Category Archives: Mexican

Mango Chipotle BBQ Burrito Bowl

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If you are still reading my blog, you are great. Work and busy weekends have taken over my life, leaving little time for blogging. Recently I’ve had a couple friends tell me they keep checking my blog but are disappointed when they find no new posts. That of course made me want to update, and because I miss it!

So it’s August already. Summer always has a way of getting away from you, doesn’t it? Having only been out of school for a couple of years, I’m still getting used to having no formal vacations, deadlines, or breaks built into my schedule. It makes the seasons kind of seem like a blur and sometimes I find myself having no idea what day or even month it is (like a few months ago when I started to write “September” as the date… what?)

Today’s post is inspired by a recipe that I’ve been eyeing forever: Chipotle-Mango BBQ Chicken Salad on Iowa Girl Eats. I’ve been following IGE for a couple years now and it’s one of my favorite food blogs, as well as one of the few I subscribe to. I’ve had this particular recipe saved for a long time and decided it was time to try out this miraculous-sounding BBQ sauce. I decided to take a slightly different take on the recipe and make mine into a burrito bowl instead, because who doesn’t love a good burrito bowl?

This Mango Chipotle BBQ Burrito Bowl is filled with chicken marinated in a sweet and spicy semi-homemade barbecue sauce, rice, and some of my favorite veggies like bell peppers, fresh corn, and avocado! It’s a great summer recipe because most of the ingredients are in season right now and is light enough that you won’t feel guilty eating it. To make the sauce quicker and easier, I added pureed mangoes and chipotle peppers to store-bought BBQ sauce. My favorite thing about recipes like this is that you can completely customize it to your taste and you get a bit of each flavor in every bite!

Mango Chipotle BBQ Burrito Bowl
adapted from Chipotle-Mango BBQ Chicken Salad on Iowa Girl Eats

Ingredients:
makes about 3 burrito bowls

  • For the sauce:
    – 1/2 cup fresh diced mango
    – 1/3 cup barbecue sauce
    – 1/4 cup tomato sauce
    – 2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, seeds removed and diced
  • 1 lb. boneless chicken breast, cut into 1-inch strips (I used tenderloins)
  • 1.5 – 2 cups cooked brown rice
  • Assorted toppings of your choice (about 1/3 cup of each):
    – Diced bell peppers
    – Diced tomato
    – Corn
    – Beans
    – Avocado
  • Optional: cheese, sour cream, scallions, cilantro
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Ingredients for the sauce, plus tomato sauce! Always forget to picture at least one ingredient…

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Your delicious toppings!

Directions:

  1. In a food processor or blender, combine ingredients for the sauce. Blend until smooth. Place chicken in a medium bowl and pour 2/3 of the sauce over it, making sure each piece is thoroughly coated. Cover with plastic wrap and marinate in the fridge for at least 2 hours or up to 6.
  2. Cook your chicken on the grill or in a frying pan over medium-high heat until cooked throughout. Let rest for about 5 minutes and then cut into bite-sized pieces.
  3. Start to assemble your burrito bowls: First rice, then chicken, your toppings, and then drizzle with the remaining mango chipotle sauce and enjoy!
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Start by preparing your mango chipotle BBQ sauce: combine diced mango, bbq sauce, chipotle peppers, and tomato sauce, and blend until smooth.

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Pour 2/3 of the sauce over your chicken and stir, making sure each piece is thoroughly coated. Marinate for at least 2 or up to 6 hours in the refrigerator.

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Cook up your chicken, either on the grill on in a frying pan.

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Assemble your delicious burrito bowl! Start with rice, chicken, and your favorite toppings.

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Finish off with the remaining mango chipotle sauce, and optional cheese and sour cream. Enjoy!

Chicken & White Bean Chili

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Ah, it’s good to be back in the old blogging world. As you may have noticed, I haven’t been around much lately. I feel bad I haven’t kept up with this blog as much as I’d like, but I honestly haven’t had the time. The only time I’m able to photograph and write recipes for HH is on the weekends, and if my weekends are busy, then unfortunately blogging gets pushed to the back burner. I’ve photographed a couple recipes over the past few weeks, but I wasn’t particularly excited about them, so I wanted to wait until I had a post I thought was worth sharing.

