I have been wanting to try this recipe FOR.EV.ER (said in Squint's voice from The Sandlot).  It's a Giada recipe, which almost never disappoints, and it has 575 reviews on Food Network with a 5 star rating.  Seriously, this is a no brainer. However, my husband thinks Chicken Cacciatore is absolutely disgusting.  He hates it at restaurants and has been scarred by previous bad experiences with this dish.  Every time I mentioned it while I was meal planning, he would make it abundantly clear that he would not eat this meal if I made it.  Finally, I decided to make it anyway and not tell him. Guess what??? I'm sure you know what comes next...HE LOVED IT.  I actually made him repeat to me at least five times that he loved it and that he was wrong for discouraging me from making it before.  I also made him swear never to question me and my cooking skills again.  I won this battle! HA!  

Try this recipe.  It's a healthier version of Giada's and its delicious and easy. 

  • 4-6 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 2 tsp of salt, plus more to taste
  • 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper, plus more to taste
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons of olive oil 
  • 1 large bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 3-4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 3/4 cup dry white wine
  • 1 28 oz can diced tomatoes with juice
  • 3/4 cup reduced sodium chicken broth
  • 3 tbsp drained capers
  • 1 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped coarsely 

Season the chicken with 1 teaspoon of salt and 1 teaspoon of pepper.  Then, dredge the chicken lightly in flour. 

In a large saucepan or dutch oven, heat the olive oil over medium high heat. Add the chicken and cook until brown, about 5 minutes per side.  Depending on the size of your pan, this could take a couple of batches.  Set the chicken aside on a plate. 

Now add the bell pepper, onion and garlic to the pan.  Add a little oil to the pan if necessary (since using skinless breasts, there may not be much grease to work with).  Cook until the onions are soft and translucent, about 5 minutes. Season with a little salt and pepper.  Add the wine to the pot and cook it until it reduces by half, about 3 to 5 minutes.  Then add the tomatoes with their juice, chicken broth, and the oregano. Return the chicken to the pan and make sure to cover with the sauce. Bring the sauce to a simmer and cook the chicken for about 20-30 minutes.  Once the chicken is cooked through, remove the chicken with tongs and place on a platter.  Cook the sauce a little longer if necessary to thicken it. Pour the sauce over the chicken and sprinkle with basil. 

I served my chicken on a bed of spaghetti with some garlic bread on the side. This is a really delicious and easy weeknight meal.  Enjoy! 

*Note: This picture does not do the dish any justice.  I was too hungry to take a decent photo!*

Ok this is by far the most mouth watering, amazing, and flavorful macaroni and cheese ever.  I decided to make this while my husband was out of town, since he isn't a big fan of mac and cheese.  I intended to eat it for a about a week for lunch, but that did not happen.  I finished it in about two days!  All by myself! I was a bit upset with myself for eating like such a pig, but I just couldn't help it. The regular ol' mac and cheese that I make is definitely good, but this one doesn't even compare.  The sauteed mushrooms and herbs add so much flavor to this dish, which is great when cooking with something flavorless like fat free cheese.  The blend of cheeses worked very well too.  I was wary about substituting gruyere cheese for fat free swiss cheese, but the results were surprisingly good.  The bread crumbs on top also add a nice crunchiness to each bite. Overall, I was ecstatic with the results.  I cannot wait to make this again and this time I will have my husband try it as well.  I highly recommend this and think everyone should add it to their grocery list...now! :)

  • 1 lb of corkscrew pasta (or your mac and cheese favorite)
  • 2 tbsps of olive oil, divided
  • 1 lb of baby bella mushrooms, chopped
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 3 gloves of garlic, minced
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 3 tbsp all purpose flour
  • 2 tsp fresh basil, minced
  • 2 tsp fresh rosemary, minced
  • 2 tsp fresh thyme, minced
  • 2 cups 1% milk 
  • 6 oz of fat free american cheese (Lifetime)
  • 6 oz of fat free swiss cheese (Lifetime)
  • 1/4 - 1/2 cup of panko breadcrumbs, lightly toasted (I used Italian seasoned)

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Meanwhile, cook the pasta according to the package directions, drain and set aside. Then, chop the shallot, mince the garlic and herbs, and shred the cheeses. Set aside all ingredients.  

Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large skillet.  Add the chopped mushrooms and saute until the mushrooms are tender, about 5-7 minutes.  Stir in the garlic and saute until fragrant, about 1 minute. Season the mixture with salt and pepper, add the white wine vinegar and set aside. 

Next, in a medium saucepan heat the other tablespoon of olive oil.  Whisk in the flour and make a paste.  Continue whisking the paste for a couple of minutes until it turns golden. Stir in the fresh herbs and continue whisking for about 1 minute, until they are fragrant. Pour in the milk and whisk constantly while the mixture simmers and thickens.  Finally, add the shredded cheese gradually, stirring constantly so that there are little or no clumps.  

Add the cooked pasta and mushroom mixture into the cheese sauce.  Stir really well to combine everything together evenly.  Pour the mixture into abaking dish coated with cooking spray.  Sprinkle the breadcrumbs on top and bake for 15-20 minutes.  Let it cool for 15-20 minutes before serving.  Enjoy! 
I  love, love, love lasagna.  Who doesn't though?  I mean it's great for large crowds, great to freeze, great to reheat, and just tastes amazing.  Recently I was invited to a large family party where they served lasagna.  Of course I could not eat it, which made me want to make a michi-friendly version at home immediately.  There are a million lasagna recipes, but I think the classic recipes are the best.  Of course, when cooking low fat nothing is "classic", but I try to make dishes taste as close to the original as possible.  I used turkey instead of sausage or ground beef and fat free cheese instead of full fat cheese.  The outcome was definitely better than expected.  The spinach in the dish added a lot of delicious flavor and the Lifetime cheeses have yet to disappoint.  I'll definitely be putting this into the rotation.  Enjoy! 

  • 9 - 12 lasagna noodles (depending on the size of your baking dish)
  • 1 pound of extra lean ground turkey
  • 1 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil 
  • 2/3 cup of onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2/3 cup Italian flat leaf parsley, minced and divided
  • 3 (6oz) cans of  tomato paste 
  • 15 oz tomato sauce (I used Classico Tomato & Basil)
  • 2 cups of water
  • 1 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1 1/2 tsp basil
  • 1 1/2 tsp oregano
  • 15 oz fat free cottage cheese
  • 10 oz frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained 
  • 1/4 cup of Rice Grated Topping, Parmesan Flavor
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 tsp garlic salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 3 cups fat free mozzarella cheese, shredded (Lifetime brand is best!)


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. 

Cook the lasagna according to package directions.  Make sure to salt the pasta. Once al dente, take the noodles out of the water carefully with tongs and place them in a single layer on kitchen or paper towels.  This allows the noodles to dry straight without curling, which makes it easier to assemble the lasagna later. 

While the pasta is cooking, brown the turkey on medium heat in a medium pot with the olive oil. Crumble the turkey and make sure it is cooked evenly.  Add the onion, garlic, and 1/3 of the parsley to the pot.  Cook for a few minutes until the onions are translucent.  Mix in the tomato sauce, tomato paste, water, Italian seasoning, basil and oregano. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes. 

Meanwhile, in a medium mixing bowl, combine the remaining 1/3 cup of parsley, cottage cheese, spinach, parmesan topping, eggs, garlic salt, and pepper.  Beat the mixture well until everything is blended evenly. 

After the sauce has simmered, spread two cups of the tomato sauce evenly into a 9x13 baking dish (or the closest size you have).  Then, place 3-4 lasagna noodles on top of the sauce.  After that, spoon the spinach mixture on top of the noodles evenly in a thin layer.  Spoon more tomato sauce on top of the mixture and then sprinkle with 1 cup of mozzarella cheese.  Layer 3-4 more lasagna noodles on top and then the remaining spinach mixture.  Then spread half of the remaining sauce and another cup of mozzarella cheese.  The final layer will have 3-4 noodles, the remaining sauce, and the remaining cheese. 

Cover tightly with aluminum foil and bake for 45 minutes. Remove the foil and cook 10-15 more minutes until the cheese is bubbly (remember fat free cheese melts and looks differently than regular cheese).  Let the lasagna cool for 10 minutes and serve.  

Bon Appetit! 

I'm back!  Wow, I cannot believe I haven't updated my blog in over two months! For the last couple of months I have been eating the same ol' same ol'. Nothing new and exciting, and definitely nothing that was blog-worthy. I was just completely uninspired to make anything new that I came across. 

