Pulled Buffalo Chicken Sandwiches

Goooood Mornin’! It is an amazingly beautiful (albeit hot) summer day today. Automatically puts me in a great mood to wake up to plentiful sunshine.

We are low on groceries right now. Not just, oh we are out of milk again low on groceries.The kind of low on groceries where you have to think of some very interesting meal combinations and eat breakfast for dinner.

buffalo chicken sandwichSo in light of this disas…I mean, challenge,¬† I was super proud of myself for coming up with these deee-lish buffalo chicken sandwiches that were super tasty and healthy for me and baby! It was like going out to eat at a pub in our own home. Will definitely be trying some variations of this with BBQ sauce and (baked) onion rings on top. Yum!!!!!

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Comment if you try any of my recipes and love them. I love to hear good, and bad, feedback as it helps me in writing future posts!!! ūüôā Who knows, maybe this next month I will even send you a FREE homemade recipe just for commenting!


Pulled Buffalo Chicken Sandwiches

Serves: 4

Ingredients:

  • 3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 cup Frank’s hot buffalo sauce
  • 1 stalk celery, finely chopped
  • 1 cup sweet onion, minced
  • 1 tsp. cayenne pepper powder
  • 4 whole wheat buns
  • 1 Tbsp. low-fat ranch dressing (this one if my favorite brand!)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375¬įF. Coat chicken with 1 Tbsp. olive oil, garlic powder, salt and pepper (to taste) and place on baking sheet. Bake for 35-45 minutes until chicken is cooked through. Allow to cool for 5-10 minutes prior to next step to lock in juices.
  2. In food processor (or by fork), shred the chicken. Be careful not to over process, you want it to be chunky not finely minced.
  3. In medium saucepan or dutch oven, heat remaining olive oil over medium heat. Add celery and onions and saute until tender.
  4. Add chicken to saucepan/dutch oven along with cayenne pepper powder (if desired) and hot sauce, stir to combine. If too dry, continue adding hot sauce 1 Tbsp. at a time until you get desired texture. Turn to low and let simmer for 5 minutes.
  5. To serve: Toast buns (if desired), top with chicken mixture, sliced tomato, and low-fat ranch dressing. Enjoy!

Avocado Tuna Salad

Happy Monday! Okay, so I know no Monday is truly happy for most of us but work with me here. Today I had to go into work early (ugh) but I also get off early due to an appointment so gotta look at the bright side of things! Since I was in such a rush to get out the door this morning I threw together this healthy tuna salad last night so I could just grab-n-go this morning.

Avocado Tuna Salad 3I am not a big fan of your typical tuna or chicken salads due to the high amount of mayo (not a fan) they contain. Most restaurants I have seen place said salads onto two large slices of white bread…blasphemy! Be careful when choosing recipes you find online. Be sure to pick ones without added sugars, salts, and unhealthy fats. That’s why this website is so awesome, if I do say so myself! I take all the guess work out of it so you get to focus on what’s really important…stuffing the delicious food in your face!¬†

Avocado Tuna Salad 2I promise you if you are a lover of tuna/chicken salad on white bread that this will change your mind. Eating wholesome and nutritious foods doesn’t have to be boring or gross. In fact, I think you will be surprised how much BETTER the food tastes when it is fresh and nutritious for you!

Avocado Tuna Salad 4I lightened up my tuna salad by replacing the mayo with avocado so you still get that creamy texture but without all the unhealthy fat and calories the mayo contains. Added bonus is the avocado brings this rich texture and flavor to the salad that is really amazing.

Avocado Tuna Salad 1You can serve this between two slices of 100% whole wheat bread, Ezekiel bread or as a dip with cucumber slices, pepper slices, celery or carrots!


Avocado Tuna Salad

Serves: 2

Ingredients:

  • 1 can no-salt added wild albacore tuna in water
  • 2 Tbsp. organic relish
  • 1 tsp. Mrs. Dash lemon-pepper seasoning
  • 1 tsp. fresh cracked black pepper
  • 1 Tbsp. organic Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 Tbsp. Mrs. Dash spicy seasoning (optional)
  • 1/4 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 ripe avocado, mashed
  • 1/4 cup minced red onion
  • 1/2 lime’s juice
  • 1 tsp. lime zest
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh chopped cilantro or parsley
  • 1/2 cup minced celery

Directions:

  1. Place all ingredients in medium bowl. Mix well with a fork, mashing avocado and breaking up chunks of tuna, until all ingredients are well combined.
  2. Add more salt or pepper to taste and serve.

Nutritional Information: 227 calories, 15g fat, 11.1g carbs, 20.7g protein


 

Hearty Sweet Potato & Quinoa Stew

April showers bring May flowers! That is certainly true here in Virginia at this time of year. I love me a good thunderstorm! Especially when I’m all cozy and warm inside my house. This is the third straight day in a row of rainy weather and I’m starting to feel as if I live in Seattle or England.

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On cold, rainy days it is best, in my opinion, to eat heart-warming meals like soup or stew. I got the idea to make this stew simply from what I was craving yesterday. I have been dieting this week to better fit into a bridesmaids dress I have to wear in early May and wanted a low-calorie and low-fat dinner that would still fill me up.

sweet potato stew

That’s where this stew comes in! It has so many nutrient rich vegetables packed into it. Sort of like a detox veggie soup you see all over the nutrition blogs promising to help you lose 10 pounds in 5 days…only it actually tastes delicious and is very filling! Like I said, it is packed with nutrients as well as lots of fiber. Oh and trust me, you won’t miss all the added sodium typically in canned goods by opting for the no-salt added versions used in this recipe!