Chicken & White Bean Chili is a fun twist on the traditional. It’s made with shredded chicken breast, green chiles, classic chili spices, and uses a chicken broth instead of tomatoes. It has all the wonderful flavor of tomato chili, but with a slightly lighter taste and is lighter on the calories, too. A combination of cornmeal and milk is used to thicken up the soup a bit, though it tastes delicious just with the broth if you want to save further calories. It’s a simple one-pot meal that comes together in under an hour and makes for great leftovers during the week.

This is a recipe I originally wrote a post for about a year ago, and have made a few times, but my photos were less than impressive. It’s not the most photogenic soup, but it sure is tasty. Last time I made it, I used cornstarch to thicken the soup, but I didn’t like the consistency. After reading a few similar recipes, it seemed like cornmeal and milk was the way to go, and I definitely liked the results better.

Chicken & White Bean Chili
adapted from White Chicken Chili on AmyBites and Pinch of Yum

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Ingredients:serves 5 -6

  • 1 Tbsp olive oil + 1 Tbsp butter
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 1 large green bell pepper, diced
  • 3 – 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • Spices:
    • 1 tsp cumin
    • 1 tsp chili powder
    • 1/2 tsp salt
    • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper or crushed red pepper
    • 1/4 tsp paprika
  • 1 32 oz. container low-sodium chicken broth
  • 3 raw chicken breasts (about 1 1/3 lb)
  • 2 14 oz. cans white beans, rinsed and drained (Cannellini, Northern White – any kind will work!)
  • 1 4 oz. can of diced chiles
  • 1/4 cup cornmeal
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • juice from 1 lime
  • Optional toppings: chopped scallions, cilantro, shredded cheese, avocado, sour cream

Directions:

  1. In a small bowl, whisk together cornmeal and milk until combined and set aside. Let it sit while cooking the chili so the cornmeal can soak up the milk and thicken up.
  2. In a large cooking pot, heat olive oil and begin sauteing diced onions. After about 10 minutes, add diced bell pepper and continue cooking, stirring occasionally until veggies are softened. Add butter and garlic and saute for an additional 3 – 5 minutes.
  3. Stir in spices and let them toast for a minute or two. Pour in chicken broth and can of diced chiles and bring to a boil. Place chicken breasts in pot and cook over a medium simmer for about 10 minutes.
  4. Remove chicken breasts from broth and let them sit on a cutting board for a few minutes before shredding it. Add shredded chicken back to the broth, along with beans. Simmer for 10 – 15 minutes, covered loosely.
  5. Pour in the cornmeal and milk mixture and cook for an additional 10 minutes. Finish off with lime juice and any spices or salt as you see fit. Serve with optional toppings and enjoy! πŸ™‚

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Begin by whisking the cornmeal and milk together to let it thicken while your soup is cooking

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Saute up your onion, pepper, and garlic

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Stir in spices and then pour chicken broth in, along with diced chiles. Bring to a boil and add raw chicken breasts right into the broth. Let them cook for about 10 minutes and then remove to a cutting board.

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Shred your chicken using forks (or your hands if it’s cooled off enough!)

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Add chicken back to the pot, along with the drained beans. Simmer for 10 – 15 minutes, loosely covered.

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Stir in your thickened cornstarch/milk mixture and continue cooking for another 10 minutes. Finish off with lime juice for an extra bite.

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The finished product!

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Add your favorite toppings

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Nom nom nom

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And what chili is complete without avocado? πŸ™‚

Turkey Chili Mac

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I wanted to come up with a more creative title for this recipe but at the same time, this one seemed appropriate. “Chili Mac” is kind of a lazy way of saying chili macaroni or chili mac and cheese, and that’s what this meal is – simple and lazy, but oh so delicious. I know I just posted a pasta recipe last week, but oh well. Pasta fits in well to my work schedule.

To me, two of the most comforting meals are chili and pasta. They’re both filling, stick-to-your-ribs kind of food and I love that they’re also both one-pot meals where you get a bit of every ingredient in each bite. Those kind of meals are my favorite (along with stir-fry), rather than having your protein separated from your veggies which are separated from your carbs/starch.

