Archive | May 2013

BBQ Chicken & Grilled Pineapple Quesadillas

I found these to be perfect with a side of corn on the cob.  The smells of the dish really have me looking forward to warm summer nights!  Looks like we’re in for it, as the next few days are supposed to be in the high 80’s.  I swear this has been the strangest May I’ve ever experienced.  We’ve had some 90 degree days and then some in the 40’s!  Hopefully June will be a little more predictable.  As always, look out for a lower sodium BBQ sauce that isn’t super high in sugar.  The best compromise I’ve found at Wegmans is the Dinosaur brand.

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BBQ Chicken & Grilled Pineapple Quesadillas- adapted from Closet Cooking

Serves: 6

6 8-inch flour tortillas

3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, shredded

1/2 cup 2% colby jack cheese

1/2 cup 2% sharp cheddar

1/2 cup + 2 tbsp low-sodium barbeque sauce

2 jalapenos, seeded and diced

1/4 pineapple, thinly sliced (equal to about 1.5 cups)

Instructions:

  1. Rinse and trim chicken breasts.  Cook in slow-cooker with 1/3 cup water for 7-8 hours on LOW setting.
  2. Preheat grill (I used my Cuisinart Griddler since it was a rainy day) to a medium setting.  Once hot, grill sliced pineapple for a few minutes until you see grill marks.  Set aside.
  3. Once chicken is cooked, shred and mix with the bbq sauce in a medium sized bowl.
  4. Place equal amounts of chicken mixture, jalapenos, pineapple, and both cheese’s on one half of each of the 6 tortillas.  Fold over and grill on medium heat for 3-4 minutes per side.
  5. Use a pizza cutter to cut each tortilla into 3 wedges.  One serving is one tortilla, or 3 wedges.

Serving Size (per serving): 300 calories, 7g fat (2g saturated), 32g carbohydrate, 26g protein

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Baked Quinoa and Chicken Parmesan

I was so excited to find this one because I know when it comes time to counsel gluten-free patients, it’s going to a be a bit of a challenge.  So much of my diet is focused around wheat products for their rich nutrients, that I don’t really explore the gluten-free world.  This recipe is a great spin on the classic that saves you some carbohydrate in place of extra protein.  I just hope my Italian grandfather isn’t looking down from heaven ashamed of me for leaving out the pasta!  This recipe is gluten free as long as you do not include the whole wheat breadcrumbs.

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Although the above picture looks like a lot of cheese, it’s really only 1 cup total which is a reasonable portion divided by the six servings.  It always gives me a good laugh when I see pins on pinterest that consist of a meal loaded with cheese with a few vegetables scattered underneath and the pin claims a “healthy meal.”  Please be cautious when you see this!  A meal with an abundant amount of cheese is a red flag to a false claim.

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Baked Quinoa & Chicken Parmesan– very slightly adapted from Prevention RD

Serves: 6

1 tbsp. olive oil

1 medium white onion, chopped

4 cloves garlic, minced

2 tbsp. balsamic vinegar

1 (14.5 oz) can low sodium tomato sauce

1 (14.5 oz) can no-salt-added diced tomatoes

1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes

2 tsp. dried basil

2 tsp. dried oregano

2 tsp. dried Italian seasoning

Black pepper to taste

1 cup quinoa, rinsed

1.5 cups water

1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts

1 cup reduced fat (2%) mozzarella cheese, shredded and divided

1 oz parmesan cheese, shredded

3 tbsp. whole wheat breadcrumbs

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Clean and trim chicken, place on aluminum foil lined cookie sheet and sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes until cooked through.  Set aside.
  3. Increase oven heat to 375 degrees.  Spray a 13 x 9 baking dish with cooking spray and set aside.
  4. Place rinsed quinoa and 1.5 cups water in a medium pot.  Cover and bring pot to a boil.  Once boiling, reduce the heat and simmer until cooked, about 15 minutes or as per package directions.
  5. To make the sauce, heat a large skillet over medium heat and add the olive oil.  Stir in the onion and cook until tender, about 6 minutes.  Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.  Add the balsamic vinegar, scraping off the bottom of the pan and cook 2-3 minutes until liquid is almost fully absorbed.  Add the tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, crushed red pepper, basil, oregano, Italian seasoning and black pepper to taste.  Bring to a low boil and simmer until rest of the meal is prepared.
  6. Once chicken and quinoa have finished cooking, add to sauce pan (turn heat off) and mix thoroughly.  Place half of the mixture in the baking dish and top with 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese.  Add other half of mixture and top with remaining 1/2 cup cheese, 1 oz parmesan, and 3 tbsp. whole wheat breadcrumbs.
  7. Cover with foil and bake for 15 minutes.  Remove foil and continue to bake for 10 more minutes.

