I often look to pinterest for new recipe ideas. This dinner was definitely inspired by a post I saw on pinterest. But, I used the types of seasoning my family likes, versus the ones in their recipe. :) I have made this several times now, and everyone enjoys it.. It is also easy to prepare a little ahead of time, and then have the spouse pop in the oven while you are out running errands, at kids practices, or any other thing that keeps you busy! :)
1 1/2 lbs Chicken Breast
4-6 potatoes depending on size
1/2 Onion Sliced
2 -3 Cups of Green Beans, Asparagus, or Carrots (or a mix!)
1/2 Stick Butter
Preheat oven to 350 degree Fahrenheit. Then, slice 1/2 of an onion into thin slices, and spread them across the bottom of your baking dish. Next, wash your potatoes and if they are small red or Yukon potatoes cut them into 4 even pieces, if they are larger russets cut them into approximately 2" chunks. Then, remove any fat/skin from your chicken breast, and chop into approximately 3 inch chunks. I use frozen organic green beans from Costco for this - and it works great. I imagine fresh veggies would work wonderfully too. I wouldn't choose any vegetable that is too soft to begin with because it does have a long baking time. :) Next, arrange everything into your pan over the top of the onions. Then, sprinkle with all of your seasonings. I use a generous amount of all of the seasonings, EXCEPT the salt, pepper, and Italian seasoning. Those, get a light sprinkling over everything. Then, I slice the butter into thin slices, and evenly disperse it over the top of everything - if you like butter a lot feel free to add more. Then, cover the top of your baking dish with aluminum foil and bake for at least 1 and 1/2 hours. Or, until the potatoes are nice and soft.. You do not need to add any fluids to the dish if you cover it tight, the natural waters in the veggies, chicken, and potatoes mixed with the butter create plenty of fluid to keep it all moist.
Crockpot Shredded Chicken
I am going to be putting two recipes on here, one for the "normal" meat we do, and then another with some yummy extras! Both are super fantastic. The first one is our main go to meat, that is fast and easy!
2lbs Chicken Breast
1/2 to 1 Cup of your favorite Salsa
Sprinkle each side or your chicken breast generously with your seasonings, then place into a frying pan over medium heat. Add your onions to the pan at the same time. You don't need to add any oil, but you can lightly brush a small amount in the bottom if you want. There are two reasons to cook it a bit before you put it in the crockpot, 1. it will help remove some of the "water". Have you ever made a crockpot meal, and it came out all watered down? I have!! 2. It will help give it even more delicious flavors. So, cook each side for about 1 minute. Then place it all into the crockpot, and pour your salsa over the top. Put the lid on your crockpot and cook for 6-8 hours on low or 4-6 hours on high! It will fall apart with your fork, mix it all up to evenly disperse all the flavors. It is ready to serve in soft tacos, enchiladas, tostadas, burritos, or on top of nachos.. :)
Now to spice it up with a little homemade salsa Verde.. :)
First, I washed and cleaned 4 tomatillos, 1 Jalapeno, and 1/4 of an onion. Then I roasted them in a pan. I then put them in a blender with a small handful of cilantro and two cloves of garlic - blended it up! I added this to my normal ingredients from above. You could reduce your normal salsa amount by 1/2 or not use it at all. Up to you. :) Just put in all the ingredients, cover and cook just like the previous recipe. :)
This is what the meat looks like in the crockpot after I shred it up a little. It falls apart so quickly! :)
Baked Italian Parmesan Chicken
This is one of my families favorites. They always ask for it, it is one of several meals that everyone enjoys! Usually we have someone that is not too fond of the meal, or would prefer something different. But, according to my kids this one always gets A++++.
