for 20-25 minutes or until edges are golden brown and the middle is cooked through

Use the back of a wooden spoon and poke holes on the top of the corn bread. 

In a medium bowl, combine the chicken and the enchilada sauce and pour over the top of the baked corn mixture. Sprinkle with remaining 1½ cups of the shredded cheese.

Bake for an additonal 5-10  minutes or until cheese is melted.

Remove from the oven and top with crumbled queso and green onions. Enjoy!

Monday, May 1, 2017

Slow Cooker Jalapeno Chicken Chili

Happy May 1st! Hard to believe May is here but I'm happy because that means warmer weather, longer days, and we are that much closer to summer! Now I don't tend to make Chili in the warmer months but today is an exception. When it's chilly, rainy, and blustery outside like it is here in chicagoland, Chili is a must! (or at least I think so) I love this Jalapeno Chicken Chili. It is one of my all time favorites. It's cheesy, creamy, spicy and oh so yummy! Perfect for a day like today!

Slow Cooker Jalapeno Chicken Chili
Serves 4
Cal 276, Carbs 17.5, Fat 11, Fiber 2, Protein 25.5

12 oz. boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 tbsp. chili powder
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 jalapeno deseeded and finely chopped
1 cup fat free chicken broth
1 can great northern beans, rinsed
2 oz. reduced fat cream cheese
1/4 cup reduced fat sour cream
1/2 cup shredded Kraft three cheese blend
4 slices bacon, cooked crisp (I used center cut)
tortilla chips, crackers, sour cream for additional toppings, if desired

Arrange chicken in bottom of crock pot. Season with chili and garlic powder. Next add in the jalapeno, chicken broth, and beans. Cover and cook on low 4 hours.

Break chicken into pieces and add in your cream cheese, sour cream, and shredded cheese. Continue cooking an additional 20-25 minutes or until cheese is melted. Enjoy!
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