Tag Archives: dinner

Crunchy Cashew Thai Quinoa Salad

I just found my new favorite salad! You have to make this…..seriously! You will not be disappointed. I was looking for a new quinoa salad on Pinterest. I found this winner which led me to the website ambitiouskitchen.com.

I went to Bulk Barn to buy my quinoa and my all natural peanut butter.

While I made the quinoa, I chopped up the veggies and made the dressing. It took no time at all to toss it all together.

This salad is vegan and gluten-free. (As long as you use gluten-free soy sauce)

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3/4 cup uncooked quinoa
2 cups shredded red cabbage, depending on how much crunch you like
1 red bell pepper, diced
1/4 cup diced red onion
1 cup shredded carrots
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
1/4 cup diced green onions
1/2 cup cashew halves or peanuts (honey-roasted is good)
OPTIONAL: 1 cup edamame or chickpeas
Fresh lime, for a bit of tang

DRESSING:
1/4 cup all natural peanut butter
2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger
3 tablespoons gluten-free soy sauce or coconut aminos
1 tablespoon honey (use agave or pure maple syrup if vegan)
1 tablespoon rice vinegar or red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon olive oil or more sesame oil
Water to thin, if necessary

1. To cook quinoa: In a medium saucepan, bring 1 1/2 cups of water to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to low and let simmer for 15 minutes or until quinoa has absorbed all of the water. Remove from heat and fluff quinoa with fork; place in large bowl and set aside to cool for about 10 minutes. You should have a little over 2 cups of quinoa.
2. To make dressing: Add peanut butter and honey or agave to a medium microwave safe bowl; heat in microwave for 20 seconds. Add in ginger, soy sauce, vinegar, and both sesame and olive oil and stir until mixture is smooth and creamy.
3. Add as much or as little dressing as you’d like to the quinoa. I always start out with a little bit of dressing and usually add more to suit my taste. Alternatively, you can save the dressing for later and add when you are ready to eat; however the flavors of the dressing usually soak into the salad so I love adding it to the quinoa first.
4. Fold in the red pepper, onion, cabbage, carrots and cilantro into the quinoa. Garnish with cashews and green onions. Serve chilled or at room temperature with lime wedges, if desired.
(Comments in the recipe are from ambitiouskitchen.com)

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Bell Pepper Nacho Boats

Bell pepper nacho boats make a great appetizer or dinner. I served mine with avocado slices.

To make appetizer boats, make sure you pick peppers that have 4 bumps. It will make for smaller servings.

This recipe is great for a make ahead meal too. I pre-cooked my turkey and added the spices and salsa. I put the turkey mixture into the fridge until ready to assemble.

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1 pound lean ground turkey
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
3/4 cup salsa, no sugar added
1 cup grated cheddar cheese, reduced fat
3 bell peppers

1. Remove seeds, core, and membrane from bell peppers then slice each one into six vertical pieces where they dip down. Set sliced bell peppers aside.
2. Cook ground turkey over medium-high heat, breaking up as it cooks. Cook until the turkey loses it’s pink colour and is cooked through. Drain off any fat.
3. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
4. Combine cooked turkey with spices and salsa. Evenly distribute mixture into the bell peppers boats, top with cheese.
5. Bake on a parchment lined baking sheet for 10 minutes or until cheese is melted and peppers are hot. Optional ingredients: sliced jalapeño peppers, diced avocado, fat-free Greek yogurt or sour cream, or sliced green onions.

Broccoli Apple Salad

This salad is sooooo good! I found it on Pinterest which lead me to the website therecipecritic.com.

I halved this recipe since I am the only broccoli lover in the house. I served it with dinner and had the leftovers for lunch. I highly recommend leaving out the pecans as they get soft the next day. If you like that added crunch then I would suggest adding the pecans to your salad when you serve it. Also, the apples did not brown, so you could make this as a make ahead dish.