4 Chicken Breasts (fillet in 1/2 to make 8 thin pieces)
8-10 Organic Crackers (I use O Organics stone ground whole wheat crackers)
1 tbsp. Fresh Parsley
1 Garlic Clove (peeled)
Pinch of Black Pepper
Pinch of Salt
1/4 Cup Shredded Parmesan Cheese
1/2 Cup Melted Coconut Oil
1/2 tsp granulated garlic
1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
Preheat oven to 400
Slice/fillet chicken breasts in 1/2 so that you have 8 thin pieces of chicken. In a food processor combine all the ingredients for the topping, pulse until you have very small crumbs (like bread crumbs). Pour into pie pan, or something similar. Next, melt coconut oil, and then mix seasonings in with it in a small dish. Using a basting brush, brush each side of your chicken with the melted coconut oil mix, and then dip into the cracker crumbs. Press crumbs onto the chicken to be sure that it is coated well. Now, on a well greased baking sheet place your chicken. Bake for about 8 minutes on the first side, then flip and bake for another 5 or so minutes on the second side. Baking time will all depend on how thick your chicken is, be sure it is cooked thoroughly using a meat thermometer.
Sometimes I make a little parmesan, garlic alfredo sauce to drizzle over the top!
I have been making enchiladas since I was about 15, but I always used a can of enchilada sauce, and would add things to it. But, as we began our quest for healthier eating, all premade foods went out the window. So, I have been playing with homemade recipes for enchilada sauce. I have made one similar to this 2 times now, and we have enjoyed it, I am sure I will continue to tweak it, since it has only been two times, but for now it works, and it is yummy!
1 tsp Safflower Oil
3/4 Medium onion diced
1/4 Red Pepper (you could use 1/2 of one type if you want)
1/4 Yellow Pepper
1/2 tsp flour
1 - 8 oz can low sodium Tomato Sauce
1 - 16 oz can low sodium diced tomatoes
1 can Diced Green Chilies
1 1/2 Cups Organic Low Sodium Chicken Broth
2 TBSP Chili Powder
3/4 tsp Granulated Garlic
1/2 tsp Onion Powder
1 tsp Parika
1/8 tsp Dried Oregano
less then 1/8th tsp Cayenne Pepper
Pinch of Salt (if you want, we dont use it)
2 lbs uncooked boneless/ skinless Chicken Breast
1 tsp safflower oil
1 tsp flour
1 1/2 cups Organic Low Sodium Chicken Broth
1/2 can low sodium diced tomatoes
1 - 8 oz can low sodium tomato sauce
2 TBSP Chili Powder
1/2 tsp Paprika
1/4 tsp Granulated Garlic
1/4 tsp Onion Powder
1/8 tsp Dried Oregano
a dash of Cayenne Pepper
1 tsp Diced Green Chilies
Corn or Flour Tortillas
Freshly Grated Cheddar Cheese
In a large stock pan, or dutch oven over medium heat place oil, onions, and peppers. Cook until softened and browning. Then, add flour stir until it is browned a bit. (this will help your sauce thicken - you do not have to add it!). Now, add the remainder of the ingredients. Bring to a soft boi, reduce heat to simmer/low just enough that it is at a soft boil while covered, and cook for about-2 hours. Then, remove lid, and using some tongs simply squeeze the meat it should fall right apart, if it doesn't you need to cook it longer! Once, the meat is all shredded, stir and then allow to sofly boil for another 1/2 hour uncovered, this will thicken it up a bit more. If most of your moisture seems to be gone, then just keep it covered for the last 1/2 hour. -- Once, cooked place a small amount into a tortilla (we use corn), roll, place your enchilada sauce over the top, with a bit of cheese, and then place in a microwave or oven to melt the cheese. Top with fresh Cilantro!
*We do sometimes make up a large batch at once, in a casserole dish, but I generally just make them up per person, and freeze the extra meat!
In a small sauce pan over medium heat place oil and flour cook until brown (again if you dont care about your sauce being thicker skip this part - but note it will be very "watery"). Once the flour is browned add the remainder of the ingredients, cover and let simmer for about 1 hour, uncover and simmer for another 1/2 hour, spoon over the top of your rolled enchiladas.
*Sometimes, I add a 1/2 tsp of Chipotle Seasoning to the sauce too!
