Chicken

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Asian Sloppy Joe Sliders

Published August 14, 2013 by jenmatteson

Who doesn’t love  a sloppy joe?  Certainly no one in this house. Unless it’s that gunk out of a can that rhymes with sanwhich.  I’ve always used the same sloppy joe recipe since I was a kid, the one my mom would make, and it’s delicious.  I had to get out of my sloppy joe comfort zone for one of my first recipe swaps, as I was given slow cooker sloppy joes.  While those were good, we didn’t love them, and I really don’t understand the point of using a slow cooker when you basically have to precook everything anyway.

Asian Sloppy Joe Sliders

I came across this recipe in Food and Wine a few months ago and have been wanting to try it.  I actually had it planned for dinner a few nights, but you know how sometimes plans just don’t work out?  Well, they didn’t.  But, I finally got the chance to make a batch of these for a camping trip with my bestie, her husby, Nate and myself.  We were in charge of one dinner and one lunch, so I thought this would be something easy, but different from the normal burger or brat that is a common meal while camping.

Sloppy Joe Sliders

I thought these turned out fantastic.  At first, I thought I would need more hoisin, but after letting it simmer and taste testing it, I thought they were perfectly Asian.  For serving, I wouldn’t mind a little extra Sriracha, but obviously it’s not for everyone.  They went over really well while camping, and even the Asian approved!  I love my mom’s sloppy joe recipe, but I have to say, this really takes the cake.  The spicy pickles really kick it up a notch, adding a crunch, while the lettuce adds some extra freshness.  Try these out for your next pot luck.  You can come back and thank me later!

Asian Sloppy Joe Sliders

Asian Sloppy Joe Sliders

Source: Adapted from Food and Wine
Servings: 8-10 (Makes 20 sliders)

Ingredients:

olive oil
1 red onion, finely chopped
1 cup celery, finely chopped
3 tbsp sambal oelek or other Asian chile sauce (I used a combo of sweet asian chili sauce and Sriracha)
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tbsp fresh ginger, minced
Kosher salt
fresh ground black pepper
1 lb lean ground chicken
1 lb lean ground pork
1 cup hoisin sauce
1-15 oz can diced tomatoes, drained
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
20 dinner rolls, split and toasted
shredded iceberg lettuce and spicy pickles (optional)

Directions:

1. Heat olive oil in a large deep skillet over medium high heat.  Add onions, celery, chile sauce, garlic, ginger and a generous pinch of salt and pepper.  Cook over medium high heat, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are softened, about 8 minutes.  Add ground chicken and pork and cook, stirring occasionally to break up the meat, until no pink remains, about 5 minutes.  Stir in hoisin, tomatoes and lime juice and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat to low and simmer until thickened, about 20 minutes.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.

2. Spoon about 1/4 cup of the mixture on the bottom half of each roll.  Top with shredded lettuce, spicy pickles and top of bun and serve.

Recipe Swap: Jerk Mango Chicken Kebabs

Published July 26, 2013 by jenmatteson

The latest edition of recipe swap was a grilling/cookout theme, hosted by Sarah at A Taste of Home Cooking.  I was excited to be WC-Recipe-Swap-badge-1assigned a recipe from Kate’s Recipe Box for two reasons.  First, I hadn’t visited her site before, so it’s always exciting to explore new blogs and new blog friends!  The second reason I was excited is that it was chicken kebabs, something that I was positive Nate and I would love.

Jerk Mango Chicken Kebabs

The recipe was for jerk mango chicken kebabs, and it really couldn’t have been simpler.  Well, except for the mango part.  I’ve only worked with mango a handful of times, and I always have a hard time cutting it up without completely butchering it.  Mangos have these weird shaped pits that make cutting it into uniform shapes not so easy.  There are several sites with step by step tutorials and videos that will help walk you through it, but I’m still somewhat mango disabled.

Jerk Mango Chicken Kebabs

Although the mango wasn’t so beautiful, the kebabs were amazing.  I used green peppers and added onions just to have some extra veggies.  Usually, I like to keep veggies/fruit and meat on separate skewers due to their cooking times, but I did like the flavor that the mango added to the chicken.  For some reason, I always forget to spray the vegetables with some olive oil, so they did turn out a bit dry, but still delicious.  This is a great, quick recipe and would be perfect for entertaining this summer!

