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Pan Seared Chicken Cutlet with Zoodles and Sun-dried Tomato Alfredo Sauce

I was in the produce section in the grocery looking for inspiration for dinner when I went around the corner and found Zoodles already to cook. This gave me a little thrill. A healthy shortcut to a dinner time meal. Next, I go to the meat department and pickup some chicken cutlets. Cutlets will make the meal prep go even faster. At my final destination I pick up some Parmesan – already grated. This meal is coming together nicely and quickly.

This is often how I plan my meals. It seems whenever I plan a week full of meals the plans seemed to get derailed for one reason or another and I end up wasting food. That really bothers me. Now, I try to draw from three different ideas for dinnertime meals, and then wing it from there. That seems to work out for us. It gives us room for leftovers/planovers or testing new recipes, and then I do not have any waste. I hope this gives you a little inspiration to check around the corner of your grocery store and try something new.

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  • Zoodles (see website)
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 16 oz. chicken cutlets
  • 1 tbsp all-purpose seasoning (see website)
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 2 tbsp paleo all-purpose flour (see website)
  • 2 garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 c parmesan, grated
  • 2 c cashew milk
  • 2 tbsp sun dried tomatoes, minced
  • basil, fresh, garnish

Prep zoodles (see website).

In a large skillet over medium heat warm olive oil. Season chicken cutlets with all-purpose seasoning. Cook chicken to a golden brown color. Remove from skillet and set aside.

Melt butter in skillet. Add flour and cook for 1-2 minutes. Pour in some of the cashew milk to deglaze the skillet; stirring continuously. Add garlic. Slowly pour remains cashew milk into skillet while whisking.

Whisk out any lump of flour. Remove skillet from heat and stir in parmesan.

In a separate skillet melt butter. Add zoodles and cook until warm, not mushy. Remove zoodles and plate.

Return alfredo sauce to heat and whisk. Spoon Alfredo over zoodles.

Cut chicken cutlets on the bias and place on top of zoodles. Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

 

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Mediterranean Chicken

I was inspired by a recipe I had came across last week.  The ingredients are simple yet delicious. The onions add a sweetness. The lemon is fragrant and adds a citrus flavor. The olives have a salty bite. Combine all these elements with the chicken and you have almost the perfect bite. Swipe all these tasty things into some balsamic syrup and that is the perfect bite.

Another plus about this dish, it is all made on a sheet pan in the oven, which is easy for cleanup.

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  • Olive oil, drizzle
  • 1 lemon, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 onion, thinly sliced
  • 4 boneless, skinless, chicken  breast
  • all-purpose seasoning (see website)
  • 16 kalamata olives, halved
  • Balsamic Syrup (see website)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Place onions, lemons slices, and olives on sheet pan. Drizzle olive oil over veggie mixture. Sprinkle seasoning on veggie mixture. Stir so that veggies are completely covered. Drizzle olive oil onto chicken breast; coating well. Sprinkle seasoning onto chicken breast.

Bake in oven for 20 minutes. Remove chicken.

Preheat broiler to high. Broil chicken  (3-5 inches from element) until chicken is browned.

Drizzle balsamic syrup around plate. Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

 

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Creamy Chicken Salad

Chicken Salad is one of my favorite chicken dishes. You can serve it in lettuce cups, on bread, on top of salad greens (these were from my aero garden) or in a wrap. It is very versatile.

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  • 16 oz chicken breast, boneless, skinless
  • 1/2 tsp all-purpose seasoning (see website)
  • 1 tsp coconut oil
  • 1/4 c homemade mayonnaise (see website)
  • 1/4 c plain greek yogurt
  • 1 1/2 tsp dijon mustard
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • Pinch of ground black pepper
  • 3 tbsp celery, diced
  • 3 1/2 tbsp dried cranberries
  • 2 1/2 tbsp walnuts, chopped
  • Fresh Salad Greens

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Pat dry chicken breast then season with all-purpose seasoning. Using a large skillet (ovenproof) melt coconut oil over medium-high heat. Cook each side of the chicken breast to a golden brown. Transfer skillet to oven and roast for 10 minutes, or until chicken breast are cooked through. Remove from oven and set aside for at least 5 minutes.

When chicken has cooled enough to handle cut into bite size pieces.