That was until I went to my sister-in-law's house for dinner about a week ago. Lynn is an incredible cook and every time I go to her house I get to try a new delicious and diet-friendly meal.  This time it was Ina Garten's Mexican Chicken Soup. I absolutely love Ina and had spotted this recipe before, but just hadn't gotten around to trying it.  What a treat!  The soup is light, a little spicy, and very healthy.  It's delicious as an appetizer or as a meal and I think it's a good soup to eat year round since it's not heavy at all. 

I made the soup a little healthier by using skinless chicken breasts and also by choosing fat free toppings.  I hope you enjoy this soup as much as I did! 

Ingredients for Soup: 
  • 2-3 large chicken breasts, bone in, skin OFF
  • Olive oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 cups chopped onions (about 2 onions)
  • 1 cup chopped celery (2 stalks)
  • 2 cups chopped carrots (4 carrots)
  • 4 large garlic cloves, chopped
  • 2 1/2 quarts chicken stock (I use organic)
  • 1 28 ounce can whole tomatoes in puree, crushed
  • 3 jalapeno peppers, seeded and minced 
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander seed
  • 1/4-1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves
Ingredients for Toppings:
  • Fat free cheddar cheese
  • Fat free Greek yogurt 
  • Avocado, sliced
  • Baked tortilla chips (optional)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Remove the skin from the chicken breasts, brush the breasts with olive oil and sprinkle generously with salt and pepper on both sides. Bake the chicken for 35-40 minutes, or until the breasts are cooked through.  Set chicken aside and let it cool. 

Meanwhile, prepare your vegetables.  Chop the onions, carrots and celery. Mince the garlic and jalapenos.  Finally, crush the tomatoes.  To crush the tomatoes, pout the can into a bowl and smash the whole tomatoes with a fork. 

Then, heat three tablespoons of olive oil on medium heat in a large pot or dutch oven and cook the carrots, celery, and onions in the pot for 10 minutes, or until the vegetables are crisp tender and the onions are starting to brown. Add the garlic to the pot and cook for 30 more seconds. 

Next, add the tomatoes and their puree to the pot along with the chicken stock, jalapenos, cumin, coriander, 1 teaspoon of pepper, and the cilantro. Bring the soup to a boil and then lower the heat and simmer for 25 minutes. 

Once the chicken is cool enough to handle, shred it with your hands (or a fork and knife) and add it to the pot.  

Serve the soup with a little bit of sliced avocado, a dollop of yogurt and some cheddar cheese.  Yum! 
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A Tasty Treats By Michi Original
Chicken Pot Pie, take two!  I made Chicken Pot Pie before and blogged it, and honestly thought it was an awesome "diet" substitute.  That was before I discovered I could make a real and savory crust, not a phyllo crust.  After deciding to remake the crust, I also decided to revamp the filling a bit as well.  I thought the first filling was still very good, but had some room for improvement. The new and improved Chicken Pot Pie is really, really amazing.  The inside is creamy and chunky and the outside is crusty and delicious. Absolute perfection! I also decided to make individual pot pies this time, which I find are much prettier and are the perfect serving size.  This will definitely fulfill the craving for pot pie if you are on a low fat diet. Promise! Even my mother loved it, who is not on my diet :). 

The recipe takes time to make (I would say at least 2 hours) but it's well worth the time and effort.  I actually really enjoy taking time to make something complicated every once and a while.  However, If you need to cut the time, you can prepare some ingredients the day before, which would significantly reduce the cooking time.  For example, you can bake the chicken the day before and refrigerate it, and you can also use frozen vegetables as well. I do not recommend using a rotisserie chicken, since it is cooked with the skin, which adds a lot of fat. I also I do not recommend using a store-bought crust.  The crusts are high in fat and have very unhealthy ingredients.  Besides, the crust listed below is really quite easy to make. 

I hope you enjoy making and eating this recipe as much as I did!  

