Tag Archives: dinner

Spicy Turkey Chili


Here is one of my favorite recipes to make once and eat healthy dinners for a week!  This chili has great spices and bold flavor, but stays lean by using ground turkey instead of ground beef. The best part is that it all comes together in under an hour, including simmering time!

Spicy Turkey Chili from Dr. Oz

To add a little healthy crunch to the chili, I added some thinly sliced radishes. Not quite as good as topping a bowl with shredded cheese, sour cream and crackers, but it keeps the meal light.

Spicy Turkey Chili from Dr. Oz

Spicy Turkey Chili

Serves 6-8


  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pound ground turkey*
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 4 minced garlic cloves
  • 2 cans (28oz) crushed tomatoes, undrained (you could use diced tomatoes for the second can if you like tomato chunks in your chili)
  • 2 cans (15.5oz) kidney beans, drained (you could use a different bean for the second can, such as black beans)
  • 1-2 zucchinis, diced (optional)
  • 2-3 Tablespoons chili powder
  • 1-2 Tablespoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • pinch of cayenne pepper
  • 2 teaspoons maple syrup
  • 1 Tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • Optional toppings: shredded cheese, sour cream, crackers, radishes


Before you begin, I suggested opening all of the cans, draining the beans, and getting the spices out because the preparation goes very quickly once you start. Heat the oil in a large saucepan. Then, add the ground turkey, onion and garlic and stir frequently to break up the ground turkey. After cooking for 5 minutes, add all the remaining ingredients. Simmer uncovered for 25 minutes.

*You could double the ground turkey if you like a meaty chili – when I do this, I also increase the spices to keep the flavor up.

These Ziploc containers are my favorite for storing individual servings in the refrigerator or freezer. I will keep a few in the refrigerator to eat for the upcoming week and then I will freeze a few for some time in the future when I need a quick meal. You could also use these for bringing lunch to work.

Spicy Turkey Chili from Dr. Oz


Honey Cashew Chicken


This is hands down, my favorite stir fry to make! Prior to discovering this Honey Cashew Chicken recipe, I used to just haphazardly throw stir fry ingredients into the skillet. Now, this is my go-to dish. I made it for my family over the holidays and they loved it!

One of the secrets I learned from this recipe is to coat the chicken in cornstarch before cooking. You will not believe how juicy it keeps the pieces of chicken and also helps bind more of the flavorful sauce to the meat.

Don’t be intimated by the list of sauces in the ingredients because you can find almost all of them at Trader Joe’s for relatively cheap prices!

Honey Cashew ChickenOnce you have the vegetables chopped and the sauce whisked together, the whole meal comes together very quickly in the skillet.

Honey Cashew Chicken

This stir fry reheats very well for either dinners the next few nights or packed lunches. I always love making things that last for several meals!

Honey Cashew Chicken

Source: Cooking Light

Servings: 4


  • 2 chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized cubes
  • 2 Tablespoons cornstarch
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 Tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 Tablespoon dark sesame oil
  • 2 cups broccoli florets
  • 1 cup frozen edamame
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, sliced
  • ½ cup dry-roasted cashews
  • 1 Tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 3 Tablespoons honey
  • 2 Tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon Sriracha (hot chile sauce, such as Huy Fong)
  • Rice


I think it’s best to prep everything first because the stir fry will cook very quickly once you start adding ingredients to the skillet. Combine the cubed chicken in a bowl with the cornstarch, salt, and pepper until the chicken is fully coated. In a separate bowl, whisk together the vinegar, honey, soy sauce, and Sriracha. Chop up all of the vegetables so they are ready to go. Start boiling the rice depending on how long it takes to cook.

Add canola and sesame oils to a large skillet over medium-high heat. Sauté the chicken for about 5 minutes or until lightly browned. You will want to make sure to stir the chicken so that all sides get cooked.

Increase to high heat and add broccoli, edamame, garlic, onion, and red bell pepper. Cook and continue to stir frequently until the vegetables are crisp and the chicken is done, about 5 minutes.

Stir in the cashews, pour the vinegar mixture over everything and stir again. Serve over rice.

Butternut Squash and Farro Salad


Hey everyone – Hope you all had wonderful Thanksgivings!! I’ve been in Wisconsin for over a week now and loving every minute of it!! I made this for dinner a few weeks ago and absolutely fell in love. So, I decided to make it for our Thanksgiving dinner with our family friends and everyone raved about it. Bottom line – you have to try this recipe!!Butternut Squash and Farro SaladFirst off, are you wondering what farro is? It is a grain similar to barley that has a slight nutty flavor and is a bit crunchy in texture. It’s full of fiber and protein, so will keep you full for a long time! I have seen it in the bulk bins at different grocery stores, but you could also order it online. Here is the package I bought at Whole Foods:

Butternut Squash Salad with Farro and Pepitas

Preparing the butternut squash for roasting isn’t the easiest, so here’s how I did it. First, cut off both ends of the squash. Next, using a vegetable peeler, peel off the skin until you get to the orange meat on the inside. Then, cut the squash in half the long way and scoop out the seeds. Finally, dice into cubes.

