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Last night I was looking for a side dish to eat with my lonely chicken breast. Originally, I was going to get a second chicken breast, cut each in half and make Lightened Up Chicken Parmesan. However, I needed a side dish.

At first, I was thinking spaghetti squash with sauce could be my side dish. I mean, spaghetti and chicken parm are perfect together. But, I stopped at a friend’s house after work and still needed to stop at the store. It was going to be late when I got home and I still needed to cook dinner.  I wasn’t in the mood to wait close to an hour for the spaghetti squash to roast. I also didn’t want to take the time to shred it up after. It’s easy. I know it is. But it’s time consuming. If you’ve ever made it, you know what I mean.

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Healthier Chicken Parmesan

I love Chicken Parmesan! Do you love Chicken Parmesan? Of course you do! Who doesn’t?

So Olive Garden Chicken Parm is 32 points. Yikes! Now that includes the spaghetti that is served with it but still, wow. Not sure how much it would be if you were to make it at home but my guess is it would still be 10-15 points, including the spaghetti.

Mine, however, 4 points! Yay! Ok, not exactly mine but hers. Mine now though because I will be making this recipe time and time again. It is that good!

I did decide to omit the spaghetti. Spaghetti noodles and sauce would probably tack on another 8 points. Still not terrible. 12 points for a meal. But if you add roasted green beans and a salad such as I did, you have yourself a 5 point dinner. That’s even better!

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Tell me that doesn’t look good. Oh my! It’s as good as it looks. Let me tell ya!

What makes this version healthier than normal Chicken Parm? I’m so glad you asked. First and foremost, the chicken is baked rather than fried. Secondly, the chicken is only breaded on one side. Weird right? I thought so. Trust me though, you won’t even notice when you’re eating it.

So…this is how you make it.

Gather your ingredients and take a picture. Oops! That’s what I do. You don’t have to do that. I mean, unless you want to. Completely up to you. lol

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Mix together the breading for the chicken – panko breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese, garlic powder, Italian season, salt and pepper.

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I just love the look of seasoned flour, breadcrumbs, etc.

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Beat an egg and set up your dredging station.

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Spray a sheet pan with Pam or whatever cooking spray that you use and start dredging. Now, remember to only bread one side of the chicken breast. This will feel slightly weird because it’s not what you’re used to. After the first one though, it won’t feel weird anymore. At least it didn’t for me. Spray the top of the chicken, after breading, with Pam to help get extra crunchy and brown.

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For the green beans, cut off the tips and toss in a bowl with some Pam, salt and pepper. Lay as many green beans around the chicken as you can. If needed, use a separate sheet pan.

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Bake in the oven for 15 minutes at 425 degrees. If your chicken is cut thin, 15 minutes will be enough.

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Spread the marinara sauce or spaghetti sauce of your choosing, beware this may change your point value, over the top of the chicken breast. I’m going to be honest here, I didn’t think half a cup of the sauce would be enough. In fact, when I first decided to make this recipe, I put the recipe in the WW app and entered 1 1/4 cups of both the sauce and the mozzarella cheese. I just knew I was going to put a 1/4 cup on each. Also thought I would be making 5 instead of 4, hence the 1 1/4 cup.

I was so wrong though. All you will need is 1/2 cup of each your sauce and your mozzarella cheese. Back to spreading the sauce on each chicken…then top with the shredded cheese. Put back in the oven for about 5 minutes so that the cheese will melt.

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This looks promising, doesn’t it?!

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After 5 minutes, pull the chicken out of the oven. If your cheese is not fully melted, leave it in for a couple more minutes. I thought mine needed a little more color and decided to sprinkle a little Italian seasoning on top. Excellent decision if I say so myself. Which I do! =)

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Doesn’t it look so good? You know it does!

Here’s the recipe.

Healthy Chicken Parmesan

  • Servings: 4
  • Print

4 points per chicken breast

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Ingredients

  • 1 lb chicken breasts (this doesn’t have be exact, I think mine was more like 1.34 lbs)
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 panko breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning plus some to sprinkle on top of cheese at the end
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 lb green beans (or however much you like)
  • Pam cooking spray
  • 1/2 cup spaghetti sauce (I used garlic and basil) *note if you use one w/ meat, it will be higher in points
  • 1/2 cup shredded part skim mozzarella cheese

Directions:

  1. Set oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Mix together the panko breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese, garlic powder, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper. Place in a dish so that the chicken can easily be placed in it for breading.
  3. Beat the egg and place in a similar style dish.
  4. Place one side of the chicken in the egg followed by the panko mixture. Press the chicken down in the breading mixture so that as much as possible will stick to it. Place breading side up on a sprayed baking sheet.
  5. Repeat for remaining chicken breasts. Spray tops of chicken with Pam to help brown and get crispy.
  6. Cut ends off green beans and toss with Pam, salt and pepper. Spread green beans around edge of baking sheet.
  7. Put chicken and green beans in the oven for 15 minutes.
  8. Pull out of oven and spread first the spaghetti sauce evenly over the chicken, then the shredded mozzarella cheese. Sprinkle with Italian seasoning and put back in the oven for roughly 5 minutes or until the cheese is melted.
  9. Enjoy!

I hope you enjoy this meal as much as I did. Share your pictures if you make it! =)

Turkey Chili

I have been in the mood for chili for a few weeks now. But with the transition between homes, I haven’t done much cooking. I guess I’m getting a little more settled because I made Turkey Chili this morning.