Ingredients for Filling: 
  • 3 large boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • Kosher salt and black pepper
  • 3 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil plus more for brushing chicken breasts
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic
  • 4 carrots, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 medium onion, chopped 
  • 1/4 tsp dried thyme leaves
  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 cup fat free half and half (any brand that is organic or does not have hydrogenated oil, palm oil, or mono & diglycerides)
  • 1 1/4 cup low fat/1% buttermilk
  • 2-3 tbsp of low sodium organic chicken stock  
  • 8 oz of frozen peas, thawed and cooked
Ingredients for Crust: 
  • 2 cups of all purpose flour 
  • 2 tsp baking powder 
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 2/3 cup low fat/1% buttermilk 
  • 3 tbsp plus 1 tsp of vegetable oil 
  • 1 egg 
Ingredients for Egg Wash: 
  • 1 egg, beaten well 
Necessary Cookware: 
  • 4 16 oz ovenproof bowls.  (The mixture makes approximately 2 quarts of filling if you decide to use another size.) 
Directions for Filling: 

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Place the boneless skinless chicken breasts on a baking sheet, brush them with extra virgin olive oil on both sides, and sprinkle generously with salt and pepper all over.  Bake the chicken for 35-40 minutes, or until cooked through.  Let the chicken cool enough so that it can be handled.  Then, shred the chicken with your hands, or if you prefer, cut the chicken into cubes.  (This step can be done a day in advance in order to save time). 

To make the filling, begin by preparing your vegetables. Chop your carrots, onions, and mince the garlic.  Cook the peas in the microwave and set aside. 

Heat three tablespoons of olive oil on a medium heat.  Cook the onions, carrots, garlic and thyme for 8-10 minutes or until the onions are translucent and carrots are crisp-tender. Add the chicken stock and season with salt and pepper to taste.  Then, add the 1/4 cup of flour to the vegetables and cook for one minute, stirring continuously.  Add the half and half and buttermilk slowly, stirring continuously until the mixture is smooth.  Let the mixture simmer on low and thicken, stirring occasionally. 

Directions for Crust: 

While the filling is simmering, it's time to make the crust. 

In a large mixing bowl, mix together the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt together with a wooden spoon.  In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, vegetable oil and egg.  Pour the milk mixture over the flour mixture. Stir the mixture together with a spoon until most of the ingredients are gathered together.  Then, using your hands, make a ball out of the dough and grab any leftover pieces of dough and put it together.  

On a floured surface, knead the ball of dough 10-12 times.  Then, using a floured rolling pin, roll the dough out to 1/8 to 1/4 inch thickness.  Cut the dough into four 7.5 to 8 inch circles, one for each bowl.  You can use the bowls as a guide if necessary. 

Now, fill each bowl with filling to the top and then carefully place a dough circle on top of each bowl. Press the dough securely around the bowls and brush them egg wash.  Cut three slits into the top of each pot pie and place them on a baking sheet. 

Bake the pot pies in the oven for 25-30 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown.  Let the pot pies cool for about 10-15 minutes and serve.  Enjoy!! 
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Tasty Treats By Michi Original

*Updated on 01/14/10*

My dad owned a restaurant pretty much my entire life and this restaurant had the best potato soup, by far.  I almost never went there without ordering it.  Of course, it was loaded with butter and cream so I haven't had it in years.  

Yesterday, I decided to attempt to remake the soup into a low fat version at home.  I was really wary of how it would taste because of the fact that I was cutting out basically all of the important fats.  I honestly thought that I might end up throwing away a couple of pounds of potatoes, along with a lot of onions and other ingredients. Amazingly, the outcome was creamy, rich, and delicious!  The fat free half and half actually worked as a substitute, along with the low fat buttermilk. The toppings made all the difference too, the turkey bacon on top was the perfect flavoring to add that little extra "something" to every bite.  I definitely recommend this recipe.  It was so good that in two days, the huge pot is practically gone.  I thought I would be freezing half of it, but there is barely any left! 

Ingredients for Soup: 
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil 
  • 2 large white onions, chopped 
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 cup fat free half and half (any brand that doesn't have mono & diglycerides, like Publix)
  • 1 cup 1% buttermilk (McArthur)
  • 1/2 cup of Nonfat Greek yogurt (Oikos)
  • 2 pounds Idaho potatoes or Yukon Gold potatoes (I only had Yukon Gold), washed, peeled and cubed into large bite-sized pieces 
  • 1/2 tsp salt, plus more to taste
  • 1/2 tsp Italian Seasoning 
  • 1/4 tsp hot sauce (Cholula is our favorite)
  • 32 ounces of Organic Chicken Broth 
Ingredients for Toppings:
  • Fat Free Cheddar Cheese, shredded (Kraft of Lifetime)
  • Nonfat Greek Yogurt (Oikos)
  • Green onions, chopped
  • 98% Fat Free Turkey Bacon, chopped and cooked

Peel and chop the onions and set aside.  Wash, peel, and chop the potatoes into large bite-sized cubes.  This soup is not creamed at all, so the chunks cannot be too large to eat. 

