Slow Cooker Chicken Fajitas

IMG_2544Yields 4 to 5 servings
From Tasty.com

Ingredients:
1 Large bell pepper, red sliced
1 Large bell pepper, yellow sliced
1 Large bell pepper, green sliced
1 Large onion, white sliced
2 Pounds chicken breast, boneless, skinless cut in half
2 Tbls seasoning, taco
6 Cloves garlic, fresh minced
1 Each lime
10 Ounce(wt)s tomatoes, diced, with green chiles drained (Rotel)
12 Each tortilla, flour, 8 inch
1 Cup cheese, Mexican blend
1/2 Cup sour cream

Directions:
Add half of the sliced peppers and onions to your slow cooker.

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Next, layer the chicken and coat all sides with taco seasoning. Top with garlic, tomatoes (be sure to drain) and the juice from one lime.
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Add the remaining peppers and onions, cover, and cook on HIGH for 3 to 4 hours.
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Remove chicken and cut/shred into slices (chicken left longer will tend to shred more – cook to your preference).
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Return the sliced chicken to the slow cooker to marinate in the juices for about 10 more minutes (on LOW) until ready to serve.
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If you find that there is too much liquid, you can remove till there is a desired amount before serving. Assemble Fajitas to your liking – we recommend topping with cheese, sour cream, and guacamole! Enjoy!
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Slow Cooker Kung Pao Chicken

So the Cook90 Challenge continues and I ate up all my taco bowls, so it was time for something new. I needed to shop for the new week, so it was time to break out the Slow Cooker. If you have read my blog, you know I am a big fan. Yes, I own the Instant Pot, but my Slow Cooker is my jam.

This was super easy, but the original recipe was pretty poorly written as execution was a mess. I had to add water a couple of times to the recipe and was thankful I didn’t just leave my house with it running – and it was on LOW! I’ve fixed the recipe and made adjustments where needed. This recipe turned out great and frankly I felt it could use a big more vege for my tastes. So feel free to add a couple of bell peppers instead of just the one, or even throw in a couple of rainbow carrots sliced on the bias.

I went with regular jasmine rice for this one, but brown jasmine is also a favorite of mine.I also had both black and white sesame seeds, so I tossed them both in for color.

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Yields 6 servings
From the unknown interwebs, but edited to make it work

Ingredients:
2/3 Cups cornstarch
1/4 tsp pepper, black, ground
1 Pound chicken breast, boneless, skinless cut into bite sized chunks
2 to 4 Tbls oil, olive
4 Each pepper, ancho, dried asian peppers
2/3 Cups peanuts, roasted
1 Large bell pepper, red bite sized pieces
1 Large squash, zucchini sliced in half moons
1/2 Cup soy sauce, low sodium
1/3 Cup water
3 Tbls honey
3 Tbls hoisin sauce
3 Cloves garlic, fresh minced
1 tsp ginger root grated
1/4 tsp pepper, crushed red
2 Tbls cornstarch
3 Tbls water
2 Cups rice, jasmine (cooked)
2 tsp sesame seeds, white
2 Each onion, green chopped

Directions:

Cut chicken into bite-sized pieces.
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In a large zip-top bag, toss in chicken, cornstarch and black pepper. Shake until well-coated.
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Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Cook chicken about 2 to 3 minutes on each side, until lightly browned. Make sure to cook the chicken in at least two batches depending on the size of your skillet. Cooking too much of the protein at once will cool down the pan and cause the meat to steam. You want the meat to get a great crust on it.
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Transfer chicken into the slow cooker.
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In a medium bowl, whisk together the soy sauce, water, honey, hoisin sauce, garlic, ginger and red pepper chili flakes. Combine well.
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Pour soy mixture over chicken in the slow cooker. Add 2 cups water. Stir well.
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Cover and cook on LOW for 2 1/2 to 4 hours or HIGH for 1 1/2 to 3 hours.

About 30 minutes before serving, whisk together the cornstarch and water in a small bowl and stir into the slow cooker if the mixture in the slow cooker is very liquidy – if not, then skip this step altogether.

Toss in the dried red chili peppers (if you cannot find these, just add another 1/8 tsp of crushed red pepper), red bell peppers, zucchini and peanuts, stirring to combine. Cover and cook on HIGH for another 20 to 30 minutes or until the vegetables are tender and the sauce has thickened up.
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Sprinkle with sesame seeds, green onions and serve over zoodles, cauliflower rice, quinoa or your favorite rice.
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For meal prep
Divide rice evenly into lunch containers. Add chicken and sprinkle with sesame seeds, cover and store in fridge for up to 4 days.
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Turkey Taco Bowls

Challenge proposed:

Cook every meal for 30 days: Breakfast!, lunch and dinner. Do not eat out, do not cheat and buy breakfast pastries, Lean Cuisines, etc. Cook. Every. Meal. #cook90challenge

Ummmmm, ok. Sure. This seems easy enough. Until I look at my work schedule and realize that I tend to work 10+ hours a day. Sure, I work from home and my office is nicely ensconced in my 2nd bedroom (which doesn’t have a bed in it) and is right upstairs from my kitchen. Easy pisy, right? Nope.

So I’ll do this modified. Twice a week, I’ll cook. I’ll meal plan, prep and cook 4 meals worth of breakfast (hello, when do I actually make time to eat breakfast… my cold brew coffee does NOT count), lunch AND dinner. I will make healthy versions of these things and I will not order take out when it turns out I have been head down configuring, data migrating or in BPRS for 6 hours straight (sorry Jimmy John’s, Door Dash, etc.). No eating out. Sorry Starbucks. No eating out. (Sorry to my bartenders, too). Sorry Yelp. Well, at least I can catch up on my backlog of reviews?

So here was my first lunch attempt. Even I was skeptical. I figured I would get bored of the same thing every day. No way – not with this one. Now, I did modify it from the original. A) Made is spicier and B) No where could I find only 1 pound of ground turkey. So I went a little crazy and ended up with 5 servings. More for me! This gets better every day as the flavors get more intense. And, this is a keeper!

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Yields 4 servings
From somewhere out there on the interweb

Ingredients:
1 Cup rice, brown
1 1/3  Pound turkey, white ground
3 Tbls seasoning, taco
1 Pint tomatoes, cherry quartered
1 Each pepper, jalapeño minced
1/4 onion, red minced
1/2 Each lime juiced
1/4 tsp salt, Kosher
12 Ounce(wt)s corn, canned drained and rinsed
1/2 Cup cheese, Mexican, grated
1 to taste taco sauce
1 Cup corn chips, yellow (optional)
Plastic containers with lids

Directions:
Cook brown rice according to package directions, adding the lime zest (of you can juice the other half of the lime) and salt to the cooking water.

Cook turkey over medium heat, tossing in the taco seasoning and breaking it up as you cook. Cook for 10 or so minutes, until cooked through.

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Add about 1/4 water and let it cook off. This helps cook in the flavor of the seasoning.
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Combine tomatoes, jalapeno, onion, juice from the lime and salt and toss together. Set aside – this is your salsa.
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To assemble lunch bowls:
-1/4 portion of cooked rice
-1/2 cup corn kernels
-1/2 cup cooked taco meat
-1/4 portion of salsa
-1/4 portion of cheese
Top with a drizzle of taco sauce (I use Taco Bell available in a bottle at the grocery)

Store in the fridge until ready to heat and eat – about 1 to 2 minutes in a microwave. Top with a little sour cream (if desired) and extra taco sauce. Serve with chips on the side.
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