Pulled Chicken Chili

Hello 2017! It’s been a while but we are back with some delicious and nutritious recipes to help you stay on track with your healthy New Years resolutions! 

What else is there to make when it’s freezing everywhere other than chili? Yes, usually the meat is on the fatty side and it’s normally paired with some sort of fat-inducing carb. But this recipe packs the protein and subs out the starch for a carotenoid rich squash. And, it’s topped with some cruncy kale because tortilla chips are certainly on no ones diet right now 😉.

Tomato Coating
Ingredients

Chicken: One red onion, One garlic clove, One (any color, yellow used here) bell pepper, One can tomato paste, 2 tablespoons apple side vinegar, 2 tablespoons agave nectar, 3-4 boneless chicken breasts

Coated Chicken
Chili: 1 can tomato sauce, 1 can diced tomatoes, 1 can black beans, 1 can kidney beans (any combo of beans will work) 

2 Spaghetti Squashes (serves about 5) 

1 bag of chopped kale. Juice of 1/2 lime. 

Directions: Dice veggies. Heat a skillet to medium heat. Brown veggies and then reduce heat. Stir in tomato paste, vinegar and agave. Add any hot spices you desire (cayenne, chipotle, cumin and black pepper used here). Mix until a cohesive paste. Lightly coat each chicken breast. 

In a slow cooker, add 1/2 the can of diced tomatoes and 1/2 can of sauce. Add chili pepper and any other hot spices desired. Add both cans of beans. Place coated chicken on top. Add the remaining diced tomatoes and sauce. Cook on low heat for 4-5 hours. After about 2 hours, use a fork to break apart chicken. 

Chicken in chili
Refer here for instructions on cooking spaghetti squash. 

For the crunchy kale topping, spread the greens out on a cooking sheet. Drizzle lime juice over and sprinkle with cilantro if desired. 

Crunchy Kale
This is just the thing to warm you up without costing you your diet. The squash serves as a great base that will make you forget all about that pasta. 

Pulled Chicken Chili over Spaghetti Squash 

Shepherd’s Pie with Parmesan Brussel Sprouts

Normally, comfort food does not involve kale or carrots but carbs, cream, sugar, and all things that leave us bloated and slightly disappointed with ourselves. But, one of the best ways to keep your diet on track is to put a healthy spin on that comfort food you crave. 

For this shepherd’s pie, we’ve upped the veggies and replaced the white potato for its orange cousin. It certainly is a great, warm recipe for the cool weather and will fill you up without the enhanced belly. 


Ingredients: Bunch of diced carrots, sliced mushrooms, kale, Brussel sprouts, half of white onion, half of bag of frozen peas, 1 1/2 lbs lean beef, 2 large sweet potatoes


Meat and Veggies: Heat a large skillet with olive oil on low. Add onions, mushrooms and carrots first and cover for about 15 minutes. Add kale, diced carrots, and peas.

Season beef as you like (we added garlic powder, salt, pepper, cumin, soy sauce and balsamic vinegar). Gradually add meat to the skillet. Raise heat. 


Sweet Potatoes: Peel sweet potatoes and slice. Bring a medium size pot of water to boil and add potatoes. Once soft, strain and let cool. In a large bowl, add butter or coconut oil and salt. Smash with a masher until smooth.

 

Pie: In a casserole dish, spread out veggie meat mixture. Top with mashed sweet potatoes. Bake for 20 minutes. Broil for 5.  


Brussel Sprouts: Cut Brussel Spouts vertically. Season with garlic powder, salt and pepper. Dip in olive oil. Spread out on an a cooking sheet and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Bake on 350 for 20 minutes. Broil for 5. 

It’s best if served with a spatula. The smooth sweet potatoes and savory beef compliment each other amazingly that you forget all about those regular, old white potatoes.

Stuffed Chicken Pockets

Happy Labor Day Weekend to our American readers and apologizes for the lapse in posts! Summer is ending but it doesn’t mean your healthy eating plan needs to go into hibernation! Tonight’s post is an all-in-one flavor bomb that goes great over anything. 


Ingredients: Boneless, skinless chicken breasts, 1/2 white onion, sliced mushrooms, bell pepper (any color desired), bunch of spinach leaves, fresh mozarella, one garlic clove. 

Directions: Chop all veggies. Fry over a medium heated skillet. Save some of the chopped garlic to season your chicken. Add spinach leaves once onions have browned. Let sit and cool.


Wash chicken breasts (about half of one is enough for one person). Season with salt, pepper, onion powder, minced garlic, and oregano. Evenly cut the breasts laterally. You need to have enough room for your stuffing without completely cutting in half. Season inside as well. 


Once veggies have cooled, begin spooning into the inside of your chicken breasts. Cut the mozarella to size and evenly disperse throughout pocket. 

Once all chickens have been stuffed, cook on 350 for about 45 minutes. 