In a large bowl combine mayonnaise, yogurt, mustard, salt, pepper, celery, cranberries and walnuts. Chill chicken mixture for 30-60 minutes. Serve chicken salad over salad greens. Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

 

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Quick Chicken Cacciatore

Cacciatore usually takes a while to make. This is a quick and tasty version that you will like. This dish is loaded with veggies. That is another plus for good health.

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  • 2 1/4 tsp avocado oil, divided
  • 3/4 tsp fresh rosemary, finely minced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • pinch of sea salt
  • pinch of ground black pepper
  • 2 chicken breast, boneless, skinless
  • cooking spray
  • 1/2 c onion, thinly sliced
  • 3/4 c red bell pepper
  • 4 oz baby portabella mushrooms, sliced
  • 6 oz red wine
  • 1/4 c fresh basil, cut into strips
  • 1/8 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 tomato, large, diced

Combine 3/4 tsp of oil, rosemary, garlic, salt and pepper. Rub oil mixture evenly over chicken. Heat a skillet over medium-high heat. Coat skillet with cooking spray. Add chicken to pan; cook chicken to a golden brown on each side. Remove chicken from pan. Add remaining 1 1/2 tsp of oil to pan. Add onion, bell pepper and mushrooms. Cook about 5 minutes. Add wine and reduce liquid to half its volume. Stir in basil and crushed red pepper. Return chicken to skillet. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 15 minutes or until chicken is done.

 

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Spinach, Apple, Berries and Almond Chicken Salad

This salad has a lot of crunch appeal and is loaded with plenty of beautiful color. Remember a variety of color in your food equals nutrients and antioxidants.

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  • 2 tbsp avocado oil
  • 1 lemon, tested, juiced
  • 1 tsp thyme, fresh
  • 1/2 tsp dijon mustard
  • 8 oz. chicken breast, boneless-skinless
  • 1/2 tsp all-purpose seasoning (see website)
  • 1 tsp avocado oil
  • 3 c baby spinach
  • 2 tbsp shredded carrot
  • 1 celery stalk, thinly sliced
  • 1 apple, halved and cut into 1/4 inch thick pieces
  • 2 tbsp almonds, sliced
  • 1/4 c raspberries
  • 1/4 c blueberries

Combine oil, zest, juice, thyme and mustard in a large ziplock bag. Add chicken to ziplock turning bag occasionally. Set aside for at least 10 minutes.

Heat a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with avocado oil. Remove chicken from marinade. Pat chicken dry. Sprinkle chicken with all-purpose seasoning. Add chicken to pan; cook 5-8 minutes on each side until golden brown. Place chicken on cutting board, let rest for 5 minutes. Cut across the grain into thin slices.

Combine spinach, carrots, celery, apple and berries in a large bowl. Add remaining marinade/dressing; toss to coat. Divide spinach mixture evenly among two plates; top evenly with chicken. Sprinkle with almonds.

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Herb Roasted Chicken and Blackberry Salad

This salad literally took 5 minutes to assemble because I had plan ahead items in my refrigerator. Here is a couple of things I always try to keep in my refrigerator when I am on a time crunch to get a meal on the table.

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Herb Roasted Chicken Breasts – I make up a sheet pan of boneless skinless chicken breasts for my initial meal. Then I will use one or two for my Cranberry Chicken Salad. I will use another chicken breast to put in as the protein in garden salads. Then the remaining chicken breasts I will put into a “pasta” dish or make quesadillas. By roasting the chicken in the beginning I have multiple meals started for the week. Because I have used the chicken in different ways it does not feel like I am eating chicken all the time.

Greens – I usually keep romaine hearts, baby spinach or baby kale in the refrigerator. Sometimes I will grab a “bag of mixed greens” to have on hand. Having the greens on hand really helps put a nutritious salad together in no time. I like to cut baby spinach or kale into strips and add to pasta dishes. Once again I am adding a nutritious boost to my pasta.

Carrots  – I like to keep baby carrots and shredded carrots on hand. I will roast the baby carrots in the oven with herbs and then drizzle a little honey on them at the end. If I have any leftover I turn these into some kind of soup. It could be a creamy roasted vegetable soup, or chicken “noodle”. I like shredded carrots to put in salads for a pop of color.

Fruit – I like to have seasonal fresh fruit handy. Chopping up a peach or throwing in some blackberries in a salad is an expected treat in what is usually just veggies in your salads.