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This could absolutely be made into a crock-pot meal by adding all un-cooked ingredients into the crock pot and setting on low for about 4-6 hours. This will freeze well also and is great for big families!

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Let me know how you like it in the comments below!! This was one of my first recipes completely made up by myself so I’m a tad proud of how it turned out!!

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Hearty Sweet Potato & Quinoa Stew

Serves: 8

Ingredients:

  • 2 medium sweet potatoes, diced
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 (32oz) container of low-sodium vegetable broth (I used 365, Whole Foods brand, here)
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 can no-salt added corn
  • 1 can diced tomatoes
  • 3 stalks celery, diced
  • 2 large carrots, diced
  • 1 Tbsp. paprika
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/4 – 1/2 tsp. salt, depending on taste
  • 1 1/2 tsp. fresh cracked black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. cumin
  • 1 Tbsp. red pepper flakes, optional
  • 1/2 tsp. chili powder
  • 2 bay leaves

Directions:

  1. In dutch oven or large skillet, saute onion and garlic over medium heat until translucent.
  2. Pour in vegetable broth and stir to de-glaze the pan. Add in the remaining ingredients and reduce heat to low and let simmer, stirring occasionally, for a minimum of 1 1/2 to 2 hours.
  3. Serve warm with side of crusty whole wheat bread or topped with low-fat cheese and enjoy!

NUTRITION FACTS per 1 serving: 140 calories, 1g fat, 28.9g carbs, 3.7g protein, 5.9g fiber, 11.4g sugar, 365mg sodium

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Southwestern Chicken Lettuce Wraps

On this rainy/snowy day I was craving something warm and satisfying for lunch. I had a bunch of pre-cooked chicken breasts in the fridge and some romaine lettuce to use up so I came up with these delicious wraps!! As you all know, I am currently dieting and trying to watch my carb intake as a result. Lettuce wraps are an awesome alternative to eating white bread or wraps and they add a satisfying crunch and crispness to many meals.

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This was thrown together in less than 10 minutes and was absolutely filling and so so tasty! I kept making that “mmmm” noise while I was eating it – it was THAT good! I could eat it every day for lunch. Try it out! It makes for a great quick, yummy, and portable lunch for work days.

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There are so many delicious different variations you can make with these so don’t be shy experimenting with it!!

**You can cut down on the fat and calories in this dish by removing the avocado and using low-fat cheddar cheese**

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Southwestern Chicken Lettuce Wraps

Serving Size: 3 wraps

Ingredients:

  • 1 4-5oz. boneless, skinless chicken breast, pre-cooked and sliced
  • 1 oz. sharp cheddar cheese, diced
  • 4 Tbsp. salsa (brand of choice, I used Tostitos medium salsa)
  • 1/2 avocado, sliced (optional)
  • 1¬†Tbsp. diced red onion
  • 3 leaves romaine lettuce, washed
  • 1/4 red bell pepper, sliced
  • 1 Tbsp. freshly chopped cilantro

Directions:

  1. Heat up chicken in microwave to desired temperature prior to arranging wraps.
  2. Arrange lettuce leaves on plate and top with chicken, cheese, onions, red pepper, salt and pepper to taste, salsa, avocado, and cilantro – in that order. Roll up sides of leaves for easier handling when eating.

NUTRITION FACTS (for 3 wraps as listed above): 400 calories, 21g fat, 16g carbohydrates, 9g fiber, 34g protein, and 6g sugar.

Avocado, Cheddar, and Tomato Panini

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For lunch today I made a Panini with the few ingredients I had on hand. I haven’t been to the store in a while¬†so we are running pretty low on groceries. This led me to break out my Panini press that we got as a wedding present back in September. I have only used it a handful of times but every time I do I always wonder why I don’t use it more frequently.

If you don’t have a Panini¬†press, you can always make¬†Panini’s in a typical sauce pan and use another heavier pan to press down on the sandwich to get the panini-like¬†crispness and texture.

You may also sub out low-fat cheese for the Vermont cheddar used here if you want it even lower in calories and fat. I choose to use full-fat cheese not only because it tastes better but because I prefer the least amount of preservatives and additives in my food as possible. Your choice!

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Oh my, I am literally drooling uploading these pictures of¬†that yummy sandwich! Don’t you want to make it?! Go on, treat yo’ self!

 

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Avocado, Cheddar, and Tomato Panini

Yield: 1 sandwich

Ingredients:image4-e1418774190376-225x300

  • 2 slices 100% whole wheat bread
  • 2 ounces sharp Vermont¬†white cheddar cheese (may use low-fat if desired)
  • 1/2 avocado, sliced
  • 5 grape tomatoes, halved (NOTE: May use sliced tomatoes of any variety as well)
  • 1/2 Tbsp. Olive Oil
  • Salt and Pepper

Directions:

  1. Heat Panini pan over medium-medium high heat.
  2. Brush one side of each slice of bread with olive oil.
  3. Cut avocado in half, horizontally, remove seed and scoop out avocado with spoon. Slice.
  4. Add cheese, avocado and tomato (in that order!) to one slice of bread. Season with Salt and Pepper to taste.Top with second slice of bread making sure olive oil side is facing outwards.
    1. Note: The oil needs to be in contact with the pan to prevent sticking and to ensure the golden color and crispness of the Panini.
  5. Place assembled Panini onto Panini pan and top with press iron. Press firmly down onto sandwich. Cook, flipping over once, approximately 5-10 minutes. The Panini is done with cheese is melted and the bread is crispy and browning.