Jerk Mango Chicken Kebabs

Jerk Mango Chicken Kebabs

Source: Adapted from Kate’s Recipe Box
Servings: 4

Ingredients:

juice of 1 lime
1 1/2 tsp chili powder
3/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1/4 tsp ground allspice
1/4 tsp salt
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 tsp brown sugar
pinch of cinnamon
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1″ cubes
1 mango, cubed into 1″ pieces
1 bell pepper, cut into 1″ pieces
1/2 onion, cut into large wedges

Directions:

1. In a large zip top bag, combine lime juice, chili powder, cayenne pepper, thyme, allspice, salt, garlic, brown sugar, cinnamon and chicken breast. Seal and toss ingredients to combine and coat chicken.  Refrigerate chicken in marinade for at least one hour.

2. If using wooden skewers, soak for at least 15 minutes before threading.

3. Preheat grill to medium high heat.  Thread skewers with chicken, mango, peppers and onions.  Grill for 10-12 minutes until chicken is cooked through, turning frequently to ensure even cooking.  Remove from heat and serve.

Checkout what the other ladies are grilling up for the cookout!

Recipe Swap: Slow Cooker Beergarita Chicken Tacos

Published May 24, 2013 by jenmatteson

I got pretty busy over the weekend and didn’t get around to Meatless Monday, but hopefully next week I’ll get there!  We had a lovely weekend of family, friends, and even a little gardening.  Last summer, we put a vegetable garden in the back, which I absolutely love!  We also put in the foundation for a front garden, but didn’t actually get to putting plants in it.  My parents have a gorgeous garden, several actually in their gigantic yard, and were kind enough to split almost anything they could and send it home with Nate and me.  We ended up staying all night, sitting by the fire, playing some cards when it decided to downpour for a short time and enjoying some cocktails, so we didn’t get to planting them that day, but we got everything in the next.  We are both so excited!

Slow Cooker Beergarita Chicken Tacos

We’ve just been so busy with work, softball, gardening/yard work and other activities, that I had really let this recipe swap slip away from me.  This week’s swap is Blogger Choice, hosted by Sarah at Taste of Home Cooking.  I got another blog that I hadn’t WC-Recipe-Swap-badge-1visited in the past.  I love when that happens!  I was assigned Ashley’s blog, Cheese Curd in Paradise.  Thankfully, it’s not a blog all about cheese curds or I would have been in trouble ;P  When we do bloggers choice, I try not to go directly to the chicken category and sift through the other categories that interest me, but nothing really grabbed me, so I visited my old standby, chicken.  As soon as I saw the beergarita tacos, I thought it’d be a perfect fit.  It’s made in the slow cooker, perfect for our suddenly overwhelmingly busy schedules, we love chicken tacos, beer, and margaritas.  I make a margarita chicken (have yet to blog it) on the grill that is so flavorful and juicy, I figured this would be somewhat similar, and probably just as delicious.  Even better, there is basically two steps.  Dump ingredients in the slow cooker.  Shred.  Done and done.

Slow Cooker Beergarita Chicken Tacos

The chicken turned out really flavorful.  I combined the ingredients, minus the chicken the night previous, so all I had to do was put the chicken in the slow cooker, pour the mixture over it in the morning and turn it on.  Bam!  But, the mixture didn’t smell so good in the morning, so I was slightly concerned.  However, they did turn out really juicy and lovely.  Nate and I both had two, and we made a salad from the leftovers for lunch today.

Slow Cooker Beergarita Chicken Tacos

Slow Cooker Beergarita Chicken Tacos

Source: Cheese Curd in Paradise
Servings: 8

Ingredients:

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1/2 cup margarita mix
6 oz lager beer
1/2 tsp lime zest
3 jalapeno peppers, diced (seeded for less heat)
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 /2 tsp cumin
1 tsp chili powder
tortillas
cilantro, shredded cheese, non-fat plain Greek yogurt (all optional for garnish)

Directions:

1. Place chicken into slow cooker (using frozen breasts is fine, and actually recommended for long cooking times).  Mix all remaining ingredients together in a medium bowl and pour over chicken.  Cook on low for approximately 8 hours, or until chicken is easily shredded with a fork.  Shred chicken breasts between two forks (I just leave it in the slow cooker and do this, but if it’s easier or you’d rather, go ahead and remove the chicken, shred it, and return to slow cooker).  Continue to cook until heated through.  Serve on tortillas and garnish as desired.

See what the others ladies cooked up for the Bloggers Choice Swap!

