A Chicken in Every Crockpot!

Karen's Kitchen Adventures

Taco Salad! May 31, 2010

Filed under: eat your vegetables,meat — frappqueen @ 8:05 am
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Here’s a great one for a warm day! Almost no real cooking involved aside from like 10 minutes of cooking the chopped meat! Also, its really good!

Quick Taco Salad (from Cooking Light)

12  ounces  ground round

2  cups  chopped yellow, red, or green bell pepper
2  cups  bottled salsa
1/4  cup  chopped fresh cilantro
4  cups  coarsely chopped romaine lettuce
2  cups  chopped plum tomato
1  cup  (4 ounces) shredded reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese
1  cup  crumbled baked tortilla chips (about 12 chips)
1/4  cup  chopped green onions


Cook beef and bell pepper in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until beef is browned; stir to crumble. Add salsa; bring to a boil. Stir in cilantro; keep warm.

Place 1 cup lettuce on each of 4 plates; top with 1 cup meat mixture. Sprinkle each serving with 1/2 cup tomato, 1/4 cup cheese, 1/4 cup chips, and 1 tablespoon onions.


Weight Watchers Beef Stroganoff February 6, 2010

Filed under: meat,one dish — frappqueen @ 4:42 pm
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I made this early last week and it can’t be easier. It tastes really good and its very simple to make. Not to mention, its only  7*  points a serving!! That’s fancy! I got it from one of my favorite cookbooks, “Weight Watchers: Ultimate Flex and Core Cookbook”, which has seriously helped Mike lose a lot of weight! All the recipes in it are simple and delicious, and good for you too!

beef: it's what's for dinner!

Dijon Beef Stroganoff

3/4 pound beef tenderloin, trimmed of visible fat, and cut into 1 1/2 inch chunks (I used sirloin because there wasn’t any tenderloin, it works fine!)

3/4 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. pepper

3 tsp. olive oil

1 8 oz package of fresh sliced mushrooms (I get baby bellas since Mike doesn’t love mushrooms and I dice them finely so he doesn’t notice them as much)

1 large shallot, minced (you can use a small regular onion if there are no shallots to be found)

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 1/2 c. reduced sodium beef broth (I get a can and use the extra 1/2 c. to dissolve the cornstarch)

1/3 c. fat free sour cream

1 tbs dijon mustard

2 tbs cornstarch (ww doesn’t have this listed but I have found that without the cornstarch, the sauce is very watery and unappetizing)

Sprinkle the beef with the salt and pepper. Heat up 2 tbs of the oil in a large nonstick pan over medium heat. Brown the meat on both sides until it is cooked through, about four minutes. Transfer to a dish to rest.

Add the last tbs of oil to the pan. Throw in the mushrooms and some more salt and pepper and cook until the ‘shrooms start to release liquid, about 1 minute. Add the shallots and garlic and cook for another 3 minutes or so, til they are tender and browned.  Stir in the broth and bring it to a boil. Cook until the mixture is reduced by about one-half, about six minutes.

Stir in the beef and cook until heated through, about one minute. Add the cornstarch to the remaining broth and stir; then add to the skillet, stirring rapidly. Let everything cook another minute or two, until the liquid reduces further and gets a bit thicker. If it is not thick enough, add another tbs of cornstarch in a little water.

Remove skillet from heat; stir in the dijon and the sour cream. Serve over delicious egg noodles! Yay!

*points are estimated: the book says it is 4 points for the meat alone, 7 if you add whole wheat pasta, however egg noodles are fat free and low in other bad stuff so I think the end points result is similar.


Pork Fried Rice January 25, 2010

Filed under: one dish,rice — frappqueen @ 9:47 pm
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I love things that involve rice, its just a cozy and delicious accompaniment to anything! Generally on Fridays, Mike and I get Chinese take out, but I recently saw a Rachel Ray recipe for Sizzling Beef and Scallions, and it looked so good, I wanted to give it a try!I figured it was pretty much just like fried rice, and I decided to switch out the beef for slightly healthier pork.  I liked it, its a lot healthier than the rice from your favorite place, and its lighter feeling even to eat. Plus, the leftovers heat up a lot better than the kind you get from the store!

fried rice!

Pork Fried Rice (adapted from Rachel Ray)

8 ounces of pork tenderloin, sliced thin and into small cubes (you can also use steak or chicken or omit to go veggie)

1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 bell pepper, chopped into bite sized pieces

2/3 c. frozen peas, thawed

1/2 tsp. sugar

2 tablespoons soy sauce

10 scallions, green parts thinly sliced, white parts cut into one inch pieces

1 tbsp fresh ginger, grated

2 large eggs, lightly beaten

2 cups of cooked white rice


If you haven’t already, cook the rice according to the directions.