For the dressing, I did use half mayo and half greek yogurt. Next time I would use just greek yogurt.

broccoli salad

4 cups fresh broccoli florets, (about 2 medium heads)
1/2 cup shredded carrots
1/4 cup diced red onion
2 large apples, finely chopped (I used gala apples)
1/2 cup pecans, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup dried cranberries

Dressing:
1/2 cup light mayonnaise
1/2 cup low fat greek yogurt
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper

1. In a large bowl combine broccoli, carrots, red onion, apples, pecans and dried cranberries.
2. To make the dressing: Whisk together mayonnaise, greek yogurt, lemon juice, sugar, salt and pepper.
3. Add the dressing to the salad and toss to coat. Chill until ready to serve.

Italian Skillet Chicken with Tomatoes and Mushrooms

We eat a ton of chicken in our house, so it’s always great to find an awesome new recipe. This one is super tasty and only takes 30 minutes to prepare.

In this recipe, make sure you pound the chicken thin so that it cooks quickly. I did not drudge my chicken in flour. I just seasoned with salt, pepper and oregano and browned it in olive oil. I also did not use the white wine. I replaced with chicken broth.

Add the spinach! This recipe suggests it as optional….but get it in there! It adds great colour plus it’s good for you.

I served my chicken with a masked sweet potato, but you can certainly serve this with orzo, rice, spaghetti or crusty bread.

I found this recipe on Pinterest which lead me to the website themediterraneandish.com.

Mediterrenean

4 large chicken breasts (pound to 1/4-inch thin)
1 Tbsp dried oregano, divided
1 tsp salt, divided
1 tsp black pepper, divided
1/2 cup all-purpose flour, more for later
Extra virgin olive oil
8 oz mushrooms, cleaned, trimmed and sliced
14 oz grape tomatoes, halved
2 Tbsp chopped fresh garlic
1/2 cup white wine (I used chicken broth)
1 Tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice (juice of 1/2 lemon)
3/4 cup chicken broth
Handful baby spinach (optional)

1. Pat chicken dry. Season on both sides with 1/2 Tbsp dried oregano, 1/2 tsp salt and 1/2 tsp black pepper. Coat the chicken with the flour;dust off excess. Set aside briefly.
2. Heat 2 Tbsp olive oil in a large cast iron skillet with a lid. Brown the chicken on both sides (3 minutes or so). Transfer the chicken to a plate for now. (I put my chicken in a 9×13 casserole dish and continued baking it in a 375F oven)
3. In the same skillet, add more olive oil if needed. Add the mushrooms and saute briefly on medium-high heat (about 1 minute or so). Then add the tomatoes, garlic, the remaining 1/2 Tbsp oregano, 1/2 tsp salt and 1/2 tsp pepper, and 2 tsp flour. Cook for another 3 minutes or so, stirring regularly.
4. Now add the white wine (or chicken broth), cook briefly to reduce just a little;then add the lemon juice and chicken broth.
5. Bring the liquid to a boil, then add the chicken back in the skillet. Cook over high heat for 3-4 minutes, then reduce the heat to medium-low. Cover and cook for another 8 minutes or until the chicken is fully cooked and its internal heat registers a minimum of 165 degrees F. (I kept my chicken in the oven cooking while the sauce reduced. I then poured the sauce over the chicken and served)
6. If you like, stir in a handful of baby spinach just before serving. Enjoy hot with your favorite small pasta like orzo and a crusty Italian bread.

Quinoa Spinach Power Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette

The kids are almost back in school after the winter break…..time to get back to routine and prepping lunches for myself.

I found this salad on Pinterest which brought me to the website aheadofthyme.com.

I changed this recipe slightly. I pre-cook a bunch of Quinoa to use during the week, so I just took out a measured cup of Quinoa to make this salad. I find this easier than making a cup every time.

The best part about online recipes is the user feedback. I highly suggest that if you come across a great recipe…make sure to take a look at what people said about it. In this Quinoa salad recipe, lots of people swapped out the raisins. I did too. I added red onion. Other highly suggested options where pine nuts and feta. Someone also swapped out the spinach with kale with great results.

Make this salad your own! However, do not change the dressing! It is wonderful on this salad. I made the dressing and used it all on one cup of Quinoa with all my veggies and it was perfect. If you double this recipe, make sure you double the dressing too.

