All posts tagged chicken

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


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)


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


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


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!

Spicy Peanut Noodle Salad

Published April 14, 2013 by jenmatteson

I mentioned a few posts ago that I was really on an Asian kick, and I wasn’t kidding. I’ve got another one. Only because I had 8 oz of fresh rice stick noodles leftover, and I wanted to use them up. I have no idea how long they would be good for, and the packaging was absolutely no help.

Spicy Peanut Noodle Salad

It’s “spring” here in Minnesota, so we must start thinking about our summer figures. Oh, and I have a small event coming up at the end of August that I’d like to look my best for 😉 I love eating salads; they are so versatile, and definitely a meal for spring and summer. While the technical start of spring was March 20th, we’ve had nothing close to what we would call “spring weather”. In fact, we just had a snow storm this week, dumping up to 9″ of snow in some areas. More snow is in the forecast for this weekend. I’m really glad I put all my patio furniture together and out on my deck when it was nice two weeks ago.

Two weeks agoThis week








But let’s talk about the salad. I really loved this salad, and the noodles bring a lot of sustenance to it. As a carb lover, adding the carbs right into my salad is brilliant! The original recipe was for  a noodle salad, but I just added more lettuce and took out some noodles to make a more salad-salad :p  This still made a huge salad, enough for Nate and I to have dinner, and each take it for lunch for two days. We ran a little short on the dressing, but that’s no biggie, though in my opinion, it was the best part! I loved all the veggies in this salad, and I added in bean sprouts (as they were also leftover from the Pad Thai I made earlier in the week).  This was a great way to use up leftover veggies, noodles, and bean sprouts to create a new exciting entrée salad.  It came together super fast, too, which is always a huge plus!

Spicy Peanut Noodle Salad

Spicy Peanut Noodle Salad

Source: Adapted from Branny Boils Over
Servings: 6


For the dressing:
5 tbsp low sodium soy sauce
2 tbsp water
3 tbsp peanut butter
2 tbsp sesame oil
1 tbsp rice wine vinegar
1 tsp fresh ginger, minced
3 cloves garlic
1 tsp sugar
1 Serrano chile, seeded
1/3 cup peanuts

For the salad:
1/2 red bell pepper, julienne
1/2 yellow bell pepper, julienne
2 carrots, shredded
1 head romaine lettuce, sliced into ribbons
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and shredded
4 oz rice stick noodles, cooked and cooled
1 1/2 cup bean sprouts, thoroughly rinsed (I quickly sautéed mine)
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
crushed red pepper flakes


1. Combine all dressing ingredients in a food process, except for the peanuts.  Puree until smooth.  Add peanuts and pulse until coarsely chopped.

2. In a large bowl, combine all salad ingredients.  Pour dressing over the top and toss to combine.  Garnish with cilantro and red pepper flakes before serving.

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


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


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!

Thai it, you’ll like it! Thai Basil Chicken

Published April 3, 2013 by jenmatteson

When I lived in lowertown St. Paul, I had an abundance of options for food (if I wasn’t in the mood for cooking, of course).  Not only that, but most of them would deliver.  Score!  Now that I live out in the ‘burbs, our delivery is limited to Chinese or pizza 😦  One of my favorite places to get take out from was Sawatdee.  I fell in love with this Thai place after the first time a friend of mine brought me there.  I couldn’t believe what I’d been missing, and it was just up the block from me!  One of the best things about it is was you could order anything on the menu, with a pepper number (1-5, 1 being very little heat, 5 being insane hot).  So for example, I’d get the vegetable curry fried rice, with four peppers.  It always seemed to depend on who the chef was, as sometimes a 4 pepper was too hot for me, and sometimes it was perfect.  Since they had such huge portions, I ordered most stuff a 3 pepper so Nate and I could share whatever we got.

Thai Basil Chicken

One of my favorite dishes that Nate ordered was Thai basil chicken.  I love basil, but it didn’t really appeal to me on the menu.  I think of basil and I think of only one flavor.  I don’t at all think to pair it with spice.  Until I tried that dish.  It was out-of-this-world flavorful and amazing!  Which is exactly why I saved this recipe as soon as I saw it.

