Balsamic Chicken & Kale Pita “Pizza” (THM FP)

I’ve missed you! I have been busy eating garbage food since Thanksgiving (just being honest here) and so I had no new recipes to share with you. I decided to get my act together for the new year, so I started a THM Fuel Cycle. It’s just a more pure version of the THM eating plan, minus cheese and nuts, and with a set way to eat for two weeks. You can learn all about it in Chapter 28.

I always find myself struggling on the fuel pull days. Those of you familiar with the plan will know what I mean. Fuel pull means no significant source of carbs OR fat. You are really asking your body to burn up your own stores. Food choices get really limited and meals can become challenging.

Yesterday I was looking for something yummy and filling to eat, and I came up with this! I hope you enjoy it. I didn’t take a any extra photos, so I hope you can get the general idea. You can absolutely adapt this recipe to be an S meal, or even an E with a little more effort. I will post ideas after the main recipe. But when you can have a delicious FP, I say go for it! I am calling it “Balsamic Chicken &  Kale Pita Pizza.”

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Ingredients:

  • 1 Joseph’s Pita
  • 1 Light Laughing Cow cheese wedge
  • 3 oz boneless chicken breast, baked and cubed
  • 2-3 large handfuls of raw kale, torn into small pieces
  • 1 medium roma tomato, diced
  • 1 clove fresh garlic, minced
  • 2-3 Tbsp fat free balsamic dressing (I used Maple Grove Farms)
  • salt, pepper, oregano to taste

Pre-heat the oven to 400°.  Mix the chicken, kale, tomato, garlic, balsamic dressing and seasonings in a medium bowl until well combined. Set aside and let it marinate while the oven heats up. Spread the laughing cow cheese over the pita and place it on a baking sheet. Pile the yummy chicken and veggies on top. Bake for 12-15 minutes until the pita is crispy and everything has had a chance to get nice and toasty.

I called this a pizza, but in reality, you will probably need a fork to eat it. It was scrumptious and my hubby loved it…he ate TWO!

Variations:

To make this an S, add real mozzarella or other cheese on top. You could probably also add olives for added flavor.

To make this an E, you could ditch the pita and use Gwen’s easy bread dough for the crust. I would pre-bake the crust and then proceed as planned.

Bon apetit!

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Amazing Zoodles

I promised a post yesterday about zoodles (zucchini noodles), but I got busy with a bunch of other things and never got around to it. Sorry! If you have cable (or TV with commercials), you have probably seen the ads for the vegetti, which makes noodles out of vegetables. If not, no worries! I found it for you:

I have been coveting a vegetti for a while now, because I love zucchini, and pasta dishes are not something I eat with wheat pastas anymore. Dreamfields turned out to be a big, fat lie, so I was right back to chunking zucchini or using spaghetti squash. Spaghetti squash is awesome, by the way, but not quite the same as real pasta in texture.

Alas…my amazing, wonderful, spectacular friend, Melissa, bought me a Paderno vegetable spiral slicer last week for my birthday. This is infinitely superior to a vegetti, so I consider myself very blessed and grateful, indeed!

Image Courtesy of Amazon

Image Courtesy of Amazon

I have already used this baby THREE times since Saturday. I have eaten five whole zucchini in this time, smothered in chunky garden sauce and a little bit of ground turkey. On my agenda this week is alfredo sauce with grilled chicken breast. Why? BECAUSE I CAN. Guilt-free, veggie noodle deliciousness!

As you can see, the zoodles are very spaghetti-like, perhaps a bit thicker. You can use other vegetables, but I have a healthy obsession with zucchini and I really like saying, “zoodles.” If you can eat potatoes and sweet potatoes, there are other blades to make curly fries. YUM!

IMG_8491

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You can eat the zoodles raw, but they are also a breeze to cook. If you like them with a bit of crunch, sautee them for about 5 minutes at medium-high heat with a little drizzle of EVOO. If you want them softer, toss them in the microwave and steam for 4 minutes, drain the excess water before adding sauce.

Your choices for topping these are endless. Zoodles pair beautifully with all kinds of meats, sauces, and seasonings. Zucchini is flexible like that. Needless to say, I am in LOVE!

Perfect Mashed Cauliflower (THM S)

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This recipe is DELICIOUS, if you like cauliflower, and if you are not on a diet that limits fat. Fat is my third favorite “F” word. One of them is “Friday.” You can use your imagination on the other one…I am working on it, ok? 😉

This recipe is NOT low fat, as I was heavily hinting at above. It’s healthy depending on your perspective on the subject. If you are going to eat this with something sugary/carby, that would be bad. If you plan to eat a sensible, low-carb meal, it’s very healthy! You will need a food processor. If you don’t have a food processor, I can make no guarantee about how creamy it will turn out.