Asian-Ginger Grilled Chicken
While searching on pinterest the other day, I found a recipe for asian inspired grilled chicken. After glancing at that recipe, I came up with an idea for something we would really enjoy! -- It came out fantastic.
4 Chicken Breasts Fileted in 1/2
1/4 Cup Soy Sauce
1/2 Cup Reduce Sodium Soy Sauce
2 Tbsp Tropical 100% Juice (you could use a mixture, orange, or pineapple)
1/2 tsp Freshly grated ginger root
2 Cloves Fresh Garlic Minced
2 Green Onions Sliced Thin
1 tsp Organic Brown Sugar
1/2 tsp Sesame Oil
1/2 tsp Oyster Sauce
1/2 tsp Rice Vinegar
In a small bowl combine all marinade ingredients, stir together well - reserve about 1/4 cup of the marinade to use for basting during grilling, pour the remainder into a larger bowl or a ziploc bag, and add the chicken. Allow to marinate in your fridge for 2-3 hours, remove chicken from marinade and place onto a preheated bbq/grill. Cook until done, (depending on the thickness & grill temp this time will very), approx. 5 minutes on the first side, and 3-4 on the second.
Asian-ginger chicken served with steamed vegis.
A while back I found a recipe on pinterest for Mongolian beef, I made it, and it was super yummy. But, lets be realistic, I can NOT afford to buy flank steak very often, if really ever! So, tonight as I was thinking about what type of Asian food I wanted to make, and debating over if I really wanted to make teriyaki chicken again or not; I had an idea! Why don't I make mongolian chicken? Well, I kind of figured it would turn out edible/ maybe somewhat terrible. haha! But, it actually was quite delicious, the boys even loved it!! I served it along side some asian inspired quinoa, topped with steamed veggis. Super yummy all the way around, and WAY cheaper and healthier then take out as the total for 6 people probably cost about $8.00.
Ingredients: (feeds 4-6 people)
about 3 lbs Chicken breast sliced into thin strips
3/4 Cups Cornstarch
1/2 Cup Safflower Oil
1 tsp Olive Oil
2 Cloves garlic minced fine
1/4 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup low sodium soy sauce (if you only use regular soy sauce, I promise you it will be very salty tasting!)
1/2 cup water
1/2 Cup Organic Light Brown Sugar
1 Dried Red Chili Pepper
2 Drops Sesame oil
1/2 tsp Rice Vinegar
In a medium sauce pan over medium heat add the safflower oil, and garlic. As soon as you begin to smell the garlic aroma add the soy sauces, and water. Stir together and then add the remainder of the ingredients, continue to stir occasionaly and reduce to low/medium heat. Cook for about 7 minutes until it thickens up a bit. Then, remove from heat.
Slice your chicken breast into thin strips, and then coat with cornstarch. Then, in a wok or frying pan warm your oil over medium/high heat. Once, hot add your chicken that has been coated well with cornstarch, cook each side just until very lightly brown. (this chicken is very thin and should not need to cook for a long peroid of time to be cooked fully.) Next, remove the chicken from the oil, and lay on a papertowel to drain off any excess grease. Now, remove the remaining oil from your frying pan or wok, and return the chicken and the marinade to the pan over medium heat. Cook until the marinade thickens around the chicken and it is all coated nicely. Stiring occasionaly! Top with some freshly sliced green onions!
Mongolian Chicken w/ Quinoa and stemmed vegis. :)
Santa Fe Chicken Salad
I've been on a search for salad recipes, that the whole family would enjoy. I came across a Santa Fe Chicken salad that looked so yummy. So, I decided to try and make my own.
3 Chicken Breasts Filleted in 1/2 to make thin Chicken Breasts
(You will use these to sprinkle on each side)
1 clove garlic, grated or minced fine
1 tablespoon onion minced really fine
juice of 1 lime
1/2 teaspoon Cumin
1/2 teaspoon Paprika
1/4 teaspoon Chili Powder
1/4 cup Organic sour cream
A little sprinkle of organic unrefined sugar
2 TBSP Safflower oil
2 Heads Romaine Lettuce
1 Sweet Red Pepper Sliced thin
1/2 Green Pepper Sliced Thin
Carrots grated or sliced thin
1 Cup Spinach
*Add any other vegetables your family enjoys!
