Category Archives: Chicken

Slow Cooker Creamy Herb Chicken

Hello, Blog! I remember you!

I haven’t gone this long without blogging before. But, you see, I have a very good reason. A Big Announcement. The thing is… and if you know my husband, you know what a big deal this is…

We Got Cable.

For reals. Cable tv. In my house. I’m still reeling. Sometimes I wake up in the middle of the night and go downstairs to turn on the tv, just to make sure I wasn’t dreaming.

I don’t really do that. But I am super excited.

I know for a fact that we aren’t the last people on Earth to get on board the Cable Train. But I know we’re pretty darn close to the caboose.

Anyway, there’s no time for blogging when there’s SO MUCH tv to watch!

So I’d like to share with you some things that you may already know, but that I’m just learning about cable tv:

  1. Frasier is on 87,000 times a day.
  2. MTV is nothing like it was when I was a kid. VH1 Totally 80’s is way better.
  3. iCarly is pretty annoying, but Good Luck Charlie is kind of cute (actually I kind of like it) (actually I don’t kind of like it, I do like it).
  4. The History Channel is not nearly as much fun as I thought it would be. Is there any actual history on that channel?
  5. Turner Classic Movies is as much fun as I thought it would be.
  6. Cupcakes are really popular. Especially red velvet ones.
  7. The Wonder Pets are just as annoying on cable as they are on DVD. Seriously, Ming-Ming. It’s called speech therapy. Go get some.
  8. I still love The Waltons.
  9. I don’t have nearly enough kids yet to get a reality tv show. I mean, four is nothing, when you could instead raise a small army. I’m looking at you, Duggars.
  10. Man vs. Food is gross. Just gross.
  11. There is absolutely nothing real about any of the Real Housewives. Seriously, Bravo. Where’s the sweatpants that have been worn one too many times before washing? The spit-up stained t-shirts? The Cheerios that are forming their own colony under the couch cushions? The mountain of laundry on every available square inch of space? Real Housewives? Real, my foot.

So those are just a few of the things I’ve learned. But with my new channel line-up I’m sure I will continue to learn new things each and every day! I haven’t even touched on infomercials yet!

When you spend so much time watching t.v., it’s good to have some quick, easy dinners that you can just throw into the crockpot in the morning, before Gilmore Girls comes on, that will be finished cooking by the time The Brady Bunch airs. This one is super duper fast and easy.

Slow Cooker Creamy Italian Herb Chicken

  • 3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 10-oz package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
  • 1 container Philadelphia Italian Cheese & Herb Cooking Creme
  • crushed red pepper for serving

Directions:

  1. Spray slow cooker insert with cooking spray. Seriously, do it! You’ll thank me later!
  2. Place chicken breasts into slow cooker. Cover with spinach.
  3. Add cooking creme, and stir it up a bit. Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high 3-4 hours.
  4. Remove chicken from slow cooker. Shred,* return to cooker, and give it a good stir. Serve over pasta with a nice sprinkling of red pepper.

Click here for printable version.

*If you prefer, you can cube the chicken before cooking it, or even leave and serve it whole. I like the shredded chicken over pasta, but that’s my preference.

Slow Cooker Creamy Herb Chicken

Creamy Herb Chicken over pasta

Wow, really bad pictures. See what happens when you don’t blog in over a month?

I thought this meal was delicious! I thought it was, “You better learn to like it, kids, because Mommy’s gonna be making this a LOT!” good. Let’s see what The Critics thought:

Don Corleone: I love it!

Sarah Crewe: It’s really good, Mommy!

Batman: I don’t really like it. Then later: Actually I think I do like it.

Curious George: I don’t really like it either. Later: I like it mixed with the pasta.

Elmo: I don’t like this dinner. Me: How do you know? Did you taste it? Elmo: No. But I looked at it, and it was spicy.

Oh well, it wasn’t a huge success. But it wasn’t a huge failure, either. I’m definitely making this one again!

Crockpot Buffalo Chicken Soup

This is going to be a quick one. It’s 5:24 a.m. and I’m supposed to go for a run in 6 minutes. And that’s all I have to say about that.

Crockpot Buffalo Chicken Soup

Adapted from A Year of Slow Cooking

  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 3 celery stalks, chopped
  • 2 cups cooked and cubed (or shredded) chicken
  • 3/4 cup chicken broth
  • 2 cups fat free milk (or no higher than 2%)
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 cup hot wing sauce
  • 4 oz Velveeta, cubed

Directions:

  1. Melt the butter in a small saucepan over low heat. Whisk in the flour. Set aside.
  2. Put the chopped onion and celery into the slow cooker. Add the chicken, broth, and milk. Sprinkle the garlic powder on top. (Note: The original recipe calls for celery salt and garlic salt. I don’t like to add much salt to soups when I’m cooking (and as the recipe states, the cheese and broth have enough salt on their own), so I leave it out. But feel free to add it if you like salty soups)
  3. Stir in the flour and butter mixture. Add hot sauce.
  4. Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours, or on hight for 3-4 hours. Stir in Velveeta 20 minutes before serving.

