When I’m looking for say, an appetizer to take to a friend’s party, a dessert to bake and share with co-workers or weekend dinner suggestions, I turn to the pictures of Pinterest. I am definitely more of a visual person - always doing much better when I can see something rather than playing with the hypothetical. Recipe books are great but since I always find myself gravitating towards those few pictures (every other page), why not just save the $20 bucks and choose from an entire (free) board of pictures?
Most recently I created the Broccoli Quinoa Casserole (recipe here) [c/o Eating Well, Living Thin] - a much healthier version of one of my favorite dishes I practically grew up on. And if there is anything I’ve learned as I’ve taken on the conscious effort to cook more, it’s that there is always room to modify a recipe to fit your needs. Take this recipe for example, I added cooked baby bella mushrooms and shredded baked chicken to take this dish from something I would consider a side to an all-in-one stop meal!
Bake chicken at 400 degrees for approximately an hour. Timing will depend on whether or not the chicken is frozen. Feel free to season as desired – I used olive oil and red pepper flakes for some heat. Once cooked, shred using two forks. [Typically this is my 'insert boyfriend here' part ] Add the chicken to the mixture in the recipe.
Cook Quinoa as directed; however, make sure to shop around for it! I went to the almighty grocery store, Central Market, which I love dearly, but found it for close to $10.00 a box. After a quick visit to the farmers market, I walked out with a couple cups for under $3.00!
Next, loosely chop the broccoli and baby bellas and sautee in a pan over medium heat with olive oil, salt and pepper. Add to the mixture in the recipe.
Combine all ingredients as directed and spoon in to an oven-safe shallow dish. Although you’re directed to use an 8×8 in. pan, I modified and used a smaller dish, using the extra mixture to make individual serving sizes (perfect for staying on track for those bikini wishes at 250 calories a serving!).
After 35 minutes in the oven, this cheesy, gooey, delicious dish looked just like the picture! 5 stars from the boyfriend I might add….Enjoy!