Pasta is an easy, go-to meal when you’re busy or tired, and chili may take a bit longer but makes for great leftovers. So the combination of the two is simple, filling, and so satisfying. I wasn’t quite ready to post a soup recipe yet, but the weather is certainly starting to change, so this chili mac recipe seemed like the perfect way to ease into fall.

The idea for this recipe was inspired by Skillet Chili Mac on Deep South Dish. It instantly appealed to me, but I made a few minor adjustments to make it a little nicer on your waistline. I opted for ground turkey over ground beef, and eliminated the sausage. I also used slightly less cheese than the recipe calls for. To make this recipe even healthier, you could use low-fat cheese and whole wheat or whole grain pasta. Think of this Turkey Chili Mac as a combination of American Chop Suey and chili, or as chili with pasta shells added. It’s filled with flavorful ground turkey, pasta, tomatoes, beans, cheese, and notes of cumin and chili powder.

Turkey Chili Mac
adapted from Skillet Chili Mac on Deep South Dish

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Ingredients:

  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1/2 a red bell pepper and 1/2 a green bell pepper, diced
  • 2 large cloves garlic
  • 1 lb. ground turkey
  • 2 1/2 cups dry shell pasta (or macaroni)
  • 1 Tbsp each cumin and chili powder
  • 2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
  • salt, to taste
  • 1 15. oz can diced tomatoes (I like fire-roasted)
  • 1 8 oz. can tomato sauce
  • 1 4.25 oz. can diced green chiles
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, diced (or half a pepper for less heat)
  • 1 cup kidney or pinto beans, rinsed and drained
  • 3/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • optional toppings: scallions, sour cream, avocado

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Directions:

  1. In a medium-large cooking pot, heat 1 Tbsp olive oil. Cook diced onion for 10-12 minutes, until softened, and add diced peppers. Cook for another 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add garlic at the end, sauteing for another 2-3 minutes and then remove from heat.
  2. In a separate pot or pan, cook ground turkey. You can do this in the same pot as the veggies if you wish, but I wanted my turkey to get nice and browned. While turkey is browning, begin cooking your pasta.
  3. Once turkey is browned and cooked throughout, add to pot with veggies. Stir in spices and cook over low heat for a few minutes until spices become fragrant. Add diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, green chiles, and chopped jalapeno pepper. Simmer for 10 – 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until extra liquid has been absorbed and chili has thickened. Add beans in the last 5 minutes of cooking.
  4. Stir cooked pasta into chili and remove from heat. Don’t forget to test-taste and adjust any spices as needed. Top off with cheese and serve with optional toppings and enjoy πŸ™‚
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Start by sauteing up your veggies and garlic

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Brown your ground turkey and add to veggies, along with spices

Add diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, and chiles. Simmer for 10 - 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add beans near the end.

Add diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, and chiles. Simmer for 10 – 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

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Add beans near the end of cooking

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Stir in pasta shells and cheese

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Top with scallions and enjoy! πŸ™‚

Avocado Greek Yogurt Dip

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Hello everyone! I apologize for my absence over the past two weeks. August 12th, as I mentioned, was the first day of my new job and needless to say I have been pretty busy and tired.

I’m still in training and learning the ropes, but I like my job so far. The people on my team and in the clinic have been very friendly and helpful, and I feel like I’ve already learned so much (but still have A LOT to learn). I really enjoy working in the hospital – each day is fairly busy and I’ve seen a lot of interesting things and people so far. Working in such an established hospital is a great way to get exposure to things you normally wouldn’t, such as rare diseases and conditions and witnessing groundbreaking treatment. Each day I get off the Longwood T stop, I feel proud that I made it this far and that I’m now an employee of one of the best children’s hospitals in the world, however small my role may be.

Adjusting to my new schedule wasn’t quite as challenging as I thought it would be. As long as I get enough sleep, I feel pretty good throughout the day (though coffee is typically involved) and I haven’t needed any naps so far like I thought I would. It’s a little hard only having a few hours of free time when I get home in the evening, but I think once I figure out how to make the most of that time, it will become easier. Even though I don’t feel the need for naps on work days, I am just tired enough that I’ve been too lazy to cook and put together a decent meal. That’s something I’ll definitely need to work on because my diet has been suffering a bit and it’s not very economical for me to buy lunch multiple times a week. But I do walk about a mile each work day (half a mile from the t to the hospital and back), so that’s a plus.