Heat olive oil over medium low heat.  Toss the onions in the olive oil and saute for a few minutes until soft and translucent.  Add the flour to the onions, stir to coat the onions and then saute for 5 more minutes.  After that, add the chicken stock, half and half, buttermilk and yogurt and stir continuously until smooth. Finally, add the spices, hot sauce, and potatoes. Stir some more and then cover the soup and simmer on low for 45 minutes to an hour, until the soup has thickened and the potatoes have cooked.  Stir the soup occasionally and check the flavoring before serving. Add more salt or hot sauce if necessary. 

While the soup is simmering, cook the bacon.  Chop the bacon and saute in a nonstick pan with some canola oil cooking spray until browned and cooked through and set aside.  Chop a couple of green onions and set aside as well.  

Serve the soup hot with toppings.  Enjoy this amazing and hearty soup! 
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Tasty Treats By Michi Original

*I'm fully aware that this picture looks like a bunch of slop on the plate.  I was too hungry to take decent pictures! :)* 

My husband loves eggplant, so he actually introduced me this dish.  I have never really been into eating vegetarian meals for dinner, but this is absolutely amazing! Tonight was the first night I made this and we ate like pigs (as you can see from the humungous portion on the plate).  This is actually a pretty easy recipe to make, and a great recipe to freeze.  I had planned on making this last week but wasn't able to finish cooking it, so I froze the eggplant after breading it (before I even got a chance to fry it).  Today I took it out of the freezer, fried, and baked it and it was perfect.  This is definitely a great meal to prepare in advance and heat up later on when you are too tired to cook! 

  • 1 medium to large eggplant 
  • 1/2 cup of all purpose flour
  • 4 egg whites, beaten 
  • 1/2 cup Panko Italian Seasoned Breadcrumbs 
  • 1/2 cup Ians Italian Seasoned Breadcrumbs (or your favorite organic brand)
  • 1/4 cup Rice Grated Parmesan Topping from Galaxy Nutritional Foods
  • Olive oil for frying 
  • 2 jars of Classico Tomato & Basil (or your favorite sauce)
  • 8 oz of fat free mozzarella cheese, grated (Lifetime or Kraft)
  • 1 box of spaghetti 

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. 

Cut the eggplant into 1/2 inch circles and set aside.  Prepare your breading assembly line by putting the 1/2 cup of flour into one bowl, the beaten egg whites into another bowl, and both breadcrumbs and rice parmesan into the last bowl.  Make sure to mix the breadcrumbs and rice parmesan together well. 

Dip the eggplant rounds first in the flour, then in the egg, and finally in the breadcrumbs mixture. Make sure to let the excess egg drip off each piece before dipping into the breadcrumbs mixture.  Pat the breadcrumbs onto the eggplant so that they adhere well. Set breaded eggplant pieces aside. 

Put half of 1 jar of tomato sauce into a large baking dish and set aside. 

Heat 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil in a large frying pan on medium or medium low heat.  Fry the eggplant for 2-3 minutes on each side, or until they are browned and crispy (not burned!). You may need to add a little more olive oil if the eggplant soaks it all up while frying.  Do this in batches until all the eggplant is fried.
Place the fried eggplant in a single layer in the baking dish with tomato sauce. Pour the remaining half of the jar of sauce over all the pieces.  Sprinkle parmesan cheese over the top of the eggplant pieces and bake for 25-30 minutes, or until the cheese is bubbly and soft. 

While the eggplant is baking, cook the pasta according to the package directions.  Make sure to salt the pasta well.  Also, in a small saucepan, heat the second jar of tomato sauce on medium-low heat until warmed through. 

