Chicken Pasta in Garlic Wine Sauce

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I’m always looking for new, healthy options to cook for dinner. I came upon this recipe from Cooking Light, and got really excited because my husband and I are huge garlic nuts!

I will say that this recipe was fairly good and very easy (great weeknight meal to make), but the sauce definitely needs more spices than what is mentioned in the recipe. However, I’m from Louisiana, so take that with a grain of salt if you aren’t used to spice, but I had to sprinkle some serious Tony Chachere’s on this. I probably will make this again with heavy adaptations, since it’s a good, healthy base sauce for pasta.

Chicken Pasta in Garlic Wine Sauce
Source: Cooking Light

Ingredients:

  • 4  ounces  uncooked medium egg noodles
  • 1  pound  skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
  • 2  tablespoons  all-purpose flour, divided
  • 1/2  teaspoon  salt, divided
  • 1/4  teaspoon  black pepper, divided
  • 2  tablespoons  olive oil, divided
  • 1  tablespoon  bottled minced garlic
  • 1/2  teaspoon  dried tarragon (you can use any dried herb, like basil or parsley as well)
  • 1  (8-ounce) package presliced mushrooms
  • 1/2  cup  dry white wine
  • 1/2  cup  fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
  • 1/4  cup  grated Parmesan cheese

Directions:

  1. Cook noodles according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain and keep warm.
  2. Cut chicken into 1-inch pieces. Place chicken breast halves in a shallow dish. Combine 1 tablespoon flour, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/8 teaspoon pepper, stirring well with a whisk. Sprinkle flour mixture over chicken; toss to coat.
  3. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken to pan; sauté 4 minutes or until browned. Remove chicken from pan. Add remaining 1 tablespoon oil to pan. Add garlic, tarragon, and mushrooms to pan; sauté for 3 minutes or until liquid evaporates and mushrooms darken. Add white wine to pan; cook 1 minute. Stir in remaining 1 tablespoon flour; cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Stir in broth, remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, and remaining 1/8 teaspoon pepper; cook 1 minute or until slightly thick, stirring frequently.
  4. Return chicken to the pan. Cover and simmer 2 minutes. Uncover; cook 1 minute or until chicken is done. Stir in noodles; cook 1 minute or until thoroughly heated. Place about 1 1/2 cups chicken mixture on each of 4 plates; top each serving with 1 tablespoon cheese.

The Skinny - per serving, Serves 4

Note: I loaded up on more mushrooms than chicken to make my meal stretch further calorie wise. That is not reflected, however, in the nutritional facts. 

Mushrooms are 15 calories/cup and barely any fat, so load up if you want! :)

Calories: 350
Fat: 11.1 g
Fiber: 1.2 g 

Chicken Gyros

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This has been a very popular recipe on the What’s Cooking board that I frequent. I love greek food, and heck, my husband loves anything involving garlic, so I thought this would be a definite winner!

This recipe comes from Elly Says Opa!, whose blog I love to read for healthy inspiration and greek recipes!

This was some very flavorful chicken, and in combination with the tzatziki sauce on the homemade pita bread that I made, it was a really great dinner!

Chicken Gyros
Source: Elly Says Opa!

Ingredients:

1.25 lbs. chicken (I used boneless, skinless breasts)
4 cloves garlic, smashed
Juice of 1 lemon
2 tsp. red wine vinegar (all I had was white wine vinegar..worked fine!)
2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
2 heaping Tbsp. plain yogurt
1 Tbsp. dried oregano
salt and pepper
1/2 batch of tzatziki (recipe to follow)
sliced tomatoes
sliced onions
4 (pocketless) pitas (I used homemade)

Directions:

  1. Whisk together the garlic, lemon juice, vinegar, oil, yogurt, and oregano in a bowl. Add the chicken and rub the marinade in. Cover and refrigerate for about an hour.chicken1
  2. Preheat the broiler (or grill, or pan on the stove).  Sprinkle the chicken with salt and pepper on both sides, and then broil until cooked through, about 5 minutes per side, depending  what size/type chicken you are using. Allow the chicken to rest for a few minutes before slicing into strips.
  3. Meanwhile, heat your pitas, a few seconds on each side on a skillet. Then, top the pita with the chicken, tzatziki, tomatoes, onions. Roll up and eat!

