Thursday, July 12, 2012

Chicken Nachos

We made these the other day when my in-laws were here and they were delicious! Super easy to make too, which is my kind of meal!

Tortilla chips of your choice
chicken cooked and shredded, or canned chicken that's pre-cooked so it just has to heat up.
diced tomatoes
1 can black beans drained and rinsed
1 - 4oz. can diced green chiles
shredded cheese

Sour cream

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Get a big cookie sheet and spread the tortilla chips out, trying not to pile on too many on top of each other so that they're good and covered. Layer on the chicken, tomatoes and green chiles. Put in the oven for a few minutes, maybe 5-10. Then pull it out and add the cheese on top, stick it back in until the cheese is melted.

To make guacamole I just mash up a few avocados and add kosher salt, lime juice, and minced garlic, to taste. Sorry, I know I'm bad at giving exact measured-out directions. But I don't think this is something you can easily mess up, guac is pretty forgiving (and delicious!)


When Eliza was born my friend brought dinner to us one night. We loved what she brought and asked her for the recipe. Unfortunately it has cream of mushroom soup in it. I hesitate in posting this recipe after Steph and I talked about possibly banning cream of anything soups from this blog! Too bad those not so healthy soups make everything taste good and are so darn convenient!! But this chicketti really is so good and easy to make and it's a good way to use up some red/green pepper that’s about to go bad. We like this so much we have it every month or two.  

½ pkg. cooked spaghetti
1 ½ c. chicken, cooked
¼ c. red and green peppers
½ c. onion
1 can cream of mushroom soup
½ c. chicken broth
½ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. pepper
1 ¾ c. grated cheddar cheese

While spaghetti is cooking, chop chicken, onion, and peppers. Combine in bowl. Add cream of mushroom, broth, salt and pepper. Add drained spaghetti. Stir and pour into casserole dish. Top with cheese. Bake at 350F for 30 min.

I buy noodles in large quantities so I just guess on how many to cook. Enough to fill a 9x13 pan but not too many to where the final product is dry. I don’t follow all the measurements above; I go pretty light on the chicken and cheese and heavy on the peppers and sometimes add sautéed mushrooms. I made it once without chicken and it was good but I prefer it with chicken even if it’s only a little bit. I like the chicken, peppers, and onions diced up pretty small.

As a side note, this is what I use to make broth. My mother-in-law gave it to me. It works just like bouillon cubes but it's better for you (no MSG, etc.) and it has to be refrigerated after opening. I'm all for healthier alternatives that taste the same! 
Also I bet you could use left over turkey from thanksgiving, switch it out for the chicken, and make a delicious "turketti."

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Full-Meal Chipotle Chop Salad

I'm not a huge salad fan. I used to assume vegans/vegetarians ate salad most of the time because...what else could they eat? Now that I've joined their ranks, I realize that you can eat tons of vegetables and rarely eat salad. Although I'm not anti-salad by any means, I just don't usually feel like they fill me up or taste great enough to make it a daily habit. Cafe Rio salads are an exception. And guess what - I found a way to get that Cafe Rio filled-up-from-salad-feeling without leaving my house!

This is a delicious recipe - we had it for lunch the other day and it was so good. Lots of protein from the beans and quinoa, and plenty of good flavor to go with the veggies. I can guarantee we'll be eating this salad many times in the future!

Oh, and one more plus is the homemade salad dressing. SO much better than the preservative-laden bottled stuff, and dirt cheap to make!

Full-Meal Chipotle Chop Salad with Agave-Lime Vinaigrette

adapted from Chloe Cooks

Agave-Lime Vinaigrette

1.5 Tbsp. olive oil
1 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar
1 Tbsp. agave
1/8 c. (or 2 Tbsp) fresh lime juice (about the juice of 1 lime)

Chipotle Chop Salad

1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 clove garlic, minced (or 1/2 tsp. bottled minced garlic)
1/4 tsp. chipotle chili powder (different than regular chili powder!)
1/2 tsp. salt
1 head romaine lettuce, cut into bite-sized pieces (I lay mine on the cutting board and slice it with a pizza cutter!)
1 large tomato, chopped
1/4 red onion, chopped (we used more than this because we love red onion - use as desired)
1 avocado, pitted, peeled, and diced
1/2 c. cooked quinoa
2 Tbsp. finely chopped fresh cilantro

To make the Agave-Lime Vinaigrette: Blend oil, vonegar, agave, and lime juice in blender until smooth. Set aside.

To make Chipotle Chop Salad: Heat oil in small saucepan over medium heat and saute black beans, garlic, chipotle powder, and salt for 5 minutes. Let cool. (So much better than eating straight cold beans from the can - I promise it's worth this step!!)

In large bowl, combine romaine, tomatoes, onions, avocado, quinoa, black bean mixture, and cilantro. Toss with dressing and serve immediately. Serves 4 as a meal and 6 as a side. But please, serve it as a meal!