Serve the eggplant on a bed of spaghetti with tomato sauce.  Bon Appetit! :)

I will never feel the need to eat fried shrimp again.  These shrimp are so crunchy and flavorful, you really do not miss the fried version one bit.   I think the broiler has a lot to do with it and I may start using the broiler more often for other "oven fried" dishes I make!  They are perfect with the usual cocktail sauce, but if you want something a little different than the norm, you should definitely try the chili-lime dipping sauce listed below, which was simply delectable.  

These are great as an appetizer for a party or also for dinner with some potato wedges and ketchup on the side.  I love appetizers for dinner! 

This recipe was inspired by Ellie Krieger, and she continues to surprise me with her amazing and healthy recipes.  However, her cooking time and directions were way off on this one.  I had to alter the cooking time greatly in order to keep the shrimp from burning to a crisp.  If you refer to the original recipe, I highly recommend that you use my recommended cooking time instead. Enjoy! 

Ingredients for Chili-Lime Dipping Sauce: 
  • 1/3 cup of Nonfat Greek Yogurt (Oikos is my favorite)
  • 2 tbsp of mayonnaise
  • 1 tbsp of lime juice
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 1 lime, zested
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
 Ingredients for Shrimp:
  • 1/2 cup of all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 4 egg whites, beaten 
  • 3/4 cup Plain Panko Bread Crumbs
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined 
  • 2 tbsp canola oil 
  • Pam Cooking Spray

To make the dipping sauce, combine the yogurt, mayonnaise, lime juice, chili powder, lime zest, and salt.  Taste for flavorings and put in the refrigerator until ready to serve. 

To make the shrimp, begin by defrosting the shrimp (if bought frozen).  I find the easiest way to do this is by putting the frozen shrimp in a colander and tossing it with cold water until all the frost is off the shrimp and they are soft and ready to handle.  

Once the shrimp is ready, prepare your assembly line of breading.  First,  add the chili powder, salt and pepper to the flour in a medium sized  and stir well to combine.  Next, beat the egg whites in another bowl until fluffy.  Last, mix the bread crumbs, salt and pepper in a third bowl.  

Toss the shrimp in the bowl with the flour until coated lightly.  Dip each shrimp in the egg white mixture, letting the excess drip off, and then dip it in the breading. Making sure to pat the breading on the shrimp so it adheres well. 

Place each shrimp on wax paper and set aside. 

Coat a baking sheet with two tablespoons of canola oil and put under the broiler for 2 minutes until heated.  Remove the heated baking sheet and add the shrimp to the sheet in even rows.  Spray the shrimp lightly with canola oil spray and put it back in the broiler for 2 minutes or until crisp and golden brown.  Watch the broiler carefully to ensure that the shrimp does not burn.  After that, remove the sheet from the broiler, turn each shrimp over carefully, spray them again lightly with canola oil, and return the shrimp to the broiler for another 2 minutes or until crisp and golden brown.  Remember to watch the broiler carefully the entire time. 

That's it!  Serve the shrimp hot or at room temperature with the chili-lime dipping sauce or some cocktail sauce.  Stay tuned with blog updates on variations of this recipe, the flavoring options are endless! :)
My new found love, Lifetime Cheese, makes the most delicious fat free cheeses I have ever tasted.  Usually fat free cheeses taste rubbery and melt terribly. Lifetime Cheese actually tastes great and melts perfectly!  I love the variety they offer as well (not just the typical mozzarella and cheddar).  When I saw that they make a "Mild Mexican" flavor, I knew I had to finally make chicken quesadillas. Once I started sauteing the colorful vegetables I knew that this recipe would be amazing and healthy.  Mmmm I wish I had leftovers to enjoy again tomorrow!  

You can find this cheese at most grocery stores, but if you don't find it there you can also buy it from their website (link above)!

  • 2 large 99% fat free boneless and skinless chicken breasts 
  • 1 tbsp of vegetable oil 
  • Juice of 2 limes
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 tsp of red pepper flakes
  • Sprinkling of fajita seasoning 
  • 2 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 red pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1 green pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1/2 large yellow onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup chopped mushrooms (your favorite variety)
  • 1 cup of packed baby spinach
  • 8 oz of Mild Mexican Lifetime Cheese, grated
  • 6 10 inch Fat Free Tortillas
Ingredients for Topping: 
  • Fat Free Greek Yogurt (Preferably Oikos)
  • Homemade Guacamole, see recipe link above

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. 