One ingredient I will never understand is fish sauce.  That stuff smells so disgusting, its terrifying putting in dishes because you are afraid to ruin it.  However, while it smells like nasty dead fish that have been sitting in the sun for the last week, it actually adds a delicious rich flavor to dishes.  It’s pretty much a staple for Thai cooking.  One thing I just learned is that the longer the fish sauce ferments, the less horrible smell it has.  This means it’s not a bad idea to invest in something a little more pricey – assuming it’s been fermented longer (which is usually the case).  Now I know for next time!

I had some leftover basil in my fridge that I wanted to use up (though it wasn’t Thai basil), and everything else is definitely a staple in my kitchen, so I didn’t even have to go out of my way to make this.  The result was just as good as the take out, with the benefit of knowing exactly what went in it.  I’d likely use Thai chilies instead of Serrano chilies, but I still had two left from making coconut lime chicken with chilies from a few nights ago.  I cannot wait to have this again very soon!

Thai Basil Chicken

Thai Basil Chicken

Source: Adapted from Cooking by Moonlight
Servings: 4


olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 shallot, chopped
1 Serrano chili, chopped finely (seeded for less heat)
1 red bell pepper, sliced thinly
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, thinly sliced (about 1″)
3 tbsp fish sauce
1 tbsp lime juice
1 1/2 tbsp brown sugar
1/2 cup chopped basil
1 cup basmati rice, cooked


1. In a large skillet or wok, heat olive oil over medium-high heat.  Add garlic, shallot, Serrano chili and red bell pepper.  Saute until they begin to soften, about 3-5 minutes.

2. Add chicken and saute until browned on both sides, about 5 minutes total.

3. Reduce heat to medium-low.  Add fish sauce, lime juice and brown sugar.  Stir and let simmer until sauce begins to thicken, 10-15 minutes.  The longer you simmer, the thicker the sauce.  Once the sauce reached desired consistency, remove from heat and stir in basil.  Serve over rice.

Recipe Swap: Coconut Lime Chicken with Chilies

Published March 29, 2013 by jenmatteson

I have been majorly lacking in participating in recipe swaps.  I couldn’t even tell you the last time I did one.  But, it’s finally time to get back in the game!  This month’s swap is once again, bloggers choice, hosted by Sarah at Taste of Home Cooking  I was assigned Kylee Cooks.  I was happy that she had a lot of chicken recipes as we eat a lot of that, although it seems like it’s been forever since I’ve blogged a chicken recipe, or even a dinner recipe for that matter.  I carefully sifted through each recipe that stood out to me including grilled chicken satay skewers with peanut dipping sauce, chicken diablo, beer and onion braised chicken, and what I thought I’d ultimately settle on, Thai chicken meatballs.  Unfortunately, she didn’t care for the sauce that the original recipe called for, therefore didn’t blog it.  The actual meatball recipe was a pretty basic meatball recipe, so without the sauce, I decided to pass.

Coconut Lime Chicken

I ended up settling on coconut lime chicken with chilies.  I liked everything about the recipe: chicken, coconut, lime, chilies.  The only substitution I made was using a fresh Serrano chili as opposed to canned.  I don’t care for canned chilies all that much because they lose a lot of their heat.  If you don’t like the heat, use canned, or even a fresh jalapeno would be less spicy than the Serrano chilies.

The pictures don’t do it much justice, as it just looks like chicken with cilantro served over rice, but let me tell you, it’s so much more than that.  The coconut is not too sweet, but just sweet enough to compliment the Serrano chili.  I was surprised that it wasn’t spicier, though it did have some nice underlying heat.  I’ve never used coconut milk before, but it sure packs a lot of flavor!  Nate and I both really enjoyed this simple and quick dinner!

