One-Pan Chicken Sausage and Veggie Roast

Oh hey there St. Paddy’s Day.  While everyone is out and about celebrating with green beers, Guinness, and Bailey’s, I decided to make a cozy twist on an Irish dinner.  I was not thinking about the holiday when I went grocery shopping this weekend so I decided to create a pseudo-Irish meal by throwing together a one-pan roast.

One-Pan Chicken Sausage and Veggie Roast

Okay so I might not be fooling anyone.  My thoughts were chicken sausage could represent the bangers from “bangers and mash” and brussels sprouts would be comparable to the cabbage component of “corned beef and cabbage”.  I threw in some broccoli for a little more green and carrots for a bit more color.  This meal is great for many reasons: minimal ingredients, one pan, quick cook time, awesome flavors.  You can easily add or substitute the veggies you have on hand and use any flavor of sausage links.

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March has snuck up on me out of nowhere.  I have no idea where the days have gone, but I am so happy that we now enjoy more hours of sunlight after a long day of work.  Now if the rain could settle then life would be perfect.  Until then roasts like this dish are the perfect dinner-fix for a weeknight or weekend.

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As always,

Bon Appeteek

Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4

The Players: 

1 T extra virgin olive oil
8 oz brussel sprouts, rinsed
6 oz broccoli florets, rinsed
4 large carrots, peeled and rinsed (I used various colors)
1 t garlic powder
12 oz fully cooked chicken sausage, sliced (I used jalapeno-flavored)
salt and pepper

The Rules: 

  1. Preheat oven to 425 F and grease 9 x 13 baking dish with non-stick cooking spray.
  2. While the oven is preheating prepare your veggies: remove stem from brussels sprouts and halve and slice carrots in half length-wise then cut into 2-inch pieces.  Place broccoli, brussels sprouts, and carrots in baking dish.  Drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with garlic powder, and season with salt and pepper.
  3. Roast the veggies for 15 minutes.  Remove from oven and add the chicken sausage.  Continue roasting for an additional 15 minutes.  Serve warm with optional freshly grated parmesan cheese on top.

Slow Cooker Honey Mustard Chicken

A fancy dinner does NOT have to take a lot of effort.  It honestly comes down to the flavors.  This dinner tastes sophisticated, best of all…it is made in the slow cooker.  Are you intrigued yet?!?!

I cannot say enough positive things about my slow cooker.  That is a kitchen tool that everyone should invest in.  As a young professional, my life is too busy to worry about week night meals, especially with an unpredictable work schedule.  HELLO slow cooker!  The slow cooker is the house guest that will never over-stay it’s welcome in my kitchen (ok not my best joke).

Slow Cooker Honey Mustard Chicken

I was inspired to make this marinade due to MY LOVE AFFAIR with mustard.  Honestly, I will stand with refrigerator open and squeeze mustard onto deli turkey, dip carrots in it, sometimes squirt a little on a pickle.  No shame with my mustard game ;) Dijon mustard is great because a little goes a long way and it’s base is either white wine or verjuice.  The acidity and subtle spice of dijon mustard pair great with honey and some fresh rosemary.  Your house will smell amazing once your slow cooker gets to work with this marinade!

Slow Cooker Honey Mustard Chicken

As always,

Bon Appeteek

Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 3 hours on high, 6 hours on low
Servings: 4

The Players: 

For the marinade:
2 T dijon mustard
2 T minced fresh rosemary
2 t honey
2 t white balsamic vinegar (alternatively lemon juice)
1/2 t sea salt
10 turns of fresh cracked pepper

3/4 C vegetable (alternatively chicken stock)
4 x 4 oz chicken breast (skinless, boneless)
2 sweet potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced (alternatively russet or red potatoes)
1 red onion, thinly sliced (alternatively yellow onion)

The Rules: 

  1. Whisk together dijon, rosemary, honey, balsamic, salt, and pepper.  Marinate the chicken breasts for at least 4 hours or overnight.  If not marinating chicken, then add vegetable stock to the above ingredients.
  2. Grease slow cooker with non-stick cooking spray or use a slow-cooker liner.  Place chicken breasts on the bottom of the slow cooker.  Top with potatoes and onion.
  3. Pour marinade over the ingredients.  (Note: If chicken was already marinating in the refrigerator, add the vegetable stock to the remaining marinade, stir to combine, and pour over remaining ingredients.)
  4. Cook on low for ~6 hours or high for ~3 hours until chicken is cooked and potatoes are fork tender.  Serve warm.