In a medium bowl, combine the chopped pork with 1 tablespoon of soy sauce. In a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil over medium high heat. Add the pork and cook, about two or three minutes, until cooked through. Transfer to a clean bowl.

Next in the skillet heat 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil. Add the scallion whites, bell pepper and ginger and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in the peas. Push the vegetables to the side and add the two eggs. Stir the eggs until they begin to set, then stir in the veggies. Add the egg/vegetable mix to the bowl of cooked pork; stir in the 1 tbsp of sugar and the remaining soy sauce.

Heat the remaining two tablespoons of oil in the skillet. Add the rice, breaking it up and cook without stirring for two minutes. Add the beef/vegetable mixture and scallion greens. Toss to combine and cook one more minute. Serve and enjoy!


Turkey Jambalaya January 20, 2010

Filed under: one dish,poultry,rice — frappqueen @ 10:49 pm

It would appear that lately all we seem to eat are things that come in bowl-fuls! Chili, soup, risotto, it’s all in a little bowl of happiness! Oh well, tonight I’ve got another bowl-ful, and this one is even healthy!

Jambalaya is an awesome mix of sausage, rice and spices. I’m not a big fan of spicy though, so I tend to try to sway Mike away from making it. However, awhile ago I made a version from Sandra Lee (of all people!, she scares me, but that’s another story) and it was not that spicy at all; in fact it was really good! So when Mike sent me this Cooking Light version, which uses turkey instead of chicken and ten kinds of fatty meats, I said, why not?! And I’m glad I did!


Turkey Jambalaya (from Cooking Light)

1 tablespoon olive oil (I just used cooking spray, it’s my bff)

1 1/2 c. chopped onion

2 cloves of garlic, minced

1 green bell pepper, chopped (I used yellow, I hate green peppers)

1 red bell pepper, chopped

2 1/2 tsp paprika

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp dried oregano

1/2 tsp pepper

1/2 tsp ground red pepper (I omitted this as I’m wimpy; also we don’t have any!)

1 c uncooked long grain rice

2 c. fat-free low sodium chicken broth

1 14.5 ounce can diced tomatoes, undrained

2 c. shredded cooked turkey

6 oz. andouille sausage, sliced thin (you can use spicy italian if you can’t find andouille)

1 bunch of scallions, chopped


Heat oil in a large dutch oven (really big pot!) over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic; sauté 6 minutes or until lightly browned. Stir in bell peppers and next five ingredients (bell peppers through red pepper); sauté 1 minute. Add rice, sauté one minute. Stir in broth and tomatoes, bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat and let simmer for 15 minutes. Add turkey and sausage; cover and cook another five minutes. Sprinkle with green onions and let simmer 1 more minute, uncovered.

Scoop it in a big bowl and dig in! This one is only 249 calories a bowl! With 7.6 grams of fat! Eat two bowls if you wanna!


Ginger Chicken and Sweet-Salty noodles with Veggies January 12, 2010

Filed under: eat your vegetables,poultry — frappqueen @ 9:50 pm
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This one is what we had tonight! Via Rachel Ray’s “Express Lane Meals” , I found this one the other day when looking through it for the millionth time for a new recipe to try.

Now, I do own pretty much every cookbook RR has ever written and I love most of her recipes. I think I’ve only had one flop from all of them! This one was really yummy in the end, but kind of frustrating in between. I’m not sure that the end was worth the effort, at least not on a weeknight. Which is odd, since it came from a cookbook called Express Lane, right?! Oh well. But seriously, even with Mike chopping half the veggies, it took me an hour to make it from start to finish! I also left a few things out either because I didn’t have them or I got lazy! Here is the recipe the way I made it.

Ginger Chicken and Sweet-Salty Noodles with Veggies

1 pound of thin long cut pasta (I used leftover thin chinese noodles, how appropriate!)

5 tablespoons vegetable oil

1/2 c. fresh flat leaf parsley

1/2 c. fresh cilantro (if you hate cilantro you can skip it)

1 large garlic clove, smashed

1/2 an onion, cut into chunks

3 inches of fresh ginger, peeled and grated

3 or 4 thin chicken cutlets

1/2 c. of mild vinegar, such as rice or white wine (I used rice)

1 1/2 tablespoons sugar

3 tablespoons tamari or soy sauce if you don’t have tamari (I do because I’m crazy)

1 seedless cucumber cut in half and then into moons (mine had seeds, oh well!)

1 red and 1 yellow pepper, seeded and cut into matchsticks

3 scallions, thinly sliced (I forgot to buy these so we did without)


Cook your pasta according to the packaged directions. Set aside in a large bowl once drained.

In a blender or food processor, combine 3 tablespoons of the vegetable oil, the parsley, cilantro, garlic, onion and 2/3 of the ginger, as well as salt and pepper. Blend until the mixture is smooth. Pour over the chicken and let it marinade at least a few minutes.