Herb Chicken Mediterranean Pizza – Papa Murphy’s Copycat

Published May 16, 2013 by jenmatteson

Have you ever been so exhausted and in no mood to make dinner?  If not, I want your life!  

Herb Chicken Mediterranean Pizza

A little over a month ago, I didn’t make it to the gym in the morning, so I had gone after work.  This means I usually don’t get home until close to 7:30, and that’s leaving work early.  Not that 7:30 is late, but for us oldies, we are usually in bed by about 9:00 on weeknights, so dinner is usually on the table by about 6:30.  Lame, I know.  So on that particular evening, I stopped by Papa Murphy’s to get us a take and bake pizza.  The deLITE herb chicken mediterranean pizza sounded interesting, so I went with that.  We both really liked it.  So much so, that not only did we devour the entire thing, but it made its way to our kitchen two more times in the next two weeks.

Herb Chicken Mediterranean Pizza

I figured before we spend all of our wedding savings at Papa Murphy’s, I better try to make this at home.  This is also why I pre-made two batches of pizza dough, separated it, and froze it.  This way I could make pizza at the drop of a hat, instead of waiting a few hours for the dough to rise.  I’m pretty sure this was just as good as the take and bake from Papa Murphy’s!  I rolled the dough out really thin so it was similar to their deLITE crust, and it came out perfectly cracker thin and crispy.  The toppings make this pizza ultra light and doesn’t make you feel bad when you grab yourself a second slice…or forth 😉  Because who wants to deal with that guilt, especially when swimsuit season is just around the corner!  Do yourself (and your body) a favor, skip delivery and make this at home.  You can thank me later!

Herb Chicken Mediterranean PIzza

Herb Chicken Mediterranean Pizza

Source: Adapted from Papa Murphy’s
Servings: 1 small pizza, 2 servings

Ingredients:

thin crust pizza dough (use your favorite, I used 1/4 of my whole wheat pizza dough)
1/4 cup olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/8 tsp dried basil
1/8 tsp dried Mediterranean oregano
1/8 tsp marjoram
1 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
handful of spinach leaves (10-12), washed and dry
1/3 cup sun-dried tomatoes
1/2 cup cooked chicken breast, diced
1/4 cup feta

Directions:

1. Prepare pizza dough to specifications.

2. In a small bowl, combine olive oil, garlic, basil, oregano, marjoram, salt and pepper.  Brush evenly over pizza crust.  Cover oiled crust with mozzarella.  Evenly distribute spinach, tomatoes, chicken and feta over pizza.  Return to oven and cook until mozzarella has melted and crust is desired crispness.

Jalapeno Popper Chicken

Published May 2, 2013 by jenmatteson

I mentioned that earlier this week that we finally got to enjoy our deck over the weekend.  On Monday, we actually got to eat dinner on our deck.  It really couldn’t have been more beautiful outside.  I made dinner while Nate did some homework, and then we enjoyed the rest of the sunlight outside with a bottle of wine.  Now, if the weather would just stay warm…all would be happy!

Jalsapeno Popper Chicken

We had our neighbors over for dinner last Friday and I made cream cheese and jalapeno stuffed burgers.  I had leftover jalapeno cream cheese mixture, so it was the perfect opportunity for me to make this stuffed chicken recipe I’d saved for some time.  Nicole’s recipe calls for panko, and it’s usually a staple in my pantry, but I was out.  I wasn’t up for making an additional stop on my way home from work – I was excited to get home and run outside in this gorgeous weather!  So instead of panko, I just used regular bread crumbs I had in my cupboard.  Also, I only used cheddar in Nate’s chicken, of course.  I liked mine just fine with just the cream cheese and jalapeno mixture.

Jalapeno Popper Chicken

I was sort of expecting the filling to ooze out while the chicken was cooking, but it didn’t at all.  I used four toothpicks in each piece of chicken, so once I took them out, the inside did start to dribble out, but it only made the meal look that much more delicious!  The taco seasoning in the bread crumbs was genius, as was toasting the bread crumbs before breading and baking the chicken.  I think that’s what gave it the extra crisp!  I loved the combination of the cream cheese and jalapenos!