Skinny Enchilada Bake

Skinny Enchilada Bake

This recipe is one I have experimented with over the past year.  It started with a trip to Miami.  My cousin and her fiance live in Miami and they were gracious enough to host us for a much needed break from the gloomy Seattle winter!  What better way to repay your host than to have a yummy, home-made meal ready for them after work?

Skinny Enchilada Bake

I decided to make a healthier twist on a favorite Mexican dish–enchiladas!  You really cannot go wrong with Mexican food or casseroles in my opinion.  Casseroles are just a midwest obsession.  Anyone who grew up in the Midwest has grown up eating their fair share of casseroles.  Traditionally, I associate casseroles with canned soup: most midwest mamas love to add canned soup to their casseroles.  Don’t worry this is not your mama’s casserole, no canned soup here (not that I have anything against your mama’s casserole).

Skinny Enchilada Bake

The first time I made this dish I did not include the sweet potato or jalapeno, I shredded the chicken, and I used salsa verde instead of enchilada sauce.  I think this new and improved version packs even more healthy ingredients into each bite and the pieces of chicken and sweet potato are a great contrast to the quinoa.  To keep it on the healthier side I went easy on the cheese, but you can feel free to add more to get an ooey-gooey, cheesy crust on top of the enchilada bake.  Feel free to garnish with greek yogurt (seriously, I may have an unhealthy obsession with that condiment), sour cream, salsa, or hot sauce.  We even used the last of the enchilada bake as the filling for some soft shell tacos.

Skinny Enchilada Bake

This is a hearty dish that is sure to be a favorite in your household.  We ate this meal three times in a row.  Not because we had to, but because it is just that good.  I usually love leftovers…once.  I repeat “three times in a row?!?!” You know this a winner-winner chicken dinner ;)

Skinny Enchilada Bake

As always,

Bon Appeteek

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 45 minutes
Servings: 4

The Players: 

1 sweet potato, peeled and cubed
1 red pepper, diced
1/2 red onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 chicken breast, fat trimmed
1 jalapeno, seeded and minced
12 oz bottle of enchilada sauce + 3/4 C water
15 oz can black beans, rinsed
1 C frozen corn
1 C quinoa + 11/2 C water (I used a mix of red and white quinoa)
1/2 C grated cheese (I used sharp white cheddar)
1 roma tomato, diced
4 scallions, diced

The Rules: 

  1. Preheat oven to 375 F and grease a 9×13 baking pan with non-stick cooking spray.
  2. For the quinoa: combine 1 1/2 C water and quinoa in a sauce pan and bring to a boil over high heat.  Once boiling, reduce heat to simmer (low setting), place lid on pan and let quinoa cook for 15-20 minutes.  (Note: Do not uncover lid from sauce pan until at least 15 minutes have passed otherwise you will lose the steam needed to cook the quinoa)
  3. Place the sweet potato pieces in a small microwave-safe bowl and add 2 tbsp of water, cover with plastic wrap and microwave for 4 minutes, until potatoes are tender.  Drain excess water and set aside.
  4. In a large frying pan greased with non-stick cooking spray sauté the pepper, onions, garlic, and jalapeno over medium-high heat for 3 minutes.
  5. Move the veggies over to one side of the pan and add the chicken breast, reduce heat to medium and cook for 5 minutes.  Flip the chicken over to the opposite side and cook an additional 4-5 minutes.  Add the sweet potatoes to the pan at this time.
  6. Pour the enchilada sauce over the chicken.  Add water to the bottle of enchilada sauce, replace lid, shake to loosen any sauce on the bottle and pour the enchilada sauce-water mixture over the chicken too.
  7. Add the corn and black beans to the pan and stir to combine all ingredients.
  8. Remove the chicken breast from the pan and set on a cutting board.  Using a sharp knife, slice the chicken into bite-size pieces.  Replace chicken in the enchilada sauce and veggie mixture. (Note: If the chicken is still slightly raw in the middle, do not worry it will finish cooking in the oven)
  9. Add the quinoa to the frying pan and stir to combine all the ingredients.  Transfer to your prepared baking dish.  Sprinkle the top of the casserole evenly with the grated cheese.
  10. Bake for 25 minutes.  Remove from the oven and top with freshly chopped tomatoes and scallions.  Serve warm with your favorite Mexican garnishes!