Butternut Squash Salad with Farro and Pepitas

I could eat this all fall and winter long!Butternut Squash and Farro Salad Butternut Salad with Farro, Pepitas and Feta

Serves 4 to 6, generously, as a main dish

1 medium butternut squash (about 2 pounds)
5 to 6 tablespoons olive oil, divided
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 cup farro
1/3 cup toasted pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
3 ounces feta (or another salty cheese) crumbled or chopped (about 3/4 cup)
1 tablespoon sherry or red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon water
1/2 teaspoon table salt
1/2 teaspoon granulated sugar
1/2 small red onion, finely chopped

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Peel squash, then halve lengthwise and scoop out seeds. Cut squash into approximately 3/4-inch chunks. Coat one large or two small baking sheets with 2 tablespoons oil total. Spread squash out in single layer on sheet. Sprinkle with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Roast until pieces are tender, about 30 to 40 minutes, turning them over halfway through the cooking time. Set aside to cool slightly.

While squash is roasting, cook farro in a large pot of simmering salted water until the grains are tender but chewy, about 30 minutes. (Since there are so many varieties of farro, however, if your package suggests otherwise, it’s best to defer to its cooking suggestion. My farro called for soaking overnight, but I didn’t do that and it turned out fine.) Drain and cool slightly.

While squash is roasting and farro is simmering, in a small bowl, whisk together sherry vinegar, water, 1/2 teaspoon table salt and granulated sugar until sugar and salt dissolve. Stir in onion; it will barely be covered by vinegar mixture but don’t worry. Cover and set in fridge until needed; 30 minutes is ideal but less time will still make a lovely, lightly pickled onion.

In a large bowl, mix together butternut squash, farro, red onion and its vinegar brine, the crumbled cheese and pepitas. Toss with 3 tablespoons of the remaining olive oil, use the 4th one only if needed. Taste and adjust seasonings. Eat now or later. Salad keeps in the fridge for up to a week.

Adapted from Smitten Kitchen here.

Foil-Baked Tilapia with Vegetables


I’ve got another quick weeknight dinner option for you! This is what I ate for dinner every single night this past week…and loved it: tilapia and fall vegetables steamed in a perfect little foil package. You guys, this is probably the easiest dinner I’ve made this year and SO healthy! With the food-heavy holidays right on the horizon, give this recipe a try!

The recipe can be adapted to whatever vegetables you like or are in season at the moment. And this is why it’s so easy: On Sunday, chop up the vegetables you are going to use for the week. Then, each night create a foil packet of fish and vegetables, drizzle with a few seasonings, wrap it up and bake! A fresh meal each night!

I tried a little bit of a different combination with each dinner. I mainly used red pepper, squash, carrots, snap peas, and green onions. I happened to have fresh parsley on hand, so I chopped some of that up too.

Foil-Baked Tilapia with Vegetables

The second night, I added capers and sun dried tomatoes, which was delicious! I also threw in some broccoli and onion.

Foil-Baked Tilapia with Vegetables

When you pull it out of the oven, you can put it right on a plate and eat straight from the foil.

Foil-Baked Tilapia with Vegetables

I used Jenna’s recipe over at Eat Live Run as a guideline but improvised with my own ingredients. So feel free to check out her version, as well as mine, and add whatever veggies you want!

Foil-Baked Tilapia with Vegetables


  • tilapia fillets (or other white, mild-flavored fish, fresh or frozen)
  • 1 red pepper, sliced into thin strips
  • 1 small squash
  • carrots
  • snap peas
  • green onions, sliced thin
  • garlic cloves, sliced thin (no need to mince since they will roast in the oven)
  • fresh herbs such as basil or parsley
  • lemon, juiced
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • balsamic vinegar
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • Other optional additions: capers, sun dried tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, zucchini, yellow onion, use your imagination…or whatever is in your fridge!


Preheat your oven to 450 degrees.

In a bowl, combine the sliced vegetables, garlic, and herbs. Drizzle olive oil and lemon juice over the veggies and sprinkle with salt. Toss well.

Tear a square of tin foil about 12 x 24″. Fold it in half and place one fish fillet in the center. Add your vegetables on top of the fish, then drizzle with balsamic vinegar and add your desired amount salt and pepper. Wrap up the foil around the fish and fold in all sides tightly so that no steam escapes and you have a nice little package.

Place in the oven for 15-20 minutes, until the fish has baked through and flakes easily. (I used frozen filets and found it took closer to 30 minutes.) You can always check the fish by unwrapping the bundle and sticking a fork into the fish.

