Chicken Fiesta Soup

Chicken Fiesta Soup

I try not to play favorites.  I really do.  BUT it’s hard not to favor the spicy tender chicken with zucchini, summer squash, and sweet corn.  No matter if I crank up the heat by adding 2 jalapenos or tone it down by omitting that awesome little green pepper, it’s a fav! When I think of slow cooker, I usually think ‘I need to get that baby prepared and cookin’ first thing in the morning or it won’t be done by dinnertime.’  Right?  That’s the benefit and disadvantage of slow cookers. Well, good news to my fellow dinner-making procrastinators!  You only need this to cook 2 to 3 hours on HIGH or 3 to 4 hours on LOW.  Any longer and your zucchini will go from crispy-tender to yucky-mush. Remember how we said au revoir to miserable, overcooked asparagus?  Let’s give our zucchini the same fighting chance!  Yes… I know how ridiculous I am. Whenever my large family (I’m the youngest of 7) gets together, they can’t resist teasing me.  Usually it has to do with healthy eating.  My brother will sympathetically put a hand on my husband’s shoulder and ask if he needs a pizza.  They chuckle as my ‘deprived’ 3 year old daughter spits out Root Beer because she doesn’t like the ‘sparkley’ drink.  Oh, they like to mock.  BUT guess who they want bringing the main dish when it’s potluck time?  This girl! This Chicken Fiesta Soup or my Classic Spaghetti or my Baked Burritos are among the most requested.  AND they’re health punked each and every time. To be fair, my sisters and sister-in-laws are pretty healthy eaters and big fans of my recipes.  And when I say big...
Baked Stuffed Zucchini

Baked Stuffed Zucchini

This is one of my all time favorite quick dinners.  It takes 30 minutes to prepare and these stuffed zucchini boats are juicy and packed with the perfect savory combination of flavors. Like I said, I’ve thrown this dinner together too many times to count.  Here’s a couple quick tips.  At this point, it’s become second nature to wash my vegetables prior to cooking or eating.  It sounds pretty strenuous and annoying to take time to wash every single fresh vegetable, right?  Nope.  It only takes 20 seconds and absolutely worth it to get the grime, dirt, wax, and who know what else off. Check out this post where you can visible see the difference between rinsing and washing your vegetables.  I love my Fit Vegetable Wash! So… scrub those zucchinis prior to preparing.     Once you’ve scooped out the insides, you can either discard them or throw them in a smoothie for dessert!   Sometimes I keep some leftovers of the meat mixture on purpose.  I love using it for quick burritos or scoop it on top FSTG tortilla chips.  Nom nom.  It’s super tasty.   Your family will love this one.  It passed my husband and 3 year old daughter taste test.  You’ll understand why we make this frequently on those busy days. PrintStuffed Zucchini Ingredients1 lb ground turkey/lean ground beef, browned 1 (15 oz) can organic diced tomatoes, drained 1 (15 oz) can black beans, drained and rinsed 1 and 1/2 cup frozen sweet corn 1 Tbs parsley 1 Tbs basil 1 tsp salt 1 tsp black pepper 3 organic zucchini, washed and cut lengthwise and insides...
Chicken Teriyaki Stir Fry

Chicken Teriyaki Stir Fry

Look.  There are several nights I’m scrambling to figure out what I’m going to make for dinner.  The day got busy, dinner time comes speeding up, and need something quick because people are starting to salivate (hungry tummies bring lots of grumpiness in my house).  Am I alone?  I’ll give you a couple tips so you can have all the ingredients to throw something together like this juicy and savory Chicken Teriyaki Stir Fry.         There are some constants when you look in my freezer and refrigerator… a large bag of organic carrots, sweet onions (refrigerate to last longer), frozen organic sweet corn, frozen organic sweet baby peas, and frozen organic broccoli florets.   HIGHLY  recommend you adding them on your shopping list (I purchase mine from Costco).  When you’re in a rush, I have several quick and healthy recipes that will use at least one like my Chicken and Broccoli Pasta, Classic Spaghetti, or my Not-Yo-Mama’s Shepard’s Pie.     I got spoiled when living in Hong Kong and Taiwan.  The food is incredible… especially the rice, fresh fruits and vegetables.  Oh, how I miss it!  You wouldn’t think the rice would be so much different in the States, but rice is definitely not created equal.  I’ve tried lots of brands but love love Lundberg Farms Brown Rice.  It reminds me of rice from Taiwan.  Keep rice in a large airtight container which makes it handy to make recipes like this rice stir fry and my Yellow Chicken Coconut Curry.     Teriyaki sauce is also something not created equal.  Read the ingredients!  Whenever purchasing something prepackaged, read the...
Sweet Potato Shepard’s Pie

Sweet Potato Shepard’s Pie

“Mom, what’s for dinner?  Honey, what’s for dinner?  Self, what are we going to have for dinner?!?!”  On some days, this question can feel like a 50 lbs bag of stress.  Hopefully by now, you know I get you.  Although I love cooking (mostly eating), somedays I’m too tired and just don’t want to cook.  Take a deep breath with me and get ready for this ridiculously gorgeous, this-is-2015 healthy Shepard’s Pie casserole.  Pst… you can even double the batch and freeze one to eat on another crazy, busy, hectic day.     I have a problem.  I’m seriously addicted.  I love LOVE the bright, beautiful colors and flavors of vegetables.   Especially organic vegetables.  I know, I know, I’ve mentioned it before but I can totally taste the difference.  I was instantly converted when I had a horrible, chemical aftertaste when eating a carrot one day.  I only buy organic carrots from now on.   Costco makes it pretty easy to have large bags of frozen organic vegetables on hand.  Next trip, just stock up on organic frozen peas, frozen sweet corn, and a large bag of organic carrots.  I have plenty of go-to recipes that call for these tasty veggies.  Stick with me and I promise they won’t go to waste.       Just to make it even easier for you, here are ingredients I use.  My kitchen would feel naked without my large container of spices.  They last a long time (and store great) even though I’m using them constantly.  Spices punch out the natural flavors of the vegetables.  And it’s a much healthier option than to throw...
Grilled Corn-on-the-Cob

Grilled Corn-on-the-Cob

You know those grilled corn-on-the-cob recipes that require you to soak for 20 minutes, pull down the outer husks, strip away the silk by hand, fold them back up in place, and then tie the ends?  Yeah… after doing that a couple times, I decided I’m too impatient for that time consuming ritual.  Side dishes should not require extensive labor. One night, I skipped all those steps and just husked and grilled!  The corn-on-the-cob turned out just as juicy, flavorful, and so much quicker and easier!            How many of you are coconut oil fans?  If you’re new to coconut oil, let me quickly share why I know you’ll fall head-over-heels for it.  First, fabulous slightly sweet taste similar to sweet butter.  For those who hate anything coconut flavor, don’t you worry… it doesn’t actually taste ‘coconuty’.  Coconut oil is a very healthy fat with health benefits ranging from weight loss, decreases risk of heart disease, curbs hunger, improves hair and skin, kills off bacteria and fungus, boost brain function, and so much more.     I bought a large container of Nutiva Organic Virgin Coconut Oil on Amazon about 6 months ago.  I use it frequently and have only used about 1/4.  I’m not worried about it going bad since it has a shelf life of over 2 years.  It’s time to purchase some coconut oil, friends.  Try it out on this easy grilled corn-on-the-cob first and let me know what you think!  Once you’re truly addicted to coconut oil, then head over to try it on my Grilled Tuna Cheese Sandwich.         ...

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