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1/2 cup uncooked Quinoa
2 cups spinach, finely chopped
1 tomato, diced
1/2 cup diced cucumbers
1/4 cup raisins
DRESSING:
1 1/2 Tablespoon lemon juice
1 1/2 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

1. In a medium bowl, rinse the Quinoa a few times
2. In a medium saucepan, boil 2 cups of salted water. Add the Quinoa and continue to boil for about 10 minutes until the Quinoa is tender.
3. Drain the Quinoa and let it cool.
4. In a large bowl, combine the spinach, tomatoes, cucumbers, raisins and cooled Quinoa.
5. In a small bowl, make the lemon vinaigrette. Combine the lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper. Pour onto the salad and toss to coat.
6. Season to taste with more salt and pepper, if needed.

Mexican Zucchini Burrito Boats

This recipe is so good! This recipe can also adjusted as well…however….it’s great as is!

I used brown rice, but you could also use quinoa. I filled the zucchini halves with the rice mixture, but I don’t see why you couldn’t fill bell peppers as well. I used a medium salsa, but use hot if you want your boats to be spicy. I didn’t use the full cup of cheese. I just added shredded cheese as needed on top.

I filled 4 small zucchinis and had about a cup and a half of the mixture left over. If you are planning on filling peppers, this recipe will make enough to fill them.

I found this recipe on makingthymeforhealth.com

zucciniboats

4 large zucchini
1 (15 ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup cooked brown rice
1 cup salsa (use your preferred level of spiciness)
1 red bell pepper, cored and diced
1/2 cup red onion, diced
1/2 cup corn kernels
1 jalapeno (or poblano pepper), cored and diced
1 tablespoon and 1 teaspoon olive oil
2 teaspoons cumin
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 cup fresh cilantro, finely chopped
salt and pepper to taste
1 cup shredded cheddar/monterey jack cheese

1. Start by greasing a 9×13 inch casserole dish, then set aside. Slice each zucchini in half lengthwise. Using a melon baller or metal teaspoon, hollow out the center of each zucchini. Lightly brush the tops with olive oil then place them skin side down in the casserole dish.
2. Warm the tablespoon of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion, red pepper and jalapeno and cook for 2-3 minutes. Then add the rice, corn, and beans along with the salsa, chili powder and cumin. Stir everything together and continue to cook for about 5 minutes then remove the skillet from the heat and set aside.
3. Preheat the oven to 400F. Stir 1/4 cup of the cilantro, salt and pepper to taste, into the filling. Spoon the filling inside of each zucchini until they are all full. Sprinkle each one with cheese then arrange them in the dish and cover with foil. Bake in the oven for 25 minutes then remove the foil and set the oven to broil. Cook them for 5 more minutes, until the cheese is bubbly and golden brown.
4. Allow the boats to cool for 5-10 minutes then top with fresh cilantro and serve. Store leftovers in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
YIELD: 8 boats

One Pan Honey Garlic Chicken with Potatoes and Broccoli

This recipe is super fast and easy.  I like this recipe for the busy nights that are filled with the kid’s activities.  Plus the kids gobble it up! (However, except for the broccoli but, I always have the option of fresh cut veggies on the side) To make this recipe even faster to prepare…pre-make the sauce in the morning.

I cut my baby potatoes into quarters. Depending on size, I also just halved them. I flattened my chicken by pounding it with a rolling pin. It ensures a thoroughly cooked chicken breast. Make sure to read the whole recipe! You add the broccoli in the last 10 minutes of baking.

I like this idea of one pan cooking too! It makes for easy clean up!

I found this recipe on Pinterest. It lead me to the website damndelicious.net.

onepanchicken

3 Tablespoons olive oil, divided
2 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
2 Tablespoons honey
2 Tablespoons brown sugar
1 Tablespoon Dijon mustard
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
16 ounces baby red potatoes, halved*
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts, pounded flat
24 ounces broccoli florets*
2 Tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves

*24 ounces broccoli florets is equal to about 5 cups
*Cooking time will vary depending on the size and thickness of the potatoes

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Lightly oil a baking sheet or coat with nonstick spray
2. In a small bowl, whisk together 2 tablespoons olive oil, butter, honey, brown sugar, Dijon mustard, garlic, oregano and basil;season with salt and pepper, to taste. Set aside.
3. Place potatoes in a single layer onto the prepared baking sheet. Drizzle with remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Add chicken in a single layer and brush each chicken breast with honey mixture.
4. Place into oven and roast until the chicken is completely cooked through, reaching an internal temperature of 165 degrees F, about 25-30 minutes. stir in broccoli during the last 10 minutes of cooking time. Broil for 2-3 minutes, or until caramelized and slighty charred.
5. Serve immediately, garnished with parsley, if desired.

