Chicken in Broccoli Cheese Sauce

A yummy recipe from George Stella’s Real Food Real Easy cookbook. Serves 4-6. Calories: 460, Fat: 19 g, Protein: 63 g, Fiber: 1 g, and Net Carbs: 4 g.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 tablespoon trans-fat free margarine (or butter)
  • 4-6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 8 ounces light cream cheese (or regular cream cheese)
  • 2 cups frozen broccoli florets
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (or salt substitute)
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 cup shredded sharp Cheddar cheese

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. ADD margarine or butter to a large skillet over medium-high to high heat, until sizzling.  Add chicken breasts and brown well, about 3 minutes each side.
  2. TRANSFER chicken to a slow cooker set to low. Add the chicken broth to the skillet the chicken was cooked in over medium-high heat and use a spatula to scrape the bottom, breaking up any glaze the chicken may have left in the pan. Heat broth until simmering.
  3. ADD the cream cheese, broccoli florets, salt, and garlic powder to the slow cooker and then pour simmering chicken broth over top.
  4. COVER and let cook 5-6 hours, or until chicken is thoroughly cooked. After the first hour of cooking, stir well to disperse the cream cheese throughout.
  5. WHEN chicken is finished cooking, set the slow cooker to high and stir in shredded Cheddar cheese, until melted. Serve immediately.

George Stella’s Tips:  If you are planning on leaving the house, you can skip the stirring an hour into cooking by melting the cream cheese in the skillet before adding the chicken broth in step 2.

George Stella’s Variation: The broccoli will break up into the sauce, and that’s not a bad thing, but if you’d like something with a little more texture, start with fresh broccoli or (even better) cauliflower florets. Also, you can add 2 teaspoons of Dijon mustard for a little more zing (which I did).

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Crispy Baked Chicken Wings Recipe

This is a great recipe that my friend Jana turned me on to.  I located it at http://www.fifteenspatulas.com and made some adjustments.  The recipe yields 2-4 servings.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 lbs. chicken wing pieces
  • salt
  • pepper
  • garlic powder

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
  2. Heat up a big pot of boiling water.  Season the water like you would for cooking pasta (taste the water, it should taste a little repulsively salty, like sea water).
  3. Boil the chicken wings for 7-8 minutes, then remove them to a wire rack so the excess water can drain off.  Let them drip dry a little bit, then dry them well with a paper towel.
  4. Place the chicken wings directly on a sheet pan.  (I use parchment paper on the pan.) Bake the chicken wings for 25-30 minutes on one side, then flip the wings and bake for another 5 minutes on the other side.  The wings should have crispy crackly golden skin on the side that was in contact with the sheet pan.

Options:  I mix ranch dressing and wing sauce to dip my wings in.  I also made these with parmesan cheese.  I put the parmesan cheese, salt, pepper and garlic powder into my food processor and then just rolled my wings in the mix before baking.  D’lish!

Low Carb Slow Cooker Chicken Fajita Soup

I found this recipe at http://www.aboutamom.com.  The carb count is not available but based on the ingredients, it is very low.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 32 oz. chicken stock
  • 1 (14.5 oz.) can diced tomatoes
  • 1 medium yellow pepper, diced
  • 1 medium red pepper, diced
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 6 oz. mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • 1 (8 oz.) package McCormick Taco with Chipotle & Garlic Skillet Sauce (I could not locate this sauce so I used 6 oz. tomato paste, paprika and chipotle chili powder)
  • 1 tbs. season salt
  • 2 tbs. fresh cilantro, chopped

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Except for the fresh cilantro, add all ingredients to the slow cooker.  Cover and cook on low for 6 hours.
  2. Using two forks, shred the chicken breasts.  Gently stir in fresh cilantro, cover, and continue cooking for an additional hour.

This recipe makes a lot of soup, about 14 cups.  I topped off with a little sour cream.

Mushroom Swiss Smothered Chicken Breasts

Another great recipe from George Stella’s Real Food, Real Easy cookbook. It has 3 net carbs per serving. There are great variation ideas at the end of the recipe. I’ve added ham to this recipe and am looking forward to trying it with bacon next time. Enjoy!