These ingredients inspired this salad that I made for our lunch. I was able to assemble ahead of time, cover and refrigerate for a quick grab and eat meal.

With a little forethought you can have a nutritious, beautifully appealing meal on the table in minutes.

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Pan Seared Chicken Breast Stuffed with Goat Cheese Pesto

This makes a good “company” main entree. My oldest son and his girlfriend came over for dinner. It was a great time to cook together. We made this chicken dish that has great flavor. Want to impress company with your cooking skills? This is the dish for you.

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  • 4 boneless-skinless chicken breast, pounded to an even thickness
  • 10.5 oz Chevre Goat Cheese
  • 2 tbsp pesto
  • all-purpose seasoning (see website)
  • avocado oil
  • 24 oz. button mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 1/2 c chicken broth
  • 1 tbsp butter

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Pound all the chicken breasts to an even thickness. This helps the chicken breast to cook evenly. Place your palm firmly on top of the chicken breast to anchor your chicken breast to your cutting board. Cut in the middle of the breast horizontally making a flap. Do not cut all the way through. You want to keep the chicken breast intact.

Stir together goat cheese and pesto until well combined.

Open Chicken breast and spread goat cheese on one side. I found doing this with wet hands worked best. Close flap of chicken breast and season with all-purpose seasoning.

Heat avocado oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Sear both sides of chicken breast to a golden brown. Transfer chicken breast to a sheet pan and finish cooking in oven. Depending on the thickness of the chicken breast cook an additional 10-20 minutes until cook through. Remove from  oven and let rest about 5 minutes.

While the chicken is resting you can make the mushroom pan sauce. Use the skillet that you browned the chicken breast in. You should have lots of flavor in your pan from the seasoning and the chicken.

Add mushrooms to skillet. You made need to add a little more avocado oil. Sprinkle some seasoning on mushrooms. Cook mushrooms over medium-high heat to remove most of the water in the mushrooms. The volume of mushrooms should reduce in half or less. Remove mushrooms so that they do not overcook. You do not want rubbery mushrooms. Pour chicken broth into pan and reduce broth to half the volume. Add a tbsp of butter to finish the sauce.

Spoon mushroom sauce over chicken breast. Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

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Chicken Curry with Cilantro Cauli-Rice

This dish is a little twist to my Shrimp Curry. Swapping the chicken for shrimp is a good idea when budget is a concern or someone might have a seafood allergy. I used boneless skinless chicken thighs. There is so much more flavor in the thighs than the breasts. Serve this with Cilantro Cauli-Rice and you have Chicken Curry “takeout” without the takeout cost.

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  • 4 tbs[ coconut oil, divided (2/1/1)
  • 16 oz. chicken thighs, boneless skinless 1-inch cubes
  • 1/2 tsp each mustard seed, ground cumin, ground coriander and garam masala
  • 1/4 onion, small dice
  • 25 oz. can/box diced tomatoes (I like Pomi)
  • 7 oz creamed coconut
  • 1 c vegetable broth
  • 1 small head of cauliflower, rice size
  • l batch of lime gremolata (see website)
  • Cilantro, roughly chopped, garnish

In a large skillet on medium heat, melt 2 tbsp coconut oil. Add chicken to melted coconut oil and cook until chicken is cooked through. Remove from skillet and set aside.

Add 1 tbsp coconut oil to skillet to melt. When oil is melted add cauliflower rice to skillet. Stir to coat cauli-rice. Add gremolata to cauliflower rice and stir thoroughly. Cook cauli-rice until is heated through and has softenend. It should have the bite just like conventional rice. Be sure not to overcook. You do not want mushy cauliflower-rice. Remove from skillet and set aside.

Add 1 tbsp coconut oil to skillet and melt. After coconut oil is melted and mustard seeds. Stir frequently until fragrant and the seeds begin to pop. Add cumin, coriander and garam masala. Cook spices, stirring frequently until fragrant. Add onion and cook, stir frequently, until softened. Add tomatoes, creamed coconut, and vegetable broth. Return chicken to tomato mixture. Stir until well combined. Bring to a simmer and then reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer until sauce is slightly thickened.

Divide cauliflower-rice between plates and top with chicken curry. Sprinkle cilantro on chicken curry for garnish. Serve. Eat. Enjoy.