Jalapeno Popper Chicken

Jalapeno Popper Chicken

Source: Adapted from Prevention RD
Servings: 2

Ingredients:

1/2 cup breadcrumbs (panko preferred, but I used regular)
2 tsp olive oil
2 tsp taco seasoning
1 egg
2 oz reduced fat cream cheese
1/4 cheddar cheese, shredded
2 jalapenos, minced (seeded if you want to reduce the heat)
2 chicken breasts (I used only one because it was giant)

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Line a baking sheet with foil and place a wire rack on top.  Spray with cooking oil.

2. In a small skillet, combine breadcrumbs and oil over medium heat.  Cook until breadcrumbs are golden and crispy, stirring frequently, about 3 minutes.  Remove from heat and transfer to a shallow dish.  Add the taco seasoning to breadcrumbs and stir to combine.

3. In another shallow dish, lightly beat an egg.  In a small bowl, combine cream cheese, cheddar cheese and jalapenos.

4. Using a small knife, cut a pocket into the side of each chicken breast.  Try to get as deep as possible without puncturing the opposite side.  Divide the cream cheese mixture evenly and spoon into each chicken breast pocket.  Use toothpicks to secure.

5. Dip chicken in egg mixture and then into breadcrumbs, making sure to evenly and completely coat the chicken.  Place chicken on prepared wire rack on baking sheet and cook for 25-30 minutes, until chicken is completely cooked through.

Recipe Swap: Rosemary Chicken Burgers with Garlic Rosemary Mayonnaise

Published April 26, 2013 by jenmatteson

Another round of Blogger’s Choice Recipe Swap, hosted by Sarah at a Taste of Home Cooking.  I was excited to be assigned a blog I have not yet visited, Jenna’s Cooking Journey, so I had a good timeWC-Recipe-Swap-badge-1 sifting through all of her recipes to find something tasty!  Of course, most dishes fit that parameter, but I wanted to find something that would be good to grill.  We had another snow storm over the past weekend, some areas getting up to 8″, and another one earlier this week, with an estimated 6-10″ of snow…in April.  The end of April.

Rosemary Chicken Burgers with Garlic Rosemary Mayonnaise

Seeing as though it’s not yet spring outside, I thought making something on the grill might make us feel like it’s spring inside.  I make a lot of turkey burgers at home, but I had yet to make a chicken burger  No real reason why, just hadn’t tried them, which is why Jenna’s chicken burgers with garlic rosemary mayonnaise was the perfect match!  I’ve never heard of putting mayonnaise in the burgers, but it really does make sense to add a little moisture and fat to the very lean chicken burger so you don’t end up with a hockey puck.  Sort of defeats the purpose, though, right?  I suppose I would say this is still on the healthy side though.

Rosemary Chicken Burgers with Garlic Rosemary Mayonnaise

Nate and I had a busy and active Sunday morning.  We headed to the gym for an hour and a half, then we had some errands to run.  By the time we got home, I was famished, so I started in on these burgers right away.  Like I said previously, I was a bit skeptical of adding mayonnaise directly to the burgers, but thought it couldn’t hurt to try it.  The original recipe called for 1/2 cup of the mayonnaise in the burgers, but after adding only about 1/4 cup of the mayonnaise, I thought that was plenty.  The burgers actually were quite difficult to handle because they were so moist.  I decided grilling them probably wouldn’t work well, so I ended up using a skillet instead.

Rosemary Chicken Burgers with Garlic Rosemary Mayonnaise

The result was absolutely amazing!  The mayonnaise added a lot of moisture and the rosemary added so much flavor that I almost forgot I was eating a chicken burger.  Although it’s a burger and my initial thought was that it might make us feel more spring-y, the rosemary actually made it more hearty and would be a really great burger for the wintertime.  So I guess, technically, with all the snow we are still getting, it really was the perfect match!  The arugula added just a hint of spice and freshness.  I don’t usually buy arugula and would have used spinach instead, but I’m glad I sprung for the spicier green option.  The only thing I would change for next time is a tomato slice to bring more freshness and color to the plate.  Nate and I both loved them; he ate two in one sitting, and called the third one for his lunch on Monday.  It’s definitely a keeper!

Rosemary Chicken Burgers with Garlic Rosemary Mayonnaise

Rosemary Chicken Burgers with Garlic Rosemary Mayonnaise

Source: Adapted from Jenna’s Cooking Journey
Servings: 4

Ingredients:

For the mayonnaise:
1/2 cup light mayonnaise
2 tbsp fresh rosemary, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp lemon juice

For the burgers:
1 lb lean ground chicken
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 tsp fresh rosemary, finely chopped
4 hamburger buns (I used sandwich thins)
1 cup arugula

Directions:

1. In a small bowl, combine ingredients for mayonnaise.  Add half the mayonnaise to a larger bowl, and refrigerate remaining mayonnaise.