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 tablespoons fat-free margarine (or butter)
  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • salt and pepper
  • 8 ounces mushrooms, sliced
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 4 slices Swiss cheese

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Add the margarine or butter to a large skillet over medium-high to high heat.  Once sizzling, add chicken breasts and sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper.
  2. Cook chicken until golden brown, about 3-4 minutes per side.
  3. Add mushrooms over chicken and sprinkle garlic powder, as well as another small pinch of salt and pepper over top.  Cover, reduce heat to low, and cook an additional 5 minutes, or until cutting into chicken at its thickest part reveals no pink.
  4. Place oven rack about 6 inches from the top, set broiler to high and transfer chicken breasts to a sheet pan.  Top chicken breasts with an even amount of the cooked mushrooms, and then cover all with the juices from the pan.  Then top each with a slice of Swiss cheese.
  5. Broil for only 1 to 2 minutes or until cheese is bubbly and melted.  Serve immediately.

Variation:  A slice of ham or two strips of bacon can be added between the mushrooms and the Swiss cheese for even more smothered goodness!

Spicy Chicken Bacon Ranch Casserole

This is a delicious recipe I adapted from http://www.ketodelivered.com.  It has 6 servings and 2.8 g. net carbs per serving.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 jalapenos (the actual recipe calls for 4 but I found 2 to be plenty)
  • 3 oz. cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 rotisserie chicken (I used the majority of the chicken)
  • 1/4 cup ranch
  • 10 slices bacon
  • 3 oz. cream cheese
  • 1/2 green pepper
  • 1 cup crumbled cauliflower
  • 1 tsp. red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 tsp. onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp. garlic powder
  • salt and pepper to taste

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 F.
  2. Chop bacon, chicken, green pepper and 2 jalapenos.
  3. In a pan, cook bacon pieces until crisp, then add cauliflower, green pepper and jalapenos.  Stir occasionally.
  4. Once soft, add all other ingredients (except cheddar cheese) and mix together well.
  5. Spread mixture on the bottom of a 9×13 casserole dish.
  6. Grate cheddar cheese and sprinkle over top.
  7. Bake for 15 minutes or until cheddar is melted and starting to crisp.

Enjoy!

Easy Mediterranean Chicken Bake

File 2-10-2015, 7 38 59 AM

This is a simple low carb meal and very good.  It comes from http://www.alldayidreamaboutfood.com.  It serves 6-8.  Total net carbs per serving:  7.79 g.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 10 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 14-ounce can quartered artichoke hearts, drained
  • 1 2.5-ounce can sliced black olives, drained
  • 1 15-ounce can low sugar tomato sauce
  • 2 cups shredded Italian cheese
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Preheat oven to 375F.
  2. In a large skillet, heat oil over medium heat until shimmering and hot.  Sprinkle chicken all over with salt and pepper. Add chicken thighs to pan and brown both sides, about 2 to 3 minutes per side.
  3. Using a slotted spoon, transfer thighs to a large 9×13 casserole dish and arrange in a single layer.  Sprinkle with artichoke hearts and black olives.
  4. Pour tomato sauce over top and sprinkle with shredded cheese.  Bake 25 to 30 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through.  Turn oven to broil and cook another 2 to 3 minutes, to lightly brown cheese on top.
  5. Remove from oven and sprinkle with fresh basil.

Southern Fried Chicken

A great low-carb recipe from buttoni.wordpress.com.  Nutritional info: 113.4 calories, 7.26 g fat, 1.72 g carbs, .53 g fiber, 1.19 g net carbs, 12.8 g protein.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 3/4 cup plain whey protein
  • 1 c. crushed pork rinds
  • 1 tbsp oat fiber (optional)
  • 1 tsp spice blend (I used a cajun spice)
  • 1/2 tsp. onion powder
  • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese
  • 1/8 tsp. coarse black pepper
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 c. heavy cream
  • 1/4 c. water
  • 1/2-3/4″ deep hot oil in a large 13-14″ skillet
  • Chicken (I used 8 thighs, but you can use whatever chicken pieces you want)

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Measure out and mix all dry ingredients in a paper bag by shaking well.  In a large bowl, whisk the eggs, cream and water together.  Toss in the pieces of cut up chicken into the egg wash and turn several times to well coat each piece. Pick each piece of meat out of the bowl and drop into the bag of seasoned “flour” and when you have 3 pieces in the bag, holding the top closed, shake the bag to coat the chicken.  Don’t put more than 3 together.
  2. Heat 3/4″ deep oil over high heat.  Place the pieces closely together.  Lower heat to medium-high so larger pieces don’t over-brown before done.  Repeat the coating process with the remaining pieces of chicken.  Brown the chicken well on one side disturbing as little as possible.  Turn pieces of chicken over carefully to brown the second side.  when brown and done (about 30-40 minutes) remove to paper towels to drain.  Finish cooking the remaining pieces if you were unable to get them all in your skillet.