On to the recipe! You will need:

  • Two 12 oz bags of frozen cauliflower (I use these because they are convenient, affordable, and steam nicely)
  • 3-4 Tbsp cream cheese (you can use reduced fat)
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 1 Tbsp Parmesan cheese
  • salt, pepper, garlic powder, parsley flakes (optional) to taste

Pour the frozen cauliflower into a microwave safe bowl. Add a tiny bit of water, cover and steam for 15 minutes. Remove and drain well in a colander. You can even press down on the cauliflower a little bit to get extra moisture out. Dump the cauli and remaining ingredients into your food processor. Use the blade that reaches nearly to the edges of the processor…you want this well-blended and very creamy, with no lumps. Pulse a few times to make sure the cream cheese and butter start to melt in, and then set that puppy to “ON” and let it go to town.

After a minute or two, you should have very creamy, super yummy mashed cauliflower. Feel free to add it to another serving dish, or you can be lazy like I am and just spoon it right from the processor. It’s YUMMY! So very, very yummy! I barely miss mashed potatoes.

It is also really good with a clove of garlic. I steam the clove with the cauli and then blend it right in. Your breath will smell like garlic for hours after – fair warning. Obviously, if you use fresh garlic, skip the garlic powder.

This recipe makes 4 large servings, or 6 smaller servings.

Italian-Style Stuffed Zucchini (THM S)

You know when you decide to experiment with a recipe for dinner, and right after you begin cooking you think, “Gee, I should probably take pictures and blog this?”  No?  I guess it’s just me then.  🙂 I had a few zucchini sitting in my veggie crisper and I was craving lasagna, but I didn’t want to go through all the hassle of making low carb zucchini lasagna.  What’s a girl to do?  Well, obviously, make an easier stuffed zucchini version!  I forgot to take pictures until I got started, but I think I managed to get everything but the onion. The cast of characters:

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4 zucchini, sliced lenghtwise

photo 1 (6)

1 lbs ground beef (Italian sausage would be delish!)

1 cup ricotta cheese, 2 roma tomatoes (diced), 1 medium onion (chopped, not pictured), 1 cup of chopped spinach, 1 cup reduced sugar spaghetti sauce, salt, pepper, Italian seasoning, garlic powder (to taste), Italian four cheese blend

Pre-heat oven to 350°.  Pre-slice and dice all veggies before beginning.  Place sliced zucchini into a foil-lined pan (I strongly reccoment foil…learn from my sadness) and pre-bake for 15 minutes.  Meanwhile, begin browning the ground meat and when nearly done, add the onion for flavor.

Beef and onion...Mmm!

Beef and onion…Mmm!

Cook meat completely, with no signs of pink.  Drain grease.  Take the zucchini out of the oven and scoop the middle, creating a zucchini “boat.”  Chop up the zucchini innards and add it to the meat, along with the diced tomato and spinach.

Meat and all veggies.

Meat and all veggies.

Cook the meat & veggie mixture for an additional 5 minutes, then add the spaghetti sauce, ricotta cheese, and spices.  Heat though.

Almost ready for stuffing!

Almost ready for stuffing!

Stuff the zucchini boats with a generous portion of the filling.  Top with a generous sprinkle of the four cheese blend and pop them into the oven.

OMG - cheesy goodness!

OMG – cheesy goodness!

Bake 20-25 minutes until the cheese is melted and golden brown, and the zucchini boats are softened.  Enjoy!

photo 4 (4)

Sooooooooo good!

And finally for the very first time, a printable recipe!!  I am really getting my blogging act together.  Go me!  Just click below for a printable pdf.  🙂 Untitled

Easy, Low Carb Breakfast Burrito (THM S)

I have an easy, “go to” breakfast that I eat about 3 days a week.  It’s a low carb breakfast burrito, chock full of veggies and healthy fats (ok, and some sausage…I love sausage!). It takes me about 15 minutes to make from stepping into the kitchen until I eat, which is pretty speedy for a cooked breakfast.  If you are a Trim Healthy Mama, this breakfast is an S.  I don’t think it can be paleo because of the low carb tortilla and cheddar.

The cast of characters:

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  • two links of sausage of your choice
  • frozen spinach
  • frozen bell pepper mix
  • two eggs, beaten
  • cajun seasoning mix (or any seasonings you prefer, that is just my favorite)
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • cheddar cheese, 1-2 oz
  • one low carb tortilla

I use the Farmer John sausage because it’s cheap and not in the skin, which makes it easier to crumble.  Your food values may require something more pure.  LOL!

I crumble two links and start cooking them along with my frozen veggies.  I use frozen veggies because they are already cut and stay in the freezer for weeks, so I never have to worry about fresh ingredients going bad, or needing to prep them.  My time in the morning is precious and I am busy!

The sausage and veggies cook up pretty fast.  While they are cooking, I beat the eggs and prep the cheese.

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When nearly done, I add the seasoning mix.

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Add your eggs and cook to your desired taste level.  I like my eggs relatively soft, yet firmly cooked.  I dice up the cheese and spread it out on my tortilla before adding my eggs to get a nice melt.  This could not be any easier!  The tortillas are soft and really tasty, and I am picky about my tortillas.  I find La Banderita at Smith’s (Kroger, Fry’s, etc).

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Fast, filling, delicious, and full of win!  Approximately 8 net carbs.  If you ditch the tortilla (for those who need *really* low carb) it’s about 3 net carbs.  YUM!

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