When it’s ready, pull out the foil package, unwrap on your plate, and dig in!


Chicken with Tabbouleh


Are you searching for a great meal to make once and have dinner or pack-able lunches for the week? This is what I made yesterday and am looking forward to eating all week! It’s Barefoot Contessa’s Chicken with Tabbouleh.

Chicken with Tabbouleh

The ingredients are so fresh and it’s satisfyingly healthy.

Chicken with Tabbouleh

If you can make this ahead, it tastes much better once the flavors have marinated together a bit. I made my chicken and bulgur the night before and then assembled everything the next morning. Also, pay attention to the type of bulgur wheat you are using. I bought quick cooking bulgur wheat, so had to adjust the ratio of water/lemon/olive oil that the bulgur soaks in according to the directions on the package.

Chicken with Tabbouleh

I served mine with some crumbled feta on top – it was the perfect finishing touch!

Chicken with Tabbouleh


  • 1 1/2 cups boiling water
  • 1 cup bulgur wheat
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (1-2 lemons)
  • Olive oil
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 whole (2 split) chicken breast, bone in, skin on (I just bought boneless chicken breasts)
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup minced scallions, white and green parts (1 bunch)
  • 1 cup chopped fresh mint leaves (I don’t like mint, unless it’s in a mojito!!, so I was tempted to leave it out, but it ended up not being too overpowering. If you don’t like mint, you could sub it for something else, like basil.)
  • 1 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley (1 bunch)
  • 1 hothouse cucumber, unpeeled, halved lengthwise, seeded, and medium-diced
  • 2 cups halved cherry tomatoes (I used roma tomatoes, which worked just as well.)


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

In a heat-proof bowl, pour the boiling water over the bulgur wheat. Add the lemon juice, 1/4 cup olive oil, and 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt. Stir. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and allow the bulgur to stand at room temperature for about 1 hour.

Place the chicken breast on a baking sheet and rub it with olive oil. Sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper. Roast for 35 to 40 minutes, until just cooked. Set aside until cool enough to handle.

Remove the chicken meat from the bones and discard the skin. Cut the chicken into medium dice and add to the tabbouleh. Add the scallions, mint, parsley, cucumber, tomatoes, 2 teaspoons salt*, and 1 teaspoon pepper. (*Note: Ina calls for 2 teaspoons salt, but I thought this was too much. Start with 1 and add more later if necessary.) Season, to taste, and serve immediately or cover and refrigerate. The flavors will improve as it sits.

Here is the link to the recipe on food network: Chicken with Tabbouleh or you can find her Tabbouleh recipe in her cookbook “Parties”.


Quinoa Salad with Mango and Chicken


Are you looking for a healthy meal to recover from a weekend of over-indulgence?? That is exactly what I was looking for and this salad does just the trick. (I will share my weekend indulgence recipe soon, because it was AMAZING.) But first, this salad is perfect for making on a Sunday and having ready for dinner during the week. I had been looking for a recipe to try to learn to like kale, since it seems to be the “super-food” that cures everything these days. This salad is the perfect segway dish, with every bite, I cannot believe how delicious and refreshing it is! I really like buying the kale at Trader Joe’s in a bag that comes with it already chopped up:

Quinoa Salad with Mango and Chicken

My friend Denise taught me a great trick: Massage the kale in your hands, just give it a few squeezes like a stress ball, to reduce the toughness.

Quinoa Salad with Mango and Chicken

The first time I made this salad, I used mango. This time, the mangos weren’t ripe, so I tried it with nectarines, which was equally great. I would definitely use them again.

Quinoa Salad with Mango and Chicken

Adapted from Kate at ThreeApplesADay
¾ cup quinoa

1 cup chicken or vegetable broth

½ cup water

4 chicken breasts
(grilled or pre-cooked, sliced or cubed)
1 mango
(or nectarine/another fruit you like)
1 red bell pepper

¼ cup chopped green onion

2-3 handfuls kale leaves, chopped

¼ – ½ cup cilantro, to taste, chopped

¼ – ½ cup mint, to taste, chopped
(I left this out because I don’t like mint)
3 T lemon juice

Lemon zest

3 T olive oil

1 ½ T red wine vinegar

Salt and pepper to taste

1. Fill a saucepan with water and chicken or vegetable broth and quinoa. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to medium low. Simmer for 15 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. Fluff with a fork and cool in refrigerator (best to make ahead of time if possible, so it’s chilled when ready to eat).

2. Dice mango and red bell pepper. Massage and chop kale, and chop scallions, cilantro, and mint.

3. Whisk together lemon juice, lemon zest, olive oil, red wine vinegar, salt, and pepper.

4. Toss the quinoa with the dressing, add all of the other diced/chopped ingredients, and  top with chicken.

5. Garnish with cilantro, mint, and lemon zest and season with salt and pepper.