The Skinny – per serving (just the chicken), Serves 4

Calories – 197.0
Fat – 8.3 g
Fiber – 0.2 g

Tzatziki Sauce
Source: Elly Says Opa!

This makes 1/4 of the batch that Elly has in her recipe. I knew I’d be eating it alone, since my husband isn’t a fan of greek yogurt.

Ingredients:

  • 1 8 oz. container of plain greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cucumber, seeded and peeled
  • 2 cloves garlic (LOVE garlic!)
  • 1/2 tsp white wine vinegar
  • salt and a little pepper
  • squeeze of fresh lemon juice (optional)
  • drizzle of extra virgin olive oil

Directions:

  1. Strain yogurt using a cheesecloth over a bowl (if you don’t have that, a strainer lined with a coffee filter will work) for several hours or overnight to get out as much moisture as possible. (Since I had greek yogurt, I didn’t need to do this)
  2. Peel and seed the cucumber.  Shred the cucumbers and then squeeze the life out of them to get rid of as much excess moisture as possible. I use a towel to do this, and you will get a lot of liquid so don’t skip this step! Yes, there is a lot of straining and squeezing–and it’s all important! You don’t want a runny tzatziki!
  3. Mix together the strained yogurt, shredded cucumbers, garlic, vinegar and lemon juice (if desired). Salt to taste. It’s best to refrigerate for 30 minutes or more before serving, so flavors can meld.
  4. Drizzle a little olive oil over the top.

For this sauce, I used Stonyfield Farms Oikos Greek yogurt. I won a giveaway from Jenny’s Cooking that included coupons for this yogurt. This was a very thick yogurt, and while I’m not a fan of plain yogurt, I will say that this provided a great base for the sauce. Thanks to the people at Stonyfield Farms and Jenny’s Cooking for the coupons!

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The Skinny – per 1 oz. serving, serves 8

Calories – 49.1
Fat – 3.4 g
Fiber – 0.1 g

Sloppy Joes

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My husband and I are always trying to find new ideas for dinner, especially with ground meat. My husband has mentioned how much he loves sloppy joes, so I thought, let’s try this! Easy peasy dinner, right?

My husband told me he was going to make them while I went on an errand, and wow! My husband can totally cook! This was delicious!

Sloppy Joes
inspired from Allrecipes

Ingredients

  • 1.25 pounds lean ground beef
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper
  • 0.5 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon honey dijon mustard
  • 2/3 cup ketchup
  • 1/4 cup bbq sauce
  • 3 teaspoons brown sugar
  • salt to taste
  • ground black pepper to taste
  • cajun seasoning to taste (Tony Chachere’s is what we used)

Directions

  1. In a medium skillet over medium heat, brown the ground beef, onion, green pepper and garlic powder; drain off liquids.
  2. Stir in the mustard, ketchup, and brown sugar; mix thoroughly. Reduce heat, and simmer for 30 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

The Skinny – per serving, serves 6 (not including bread calories)

Calories 291.1
Fat 19.8g
Fiber 0.6g

Cheesy Chicken & Rice Casserole

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After a pretty full day, I wanted to make the hubs and I something easy and enjoyable. I’ve seen this recipe from Campbell’s for quite some time and was hoping that it would be a great recipe. I will say it had some really great flavor, but this recipe had some issues that I will take note of for next time.

First off, some of the rice ended up extra soft and some was still crunchy. I’ll have to be sure to stir occassionally while it’s in the oven to ensure that the rice is evenly cooked for next time.

Also, the recipe states that it needs to be covered the whole time it’s in the oven. However, after 50 minutes, it was still very watery. I had to keep it in the oven uncovered for a while after to let it evaporate, but it was still slightly watery even after that. Next time, I’ll uncover it when it’s halfway done to make sure it evaporates enough to make a thicker sauce for the chicken and rice.

I ended up omitting the vegetables called for in the recipe, since the hubs isn’t a fan of mixed vegetables. So, as you can see, dinner was pretty carb-y with the addition of some yummy garlic bread!