Buffalo Chicken Soup

 Click here for printable

Wow this is good soup. This is “Cook it for lunch and then “forget” to tell your husband that you made it so you can eat the rest by yourself all week” good.

The soup thickens the next day, and it’s fun to dip tortilla chips into it, but still eat it with a spoon, so it counts as a meal.
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Don Corleone and I love this soup. I don’t give the little Critics any. I think it would be too spicy for them, plus then I’d have to share.
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And in case you were curious, here’s an update on my morning. Between 5:24 when I started this post and 7:00 or so (or whenever I get around to publishing), my kids woke up at 5:30, I ran one mile and it took 13 minutes, my 5-year-old (Curious George) drank two cups of milk and then puked it up all over the carpet (and me), I couldn’t figure out a formatting problem with this post (hence the random periods after each paragraph), and I posted a recipe.
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And that’s all I have to say about that.

Back to School Madness and Some Recipe Links

Well. I managed to blog through last year’s end-of-school year madness, blog while on vacation, blog every day in July, and yet this back to school business the last few weeks has really thrown me for a loop.

I do most of my writing in the morning, before the kids wake up. And since my kids are early risers, that usually means I’m at the computer by around 5 a.m. I’m a morning person, so this usually doesn’t bother me. I like the quiet. I like that I can think a complete thought without getting interrupted. Of course, I don’t have that many complete thoughts that early in the morning, but the point is that I could complete a thought if I wanted to.

I don’t know why, but the start of school this year has really worn me down. I don’t remember ever being this tired without having a newborn in the house. I haven’t gotten up early, and I crash on the couch as soon as the kids are in bed at night. So blogging kind of… didn’t happen.

I have some recipes that I’d like to share, but I’m still working on getting my act together. In the meantime, because I miss my blog, I’ll just  share some other people’s recipes that I found recently that I can’t wait to try.

Chipotle-Chicken Meatballs from Rachael Ray:

Chipotle-Chicken Meatballs

Southwest Chicken Chili Mac from Picky Palate

Poppy Seed Chicken from The Girl Who Ate Everything

Baked Breaded Eggplant from Aggie’s Kitchen:

Tomato Cobbler with Gruyere Biscuits from Annie’s Eats:

Oh, there are many, many more, but since it’s 10:00 and waaaaaay past my crash-on-the-couch-time, I’d really better be going.

I hope to get back into the swing of things next week. I promise to share some new recipes soon!

Chicken and Stuffing Bake

Summertime is a great time to be married to a teacher, especially when there are little kids to be wrangled.

Do you believe I actually ran errands this summer in the middle of the day?? It’s always exciting when I can go to the grocery store at say, 11 am, with no children.

Yes, you heard me right. That’s what I call exciting. A trip to the grocery store without kids.

Anyway, I digress. My husband went back to work this week. He had inservice days, but the kids go back next week.

He always loves the first day of school, when the kids get off the bus singing, and joining in a school-wide dance number outside the building before the bell rings:

"Back, back, back to school again..." -Grease 2

Of course, not everybody shows up:

"Bueller... Bueller..." -Ferris Bueller's Day Off

And when they do, it’s not always easy. Sometimes a life lesson or two must be imparted in this harsh, harsh world:

To Sir, With Love

And when those lessons aren’t heeded, punishment must ensue:

The Breakfast Club

Of course, he loves those teaching moments when his students rally together to support him in times of trouble:

"Oh captain, my captain!" -Dead Poet's Society

And there’s always a couple of quirky kids in every bunch, isn’t there?

Napoleon Dynamite

Of course, my husband teaches elementary school music, so I’m pretty sure none of those scenarios every really happen at his job. But do you know how hard it is to find movies about elementary school music classes?

I don’t either, I didn’t even try. I’m just assuming it would be hard.

On Don Vito Corleone‘s first day back to work after summer vacation, I of course, being the loving wife that I am, had to make one of his favorite meals for dinner:

Chicken Stuffing Bake

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 8 oz swiss cheese
  • can of “cream of something” soup, or see  below for substitute
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • a few tablespoons sherry
  • 8 oz stuffing
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick butter), melted

Directions:

  1. If you are using the cream soup substitute, prepare that now.
  2. Preheat oven to 350˚
  3. Spray bottom of 9 x 13-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Arrange chicken pieces in dish, and arrange swiss cheese over top.
  4. Pour soup into a large measuring cup. Add 1/4 cup milk, and top it off with the sherry. It should equal about 1 1/2 cups total. You could add a little more milk and a little less sherry if you prefer. Pour soup mixture over chicken and cheese.
  5. Sprinkle the entire dish with the stuffing. Drizzle the melted butter evenly over the stuffing.
  6. Cover and bake for about 45-50 minutes, or until chicken is done.

Personally, I think canned cream of something soups are kind of gross, so I use them sparingly. Here is a great substitute I found at Buns In My Oven:

Cream of Chicken Soup Substitute

  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  1. Melt the butter in a small sauce pan over medium-low heat. When melted, whisk in the flour and continue whisking until smooth and bubbly.
  2. Remove from the heat and slowly whisk in the chicken broth and milk. Return to the heat and bring to a gentle boil, whisking constantly, until the soup thickens. Add salt and pepper to taste. Substitute this for one can of cream of chicken soup.

