Walnut-Chicken Salad from Southern Living

I love to make salads for dinner, and this southern-style salad makes a great main-dish dinner or weekend lunch. The walnut coating on the chicken cutlets is delicious paired with buttermilk, honey and basil. Feel free to use almonds or pecans instead of the walnuts, and if you’re short on time, use your favorite jarred salad dressing.

 

Walnut Chicken Salad

Prep: 15 minutes

Cook: 6 minutes

Yield: 4 servings

Ingredients

4  chicken cutlets

3  tablespoons nonfat buttermilk

3/4 cup  finely ground walnuts

1/2  cup  fine, dry breadcrumbs

1/2  teaspoon salt

2  tablespoons olive oil

6  cups  torn mixed salad greens

4  cups  torn fresh spinach

1  cup  (4 ounces) shredded colby-Monterey Jack cheese blend

16  cherry tomatoes, cut in half

Buttermilk-Honey Dressing

Preparation

1. Brush buttermilk evenly over chicken.

2. Combine walnuts, breadcrumbs, and salt in a shallow dish; dredge chicken in mixture.

3. Pour oil into a large skillet; place over medium-high heat until hot. Add chicken, and cook 3 minutes on each side or until golden. Remove from heat; cool slightly. Cut chicken crosswise into thin slices.

4. Combine salad greens and spinach, and arrange on each of 4 individual plates. Sprinkle with cheese, and top with tomato halves and chicken. Serve with Buttermilk-Honey Dressing on the side.

Buttermilk-Honey Dressing

Prep: 5 minutes

Yield: 1 cup

Ingredients

1/3  cup  honey

1/3  cup  nonfat buttermilk

1/4  cup  chopped fresh basil

2  tablespoons lemon juice

1/2  teaspoon pepper

Preparation

1. Combine all ingredients in a small bowl, stirring well with a wire whisk.

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Using a rotisserie chicken is a life-saver for so many wonderful quick dinner recipes. I created this recipe since my 3 kids love Caesar Salads, and sometimes a delicious sandwich and a salad or side is all they want for dinner. The simple mixture of low-fat mayonnaise, garlic, fresh parsley, lemon juice and Parmesan create an incredibly flavorful spread for these sandwiches. In twenty minutes, dinner can be done, but this recipe is also great to serve for lunch on the weekends.

 

Caesar Salad Sandwiches

Prep: 20 minutes

 Yield: 4 servings

Ingredients

1/2 cup low-fat mayonnaise

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/3 cup chopped fresh parsley

11/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1 teaspoon grated lemon rind

3/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

2 cups thinly sliced, cooked chicken (I used rotisserie chicken)

1 (16-ounce) loaf Ciabatta bread (or French or Italian bread)

Romaine lettuce leaves

Tomatoes, purple onion (optional)

Preparation

1. Combine first 7 ingredients in a medium mixing bowl. Spread mayonnaise mixture evenly over cut sides of bread. Top evenly with chicken and lettuce; serve immediately. Top with tomatoes and purple onion, if desired.

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Five-spice powder is a spice used often in Chinese cooking, but it’s a mixture of cinnamon, cloves, fennel seed, star anise and szechuan peppercorns. It is now commonly found in all grocery stores in the spice section and yields lots of unique but delicious flavors. If you don’t eat pork, this recipe works great with thinly sliced chicken breasts. Serve with rice, Asian noodles or steamed broccoli and a salad for a complete weeknight meal.

 

Five-Spice Pork

Prep:  5 minutes

Cook: 10 minutes

Yield: 4 servings

Ingredients

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 tablespoons dark brown sugar

1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce

1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon Chinese five spice powder

2 tablespoons honey

11/2 pounds thinly sliced boneless pork loin chops

Ingredients

1. Whisk together first 5 ingredients in a medium bowl; pour over pork. Marinate 30 minutes to 1 hour, if desired. Cook in a large lightly greased saute pan over medium-high heat 3 minutes on each side or until desired degree of doneness.

Fresh Tomato-Pesto Pizza from Cooking Light

It’s pizza night at my house, so I thought I would share this recipe. With only 240 calories and 9 grams of fat, you can’t go wrong. Feel free to add cooked chicken or shrimp on this pizza. And if you want a shortcut, purchase jarred pesto in the grocery store. I love using Mama Mary’s crust or Boboli, which work great on busy weeknights (which is always at my house with 3 kids, especially during baseball season).

 

Tomato-Basil Pizza

Prep: 15 minutes

cook: 12 minutes

Yield: 8 servings

Ingredients

FOR THE PESTO:

4  cups basil leaves

2  garlic cloves

1/4  cup  fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth

1  tablespoon grated fresh Parmesan cheese

1  tablespoon olive oil

FOR THE PIZZA:

1  (1-pound) pizza crust (such as Boboli or Mama Marys)

3  cups  chopped seeded tomato (about 2 pounds)

3  garlic cloves, thinly sliced

1  cup  (4 ounces) shredded mozzarella cheese

1/4  cup  thinly sliced basil leaves

Preparation

1. Preheat oven to 475°.

2. To prepare pesto, place 4 cups basil leaves and 2 garlic cloves in a food processor, and pulse 5 times or until coarsely chopped. With processor on, add broth, Parmesan, and oil through food chute; process until well-blended.