Butterfly the chicken and put the thin breasts into a zip-loc bag with the vegetable oil, lime juice, garlic, and red pepper flakes. Massage the mixture around the chicken and let it marinade for at least an hour in the fridge. 

While the chicken is marinating, chop the red pepper, green pepper, onion, and mushrooms and set aside.  Grate the cheese and set aside as well.  *If making guacamole, you will also have time to prepare it during this time.* 

After the chicken has marinated, remove it from the fridge and cut the breasts into small cubes.  Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a medium large pan and add the chicken cubes. Sprinkle some fajita seasoning on your chicken, as much as you like  Saute the chicken until they are cooked through. Remove the chicken from the pan and set aside. 

Add the remaining tablespoon of olive oil to the pan along with the peppers, onions, and mushrooms.  Saute for a few minutes until the onion are soft and translucent.  Add the cooked chicken back to the pan along with the spinach and saute for about one minute, until the spinach has wilted.  

Place two tortillas on a baking sheet.  Scoop the chicken and vegetable mixture onto each tortilla and sprinkle some cheese over the top of each one.  Then top with another tortilla.  Bake the quesadillas in the oven for about 15-20 minutes, or until the cheese has melted and the tortillas are slightly toasted.  

Cut the tortillas into fourths and serve immediately with some plain yogurt, guacamole, and any other of your favorite dipping sauces! 
Oh yes, I said parmesan!  This is not the parmesan you are expecting, but it's just as delicious!  I decided to try some vegan/soy parmesan topping and I was not disappointed!  What makes grated parmesan taste good? Parmesan flavor? Check!  Parmesan consistency?  Check!  Fat content? Not so much. I am so happy to have found this and will be using it in a lot of my recipes from now on. Next on the diet hunt, blocks of fat free parmesan cheese.  :)

This recipe is basically the same as my previous blog entry of Baked Italian Chicken Tenders, just with the parmesan added and different fries.  This is a quick and easy meal for a weeknight.  Yum! 

Ingredients for Chicken Tenders: 
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • McArthur Cultured Lowfat Buttermilk
  • 2 pounds of chicken breast, cut into tenders
  • 1  cup of Panko Italian seasoned bread crumbs 
  • 1 cup of Jaclyn's Italian seasoned bread crumbs (or any other organic brand you like) 
  • 1/2 cup of Rice Grated Topping, Parmesan Flavor (I like the one by Galaxy Nutritional Foods, can be found at Whole Foods - request it if they don't have it in stock!). 
Ingredients for Baked Potato Wedges: 

  • 2 large baking potatoes, or 4 small
  • 2 tbsp olive oil 
  • 3/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/3 tsp fresh ground pepper
  • 1/2 tsp minced fresh garlic (or more if you prefer!)

Directions for Chicken Tenders: 

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  First, cut the chicken breasts up into chicken tenders. Then, put the chicken tender pieces in a large bowl and pour the buttermilk over them.  Toss the chicken tenders in the buttermilk and make sure they are completely coated.  Cover the bowl and put them in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes. 

Combine the bread crumbs and parmesan topping in a bowl with a fork or whisk. Once the chicken is done marinating, take the chicken pieces directly from the buttermilk and coat each tender it in the breading.  Make sure to pat the breading so that it sticks to the chicken pieces all over.  Put the chicken tenders on a baking sheet and drizzle with a little olive oil. 

Bake the chicken tenders for 12-15 minutes, turning once, or until browned and cooked through. Serve immediately with your favorite dipping sauce. 
Directions for Potato Wedges: 

While the chicken is marinating, cut the potatoes into wedges. First, cut the potatoes lengthwise and then cut each half in thirds lengthwise. You'll have 6 wedges if you use a large potato.  Put the potatoes on a cookie sheet and cover the potatoes with the olive oil, salt and pepper.  With washed hands, toss the potatoes inside the oil, salt and pepper to make sure each potato is well coated. Spread the potatoes on the sheet in a single layer so one side of each potato is down. 

Bake the potatoes for 30 to 35 minutes, turning the potatoes once after about 20 minutes. Bake until the potatoes are browned and crispy on the outside, but not burned.  Sprinkle with a little more salt and serve immediately.  Yum!

Tip:  Put the potatoes in the oven first, on the bottom rack, so that the fries and chicken tenders are done at the same time.