Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Crock Pot Spaghetti

Today is my husbands birthday and he requested Spaghetti for his Birthday dinner. I've always wanted to try and make spaghetti sauce in the crock pot without having to cook the ground beef first, but I've always been a little skeptical. Well, until today. I am so happy with the way this sauce turned out. It was incredible and what a time saver! I find that the key is to use very lean ground beef...I'm talking the 96/4 kind. Since there is virtually no grease you don't need to drain the beef. It was just as good if not better than a spaghetti sauce that simmered over the stove all day. A hit with the entire family!

Crock Pot Spaghetti
Serves 6

16 oz. spaghetti, cooked to al dente
1.5 lbs lean ground beef 96/4
2 tsp. garlic powder
2 tsp. oregano
1/4 tsp. dried basil
1 tsp. onion powder
1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes
28 oz. can crushed tomatoes
6 oz. can tomato paste
8 oz. can tomato sauce

Add ground beef to your crock pot. Break up into pieces and season with dried seasonings. Cover and cook on high for one hour. Turn heat to low and add remaining ingredients. Stir well and cover. Cook for 6 hours stirring occasionally. Serve over hot cooked pasta. Enjoy!

Monday, July 28, 2014

Crock Pot Pesto Mozzarella Chicken

If you are a fan of pesto then you are going to love this recipe! My whole family loves Pesto even my three year old (which I have always found to be surprising!) and when we combine it with chicken and cheese, well...it's an instant winner!

Crock Pot Pesto Mozzarella Chicken
Serves 4
Cal 229, Carbs 1.7, Fat 12.5, Protein 28.2

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 cup pesto sauce
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
Chopped tomato (Optional for garnish)

Arrange chicken in bottom of crock pot. Sprinkle with garlic powder and top with pesto. Cover and cook on low for 3-4 hours. About 15 minutes before removing from crock pot sprinkle cheese on top. Serve over noodles or rice. Enjoy!

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Crunchy White Cheddar Chicken

Happy Sunday! We've had another busy weekend so I was looking for something quick and easy for dinner. I don't think it gets much easier than this Crunchy White Cheddar Chicken. Such a great flavor combination and a hit with the family!

Crunchy White Cheddar Chicken
Serves 4
Cal 262, Carbs 10, Fat 8.7, Protein 40

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 cup panko breadcrumbs (I used garlic and herb)
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp pepper
1 cup reduced fat shredded white cheddar cheese (I used Cabot)

Pre-Heat Oven to 375.

Line a baking sheet with foil and set aside.

Mix all ingredients together.

Dip chicken breasts in cheese/breadcrumb mixture.

Lay chicken on baking sheet and cook for 30 minutes or until juices run clear. Enjoy!

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Smothered Italian Chicken

This is another dish that I used to make a lot back when I was single. Another quick and easy weeknight meal but you'd never know it only took 20 minutes to make. Serve it alongside a tossed salad and you've got a delicious and filling meal!

Smothered Italian Chicken
Serves 4

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
2 tsp. garlic
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
2 cups pasta sauce of your choice
4 slices texas toast

Spray a large pan with non stick cooking spray. Season chicken with garlic powder and saute chicken 6-7 minutes per side or until fully cooked. Place each chicken breast on top of one slice texas toast and add 1/2 cup sauce and 1/2 cup shredded cheese to each. Place under broiler for 1-2 minutes or until cheese is melted. Enjoy!

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Loaded BBQ Chicken Panini Sandwiches

I'm loving my Panini maker lately. It makes for fast and easy dinners and I'm enjoying creating new sandwiches like this Loaded BBQ Chicken Panini. It combines all my favorites. BBQ Chicken, Cheddar Cheese, Bacon, and Tomatoes and crusty Sour Dough bread. Yum!

Loaded BBQ Chicken Panini Sandwiches
Makes 4 Sandwiches
WW PP=11
Cal 428, Carbs 40, Fat 13, Fiber 2, Protein 37

4 cooked boneless skinless chicken breasts (I grilled mine-they are good in the crock pot too)
1 cup BBQ Sauce (I like Stubs)
8 slices cooked bacon
4 slices reduced fat cheddar cheese
1 large tomato, sliced
8 slices bread of your choice (I used sourdough)

To assemble sandwiches add 1/4 cup bbq sauce to each chicken breast. Top with one slice cheese, two slices bacon, and two slices tomato. Place between two slices of bread and grill on panini press or griddle until bread is toasted and cheese is melted. Enjoy!

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Creamy Buffalo Chicken Pasta Salad

When it's hot outside one of my favorite meals to prepare are pasta salads. The are light, cool, and refreshing. Instead of the traditional pasta salad I decided to make a Buffalo Chicken one. Yes, another Buffalo Chicken dish! It was a bowl full of yummy spicy goodness!

Creamy Buffalo Chicken Pasta Salad
Makes 10 Servings
Cal 212, Carbs 34.4, Fat 3.9, Fiber 2, Protein 11

1 16 oz. Box Mini Bowtie Pasta
2 chicken breasts cooked and chopped
1/2 cup Buffalo Wing Sauce (you can adjust this to suit your taste)
1/8 cup light ranch dressing
1/3 cup light sour cream
1/4 cup reduced fat blue cheese crumbles
1/4 cup reduced fat shredded cheddar cheese
1/4 cup shredded carrots
1/4 cup diced green onions

Prepare the pasta according to package directions. Drain and run cold water over pasta to cool.

Add the remaining ingredients to a large bowl. Stir to combine. Add cold pasta and toss. Serve immediately. Enjoy!

Monday, July 21, 2014

Crock Pot Chicken Enchilada Tacos

It's going to be a hot one today here in Chicagoland and I've been wanting to make enchiladas for a while but I certainly don't want to use the oven. So, instead of traditional enchiladas I decided on enchilada tacos. Super easy to prepare and best of all...the crock pot does all the cooking! You get all the flavors of a chicken enchilada in taco form. They were a hit!

Crock Pot Chicken Enchilada Tacos
Makes 10 Tacos
Cal 102, Carbs 13.3, Fat 2, Fiber 1, Protein 9.6

16 oz. boneless skinless chicken
1 tbsp. chili powder
1 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 can enchilada sauce
1 can rotel, drained
10 white corn tortillas (I used mission brand)
shredded lettuce, cheese, sour cream etc for toppings

Arrange chicken in bottom of crock pot. Season with chili powder, cumin, and garlic powder. Add in the enchilada sauce and rotel. Cover and cook on low for 4 hours. Shred chicken and spoon into tortillas. Add any additional toppings of your choice. Enjoy!
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