Crockpot Pesto Chicken

I have been obsessed with this recipe recently.  I make it every two weeks!  Super easy and pretty quick for a crock pot recipe!

 

Ingredients:

  • 4 Chicken breasts
  • 4 mushrooms (I hate mushrooms, so I dice them VERY fine so I “hide” them)
  • 1c chicken broth
  • 2 shallots cut julienne
  • 1 jar of pesto

 

Line the crockpot with the crockpot liner.  Pour the broth in.  Then put in the chicken, mushrooms, and shallots.   When it comes to putting on the pesto, I spread it on top of the chicken breast.

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Put the lid on, cook on low for 4 hours, or high for 2 hours.

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Serve over pasta, or eat it by itself!   Trip likes having it with a little bit of marinara.  Sometimes I think he will put my marinara on anything!  🙂

 

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Chicken Parmesan

Like I mentioned in previous posts…..we LOVE Italian food!  And our favorite dish at Italian restaurants is Chicken Parmesan.  I like to try different dishes on the menu, but Trip…he stays with the classic.  He will order Chicken Parmesan and I will try something new, and his dish is always better.  Since we love this dish so much, it only makes sense that I make it at home, but only a bit healthier.

Ingredients:

  • 2 large chicken breasts
  • 2c almond flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp basil
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • Marinara
  • Shredded Mozzarella
  • Coconut Oil

 

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Normally in restaurants the chicken comes in a single breast.  I like to cut the chicken into pieces and then bread it.   Open the eggs for an egg wash in a bowl.  In another bowl, put your almond flour and spices in.  Mix the flour and spices.

 

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Dip the chicken into the egg wash and then put it in the breading.  I typically use my left hand to mix the chicken in the eggs, drop it into the breading bowl and use my right hand to roll the chicken in the breading.  I have found that this will help keep excess egg into the breading and it won’t get as many clumps.

When you are finished, it looks like this:IMG_2483

As you can see, there isn’t a ton of flour on the chicken.   A lot of restaurants will have pounded the chicken so thin that some bites are just breading.  With this thin coating of breading, you get the taste and the texture of the crispy breading.

Next, you will use a medium pan and put a tablespoon of coconut oil in.  You will sear each side of the chicken for 1.5-2 minutes on each side.  (As you can see, I don’t deep fry my chicken.)  You want a nice golden color on the chicken.  It’s ok if it isn’t cooked all the way through, we will be baking it in a few minutes.

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You can get your baking dish ready while the chicken is cooking.  I start by putting a layer of marinara on the bottom.  I like using the marinara recipe I posted earlier.  Then once the chicken is done searing on both sides, put it on a paper towel to drain off excess oil.  Next you can start putting it in your baking dish.

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Once it is full of chicken, put another layer of marinara over the chicken.

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Bake the chicken for 20 minutes in the oven.  Once that has finished cooking, put as much mozzarella as you like over the dish.  And cook until cheese is melted, about 7 minutes.

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You can serve this over pasta, zoodles, sweet potato noodles, or quinoa!  Or just eat it plain.   Anyway you have it, it tastes amazing!

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Crock-pot Salsa Chicken

For the longest time, I swore off buying a Crock-Pot.   Part of me was scared to leave a cooking appliance on while I was at home.  The other part of me thought I was buying lazy by just putting something in a Crock-Pot and not doing anything.  Two years ago, my boyfriend’s brother bought me one for Christmas….and it is one of my favorite kitchen appliances.

So shiny!

So shiny!

 

Since getting this awesome Crock-Pot, one of our favorite meals is Salsa Chicken.  It’s super easy and great for leftovers!  I usually make this before my work weekends so I have lunches already made.  In fact, I have made it so often for work lunches, one of my coworkers Kim requested that I blog about this recipe!  Well, here ya go Kim!

Ingredients:

  • 4 thawed chicken breasts
  • 1 lime
  • 1 taco seasonings packet
  • 1 jar salsa (need AT least 18 ounces of salsa for the full recipe)
  • Crock-Pot Liner
  • optional: chopped jalapeno or hatch chili pepper for extra kick if you want

 

First thing to do is put your Crock-Pot liner in your crock pot.  If you have never used, or heard of a Crock-Pot liner, you need to go to Wal-Mart and buy them now.  They will save you SOOOOO much time when it comes to clean up.   This will save you from having to scrub the crock pot when you are finished cooking.

Put your thawed chicken breasts in the bottom of the crock pot.  Squeeze the entire lime over the chicken.  Once you put the lime juice over the chicken, now spread the taco seasonings over the chicken breasts.

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Now, pour the salsa over the chicken.  You want to make sure that the chicken is fully covered with salsa.