Cheesy Chicken & Rice Casserole
Source: Campbell’s Kitchen

Ingredients

  • 1 can (10 3/4 ounces) Cream of Chicken Soup
  • 1 1/3 cups water
  • 3/4 cup uncooked regular long-grain white rice
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 cup frozen mixed vegetables (we omitted this)
  • 4 skinless, boneless chicken breast half  (about 1 pound)
  • 1/2 cup shredded Cheddar cheese

Directions

  1. Heat the oven to 375°F.  Stir the soup, water, rice, onion powder, black pepper and vegetables in a 2-quart shallow baking dish.
  2. Top with the chicken. Cover the baking dish.
  3. Bake for 50 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through and the rice is tender. Top with the cheese. Let the casserole stand for 10 minutes. Stir the rice before serving.

The Skinny – per serving, serves 4

Calories 408.4
Fat 10 g
Fiber 0.7g

Mexican Potatoes

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My husband and I like to make our weeknight cooking as simple as possible. Just lately, we got into making tacos, but were shamefully using the kits for tacos and mexican rice.

After finding this recipe for Taco Seasoning on Allrecipes, I decided it was probably worth a shot to do this without the kit. Not only did we have all the spices on hand, but because it was a mix we made, it felt a little more homemade with not much extra effort!

For the side, I wanted to try something a little different, so I searched for ideas with mexican spiced potatoes and after looking at many ideas, I found a recipe for us to try.

These potatoes had a nice flavor, but I was hoping for more of a kick with them. So, next time, I’m going to probably adjust the spices a good bit or even try putting some of the Taco Seasoning in there with the recipe.

Mexican Roasted Potatoes
Adapted from The Nourishing Gourmet

Ingredients

  • 5 medium russet potatoes, diced
  • 1/3 cup of olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt (plus more to sprinkle on top)
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne powder
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon style mustard
  • 1 lime, juiced (or more to taste)

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Combine all of the ingredients, except the potatoes and lime in a jar and shake to thoroughly mix ingredients (or whisk in a bowl).
  3. Pour your diced potatoes into a jelly roll pan, and toss with the oil mixture. Sprinkle with salt and freshly ground pepper.
  4. Roast for about 40 minutes, until the potatoes are well cooked, and browning on the edges. Take out of the oven, and sprinkle the juice of one lime over it. Taste test, and add more lime juice or salt, if needed and serve.

The Skinny - per serving, serves 6

Calories 250.5
Fat 12.1 g
Fiber 4 g

Chicken Scallopini

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I’ve always been curious about the taste of capers. I’ve never had them, but this recipe for Chicken Scallopini really caught my eye. My husband and I usually stick to the same old recipes, but I thought this would be a nice change from the usual.

I ended up putting the heat way too high on the skillet, partially burning the coating on the chicken without cooking it all the way through. So, I had to put the breasts in the oven for 10-15 minutes afterwards. I’m still learning how to cook, so these mistakes do happen for me. Sadly, putting them in the oven killed the crunch that I think the dish was supposed to have from the bread crumb coating.

The flavor of the chicken and sauce, however, was very good. Turns out, I love capers and I can’t wait to use them again! I served these with Creamy Parmesan Orzo (a must try!) and green beans.

Chicken Scallopini
Source: Cooking Light

Ingredients:

  • 4  (6-ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
  • 2  teaspoons  fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4  teaspoon  salt
  • 1/4  teaspoon  black pepper
  • 1/3  cup  Italian-seasoned breadcrumbs
  • Cooking spray
  • 1/2  cup  fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
  • 1/4  cup  dry white wine
  • 4  teaspoons  capers
  • 1  tablespoon  butter

Directions:

  1. Place each chicken breast half between 2 sheets of heavy-duty plastic wrap; pound to 1/4-inch thickness using a meat mallet or rolling pin. Brush chicken with juice, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Dredge chicken in breadcrumbs.
  2. Heat a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray over medium-high heat. Add chicken to pan; cook 3 minutes on each side or until chicken is done. Remove from pan; keep warm.
  3. Add broth and wine to pan, and cook 30 seconds, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Stir in capers and butter.

***
I thought it would be cute to call the nutritional information from now on, The Skinny. I’m sure it’s unoriginal, but I like it. :) I will also no longer calculate POINTS on here, since I’ve been reading that a few food bloggers are getting in trouble with Weight Watchers for calculating these. I am, however, including the information necessary for you to use online/paper POINTS calculators if need be. :)
***

The Skinny – Per serving, serves 4
Calories: 206
Fat: 4.6 g
Fiber: 0.6 g

Chipotle-Honey Glazed Chicken

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The minute I saw this chicken on Smells Like Home, I starred it for a later date. Not only is it a Bobby Flay recipe, but it looked healthy too!