Coconut Lime Chicken

Coconut Lime Chicken with Chilies

Source: Adapted from Kylee Cooks
Servings: 4


olive oil
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch cubes
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2-1 tsp curry powder
8 oz can light coconut milk
1 Serrano chili, seeded and diced (sub 4 oz can of chilies or 1 jalapeno, seeded and diced for less heat)
zest and juice of 1/2 lime
salt and pepper
2 tbsp green onions, chopped finely
1 tbsp fresh cilantro, chopped
1 cup basmati rice, cooked to package directions


1. Heat olive oil (one turn of the pan) in large skillet over medium heat.  Add chicken and garlic and cook until browned on all sides, about 5 minutes.

2. Add curry powder and cook, stirring for 1 minute.  Add coconut milk, chilies, lime juice and zest and reduce heat.  Simmer until chicken is just cooked through, about 5 minutes.  Salt and pepper to taste.

3. Remove from heat and stir in green onions.  Serve over rice and garnish with cilantro.

Take a look at the other participants in the bloggers choice swap:

Chicken Pot Pie

Published December 7, 2012 by jenmatteson

I was recently asked by my aunt to cater her annual cookie exchange for 10 ladies.  I was so excited – it was officially my first catering gig (though I did tell I’d do it for just the cost of groceries seeing as though it was the first time I was doing this for someone other than myself or my own friends).  She hosts this event every 10 years, as it changes from each person’s house every year.  The dinner is seated and fairly fancy.  We talked quite a bit about the menu and she had a fairly good idea of what she wanted, so that made things quite easy for me to work with.

Chicken Pot Pie

Chicken Pot Pie

She really wanted to do something that was served in individual dishes.  I came up with a list of ideas and she settled on pot pies.  She also gave me the idea to use almond milk, which I’ve never used before, for the sauce.  I believe it was the base to a sauce she had at another event.  So I went on a mission to start working on the filling.  Thankfully, it was just after Thanksgiving and I had a bunch of leftover turkey, so I used that (though the real thing would be made with chicken).  The sauce turned out wonderful, but now I had to perfect the crust.  I originally used a pastry recipe from Ina Garten, and it was pretty good.  My intent was to make that for the event.  However, I did have some leftover pie dough in my fridge from Thanksgiving (not really sure why I saved it, but glad that I did).  I tried using that crust over the pot pies and it was absolutely to-die-for perfect!

Chicken Pot Pie

The event turned out great!  I only had one minor set back, which was not accounting for extra baking time with so many things in the oven.  No biggie. It all turned out wonderfully for my first real event.  For the rest of the meal, I served mini twice baked potatoes as an appetizer, a roasted pear salad with champagne vinaigrette, toasted walnuts and gorgonzola, and for dessert, thick mint ice cream sandwiches.  She had a blue Christmas theme going on, and wanted to use her Christmas martini glasses for a blue non-alcoholic drink.  I concocted a yummy fruity blue Christmas drink (there is an adult version, too ;)).  Thank you to my Aunt Kay for believing in me, food untasted, to take on such an important event!

Chicken Pot Pie

Chicken Pot Pie

Source: Filling is Pigzilla Original, pastry from Food and Wine
Servings: 6


For the pastry:
Perfectly Flakey Pie Crust

For the filling:
4 tbsp butter
5 tbsp flour
2 cups almond milk, warmed
1 cup low sodium chicken broth, warmed
salt and pepper
1 tbsp rosemary
1/2 tbsp thyme
olive oil
1 onion, diced
4 small Yukon gold potatoes, par-boiled (about 8 minutes), peeled and diced
2 carrots, peeled, diced and blanched for 2 minutes
1/2 cup frozen peas
1/2 cup frozen corn
1 cup cooked chicken breast, I seasoned mine with turmeric


1. Prepare dough for pastry.  I highly recommend using this perfectly flakey pie crust recipe. This will make enough for 6 pot pies.

2. In a large, deep sauce pan, melt butter over low heat.  Sprinkle in flour and whisk until flour is dissolved.  Slowly add in almond milk and broth.  Increase heat to medium and bring to a boil, whisking frequently.  Allow sauce to thicken to desired consistency, then reduce heat to a simmer.

3. In a small skillet, heat olive oil over medium-low heat.  Add onions and saute until soft and translucent, about 10 minutes.  Add onions, potatoes, carrots, peas, corn, turkey, rosemary and thyme to sauce.  Simmer for 5 minutes more, then remove from heat.  Evenly divide the mixture into 6-1 cup ramekins, slightly mounding mixture over the top in the center.