Nutrition Facts (per serving): 336 calories, 9.5g fat, 32g carbohydrate (5g fiber), 30g protein

Recipe Recommendations

On Saturday, I officially became a “dietitian.”  Hopefully in a few months and with a lot of studying, I will finally be a Registered Dietitian.  While I can’t wait for that day, I am relieved to no longer be an intern.  Working for free is not ideal, although I have learned a LOT!

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So over this whole blog hiatus, I haven’t had time to be creative, but I have cooked a lot.  Most of the recipes I have hardly changed, so in efforts to not lose them in a sea of pinterest boards, I have linked them here for you all to enjoy too.  New Applebutterhamony recipes are on the way, I promise!

Crispy Kale & Mushroom Fried Rice

Balsamic Roast Beef

Tangy Thai Chicken Sandwich

Creamy Avocado & White Bean Wrap

Spiced Lentil Tacos  –> really excited about these!

Spaghetti in Garlic Gravy with Fresh Herbs

Stuffed Shells –> Believe it or not, this was my first time making stuffed shells.  I never knew how ridiculously easy it was!  One thing I have to say here, sub full fat for part-skim ricotta, still a great flavor while saving yourself some fat.

Apple-Cheddar Chicken Tartines with Honey-Dijon Roasted Potatoes –> Made them both and loved them both!

Quinoa Stuffed Poblano Chiles

Sketch-Free Broccoli and Cheese Soup –> I’ve never seen Mr. Applebutter excited about a soup, and this one he was over the moon for.  Let’s be honest here, this soup has a lot of cheese.  It’s not a staple, it’s a treat.  A very delicious treat!

Honey-Lime Chicken Skewers –> So easy, so delicious.

Grilled Chicken and Vegetable Quesadillas

Philly Cheesesteak Pizza

Sweet Potato Quinoa Salad

I love quinoa salads because they are so easy and friendly for those who eat gluten free.  This one is probably best served at room temperature, so you also don’t have to worry about keeping it hot while the rest of your food cooks.  Feel free to alter the nuts or exchange the raisins for cranberries or whatever you happen to like best!

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Sweet Potato Quinoa Salad

Serves: 6

1 large sweet potato, peeled and cubed

1 tbsp. olive oil

1/4 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. pepper

1/3 cup walnuts, chopped & toasted

1/3 cup golden raisins

1 cup quinoa, rinsed and cooked

1.5 cups low-sodium vegetable broth

1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped

Dressing:

1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
3 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
5 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 F.
  2. Place cubed and peeled sweet potato on a cookie sheet.  Drizzle with 1 tbsp. olive oil and season with salt and pepper.  Bake for 25 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Once cooked, remove from the oven, allow to cool and set aside.
  3. Using the same cookie sheet used to cook the sweet potato, place chopped walnuts into the oven for about 6 minutes until toasted.
  4. Cook quinoa according to package directions in vegetable broth.  Once cooked, cool and set aside.
  5. Mix all ingredients for the dressing and set aside.
  6. Combine sweet potato, toasted walnuts, golden raisins, fresh parsley, and quinoa in a medium sized bowl.  Coat with dressing and mix well.

Nutrition Facts (per side serving): 330 calories, 19g fat (2g saturated fat), 34g carbohydrate (5g fiber), 6g protein

English Muffin Tuna Burgers

These were quick and easy for a weeknight dinner.  I tend to shy away from any kind of “cake” or “patty” recipe because they never seem to form right, if at all.  This idea attracted me because I am a sucker for English muffins.  Just love them! I was happy to see that the tuna patty did in fact make a solid crispy burger, and it tasted good too.  Enjoy your omega 3’s! :)

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English Muffin Tuna Burgers

Serves: 4

2- 6 oz cans tuna fish in water, drained

1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs

1/4 cup finely chopped green onions

2 tbsp. fresh parsley, minced

1 tsp. Italian seasoning, dried

2 cloves garlic, finely minced

Pinch of salt & pepper

juice of 1/2 lemon

3 tbsp. + 4 tbsp. plain Greek yogurt, divided

1 egg

4 whole wheat English muffins, toasted

4 leaves romaine lettuce

8 tomato slices, 1/4″ thick

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 F
  2. Combine tuna, panko, green onion, garlic, salt, pepper, lemon, 3 tbsp. Greek yogurt, and egg.  Mix well with you hands.
  3. Form into 4 equal patties (they will be wet- it’s ok).  Place on greased baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile toast English muffins.  Once patties are done, place each on English muffin and top with 2 slices tomato, lettuce, and 1tbsp. Greek yogurt.  Serve with suggested side of homemade sweet potato fries and veggies of your choice.

Nutrition Facts (per serving): 276 calories, 3.7g fat (.9g saturated), 36g carbohydrate (5g fiber), 28g protein