2. To the larger bowl with 1/2 the mayonnaise, add ground chicken, salt, pepper and rosemary.  Gently combine with fingers, being careful to not over work the meat.  The mixture should be quite moist.  Divide into four equal parts and shape into patties.

3. Preheat a large skillet over medium heat.  Spray with olive oil.  Gently place patties (I had to do them two at a time) in the skillet and cook over medium low heat for 8-10 minute.  Flip and continue cooking until chicken is cooked through, about 8-10 more minutes.  Remove from pan and let rest.  Repeat with remaining patties.

4. Prepare buns with reserved garlic rosemary mayonnaise on tops and bottoms.  Divide arugula among the bottoms of the buns, place burger on top of the greens, add the top of the bun.  Enjoy!

Check out what everyone else made for the Blogger’s Choice Swap!

Recipe Swap: Honey Garlic Chicken Drumsticks

Published April 12, 2013 by jenmatteson

Two recipe swaps in a row, and I’m almost on fire!  As always, the swap was hosted by Sara at A Taste of Home Cooking.  This week’s theme was chicken, so there was absolutely no way IWC-Recipe-Swap-badge-1 wasn’t going to participate.  I submitted my honey mustard chicken skewers with a kick, one of my favorite chicken dinners!  As for me, I was assigned honey garlic chicken drumsticks from Sweet Beginnings, which just so happens to be one of the blogs I frequent.  Jaida has mad love for food, and her recipes have never disappointed.  In fact, I had her blog for a bloggers choice swap not too long ago, in which I made her avocado and lime black bean tacos.  YUM!  Based on previous results, I was really looking forward to making her chicken drumsticks.

Honey Garlic Chicken Drumsticks

I don’t really care for chicken drumsticks.  I don’t even like wings all that much.  But I still eat them.  And I still buy them when they are on sale.  That’s how thrifty I am.  Some like to call it cheap 😉  I had these drumsticks in the freezer for a few months, so it was actually time to use them (and I’m certainly not pretending that I wouldn’t have used them if they’d been in the freezer longer than that).  The recipe was pretty simple, including all ingredients I had in my kitchen already (one of my favorite things!).

Honey Garlic Chicken Drumsticks

These came together rather quickly – a little too quick, so I used the sauce as a marinade and put the drumsticks back in the fridge until it was closer to the time Nate would be home.  I was a little concerned about the amount of butter used in comparison to the rest of the ingredients, but hey, it’s a swap and I played by the rules 🙂  The result was good.  The sauce got nice and sticky in the oven and the skin browned nicely with a slight crisp.  While the sauce smelled really sweet (Nate actually commented on that when he walked in the house), the butter flavor was a bit overwhelming.  Personally, I would omit this altogether the next time.  I know when Nate really likes something as he usually says so, and he also would eat the leftovers.  We had one drumstick left, and he wasn’t calling it for his lunch, so I knew it wasn’t his favorite, and he told me so.  But that’s okay.  Logic tells me that if he’s honest about not liking one thing, that means he’s likely always honest about liking everything else 😉  This would be a great go-to meal for a weeknight when I haven’t planned dinner!  Thanks, Jaida!

Honey Garlic Chicken Drumsticks

Baked Honey Garlic Chicken Drumsticks

Source: Adapted from Sweet Beginnings
Servings: 2

Ingredients:

3 tbsp butter
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp low sodium soy sauce
2 tbsp honey
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
1 tbsp cilantro, chopped
4-6 chicken drumsticks
salt and pepper

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  In a small saucepan, melt butter over medium-low heat.  Add garlic and cook until fragrant, about 3 minutes.

2. Turn off heat.  Add soy sauce, honey, crushed red pepper and cilantro.  Stir to combine.

3. Arrange drumsticks in a single layer in a baking dish.  Sprinkle generously with black pepper, salt if desired (remember the soy sauce will naturally add salt).  Pour the sauce over the drumsticks and roll to coat evenly.

4. Bake for 40-45 minutes, until chicken is cooked through.  I turned the broiler on for the last 5 minutes to crisp up the skin a bit.  Garnish with cilantro and serve.

Click here to see what the other recipe swappers cooked up!

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