Grilled Zucchini Lasagna

File 18-8-2015, 7 40 08 PM

This is not a quick and easy recipe to make after work, but a great recipe to make on the weekend (and worth the time).  We also had great leftovers.  This recipe comes from Carolyn Ketchum (one of my favorite cooks) at asweetlife.org.  This recipe uses thinly sliced zucchini in the place of noodles.  Nutritional info:  Calories from fat: 262, Carbs 10.72g, total dietary fiber 1.89 g, protein 30.72g.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 3 large zucchini, about 12 ounces each
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1 14-oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper
  • 1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes (I prefer to add 1/2 tsp.)
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup full-fat ricotta
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil (I used flakes)
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 12 ounces shredded mozzarella

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Preheat grill to medium (temperature should only be about 300 to 350F).
  2. Cut each zucchini in half crosswise and then slice each half lengthwise into 1/4 inch thick slices
  3. Grill zucchini slices until they are tender and much of the moisture has been removed, about 3 to 5 minutes per side.  Remove from grill and set aside on layers of paper towels to continue drying out.  Alternatively, roast zucchini at 350 degrees in the oven on wire baking racks for about 20 minutes.
  4. Heat a large saute pan over medium heat.  Add ground beef and cook through, breaking up any clumps with the back of a wooden spoon, about 7 to 10 minutes.  Add tomatoes, salt, pepper and pepper flakes.  Turn heat to medium low and simmer 10 minutes.
  5. In a large bowl, combine cream cheese, ricotta, parmesan, basil, egg, garlic and salt.  Stir to combine well.
  6. Preheat oven to 350F and grease a 9×13 inch glass or ceramic baking dish.  Lay 1/3 of the zucchini slices across the bottom in a single layer.  Spread with 1/3 of cream cheese/ricotta mixture, then 1/3 of meat sauce and 1/3 of the mozarella.  Repeat these layers 2 more times.
  7. Cover with foil and bake 30 minutes, until bubbling.  Remove foil and bake another 15 minutes or so, until cheese on top is beginning to brown.  Remove from oven and let stand 10 minutes before serving.

Serves 8.

Almond Chicken Salad

This is a great, healthy low carb recipe based on the ingredients, but I do not have the carb count for this one.  This recipe is great just as a meal or with a green salad.  The recipe comes from alt.support.diet.low-carb, although I have made a few changes.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 4 cups cooked chicken (I used a rotisserie chicken from Fry’s)
  • 1 cup chopped celery
  • 3/4 cup sliced green onion
  • 3 hard boiled eggs, chopped
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 1 tbsp. prepared mustard (I used spicy Dijon)
  • 1 tsp. salt (or salt substitute)
  • 1/2 tsp. pepper
  • 1/4 tsp. onion pepper (I did not have so I used garlic pepper)
  • 1/4 tsp. celery salt
  • 1/8 tsp. dry mustard
  • 1/8 tsp. paprika
  • 1/2 cup slivered almost, toasted (I forgot to toast, but it was still great)

DIRECTIONS:

  1. In a large bowl combine chicken, celery, onions and eggs.
  2. In another bowl, combine the next 9 ingredients; stir until smooth.  Pour over chicken mixture and toss gently.
  3. Stir in almonds and serve immediately, or refrigerate and add almonds right before serving.

Chicken Pizza

This recipe from http://www.genaw.com has become one of our favorites. It is very easy to make and about 3 net carbs per serving (depending on toppings).

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 boneless chicken breast (about 5 1/2 ounce)
  • Dash Italian seasoning
  • Dash garlic powder
  • Dash salt

TOPPINGS:

  • 1 tablespoon pizza sauce
  • 1/2 ounce pepperoni (8 thin slices)
  • 1/2 large fresh mushroom, sliced thin (1/2 ounce)
  • 1 ounce Italian sausage, cooked and crumbled
  • 1 ounce mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 2 tablespoons green pepper, minced (1/2 ounce)
  • 1 tablespoon red onion, minced (1/4 ounce)

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Pound the chicken as thin as possible without tearing it.
  2. Season both sides of the chicken with the seasonings and place it on a foil-lined baking sheet.
  3. Spread the pizza sauce on the top of the chicken.
  4. Arrange the remaining topping ingredients in this order:  pepperoni, mushrooms, sausage, cheese, peppers and then the onions.
  5. Lightly sprinkle with a little more Italian seasoning and garlic powder.
  6. Bake at 400 degrees for 10 minutes.  Do not overcook.

Makes 1 serving.