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I needed something quick and easy for dinner earlier this week and had some chicken breast that needed to be used. I grabbed some other random ingredients out of the fridge and pantry and came up with this! I pulled inspiration from this glazed pork chop recipe and from this chicken stir-fry recipe to come up with an easy lo Mein recipe (using spaghetti noodles).

I loved how the sweetness of the brown sugar and the saltiness of the soy sauce really complemented each other. Next time you reach for the take-out menu, whip this up instead! Your wallet will thank you.

Chicken Lo Mein

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Serves Two

Ingredients

  • 4 oz. lo mein noodles (I used spaghetti, a mixture of regular and whole wheat)
  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, diced
  • sliced vegetables of your choice (I used green peppers and broccoli)
  • olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 2-3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika
  • a pinch of red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce

Prepare noodles according to package. Drain and set aside.

Meanwhile, combine brown sugar, garlic salt, paprika, and red pepper flakes in a small bowl. Heat 1-2 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat in a non-stick saucepan. Season the diced chicken with salt and pepper and add to hot pan. Sprinkle with brown sugar mixture. Cook the chicken over medium heat until cooked through, about 5-7 minutes, turning often. Once cooked, transfer to a plate and keep warm.

Add one tablespoon of olive oil to the same (now empty) pan and return to stovetop, over medium-high heat. Once oil is heated, add the vegetables. Cook until crisp tender. Add the minced garlic and cook for about 30 seconds. Reduce heat to medium.

Return the chicken to the pan and add the noodles. Add the hoisin sauce and soy sauce. Toss to coat and allow to cook for about one minute, just to heat up the sauce. Serve immediately.

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Chicken, especially whole or bone-in, was something that I was always a little intimidated by. I could never seem to cook it quite right and would usually overcook it to avoid undercooking it. Needless to say, overly dry chicken was a common occurrence, though I do remember when we had to throw out a batch of chicken drumsticks because they weren’t fully cooked. I think cereal came to our rescue that night. 😉

Roasting a whole chicken is much easier than I thought, and really comes together very quickly with minimal prep work. It presents an aesthetically pleasing dinner that is perfect for guests, since you don’t need to stand over a stove for hours. I especially love the leftovers we always seem to have! So delicious on a salad the next day.

This recipe is really flavorful and super moist, thanks to the broth. The mustard was only slightly evident, but paired really well with the garlic. When it was cooking you could really smell the garlic and I was afraid that it would be overpowering, but it wasn’t at all. We will definitely be making this again!

Garlic Mustard Roasted Chicken

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Ingredients

  • 1 whole chicken (2-3 lbs.)
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • salt and pepper
  • Italian seasonings
  • 2 tablespoons spicy brown mustard
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 2 tablespoons white wine
  • 1 teaspoon hot sauce
  • 1 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. In a roasting pan or deep baking dish, lay out the onion slices and add the chicken broth. Prep chicken by removing innards and rinsing with cold water. Pat dry. Gently separate the skin from the meat. Season generously with salt, pepper, and Italian seasonings, including under the skin and in the cavity. Place in baking dish, breast side up.

Combine the mustard, garlic, soy sauce, hot sauce, olive oil, and salt and mix well. Pour/spread over chicken. Bake for 1 hour and 20-25 minutes, or until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees. Slice and serve with some of the onion slices and pan juices, if desired.

Source: Slightly adapted from Food. People. Want.

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I bought a pre-made pie crust at the grocery store the other week and have been wanting to make individual chicken pot pies (it wouldn’t be very difficult to make your own crust but sometimes I’m lazy). I planned to use leftover roasted chicken but didn’t make them in time to utilize the leftovers. I pulled some chicken breasts out of the freezer this morning so they would be ready to go after work.

I ended up poaching the chicken, which I’ve never done before. You just add the chicken to boiling water or broth, reduce to a simmer, and cook for about 12-15 minutes. Easy as that! I will definitely use this method in the future when preparing chicken to be added to a dish.

We really enjoyed these, though they didn’t really taste like traditional chicken pot pies. I think the addition of the red bell pepper was a little overwhelming and I would leave it out next time. I would also add in some celery, since I think that’s what it was lacking. The sauce was a bit thick so I would thin it out a bit in the future.

These definitely fall in the ‘comfort food’ category and they were a nice treat! I halved the recipe and made two large portions using oven safe bowls.

Individual Chicken Pot Pies

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Ingredients

  • 1 box pre-made pie crust (2 crusts)
  • 1 egg, for egg wash

For the filling:

  • 3 tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 large russett potato, peeled and diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced (I would replace this with celery)
  • 8 oz. button mushrooms, sliced (I omitted)
  • ½ tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 purchased rotisserie chicken (or cooked chicken breast, cubed)
  • 1-2 cups frozen peas and carrots

For the sauce:

  • 8 tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2½ cups chicken broth
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • Dash of hot sauce
  • Salt and pepper

To make the filling, melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat.  Add the onion and potato to the pan, and sauté for about 5 minutes.  Mix in the garlic, bell pepper (or celery) and mushrooms, and cook for about 15 minutes more, until the potatoes are tender.  While the vegetables are cooking, remove the skin from the chicken, pull the meat off the bones and shred or chop the chicken into bite-sized pieces (or dice chicken breasts). Once the vegetables are finished cooking, turn off the heat and mix in the chicken and the frozen peas and carrots.  Stir in the red pepper flakes, and season with salt and pepper to taste.

To make the sauce, melt the butter over medium heat in a large saucepan.  Add the flour and whisk until smooth.  Whisk in the chicken broth and cook over medium heat until it thickens to the consistency of a cream soup.  Mix in the cream, the hot sauce and season with salt and pepper to taste.  Pour the cream sauce over the chicken and veggie mixture and stir to combine well. Spoon the mixture into 6-8 individual oven-safe dishes (such as ramekins).