Anywho, food. I’ve missed food and cooking and blogging and generally being a foodie. I almost started to forget that cooking relaxes and distracts me when I have a lot going on. For now, I think I may only be able to blog on the weekends but perhaps as time goes on I’ll figure out how to update during the week, as well.

This Avocado Greek Yogurt Dip is inspired by Trader Joe’s Reduced Guilt Chunky Guacamole. TJ’s Reduced Guilt Guacamole is mixed with fat-free Greek yogurt, which cuts out about half of the fat. At first I was unsure how my beloved guacamole would taste mixed with Greek yogurt, but I found that I actually loved it. The yogurt adds a nice tangy creaminess to the dip and complements the flavors surprisingly well.

The base of the recipe is actually identical to my guacamole, but with the addition of the yogurt. I chose to call it Avocado Greek Yogurt Dip mostly because I liked the way it sounded and I already have two guacamole recipes on this blog.

Avocado Greek Yogurt Dip
makes about 1 cup

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Ingredients:

  • 1 ripe avocado, mashed
  • 1/4 cup diced tomato
  • 2 – 3 Tbsp diced red onion or shallot
  • 2 green onions, diced
  • 1/2 jalapeΓ±o, finely diced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 small handful of cilantro, chopped
  • juice from 1/2 of 1 lime (about 1 Tbsp)
  • pinch of cumin
  • salt, to taste
  • 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
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Ingredients (don’t mind the unattractive appearance of my avocado…)

Directions:

Combine all ingredients in a small bowl and mix thoroughly. Serve with chips, crackers, or veggie sticks and enjoy! Store in the refrigerator in an air-tight container and cover with plastic wrap to save for later.

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Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix it up

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and voila! Creamy, tangy, low-fat guacamole πŸ™‚

 

Chili Lime Chicken Burgers

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If you’re looking for a healthier burger still packed with flavor for your cookouts this summer, look no further. These chicken burgers are seriously delicious while staying light on calories.

This recipe comes from Iowa Girl Eats, and is inspired by Trader Joe’s Chili Lime Chicken Burgers, which is found in the frozen prepared foods section of TJ stores. I used to eat those burgers all the time in college because they were perfect for a quick meal between classes or before an exam. Making these burgers at home is economical and you can even freeze them to eat at a later time. They’re also super simple and will probably take you no more than 20 minutes from start to finish.

I stayed pretty true to the ingredients in Kristin’s recipe, but tweaked it just a little to suit my taste. These Chili Lime Chicken Burgers are juicy, slightly spicy, and have a hint of lime – perfect for the summer time. They taste amazing with guacamole or salsa – especially pineapple or mango salsa! – and are a great alternative to beef or turkey burgers. They’re probably my favorite burgers to date!

Chili Lime Chicken Burgers
slightly adapted from Copy Cat Trader Joe’s Chili Lime Chicken Burgers on Iowa Girl Eats

Ingredients:
makes 4 burgers

  • 1 lb. ground chicken
  • 1/3 cup finely diced red bell pepper
  • 1/4 cup chopped green onions
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • juice from half of one lime (about 1 – 1.5 Tbsp)
  • 1 Tbsp Sambal Oelek chili paste or 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • optional: 2-3 Tbsp chopped cilantro
  • to serve: buns/rolls, cheese, sliced avocado, salsa

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Directions:

In a medium mixing bowl, combine all ingredients up to cilantro. Mix together just until combined and form into 4 patties. Fire up your grill or frying pan, and once it’s hot, place your burgers on the heat (don’t forget to lightly grease the grill/pan!). Cook for about 3-5 minutes on each side, or until burgers are lightly browned and cooked throughout. Serve on a bun with optional toppings and enjoy!

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Mix all of the ingredients together and form the burgers into 4 patties.

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Grill up those burgers.

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Cook until browned and no pink remains.

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Serve with cheese, if desired (I used cheddar)…

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… and some sliced avocado and salsa. I used Newman’s Own Pineapple Salsa

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πŸ™‚