4.  Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Remove dough from refrigerator and divide into 6 equal portions.  Roll each into a small ball, then roll out into 8-inch rounds.  Brush the outside rims of each ramekin with egg wash then place dough rounds on top, trimming dough to 1/2-inch larger than the ramekins.  Tightly press the dough to the sides to make it stick.  Make three slits in the top of each pie, brush with egg wash, and sprinkle with sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper.  Place on baking sheet and bake until tops are golden brown and filling is bubbling hot, about 50 minutes.  Remove from oven and let cool at least 15 minutes before serving.  They will be HOT!

Spicy Pineapple Chicken

Published October 27, 2012 by jenmatteson

Elly posted this recipe on Thursday morning, and I made it for dinner on Thursday night.  It’s not often that recipes make it to my dinner table same day, let alone same week.  But I just so happened to have all the ingredients, and I had purchased chicken breasts at the grocery store over the weekend (on sale, of course) that I had been meaning to freeze, but still hadn’t gotten around to.  I figured I should at least make two of them for dinner tonight, which will force me to freezer-zip-top-baggie the other two and store in the freezer.  However, I just couldn’t decide what to make.  I was thinking buffalo chicken wraps, then chicken tacos, then possibly a salad (I have a gala this weekend and must look good in my dress!), but nothing really seemed to excite me.  Thankfully, I was on my cooking board and Elly, from Elly says Opa!, posted this recipe (pictures didn’t hurt either!).

I had leftover pineapple from mango-habanero chicken sandwiches, and it’s not like I couldn’t just eat the pineapple alone, but it’s always more fun to make something from it.

I didn’t change much, but I only had a half can of pineapple w/juice left, so that left me with about 1/2 cup of pineapple juice.  I made it work, but I’d suggest the full cup if you have it.  Also, I added a little more chili sauce, as we like things with a little more kick.  I would have added sliced green onions to the finished product, but I didn’t have any, so I used some cilantro, just to add some color.  Everything else is pretty much as the recipe was written, and it was delicious.  Definitely better than take out and a good creation for my uninspiring chicken breasts!

Spicy Pineapple Chicken

Source: Elly Says Opa!
Servings: 4


For the sauce:
1 cup pineapple juice
1-2 tbsp chili sauce (depending on how spicy you like it)
1 tbsp white vinegar
2 tsp low sodium soy sauce
1/2 tbsp sugar
1 1/2 tbsp water
1 tsp cornstarch

For the chicken and vegetables:
1/3 cup cornstarch
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, sliced
salt and pepper
olive oil
1 medium onion, sliced thick
1 red bell pepper, sliced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup chopped pineapple


1. In a medium bowl, whisk together pineapple juice, chili sauce, vinegar, soy sauce, sugar, water and cornstarch.  Set aside.

2. Salt and pepper sliced chicken breasts, then toss with cornstarch.  Ensure all pieces are coated with the cornstarch.  Add enough oil to coat the bottom of a skillet, and heat over medium-high heat.  Once oil is hot, add chicken and cook on each side until cooked through, 3-5 minutes.  You may have to add the chicken in two batches so you don’t crowd the pan.  You want your chicken to get a nice crust.

3. If needed, add a small amount more oil to the pan and saute onions and peppers for about 3 minutes, until they start to  become soft.  Add garlic and cook for one minute more.   Stir in the sauce and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 3-5 more minutes, until sauce begins to thicken.  Add chopped pineapple and chicken.  Toss to coat chicken with sauce.  Serve over prepared whole grain rice.

Mango-Habanero Chicken Sandwiches

Published October 25, 2012 by jenmatteson

I wanted to make a chicken sandwich with my latest homemade hot sauce, mango-habanero.  I quickly Googled it as I knew I couldn’t be the first person to think of such a sandwich, and guess what?  I wasn’t.  Domino’s Pizza has a chicken habanero sandwich, so I used that as inspiration.  I added some additional ingredients, and omitted cheddar cheese and jalapenos.  Normally, I wouldn’t omit a pepper like jalapeno, but I thought the mango-habanero hot sauce was spicy enough, so they weren’t necessary.

