Thursday, March 31, 2011

Nacho Salad

This is one of my kids' favorite ways to enjoy lunch.  

On a plate, layer: 
tortilla chips
ground turkey, browned and seasoned with an envelope of taco seasoning
shredded cheese
shredded lettuce
reduced fat sour cream

You can also add any other toppings you enjoy on a taco salad: Olives, guacamole, onions, sliced tomatoes, corn, or black beans would all make a great addition. 

Kid Rating: 6 Thumbs Up! 

I didn't figure the calorie count on this one, but it's easy to control fat and calories in this by choosing low fat ground turkey and lower fat cheese and sour cream. 

Monday, March 28, 2011

Chicken & Veggie Pasta

Easy as Pie Chicken n' Veggie Pasta

There's really not much to explain here, but this is an easy to prepare lunch that's healthy to boot. 

1 box of cooked tri-color vegetable pasta (it has a full serving of veggies in each serving of pasta! 
some chopped, cooked chicken
half a jar of spaghetti sauce

And top with some shredded parmesan cheese. 

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Snackin' Mix (the healthier version)

Combine in a large bowl: 
2 cups of mini-marshmallows
4 cups of pretzels
1 can of mixed, unsalted nuts
8 ounces reduced fat cheese crackers
6 ounce bag of dried cranberries

Stir gently or use your hands to mix the ingredients and that's it! This makes about 35 servings. I bagged pre-measured servings (approximately 1/3 of a cup) into ziplocs to make it easy for the kids to access (and to portion out properly).

This snack mix contains 123 calories and 5 grams of fat. I think it's a little healthier than my usual snack mix because the fats come primarily from nuts instead of canola oil. It's also a lot lower in sodium! The marshmallows are a real treat for the kids, but with only 5 or 6 mini-marshmallows in a bag, they aren't getting a ton of sugar.

Kid Rating: 6 Thumbs Up! Their favorite part: marshmallows, of course!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Turkey Sloppy Joes

The last couple of weeks have seemed a little disorganized. I'm not exactly sure why, but most days we've either been having leftovers or a simple sandwich for lunch. Nothing blog-worthy. I figured I'd share today, though. Gavin fixed lunch for us today--Sloppy Joes made with ground turkey.

Here's how to make them:

Brown a pound of ground turkey breast along with some chopped onion.  (Our grocery store sells two varieties of ground turkey with one containing about 19 grams of fat and the other containing less than 2 grams of fat. There's a price difference of close to $2 per pound, but the difference in fat count is definitely worth it!)

To the browned ground turkey add:

1/2 cup of ketchup
3 tablespoons of barbecue sauce
1 tablespoon of mustard
2 teaspoons of worcestershire sauce
pepper to taste

Simmer for a few minutes and then serve on wheat buns.


Kid Rating: 6 Thumbs Up!

Monday, March 14, 2011

Mexican Chicken Wraps

Yesterday morning before church I put Mexican Chicken (aka Tex-Mex Chicken) in the slow cooker so we'd come home to a nice meal without a lot of work. This recipe makes a large batch of Mexican Chicken so we had enough left to make another meal today.

To your slow cooker add:
4 large chicken breasts
1 can black beans, drained & rinsed
1 can corn, drained
1 package taco seasoning
1 jar of salsa

Cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high for 3-4 hours. Just before serving shred chicken and add 1 cup of reduced fat sour cream to the slow cooker. Serve over rice.

Today we used the leftover Mexican Chicken on some whole wheat, high fiber, tortillas. They were delicious! 

I know that rising grocery costs are probably a concern for most families right now, as they certainly are for us. But this dish was especially economical. 

$4.91 for Chicken Breasts (I used bone-in breasts because they were on sale at Kroger this week)
$0.69 for black beans
$0.79 for corn
$0.35 for taco seasoning
$1.99 for salsa
$0.99 for sour cream

Total Cost: $9.72 (not including the rice) and this meal fed my family of 5 for two meals and we still have leftovers for my husband to take to work for lunch one day this week. 

This meal also fits into a low calorie plan with ease. The Mexican Chicken has 196 calories per serving. 

Edited to Add:
Kid Rating: This one gets a 6 thumbs up! They liked it best on wraps, but it was great on rice as well. 

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Presentation is Everything: Chicken Salad Scoops

This presentation of ordinary chicken salad turned what would have been a boring lunch into an exciting one. The idea for this came from Luci's Southern Living For Kids cookbook. 

Chicken Salad

2 cooked boneless skinless chicken breasts, chopped
1/4 cup raisins
1/4 cup shredded carrot
1 stalk of celery, diced
1/2 cup reduced fat mayonnaise
1/4 cup chopped unsalted roasted peanuts

Place all ingredients in a bowl and stir to combine.

To assemble the Chicken Salad Scoops, put a lettuce leaf in the top of each ice cream cone and then top with a scoop of chicken salad. I used my ice cream scoop to make a nice round scoop. 

I served this with baby carrots and some snack mix I made this weekend.

Luci and Ben were completely smitten with this new take on chicken salad. Gavin appreciates chicken salad on its own merits, but thought the cone was a nice addition anyway. 

Kid Rating: 6 Thumbs Up!