I have to say, this was the best chicken recipe I’ve ever made to date. It was so flavorful and the spice wasn’t too over-powering for me. It was also simple and basically like BBQ-ing on a grill. Since we were out of propane for our grill, I made this inside on the cast iron grill. :) I served it with Green Bean Casserole and some garlic bread. Perfection!

Chipotle-Honey Glazed Chicken
Source: Bobby Flay via Smells Like Home

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 2 tbsp pureed canned chipotle chilies in adobo
  • 1 1/2 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 2 tbsp ancho chili powder
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tbsp canola oil
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp Spanish paprika
  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts, pounded to 1/2″ thickness
  • 1 tsp sesame seeds
  • 1 tsp chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 tsp chopped chives

Directions:

Heat your grill to high.

Whisk together the honey, chipotle puree, mustard, 1 tbsp ancho powder, 1/2 tsp salt, 1 tbsp oil in a small bowl. I just threw it all in the food processor to blend it well.

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Stir together the remaining ancho powder with the coriander, cumin, and paprika in another medium bowl.  Add the chicken breasts, the remaining oil, and toss to coat.  Season with a little salt and freshly ground black pepper.

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Place the chicken on the grill and grill for 3-4 minutes.  Flip the chicken and brush the pieces with the honey-chipotle sauce.  Cook for an additional 3-4 minutes.  Flip the chicken again and brush the other side with the sauce; cook for 1 more minute.    Flip once more and cook for another minute. Remove chicken from the grill and brush on more sauce as desired. Sprinkle with sesame seeds, cilantro, and chives before serving.

Pot Roast

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On our honeymoon, my fabulous DH brought me to the outlets in Orlando, where there was a Le Creuset outlet. I was overwhelmed by the beautiful cookware there, but I was on a mission – to get a 5 quart dutch oven in a pretty, fun color!

And did I? Yes, yes I did! I bought a dijon colored one for just over $100, because I purchased a “second quality” oven and also had a 40% off coupon given to me by the lady working there. Second quality still has the lifetime warranty, and it’s called second quality because of purely just cosmetic flaws. I don’t personally see flaws, so I was super stoked to buy it!

I promised DH I would break this bad boy in with a pot roast, and I found the perfect recipe on Cooking Light online. This recipe did not disappoint at all.

I made a few adaptations, which are noted in red.

Classic Pot Roast
Source: Cooking Light

Ingredients:

  • 1  teaspoon  olive oil
  • 1  (3-pound) boneless chuck roast, trimmed (We used rump roast..it was on sale!)
  • 1  teaspoon  kosher salt
  • 1/4  teaspoon  freshly ground black pepper
  • 2  cups  coarsely chopped onion
  • 1  cup  dry red wine
  • 4  thyme sprigs
  • 3  garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 head of garlic
  • 1  (14-ounce) can fat-free, less-sodium beef broth
  • 1  bay leaf
  • 4  large carrots, peeled and cut diagonally into 1-inch pieces
  • 2  pounds Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 pound whole mushrooms, cleaned
  • Fresh thyme leaves (optional)

Directions:

  1. Heat olive oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Sprinkle chuck roast with salt and pepper. Cut small slits in the roast and put cloves of garlic in for flavor. Add roast to pan; cook 5 minutes, turning to brown on all sides. Remove roast from pan. Add onion to pan; sauté 8 minutes or until tender.
  2. Return browned roast to pan. Add the red wine, thyme sprigs, chopped garlic, beef broth, and bay leaf to pan; bring to a simmer. Cover pan and bake at 350° for 1 1/2 hours or until the roast is almost tender.
  3. Add carrots, mushrooms and potatoes to pan. Cover and bake an additional 1 hour or until vegetables are tender. Remove thyme sprigs and bay leaf from pan; discard. Shred meat with 2 forks. Serve roast with vegetable mixture and cooking liquid. Garnish with thyme leaves, if desired.