Filet chicken breasts in 1/2, and then sprinkle the seasonings on each side. Allow to sit for a few minutes while you mix up your dressing, and prepare your salad.
In a small bowl combine sour cream, and all seasoning; whisk together until well combined, then slowly add the oil while you conitinue to whisk until everything is well mixed.
Prepare your salad, and place on dinner plates, or in a serving bowl.
Now, over medium heat place a frying pan, drizzle a small amount of safflower oil over your chicken breast, and place them into the frying pan. Cover and cook each side for about 4 minutes. (depending on thickness this easily could take longer, be sure your meat is cooked well!)
We garnished with a little shredded colby jack cheese, and cilantro over the top!
Chicken Sprinkled with seasonings.
You can do it as a wrap too! -- This one had mexican bean salad on top..
I realized recently that most all of the bbq sauces have HFCS in it, something that we are trying really hard to avoid in our diet. So, I bought the one brand that did not have it in it, well lets just say I will NOT be buying that brand ever again, it was spendy and not good!
So, today I decided to make my own, and it came out delightful!
My ingredients list is NOT exact, as I did it to taste! :)
2 TBSP fresh onion minced/diced small
1 tsp Olive or Safflower Oil
2 Garlic Cloved Minced
1/2 tsp Organic unrefined Sugar
1 Cup ORGANIC Ketchup (If you dont buy organic, or a brand w/out HFCS it defeats part of the purpose)
1/2 Cup Broth or Water (I used organic low sodium beef broth)
1/2 tsp Onion Powder
1/2 tsp Rice Vinegar (could use white or apple too)
1 tsp Granulated Garlic
1/2 tsp Crushed Black Pepper
1 tsp Mesquite Liquid Smoke
1 tsp Worcheshire Sauce (lea & perrins)
1/4 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp parsley flakes
1/2 tsp blackening season
1/4 tsp Crushed Red Pepper
I first sauteed the onions and added a bit of sugar on top once they were almost done, to kind of carmelize them. Then, I added the minced garlic, let cook for less then one minute and added the ketchup, and remainder of ingredients.. I allowed this to simmer for about 10 minutes, stiring occasionally (I did not boil).. This made enough to coat about 2 lbs of chicken breast several times, while they were on the bbq. The sauce is a little smokey with a bit of spice!
Cilantro, Chicken Tacos
I saw a recipe on pinterest for a cilantro pesto, to put over tacos, and it inspired me to make a cilantro marinade.
2 lbs chicken breast cut into small cubes
1 bunch of cilantro
2 Cloves Garlic
a couple slices of sweet onion
the juice of one lime
1/8th cup of chicken stock
6" Corn Tortillas
Place cilantro, garlic, onion, lime juice, and chicken stock into a food processor and blend until its all into tiny bits. Pour over the chicken, and allow to marinade for at least one hour, but it can be stored over night, or placed in the freezer. Once the meat has been marinated heat a frying pan over medium-high heat add about 1 tablespoon of olive or safflower oil. If you are going to add red peppers and onions you can add those to the pan and sautee for a minute or so, then add the marinated chicken. Cook until done, stirring occasionaly. It will take approx. 5-6 minutes.. Serve with warm, corn tortillas and top with your favorite toppings.
Garlic and Red Pepper Kabobs
I always look up kabob recipes and they are all basically the same! And, I don't really care to use a bottled marinade.. So, this afternoon I decided to make up my own again, it came out super delicious!
In a food processor I placed olive oil, 2 strips of a sweet red pepper, 2 clovse of garlic, 1/4 tsp chives, 1/2 tsp dried parsley, 1/8 tsp dried onion flakes, 1/2 tsp worcheshire sauce, a small pinch of salt & crushed black pepper. I then pulsed it until everything was blended together, then I poured it over the chicken strips, and allowed to marinate overnight, but a few hours would be fine too!