The key to making this dish taste original and not just regular old chicken, veggies and a little bit of cheese is to make sure the breasts are thoroughly seasoned, inside and out. Spices are what make or break a healthy recipe. Get creative! 

Roasted Chickpea Coleslaw

Coleslaw can easily tow the line between healthy and unhealthy. It all depends on how you dress it. We all know mayo gives it the full flavor, but also the full fat content. But this blog’s purpose is to find ways around the bad ingredients without sacrificing flavor. Plus, this recipe adds something unique in the form of roasted chickpeas for added protein and crunch. 


Ingredients: 1 can of chickpeas, 1 12 oz pack of broccoli (or cabbage) slaw, 1/4 chopped onion, 1 tablespoon of chia seeds, 2 tablespoons of yellow mustards, 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar, 1 tablespoon of agave nectar 

Directions: Drain and rinse the can of chickpeas. Toss with any desired spices (black pepper, garlic powder, sea salt and nutritional yeast were used here). Bake on 350 for 20 minutes. Broil for 5. They should have a nice crunchy yet moist consistency. 

Toss slaw mix with onion and chia seeds. Add wet ingredients and mix thoroughly. You can add the chickpeas before the dressing or on top of you prefer. 


You’ll find that the mustard and vinegar provide a great tangy flavor, balanced with the sweetness of the agave. Plus the chia seeds give additional moisture once they gel. Makes a great BBQ side or a vegan meal all on its own. 

Grilled Romaine Salad

Now this one had us a bit skeptical. It sounds a little pretentious and something someone attempting to be on top of food culture would serve. Plus, throwing a green on the grill seems like a watery, wilted mess. But, turns out, it’s almost like a new veggie to throw in a sautée. And its size provides a nice base for a warm, wedge salad. 


Ingredients: romaine stalks, 1/4 onion (red used here, any will work), 1/2 red pepper, 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar, 2 tablespoons of olive oil, 1 lemon slice, 1/2 avocado. Any protein will work: 2 pieces of bacon, 1 hard boiled egg and 2 slices of ham were used here. 

Directions: Mix the vinegar, oil and juice of the lemon wedge. Cut the romaine stalks in half. Season with black pepper and salt. Lightly distribute the dressing over the half of romaine. 


Once prepared, place romaine on grill. We have used a stove top griller but it will work the same on a normal outdoor grill. The only advantage here is allowing the onions and peppers to cook with the risk of them falling through. 


It’s best to cut piece by piece. It definitely beats a normal salad and serves as a good healthy option for summer grilling. 

Lettuce Wrapped Burrito

Happy #tacotuesday! Tacos are not the most unhealthy indulgence, but it’s the shell and certain fatty add ins like sour cream that break the meal and your diet. The good news is the dish is welcoming towards different veggies, so load ’em up!

ground beef
Ingredients: 16 oz lean ground beef (makes about 5 burritos), 1-2 bell peppers (any color), 1 white onion, 2 avocados, ), 1/2 of tomato, cheddar cheese (if desired), 2-3 stalks of romaine lettuce

Directions: Slice peppers and about a 1/4 of the onion. Place meat in a large bowl and season with cumin, garlic powder, various peppers (chipotle, cayenne and black were used here), cilantro, lime juice and salt. A dash of balsamic vinegar was also thrown in. In a greased pan, sautée peppers and onions until browned. Add meat and dice with spatula. Cook for about 15 mins. 

pico de gallo
Pick de gallo: Dice about half of the tomato and half of the onion like shown above. Season with cilantro, chipotle and salt. Mix thoroughly. 

romaine leaves
For lettuce wraps, we have found that it’s best to double up the romaine leaves for support. Plus, it adds to your veggie intake. We have layered the wet ingredients first, followed by the meat and some leftover quinoa, a bit of shredded cheese and finally the diced avocado. 

Lettuce Burrito
Try to secure an additional romaine leaf on top of the wrap to give it a burrito feel. The final product is hearty and requires two hands. It will make you forget all about Chipotle or Moe’s!

Cucumber Wrapped Turkey Rolls

It’s always great to find a dish that’s equal parts healthy, convenient, and delicious. But no one wants to each the same thing over and over again. The cucumber wrapped sushi rolls were amazing so we decided to change up the contents and it gave it a whole new life. 

turkey wraps red pepper onion
We have peeled the cucumbers with the vegetable peeler (see the sushi post for instructions) and cut red bell pepper and onion julienne. The turkey meat is grocery store bought and is nitrate and hormone free. Most lunch meat is heavily processed and contains all kind of nastiness. It’s best to shell out a little extra money for a better product. Next, we used hummus as a binder and to give it a bit of moisture. 

We’ve served it with quinoa and gone with a Mediterranean theme in seasoning it with dill, parsley, and garlic and garnishing with green olives. 

Turkey wrap with hummus
Lettuce wraps are great (and stay tuned! we are working on some fun variations) but cucumber wraps are much easier to bite and enjoy. Wrap it up!