We both thought the sandwiches were perfect.  Nate said it met his threshold of spicy, but really enjoyed it.    I’ll have to come up with more ways to use this homemade hot sauce, but for now, this was great!

Mango-Habanero Chicken Sandwiches

Source: Adapted from Domino’s Pizza
Servings: 2


2 hoagies
4 slices provolone
handful spinach leaves
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and shredded (I used taco seasoning on mine)
2 tbsp mango-habanero hot sauce
sliced onion
1/4 cup pineapple tidbits


1. Preheat broiler.  Slice the hoagies down the center on top.  Scoop out a little of the insides.  Spray with olive oil, and layer cheese on each hoagie.   Place under broiler until cheese is melted and hoagie is lightly browned, 2-3 minutes.

2. Remove from oven and add spinach leaves and shredded chicken.  Drizzle 1 tbsp of hot sauce over the chicken.  Add onion, pineapple bits and another layer of provolone cheese.  Place under broiler until cheese is melted.  Remove and let cool before serving.

Salsa Verde Chicken ‘n’ Dumplings

Published October 18, 2012 by jenmatteson

I saw this recipe on my cooking board a few weeks ago, posted by Jaida at Sweet Beginnings, and immediately ran out to get the ingredients.  I think the only things I didn’t already have was salsa verde (kind of important) and evaporated milk.  I planned to make it right away, but for some reason, something has continually come up, preventing me from making this seemingly delicious dinner.

Finally, I had the time to make it on Sunday, and it was so amazing!  Nate and I both loved it.  It’s got all the qualities of comfort food, but also incorporates Mexican flavors (which I absolutely love!).  I made some very minor changes and added some corn, bell pepper and black beans for a little more substance.  The only thing I would change in the future would be to add a touch more broth (of course this is probably because I added more ingredients, so it seemed a little dry).  The recipe calls for 14 oz of chicken broth, and I had a box of it in my fridge.  When measuring it out, I had exactly 14 oz left.  Weird!  So, I would have added more had I had more broth, but I didn’t.  We both still loved every last bite and are looking forward to leftovers tonight for dinner!  The pictures really don’t do it justice, but trust me.

Salsa Verde Chicken ‘n’ Dumplings

Source: Sweet Beginnings
Servings: 6


olive oil
1 large onion, diced
1 bell pepper, diced
3-4 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
20 oz low sodium chicken broth
2 cups (16 oz) salsa verde
1 can (5 oz) evaporated milk
1 can low sodium black beans
1 cup frozen corn
3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and shredded (mine were seasoned with taco seasoning)
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
2 scallions, minced
salt and pepper

For the dumplings:
1 cup skim milk
3 tbsp unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup cornmeal
1 tbsp baking powder
3/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
1/4 cup scallions, minced


1. In a large oven safe pot, heat olive oil over medium heat.  Add onions and peppers and cook until soft, about 5-7 minutes.  Add garlic and cook until it becomes fragrant, about 1 minute.

2. Whisk in flour to form a very dry paste.  Add broth, salsa verde and evaporated milk.  Bring to a boil and whisk continuously until the mixture forms a sauce.  Reduce heat to low and add black beans, corn, chicken, cilantro and scallions.  Salt and pepper to taste.  Remove from heat and cover to keep warm.

3. Heat oven to 400 degrees.  To make the dumplings, heat the milk and butter in a small sauce pan over low heat until steaming and butter is melted.  In a medium bowl, mix flour, cornmeal, baking powder, salt, cilantro and scallions with a fork.  Stir milk and butter into flour mixture to form a thick, firm dough.

4. Scoop uniform dough balls and drop into chicken mixture.  A cookie scoop will work well.  If you don’t have one like me, just use your hands to roll small balls with the dough.

5. Return pot to a simmer over medium-high heat for 2-3 minutes.  Cover and place in oven for 15-20 minutes (this will depend on how large you make your dumplings).  Remove from oven, scoop into shallow bowls and serve.

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