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Unwrap the pre-made pie crusts and cut into quarters (or into thirds, depending on how many servings you are making). Reshape as needed and lay one over each dish. Beat the egg and brush over the crusts. Place dishes on a baking sheet and bake for 20-25 minutes. Enjoy!

Source: Annie’s Eats

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I was looking for something different to make for dinner tonight and came across this recipe for cornmeal crusted chicken topped with a spicy cheese sauce. Yes, please!. This is probably the least healthful dish that I’ve ever made so if that is what you’re looking for, look elsewhere.

I’ve never breaded my chicken with cornmeal but it is delicious! It gives it a slightly heartier texture that we loved. The sauce is deliciously cheesy with a kick from the jalapeno peppers, but it’s not overwhelming. It’s very rich but definitely a tasty treat.

If you like jalapeno poppers, I’m sure you’ll love this recipe. We won’t be repeating this often because of its richness but it will be made again. It’s dangerously good, as I displayed by falling down the stairs trying to get a picture! I’m so graceful…and unhurt.

Cornbread Crusted Chicken with Jalapeno Popper Sauce

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Ingredients

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (I used chicken tenders)
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/4 cup cornmeal
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 slices of bacon, chopped
  • 3 jalapenos, seeded and chopped (I used jarred slices)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 3/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese

In a medium skillet, fry bacon until crisp; drain on paper towels and set aside.

Combine cornmeal, flour, chili powder, cumin, and salt on a rimmed plate. Dip each chicken breast in beaten egg, then in cornmeal mixture. Pan fry in a small amount of vegetable oil in a medium skillet until coating is crisp and juices run clear. Remove from skillet, drain on paper towels, and keep warm.

Add jalapenos to the same skillet that was used to cook the bacon and heat over medium. Add garlic and cook and stir for 30 seconds or until fragrant. Stir in chicken broth and bring to a boil. Add cream cheese and stir until melted and smooth. Stir in shredded cheese and bacon, stirring until the cheese is melted.

Top chicken with sauce and serve.

Source: Adapted from Let’s Dish

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Today was a #fail in terms of healthy eating…until this evening anyway! I was in a rush this morning (the snooze button was hit a few too many times) so I gulped down a bowl of cereal and grabbed an iced coffee on my way out…Reid’s cousin has been in Guatemala for some time and brought us some coffee to try from there. Whenever he brews a pot I refrigerate the leftovers! Win win! 🙂 And it’s really yummy…

So that’s not so bad but once I got home from work I was starving…and proceeded to eat half a sleeve of crackers, topped with pepperoni…yup. That was my lunch. Oh, and I topped it off with a caramel oat bar. 🙂

After that nonsense I tried to get motivated for a run but just wasn’t feeling it. I put my gym membership on hold for a few months since we were supposed to start P90X today (the DVD’s haven’t arrived yet) so that isn’t an option for the time being. I rolled out the yoga mat and did Jillian Michael’s 30 Day Shred on demand…it was only level one but was still a pretty good workout. I only have 8 pound hand weights so it was tough at times…I’m a wimp! 🙂

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As I was stretching at the end I finally got the urge to go for a run…the Shred is only 20 minutes longs so I suited up to compliment that with a 2.25 mile loop around the neighborhood. I “unwired” for this run…no Garmin or iPod. The only thing I brought along was a package of fruit snacks, just in case my blood sugar dropped suddenly. I always try to run with some sort of sugar, just in case. Thankfully I didn’t need to eat it!

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I’ve missed running so much! Even though I spent most of my time dodging slush puddles and sniffling, it was awesome!

Now on to dinner…Reid called to say he was going to be late so I had to come up with something for one, and quick…because if you didn’t know, crackers and pepperoni don’t hold you over for very long! I snacked on a pear as I pulled veggies out of the fridge.

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Chicken Stir-Fry for One

 

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Ingredients

  • 2 ounces whole wheat pasta
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • one chicken breast
  • one carrot, julienned
  • 1/4 red bell pepper, julienned
  • a few broccoli florets, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1/8-1/4 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon hoisin sauce
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • crushed red pepper (optional)

Prepare pasta according to directions. Set aside.

In a nonstick skillet, heat the oil over medium heat. Cube the chicken breast and add to the hot skillet, cooking until only slightly pink inside, about 3-4 minutes. Add the carrots, red bell pepper, and broccoli and sauté until crisp-tender, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for about 30 seconds.

Add the hoisin sauce and soy sauce, stirring to coat. Add the pasta and red pepper flakes (if using) and toss to coat. Remove from heat and serve immediately.

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This was delicious! So quick (it took about 20 minutes) and easy, yet full of flavor! The crunchy veggies were the best part and I would probably leave out the chicken next time as it didn’t really add much flavor to the dish. Added protein, at least! I used organic pasta, chicken and vegetables. I’ll probably whip some up for Reid when he gets home since it was so good!

Tomorrow is going to be a busy day! I have my first large cupcake order to fulfill for a bridal shower! I’m excited! 😀

Beginning the Balance: I really struggled with portion control for a while and found that using portioned containers or measuring out my food helped me to recognize proper portions on my own. Use a smaller plate. Putting snacks into a bowl rather than eating from a bag helps to control mindless eating. Try to focus on your food rather than eating while working, watching TV, reading, etc.

Foodbuzz
I'm Ashley. Wife and new mom. Lover of food, running, baking, strength training, fashion, iced coffee, interior design, and photography. Welcome to Will Run for Food, where I document bits of all of the above (and more)! Thanks for stopping by!

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Contact me at willrunforfood@live.com

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