While the pasta is cooking and the marinade is marinating, place a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the rice wine vinegar, sugar, tamari, and the rest of the grated ginger. Cook until the sugar dissolves. Once it has dissolved take from the heat and pour it into the bowl with the pasta. Add the chopped veggies (cucumbers, peppers and scallions) and toss the ingredients together so everything is well coated. Put foil over the top of the bowl to keep it warm.

Warm up a grill pan or skillet and cook the chicken through about 3 or 4 minutes per side or until the meat is fully cooked and white all the way through. It took me about 15 minutes because I had super thick chicken breasts. whoops!

Once it is cooked, slice the chicken very thin. Spoon the noodle and veggie mixture into a bowl and top with some chicken. Break out the chopsticks and enjoy! It’s takeout at home!


Hamburger Buddy!

Filed under: eat your vegetables,meat,one dish — frappqueen @ 9:27 pm
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This was what we ate last night, but I was still too sleepy from my harrowing audition, plust a full day of school and crazy painting children til 4:30 to update!

This dinner is one of our favorites. It isn’t too hard to make and its fairly good for you too! Also, its really a cozy dish, which is nice when you’re sleepy on a Monday.

I found this recipe about a year ago on EatingWell.com, and we’ve been making it ever since!

hamburger buddy!

Hamburger Buddy

3 cloves garlic, crushed and peeled
2 medium carrots, cut into 2-inch pieces
10 ounces white mushrooms, large ones cut in half
1 large onion, cut into 2-inch pieces
1 pound 90%-lean ground beef
2 teaspoons dried thyme
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
2 cups water
1 14-ounce can reduced-sodium beef broth, divided
8 ounces whole-wheat elbow noodles, (2 cups) (I use Smart Pasta in the purple box, I hate whole wheat pasta!)
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 cup reduced-fat sour cream
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley, or chives for garnish


In a food processor, mince up the garlic, carrots and mushrooms. Turn it off, add onion, and pulse until roughly chopped. I must confess, this never works for me, we always end up with a substance that looks like mush, but hey, its still veggies and it still tastes good, and that might come in handy if you  have picky eaters and need to sneak some veggies!
Cook the  beef in a large straight-sided Dutch oven over medium-high heat, breaking it up with a wooden spoon, until no longer pink, 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in the chopped vegetables, thyme, salt and pepper and cook, stirring often, until the vegetables start to soften and the mushrooms release their juices, 5 to 7 minutes.
Stir in water, 1 1/2 cups broth, noodles and Worcestershire sauce; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to medium and cook, stirring occasionally, until the pasta is tender, 8 to 10 minutes.
Whisk flour with the remaining 1/4 cup broth in a small bowl until smooth (if you forgot to save the broth like I often do, just whisk it with a little water!); stir into the hamburger mixture. Stir in the sour cream. Simmer, stirring often, until the sauce is thickened, about 2 minutes. Serve sprinkled with parsley (or chives), if desired.

Scoop into bowls and be amazed! It’s like Hamburger Helper, but healthier and tastier!

close up!


Light Greek Chicken Casserole January 9, 2010

Filed under: casserole,one dish,poultry — frappqueen @ 11:21 pm
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After all that effort making crème brûlée, I did not want to work too hard for my dinner too! I had some chicken defrosting in the fridge, so I decided tonight to make one of our favorite easy yet healthy dinners: Greek Chicken Casserole.

This one is light and delicious! It also only takes about 5 minutes prep time, and the rest is done in the oven! What can be easier than that?

delicious chicken!

Light Greek Chicken Casserole

package of chicken breasts

can of diced tomatoes

one onion, sliced (I prefer red onion for this, but today they looked gross in the store so I used a sweet onion)

One zucchini, sliced

tablespoon or two of oregano

salt and pepper to taste

sprinkle of garlic powder

low-fat feta cheese

1 c. orzo


Heat oven to 450 degrees. Slightly lower if your oven is not crazy like mine.

Rinse chicken and pat dry. Salt and pepper to taste and add oregano. Place in 8×8 baking dish. layer tomatoes (including the water in the can), zucchini and onion over the top of the chicken. salt and pepper some more and sprinkle some garlic powder over the top. Cover with foil and pop in the oven! Let chicken cook for about a half hour, until the liquid is bubbling and chicken is cooked through.

Take chicken out of oven and remove foil. Top with crumbled feta cheese. Switch your oven to broil and put the dish back in, uncovered. Keep an eye on the dish and broil until the cheese just starts to brown, about five minutes. Do NOT walk away, it can go quick!! Remove and let cool for five minutes before serving. We like ours over some orzo pasta, but you can eat it over rice or alongside potatoes, whatever floats your boat!