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You read that right. This. Morning. I didn’t get to it last night and needed something to eat for lunch. So, I prepared it before going to work. You gotta do what you gotta do.

I’m made this recipe several times now. It’s full of veggies, good for you beans and ground turkey instead of beef. Veggie wise, it has your typical onions and tomatoes. But it also has red bell pepper and corn. I’ve thought of trying to sneak in some other veggies without turning it in to a stew. I still want the essential flavor to be chili since that’s what it is. I’m sure you can easily add mushrooms and maybe even a carrot. I’ve seen several veggie chili’s have zucchini and yellow squash in them. I’m sure that would work but I’m not quite on board yet. I’ll let you know if I ever give it a try. 😉

Beans are an excellent way to stretch a meal. They’re good for you too. Most people think of meat, eggs and dairy when thinking of protein. But there are a lot of non-animal sources of protein out there as well. Beans are one of those. 1 cup of dark red kidney beans will provide 16 grams of protein; whereas 1 cup of black beans has 15 grams.

An easy way to make your chili lighter is to switch out the ground beef for ground turkey. I’ll be honest, I hardly ever purchase beef anymore. Ground turkey is where it’s at people! It’s cheaper, lower in calories, lower in smart points and still tastes great. Protein wise, it appears 90/10 ground turkey and 80/20 ground beef has the same amount – 15 grams per 3 oz. Calorie wise though, the same amount of ground turkey has 120 calories where as ground beef has 216 calories. It’s a no brainer!

Chili is one of the easiest meals to put together. Other than chopping a few items, it’s pretty much a dump and wait sort of meal. This is what I use in mine

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While browning your ground turkey, add in chopped onion and garlic. Don’t forget to season with salt and pepper.

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Then add your red bell pepper.

20171113_063520It doesn’t really matter the order you add the remaining items but I prefer to add the seasoning first, stir and then add everything else. You can purchase premade chili seasoning and it will work just fine. Or you can make your own. I do both…depending on my mood. Today I made my own with ground cumin, chili powder and paprika.

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You might not think this is enough seasoning. I didn’t. In fact, just about every time I make this, I question it. But I remember that I never add more and it turns out tasty. So I leave it be. If you want to increase the amounts of seasonings, have at it. Make it yours.

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Now add in tomato sauce and diced tomatoes.

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It’s time for the fun stuff…uh it’s all fun!…but I’m talking about beans and corn. There’s dark red kidney beans in there. Promise. I just didn’t take a picture. Oops!

So colorful!

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Right now it’s a little on the thick side. I happen to like it thick but it can get too thick after sitting for a while. So while the flavors come together I like to put the lid on the pot. It does wonders.

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Yumm!

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It’s so good! Good for you too!!

Here’s the recipe:

Turkey Chili

  • Servings: 5
  • Print

8 points per serving

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Ingredients:

  • 1 lb ground turkey
  • 1 small yellow onion
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 Tbsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 8 oz tomato sauce
  • 15 oz diced tomatoes
  • 15 oz dark red kidney beans
  • 15 oz black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup frozen corn

Directions:

  1. Brown ground turkey, breaking up as it cooks.
  2. Add in chopped onion and chopped garlic.
  3. After turkey and veggies are cooked, add in cumin, chili powder and paprika. Feel free to increase the amount of each if you like.
  4. Stir in tomato sauce and diced tomatoes. This is when it really starts to look like chili. =)
  5. Add in both beans and frozen corn. At this point, it’s pretty much done. You just want all of the flavors to come together.
  6. Cover and simmer for around 30 minutes.
  7. Serves 5 at 8 points each (about 1 1/4 – 1 1/3 cups). If only making 4 servings, it will be 10 points each.
  8. Enjoy!

Supreme Scrambled Eggs

I recently moved. As most people do, at least I think most people do this, I provided food to those who helped me as a way of saying thank you. I had donuts ready when they got there and pizza for when we were done.

Of course I had left overs of each. Yuck! Not yuck because I don’t like donuts and pizza but yuck because I love both donuts and pizza and should not be eating large amounts of either!

Here I am stuck with all of these left overs. What am I to do?

My Dad told me of something one of his friends does and it is quite clever. The next morning he removes the veggies off the supreme pizza and adds them to some scrambled eggs. That way he isn’t throwing away all of his left overs. Or any, if he still ate the pizza later just minus the veggies.

I thought I would give this a try this morning. I had 2 slices left and removed as much of the mushrooms, peppers and onions as I could. I sautéed them for a just a little bit to warm them through, then added 2 beaten eggs. Walah!

20171106_065946It didn’t taste too shabby. Bonus, now I don’t feel so bad throwing away the remaining pizza and it’s a low point breakfast. The veggies are zero and the eggs are 2 each. This plate plus a cup of fat-free milk brought my breakfast total to 7 points.

Enjoy!

Dinner Tonight

I made a variation of an old dish tonight. I didn’t quite have all of the ingredients but was able to make do with what I had. It was just as good, if not better, than I remembered it. What is it you ask? Chicken Tortilla Soup!

Well I chose not to use any tortilla chips. Does this mean that it was just chicken soup? lol

Maybe it can be Chicken Fajita Soup. Call it whatever you want, it was freaking good!

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