Salsa Verde Crock Pot Shredded Chicken

Salsa Verde Crock Pot Shredded Chicken

Now that everyone has had their fill of turkey, stuffing, potato sides, pies, cranberry sauce and everything else that screams Thanksgiving, I thought I would lighten things up a bit with a crock pot favorite of mine!  Maybe you still have leftovers you are working on, but this is a great meal to have in your back pocket when the week gets busy.

Salsa Verde Crock Pot Shredded Chicken

Crock pots are seriously one of life’s greatest inventions.  Especially for “Type A” personalities like mine that fear leaving anything on the stove top or in the oven without being nearby.  I love experimenting with what I throw into the crock pot.  Mexican meals tend to be a hit in the household so why not spice up the traditional shredded chicken taco dish and make a crock pot meal out of it?  Seriously, easy-peasy and I had all the ingredients on hand in the pantry and freezer.  Even better.

Salsa Verde Crock Pot Shredded Chicken

I am still trying to get into the habit of throwing together a crock-pot meal on Sunday to have as lunch throughout the week.  Emphasis on the word “trying.”  The holidays make it hard, because there seems to be a holiday party, cookie exchange, cabin trip, or some type of outing every weekend (excuses, excuses I know).  But I guess that is when the crock pot will come in handy!  It saves me time and worries since I know I can meal prep or throw a warm meal together while running around and completing other errands.

Salsa Verde Crock Pot Shredded Chicken

This is sure to be a hit.  But you do not have to worry if you do not have all the ingredients on hand.  Use a red salsa or enchilada sauce instead of salsa verde or remove the beans/corn if you don’t have either on hand.  Believe me the general shredded chicken concept is what you are going for and you can play around with all the extra ingredients ;)

Salsa Verde Crock Pot Shredded Chicken

I chose to serve my salsa verde shredded chicken as a bowl, but I have also thrown this filler in corn tortillas to make tacos, in flour tortillas to make burritos or quesadillas, and on top of salads when I am “thinking” skinny.  (Believe me the thinking skinny part tends to lose out to the carbs on most occasions, but I am throwing it out there to all the other health buffs out there).

As always,

Bon Appeteek

Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 3.5 hours on high (or 6 hours on low setting)
Servings: 4-6

The Players:

For the salsa verde chicken: 
16 oz jar salsa verde
3.3 oz can fire-roasted, diced green chiles
2 frozen chicken breasts
1 C frozen corn
15 oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 oz packet taco seasoning

Optional for serving: 
1 C jasmine rice
1/2 C quinoa
2 C water
1/2 cube vegetable bouillon

Garnishes: 
sriracha sauce or hot sauce
greek yogurt or sour cream
shredded cheese
avocado slices
fresh cilantro
lime wedges
green onions

The Rules:

  1. Place 1/3 of the salsa verde in the bottom of the crock pot.
  2. Lay chicken breasts on top of salsa verde and sprinkle taco seasoning packet on top of chicken.
  3. Spread corn, black beans, and chiles evenly on top of chicken.  Cover with remaining salsa verde.  Secure lid on crock pot and use manual settings to set on high for 3.5 to 4 hours.
  4. After 3.5 hours remove chicken breasts from the crock pot and allow to rest on cutting board for ~10 minutes, this will allow the juices to settle.
  5. Using two forks, shred the chicken breast and then add back to crock pot.  Stir to combine the chicken with the salsa verde sauce.  Turn off the crock pot.  Serve as instructed bowl or in wraps, tacos, over salad, etc.
  6. If you desire to serve as a shredded chicken bowl: combine the quinoa, jasmine rice, water, and vegetable bouillon in a small pot.  Bring to a boil while uncovered, stir, replace lid and reduce heat to a simmer.  Cook for 15-20 minutes.  (Note: Do NOT remove the cover from the rice mixture until at least 15 minutes have elapsed.  Removing the cover allows the steam to escape and does not allow for thorough cooking of the rice/quinoa.)
  7. To assemble to chicken bowl: place 1/2 C of the rice-quinoa mixture in a bowl, ladle shredded chicken on top, and serve with optional garnishes.

 

Chicken Piccata

Chicken Piccata

If you’re like me then you are bound to find yourself in the predicament of craving a dish, not having all of the ingredients, but being too lazy to go purchase them from the store.  Usually I look forward to any excuse to run to the grocery store.  This was not one of those days.  I had most of the ingredients, except for the herbs and garlic so I decided to improvise.  Improvise in this scenario meant withhold…I simply did not add the ingredients to the dish.  You know what?  It tasted AMAZING.  Sure the garlic and herbs would have added a lil something something to this dish, but it still tasted authentic without them.

I was craving chicken picatta.  Piccata simply means, meat that is thinly slice, coated, browned, and covered  in a sauce.  I never order chicken piccata when I go out to eat, because it is such a simple dish to prepare at home!  The dish has a handful of ingredients, most of which are staples in any home: flour, chicken, butter, oil, WINE.  If you don’t have the lemon or capers you can still make this dish.  Andrew does not eat the capers, because he avoids all foods pickled and he enjoys every bite.

Chicken PiccataMake sure you gently flip the chicken breast over, to prevent the crust from flaking off.

I try to minimize the butter and olive oil when I make the dish and let the chicken breast rest on paper towel to absorb any excess grease.  You can always add more butter and oil if you would like, the sauce will be more rich –which is never a bad thing.

Chicken PiccataLook at all those yummy brown bits, make sure to scrape the bottom of the pan to get all that flavor in your sauce!

Next time you find yourself missing a few of the “extra” ingredients from the recipe try it any way…you might end up happier with the end result than if you had followed strictly followed the recipe.

Chicken Piccata

As always,

Bon Appeteek

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 2

The Players:
2 chicken breasts
2 T butter
2 T extra virgin olive oil
1/2 C flour
Juice of 1/2 a lemon
1/2 cup of dry white wine (pinot grigio, sauvignon blanc, or chardonnay)
1 T capers
sea salt and cracked pepper to taste
Optional: parsley

The Rules:

  1. Trim the fat from the chicken breast.  Cover the chicken breast with plastic wrap and then pound until they are ~1/2 inch thick.  (Note: If you do not have a meat tenderizer/pounder then use the bottom of a pan).
  2. Season the chicken with sea salt and cracked pepper then dredge in flour.  Shake off any excess flour.
  3. Heat butter and olive oil over medium-high heat in a pan.  Once the butter and oil mixture is hot, add chicken breast to the pan.  Cook until brown on one side (~5 to 6 minutes).
  4. Gently flip the chicken breast over using tongs or a fork.  Cook an additional 5 to 6 minutes until brown on opposite side.
  5. Remove chicken from pan and lay on a plate covered with paper towel (to absorb excess oil).
  6. Add the wine to your pan and whisk, making sure to scrape up any brown bits.  Reduce heat, add lemon juice and capers, and allow sauce to simmer. Cook for a couple minutes until the sauce has thickened.
  7. Serve immediately with lemon-wine reduction drizzled over the chicken. (Optional: garnish with fresh parsley)