Chicken Pot Pie

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I am always looking for ways to make my cooking/baking skinnier and tastier. I have been questioned a few times on my blog as to why I feature some recipes that aren’t so skinny, when in fact, my blog’s name is “Skinny Food by Amy”. I like to feature ALL recipes that I cook/bake. Some recipes are made for people who have no interest in lower fat foods, so I make the full fat/calorie versions. Also, I prefer to make some recipes verbatim at first, before experimenting and adapting. For example, the cake batter ice cream. This was my first ice cream and I wanted to ensure that it came out good! Now, after a couple of recipes,  I’m getting more and more comfortable with the ingredients involved in making ice cream, thus, now looking for skinnier versions.

Now, after explaining why everything isn’t so skinny, here is a skinnier recipe that actually ended in a FAIL. I don’t like to blog about fails, really, but I’m still learning how to cook/bake so I have to share when mistakes happen. The picture above looks really good, but after following the recipe verbatim, the pot pie came out bland. Really really bland.I should’ve adapted it, being from Louisiana and being used to spicy, spicier and spiciest! Ugh…

Next time I make this, if there even is a next time, there will be TONS of spices added! I will admit, however, the biscuit topping was delicious! Can’t mess up Bisquick!

Chicken Pot Pie
Source: Weight Watchers forum

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup cut-up cooked chicken
  • 1 bag (12 oz.) Green Giant® Valley Fresh Steamers frozen mixed vegetables, thawed
  • 1 can (10-3/4 oz) condensed 98% fat-free cream of chicken soup
  • 1/2 cup fat-free (skim) milk
  • 1 cup Bisquick Heart Smart® mix
  • 1/2 cup fat-free (skim) milk
  • 1 egg

Directions:

  1. Heat oven to 400°F. In ungreased 2-quart casserole, mix chicken, vegetables, soup and 1/2 cup milk. Microwave on High 4 minutes; stir.
  2. In small bowl, stir Bisquick® mix, 1/2 cup milk and the egg with fork until blended. Pour over vegetable mixture.
  3. Bake uncovered about 30 minutes or until golden brown.

Makes 6 servings.

Calories: 220, Fat: 6g, Fiber: 2g
POINTS*: 5

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Watermelon Sorbet

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I’ve been looking at watermelons in the stores a lot lately. It’s so hot outside (100+ degrees – heat index) and a nice, refreshing watermelon was what I was craving!

So, I went to the local produce stand and bought my first watermelon of the summer. I was having company over last night and wanted to end the meal on a lighter note. I was originally looking at The Perfect Scoop for inspiration, but I didn’t have limes. I was afraid to use lemons instead, but found this Alton Brown recipe on Joelen’s blog. It used lemons! YAY!

I’ve never cut up a watermelon, so I was sure that I was going to make a juicy mess. It wasn’t all that bad, but look at how GORGEOUS and ripe this watermelon was…mmm!
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The verdict? This was a light, refreshing sorbet and a definite MUST for the summer! Seriously make this for your 4th of July party! Your guests won’t be disappointed! Also, it’s (along with other fruit sorbets) VERY skinny, especially if you made this with Splenda, which I didn’t have on hand at the time. :)

I’m submitting this to Joelen’s monthly Tasty Tools event, which features the ice cream maker! I’m sure there will be a ton of great summer treats for this blogging event so definitely start following her blog if you haven’t already!

Watermelon Sorbet
Source: Alton Brown -  found on Joelen’s Culinary Adventures

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound, 5 ounces diced watermelon, muskmelon or honeydew
  • 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons vodka (omitted)
  • 9 ounces sugar, approximately 1 1/4 cups

Directions:

  1. Place the melon in the bowl of a food processor and process until smooth. Add the lemon juice, vodka, and sugar and process for another 30 seconds. Place the mixture into the refrigerator until the mixture reaches 40 degrees F; depending on the temperature of your ingredients and refrigerator, this could take 30 minutes to 1 hour.
  2. Pour the chilled mixture into the bowl of an ice cream maker and process according to manufacturer’s directions. Transfer the sorbet to an airtight container and place in the freezer for 3 to 4 hours before serving.

Makes 12 (1/2 cup) servings.
(I added a little too much melon than stated, and it was overflowing in the ice cream maker, so I estimated based on 1.5 quarts yielded instead of Alton Brown mentioning this yields 1 qt.)

Calories: 112, Fat: 0.4g, Fiber: 0.5g
POINTS*: 2