Click here for printable

Chicken Stuffing Bake

The Critics thought:

The Don: This is really good!

Sarah Crewe: It’s good! It tastes like chicken.

Batman: (whining) I don’t really like it.

Curious George: I don’t really like it, either.

Elmo: Can I have some more of this?

So, it’s back to work, and I’m back to grocery shopping at night or on weekends. Boo hoo!

What about you? Do you have kids going back to school? Are you a teacher going back to work? How do you make going back to work/school after vacation more bearable?

This is not a real post.

This is a not a real post. And you are not really reading it. In fact, you’re not even here. You’re on an island in the Carribean, sitting on the beach, watching the waves crashing on the shore. The sun is warm, the water’s cool, and that cute young cabana boy is bringing you a daiquiri. And perhaps that’s not all he’s bringing you…

Hey! Stop it! This blog is G-rated, thank you very much. Get up, you have to make dinner!

I’ve told you about this chicken before, maybe more than once. And I’ve pestered encouraged people (like my sister) to make it. It has become my absolute favorite slow cooker meal. I make it so often that I’m pretty sure my family will feel the need to have an intervention soon.

I got the recipe from Stephanie O’Dea’s A Year of Slow Cooking blog. It’s so easy. You just take chicken breasts, Philadelphia cooking creme (Santa Fe blend), and a can of diced tomatoes. Dump them in your crockpot, and cook in low for 4-5 hours, shredding the chicken in the last hour. Then serve on taco shells. That’s it. Click here to see the full recipe laid out all nice and pretty, and a nice picture.

My kids love it, although I found out last night they like it better on soft tortillas than on crunchy taco shells.

I don’t have a picture (which is why this isn’t a real post), because I’m on vacation, and I’m supposed to be taking a blog break, anyway.

My favorite part of this recipe? The leftovers are fantastic cold, on a Triscuit. Maybe with a daiquiri. On a beach. In the Carribean. Or your living room. Whatever.

Watermelon

It’s hot.

I woke up at 3 a.m. and the thermometer in my living room read 80˚. That’s just wrong.

Can someone please tell me if the period goes before or after the degree sign in the above sentence? It just doesn’t look right either way, and that’s the sort of thing that bothers me.

Sorry, I digress.

As far as I’m concerned, there’s only one thing appropriate to eat when it’s this hot.

Watermelon.

Click on each image for the recipe.

I made this yesterday. Holy cow, is it good:

Watermelon Granita from The Pioneer Woman

This is so cute I can’t stand it:

Watermelon Lime Sorbet Slices from Food for My Family

I love when food is paired with the word ‘bombe:’

watermelon sorbet

Watermelon Ice Cream Bombe from Foodista

This looks interesting:

Grilled Watermelon "Burger" from The Nervous Cook

Watermelon and chicken is a refreshing summer combination:

Grilled Chicken with Watermelon Salsa from Kristine's Kitchen

This one’s for my sister:

vegan soul strawberry watermelon smoothie

Watermelon smoothie from Alisa Cooks

Or maybe you prefer:

Watermelon Smoothie Popsicles from One Ordinary Day

Watermelon is not just for kids:

Strawberry Watermelon Mojito from Baking with Basil

Or perhaps you prefer your watermelon with vodka:

Watermelon Martinis – Oh, sweet sugar baby!

Watermelon Martini from Bunkycooks

And of course, you could go old school:

Watermelon from God

Enjoy your watermelon, however you like it!

Grilled Chicken and Nectarine Salad

At the end of June, I found out about NaBloPoMo (National Blog Posting Month), and I decided to commit to blogging every single day for the month of July. I am happy to say that I have made it halfway through the month, despite having sick children and/or being away on vacation for most of that time! Yay! Two more weeks to go! If you get a chance, check out the NaBloPoMo blogroll and visit my fellow bloggers, and send some encouragement their way. Blogging every single day isn’t an easy task!

Grilled Chicken Salad with Nectarines
  • 3-4 boneless chicken breasts
  • 6 cups lettuce (I used Romaine)
  • 2-3 nectarines, sliced
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/4-1/2 cup crumbled goat cheese
  • your favorite vinaigrette (I used a berry vinaigrette)

Directions:

  1. Grill (or broil) chicken breasts until done. Allow to cool, then cut into slices.
  2. Put lettuce into a large salad bowl. Top with nectarines, pecans, and cheese.
  3. Arrange chicken slices on top of each serving, and add dressing.

Chicken and Nectarine Salad

Obviously with a salad like this you should add as little or as much of the ingredients as you like. I was going to make a dressing to go with it, but I happened to have a bottled berry vinaigrette on hand, and I thought that would be tasty (it was!).

My Critics loved the salad! Well, all but my harshest critic, Curious George. He wasn’t too pleased. But the rest of them happily ate their dinners, and some even had seconds! Yay!