If you are trying to decide what to cook for dinner I am about to introduce you to one of the best chicken dinners that just so happens to be one of the healthiest. It is my own recipe so I do not have a name for it. Honestly, it does not matter what you call it, all you need to know is that it is good. You just need the instructions for how to make an easy chicken dinner.
First off, I always start with frozen chicken breasts. If I have planned it out correctly and know that I will be cooking a particular day, I will not freeze it. However, more often than not, something happens and I go out to eat, or order a pizza and skip cooking at home for a few days while my chicken sits in the refrigerator going bad. I don’t know if you have ever noticed this, but raw chicken does not keep for very long in the fridge.
So to avoid all of that, I just go ahead and freeze it if I do not use it the same day that I bring it home from the grocery store.
But that is not a problem if you need to cook a chicken dinner on relatively short notice. Here is the trick I use.
I remove that frozen chicken from the packaging and place it in a crock pot and let it cook for four or five hours while I go out and do other things.
When I return, the chicken is cooked, but still very white. I like to brown my chicken a little before eating so I remove it from the crock pot and place it in a pan to pan fry it for a few minutes. At this point I begin to add some of my favorite ingredients. This recipe is versatile and is really nothing more than traditional stir fry, the difference being is that once I add the veggies to the chicken mixture, I only cook it on low heat for a few minutes. High heat destroys a lot of the nutritional value of any vegetable so the less heat, the better.
So here is one of the best chicken recipes. I will call it Grilled Chicken Veggies.
Ingredients Needed for Stir Fry Chicken
Once again, you can put whatever you want into it and I vary these ingredients from time to time.
- 3 – 4 chicken breasts
- Red, Yellow or Green Bell Pepper
- 1 – 2 diced tomatoes
- 1 crown of Broccoli florets
For browning the chicken, I use coconut oil. Some like to use extra virgin olive oil, but that is not a good idea because it has a low smoke point, meaning that at a certain temperature, the beneficial health effects of the oil turn bad. For olive oil, that smoke point is much lower than coconut oil, so you can use the latter to fry meat and other items much longer and at a higher heat.
Before cooking the chicken in the pan, prepare you broccoli and place it in boiling water on the stove and cover. Turn off the heat and let it simmer in the hot water covered.
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How to Prepare the Meal
Before I remove the chicken from the crock pot, I prepare the pan that I use to fry the chicken. When I say fry, I do not mean fry as in fried breaded chicken. I am simply marinating the chicken in the oil in the pan.
First I add the coconut oil so that it covers the pan, then I start to sprinkle in a few of my favorite seasonings: Italian Seasoning, Oregano, Paprika.
The paprika is crucial because it will coat the chicken once it is in the pan and aid in searing the chicken with a hardened outer layer.
Before adding the chicken, I bring the coconut oil to high heat and toss the chicken breasts in the pan. One of the great things about cooking the chicken in the crock pot beforehand is that it makes the chicken breast very tender. So if you want to cube it while it is in the pan you can, or simply use a fork and a spoon and tear it apart into shredded chicken.
As it begins to brown, make sure you toss it in the pan to cover it with oil and seasoning, particularly the paprika.
While this is happening, you can prepare the other ingredients.
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Dice or cube a tomato or bell pepper. You can also add green onions. In the past, I have also added black beans to the mixture.
After the chicken has been browning for about five minutes, remove the broccoli from the pan and drain in a colander in the sink. Then toss the broccoli in with the chicken.
Next, add the chopped bell peppers. I like to add the tomatoes last, sometimes even waiting and serving them on the table as a topping to the dish.
Let the mixture simmer on low heat for about five minutes. If you want to cover everything with a little bit of extra virgin olive oil, go ahead now. However, I usually wait and just add it when I have the dish on my plate.
If you are looking for quick simple meals, this is a great option. Also, this dish is very healthy. You might question the frying in oil, but coconut oil is very good for you so there is nothing in this dish that is bad for your. Plus it is low calorie.
When I am on a workout routine, I usually make this a couple of times a week, then simply prepare individual servings in separate plates so I have a meal ready to eat.
Give it a try. Add your own favorites and create your own quick meals with chicken. You can make it as nutritious as you want. I am definitely going to experiment with various types of beans soon.
Best of all, there is no need for any side dishes. You have everything you need.
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