3. To prepare pizza, place pizza crust on a baking sheet. Spread pesto over crust, leaving a 1/2-inch border; top with the tomato, garlic slices, and mozzarella. Bake at 475° for 12 minutes or until the cheese melts. Sprinkle with 1/4 cup basil. Cut the pizza into 8 wedges.

Oven-Fried Chicken from Sunset

Who doesn’t love fried chicken? Developing a good oven-fried chicken recipe is not an easy task, but I am very happy with this version. Using nonfat buttermilk and egg whites works perfectly with the mixture of flour and cornmeal. If you want to add herbs, you can combine dried seasonings or finely chopped fresh herbs into the flour mixture. Also, if you want to speed up the cooking process a bit, purchase chicken cutlets or chicken tenders which are smaller and thinner. This is a family-favorite that’s great anytime of the year.

 

Oven-Fried Chicken

Prep: 10 minutes

Cook: 40 minutes

Yield: 4 servings

Ingredients

1  cup  nonfat buttermilk

2  large egg whites, beaten

1  cup all-purpose flour

1/3  cup cornmeal

1  teaspoon kosher salt, divided

3/4  teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

1/4  teaspoon ground red pepper

3  chicken breast halves, skinned (about 11/4 pounds)

3  chicken drumsticks, skinned (about 3/4 pound)

2 tablespoons  canola oil

Cooking spray

Preparation

1. Preheat oven to 425°.

2. Cover a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Combine buttermilk and egg whites in a shallow dish; stir well with a whisk. Combine flour, cornmeal, 1/2 teaspoon salt, black pepper, garlic powder, and red pepper in a separate shallow dish; stir well. Sprinkle chicken evenly with remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt. Dip chicken in buttermilk mixture; dredge in flour mixture.

3. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken to pan; cook 4 minutes on each side or until lightly browned. Place chicken on prepared baking sheet; lightly coat chicken with cooking spray. Bake at 425° for 30 minutes or until chicken is done.

Spaghetti and Meatballs from Cooking Light

If you think you can’t be healthy eating Spaghetti and Meatballs, you’re wrong. This version uses ground turkey, whole wheat spaghetti and egg whites. I like to bake the meatballs on a rack in the oven first, then put them in the sauce. I made this recipe for some kid’s cooking classes I taught 2 summers ago, and it was an instant hit. They had no idea I had slipped in turkey for the beef, and for many of them, it was the first time they tried whole wheat noodles. They really liked them! This is a super easy recipe and a family favorite at my house, so I hope you will enjoy it in your home too. Also, please comment by clicking on the button below, and tell me what type of recipes you would like to see. Alison

 

Spaghetti with Turkey Meatballs

Prep time: 20 minutes

Cook time: 40 minutes

Yield: 8 to 10 servings

Ingredients

11/2 pounds ground turkey 

1 cup Italian-seasoned breadcrumbs

egg whites

1/4 cup minced onion

1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, divided

1 garlic clove, minced

1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning

3/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1 (3-pound) jar marinara pasta sauce 

1 (16-ounce) package whole-wheat spaghetti 

Fresh basil, optional

Preparation

1. Combine turkey, breadcrumbs, egg whites, onion, 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, garlic, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Shape mixture into (1-inch) balls. (I used a tablespoon cookie scoop for the balls.)

2. Place a rack coated with cooking spray in a lightly greased aluminum foil-lined broiler pan. Arrange meatballs on rack. Bake at 400F for 10 minutes or until meatballs are browned.

3. Cook pasta according to package directions; drain.

4. Pour marinara sauce into a Dutch oven. Add meatballs. Cover and simmer over low heat 30 minutes. Serve over pasta and sprinkle with remaining Parmesan cheese and fresh basil, if desired.

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My friend and loyal fan, Dawn, asked me a while back for a recipe for White Chili. I promised her I would work on one, and this recipe came out great. It’s simple to prepare-just requiring some chopping, vegetables and grating cheese, and that’s the only work involved. Feel free to use already-shredded cheese if your short on time, and I used a rotisserie chicken to speed up the process. This chili has just the right consistency and spice. Even my 8-year-old was asking for seconds.


White Bean Chili

Prep: 20 minutes

Cook: 35 minutes

Yield: 4 to 6 servings

Ingredients

1 medium onion, diced

1 teaspoon olive oil

1 (4-ounce) can chopped green chiles, undrained

2 cloves garlic, minced

11/2 teaspoons ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper

2 (15-ounce) cans Great Northern Beans, drained and rinsed

31/2 cups low-salt, fat-free chicken broth

2 cups chopped cooked chicken (I used rotisserie chicken)

1 cup freshly grated Monterey Jack cheese

1 cup freshly grated Colby cheese

Toppings: crushed corn chips, light sour cream, chopped green onions, olives, chopped tomatoes, oyster crackers, bacon

Preparation

1. Cook onion in hot oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat, stirring until tender. Add green chiles and next 4 ingredients; cook 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Add beans and chicken broth. Bring to a boil; reduce
heat, and simmer 20 minutes. Add chicken, 1/2 cup of Monterey Jack and 1/2 cup Colby cheese; simmer 10 minutes more. Ladle chili into individual bowls. Top each serving evenly with cheese and desired toppings.