Chicken Salad

This recipe makes for a quick dinner, especially on the nights of my son’s soccer games.  You can have this flavorful salad on it’s own, in a croissant or on fresh rye bread.

I use a rotisserie chicken from Sobey’s. I usually grab the chipotle flavoured chicken, but the regular barbecue flavour is just as good.

4 cups chicken, cooked
1 cup mayonnaise, or greek yogurt
1 cup celery, diced
2 Tbsp dill, fresh
1 1/2 cups red grapes, quartered
2 green onions, chopped
salt and pepper to taste

1. Mix all ingredients together.

Asian Quinoa Slaw Salad with Sesame Ginger Vinaigrette

Yum! I really liked this salad. I do wish however I had purple cabbage to add more colour. This salad is super easy to make, especially if you have a food processor to help you. In a pinch you could buy the package of pre-cut coleslaw.

I did not add the black sesame seeds. I cut up cashews and added to the top instead of mixing them in. You can also substitute almonds if you wish.

Shredded chicken or pork would be an excellent addition to this salad.

I found this recipe on Pinterest, which lead me to the website thekitchengirl.com.

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6 cups shredded cabbage
1 cup cooked Quinoa
1 cup shredded carrots
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
1/3 cup chopped cashews
1 Tbsp toasted black sesame seeds
2 finely chopped green onions
1/2 cup Sesame Ginger Vinaigrette (see recipe below)

1. In a large bowl, combine cabbage, cooked Quinoa, carrots, cilantro, cashews, sesame seeds and green onions; cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
2. To serve, toss in sesame ginger vinaigrette

SESAME GINGER VINAIGRETTE
1/4 cup rice vinegar
1/2 cup canola oil
2 Tbsp sesame oil
1 tsp finely grated fresh ginger
1 finely grated garlic clove
1 Tbsp honey
Salt and pepper to taste

1. In a bowl, whisk together rice vinegar, canola oil, sesame oil, Ginger, garlic, honey, salt and pepper; cover, refrigerate.
Makes 3/4 cup

Honey Mustard Salmon

This is my new favourite salmon recipe. I changed this recipe slightly. I preferred to barbecue my salmon in a foil packet rather than cooking in a skillet with oil. I also steamed my broccoli.

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I also halved the honey mustard mix since I was only making one salmon portion for myself. I added the honey mustard mixture in with the salmon before I cooked it on the barbecue with great results. Be careful not to cook at a super high temperature since there is honey in the mixture and it will blacken.

My halved mixture is:
2 Tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon whole grain mustard
2 tablespoons honey
Pinch of onion powder
1/2 tablespoon soy sauce

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I found this recipe on Pinterest. It lead me to a website dinneratthezoo.com

1 and 1/4 lbs of salmon, cut into fillets
1/4 cup Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons whole grain mustard
1/4 cup honey
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
1 tablespoon olive oil, divided use
2 cups of broccoli florets
Salt and pepper to taste
Optional: lemon wedges and chopped parsley

1. In a small bowl mix together the Dijon mustard, whole grain mustard, honey, soy sauce and onion powder.
2. Heat 1 teaspoon of oil in a large pan over medium high heat. Add the broccoli and cook for 3-4 minutes. Add 1 tablespoon of water and cook for 2-3 minutes more until water is evaporated and broccoli is tender. Season the broccoli with salt and pepper, remove it from the pan and place it on a plate.
3. Heat the remainng 2 teaspoons of olive oil over high heat. Season the salmon generously with salt and pepper.
4. Put the salmon in the pan and cook for approximately 5 minutes on each side. Brush the tops of the fillets with the honey mustard mixture and place sauce side down in the pan and cook for 1 minute more.
5. Add the broccoli back into the pan with the salmon and cook for 2-3 minutes more or until the vegetables are heated through. Drizzle the salmon and broccoli with remaining honey mustard mixture and serve. Sprinkle with chopped parsley and serve with lemon wedges if desired.