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I will normally get a big jar of salsa from Costco and use about 3/4 of it.  I can imagine what you are thinking….wow!  That’s a lot of salsa.   And yes, it is.  But we feel that it is necessary.   When the chicken is finished cooking, the salsa sauce goes perfectly over the chicken and can be used as a taco salad dressing.  There have been times when we didn’t put enough salsa on it, and honestly, the dish wasn’t as good.  So, don’t be stingy with your salsa!  🙂

With the salsa on, you can add the chopped peppers if you want.  In not, put the lid on the Crock-Pot and cook on low for 7 hours.

And 7 hours later…..

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You have flavorful chicken that is able to be pulled apart and eaten for dinner.  Like I mentioned earlier, you can put it on a taco salad, put it over rice, or just add a bunch of the salsa sauce from the Crock-Pot and eat it by itself.  Whatever you decide to eat this with it will be amazing that night or the next day for lunch!  Enjoy!

Spaghetti and Butternut Squash Casserole

While working in triage….ok, so maybe I wasn’t working…I was daydreaming about what new things to make and this recipe just popped into my head.  Right now I am going through an obsession with squash.  It’s tasty and super low in calories….so why not?  And I love tomato sauce….so why not mix everything together?

Ingredients:

  • 1 cooked spaghetti squash
  • 1/4 of butternut squash shredded
  • 5c tomato sauce (I used this recipe from Nom Nom Paleo…one recipe made 5c after blending)
  • 2 chicken breasts diced and cooked
  • 1c diced red bell pepper
  • 1c chopped spinch
  • 1/2c chopped mushrooms (since I don’t really like mushrooms, we diced them up super fine)

 

First you need to cook your spaghetti squash.   Cut it in half and bake it rind side up at 375 degrees for 30-40 minutes.  You will know it’s ready when you can easily scrap out the strands.

While the squash is cooking, you can start making the tomato sauce.  I followed it exactly like the recipe on Nom Nom Paleo.   It does come out chunky like she said, so I blended it until it was a smoother consistency.   I can not say enough great things about this recipe.  I could not stop eating it with a spoon.  So good!

When the sauce was simmering, I prepared the rest of the ingredients.   I marinated the chicken in a fat free sun dried tomato marinade.   If you don’t want to marinate it, you can season it to your preference.

Once the spaghetti squash has been made into strands, I mixed everything together in one giant bowl.  Not going to lie….didn’t look like the most appetizing meal I ever cooked.  But I still had high hopes for this.  After mixing all the ingredients so that there was tomato sauce on everything, I put it in a 13×9 glass baking dish.   Then bake it in the oven at 375 degrees for about 40 minutes.  How I judged it on being done was by finding a piece of the shredded butternut squash and making sure it wasn’t very crunchy.

Let it cool for a few minutes and serve!

After baking

After baking

 

Even my boyfriend loved this dish!  If it gets his seal of approval, it has to be good!   It heats up well the next day in the oven or the microwave, so it is prefect for lunch the next day!

Spinach Chicken Rollups

Can you feel is?  Baseball season is beginning!  While my boyfriend is away at Spring Training, my mom has come up to stay with me.  🙂

We have continued our Mother-Daughter tradition of having waffles and bacon, and I got to make her my Paleo Pecan Waffles.   And it was a hit!  She couldn’t stop raving about them.  With that being a success, I had to make sure that I made something else to impress her.   Tonight I made my Spinach Chicken Rollups.    After one bite, she was hooked and you will be too!

Ingredients:

  • 4 small chicken breasts (or two large chicken breasts cut in half lengthwise)
  • 1c frozen spinach thawed out
  • 1/3c shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1 caramelized onion (if you don’t like onions you can omit this and it will still be tasty)
  • 1 egg
  • 1c panko bread crumbs (I used gluten free and seasoned it with salt and pepper)
  • 1c marina sauce
  • 1/2c shredded mozzarella cheese

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

First step is to pound out the chicken so it is easier to roll up.  I bought some chicken from Sprouts and they were gigantic.  So I cut them in half lengthwise and it worked out better than if I used it whole.

Gather three bowls to be used for the preparing of the chicken.  In the first bowl put the thawed out chicken with the 1/3c of mozzarella cheese.  The second bowl put the egg and mix it up.  And in the third bowl put the panko bread crumbs.

Spinach Chicken RollupsFirst put the spinach/mozzarella mixture and the caramelized onions in the flattened chicken breast and roll it up.  Secure it with toothpicks.  Then dip it into the egg mixture and once coated with the egg roll it in the Panko breadcrumbs.  Place rolled up chicken in a glass baking container.

Once you have finished rolling up all the chicken, spray with baking spray.

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Put into heated oven for 25 minutes.  Once that is finished, spread out the marinara sauce on top and put as much or as little cheese as you like.   Put back into the oven until the cheese is melted, about 5 minutes.

Spinach Chicken Rollups

I have made this with a side of broccoli, pasta, or over quinoa.  It is very versatile.

Spinach Chicken RollupsDinner was a great success, and now we are going to go and try my first attempt at homemade ice cream.  Hopefully it will be just as tasty!