Ringing in the New Year

My take on a paleo buffalo chicken casserole

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HNY everyone! It’s been awhile and for that I apologize. Thus far 2017 has been a bit of a shit show and I’m still trying to get my bearings. Between a lingering illness (just go away already), a sick cat, and a poor little adopted cat we had to give up I’m pretty much ready for 2018! That being said this will not be the blog that addresses resolutions or raising my bar, that will come, but enough is enough and it’s time to get on with it so here I am. Plus Jen is waiting for the buffalo chicken casserole recipe so I need to get my tuchas in gear.

For the menu this week I stuck to some tried and true favorites because it was easy and because I needed some comfort food in my life. I’ve included links to the recipes I borrowed below.

Monday Steak with Trader Joe’s Garlic Coffee rub, sweet potato, and broccoli
Tuesday Fajita chicken with peppers and onions, quinoa with green chilis, black beans, and roasted corn
Wednesday Buffalo Chicken Casserole from paleomg.com
Thursday Sweet Potato Bahn Mi bowls from paleomg.com
Friday Mongolian Beef from fedandfit.com, brown rice, Szechuan broccoli
Saturday Beef Stew
Sunday Chili

With the exception of Friday, we ate pretty well this week. The coffee rub from Trader Joe’s was surprisingly delicious. If you are a meat eater I highly suggest you check out this rub, it was the perfect combination of sweet and savory. I said after almost every bite, “damn this stuff is good”. I’m really trying to find an excuse to have steak again this week so I can eat it one more time.

img_3692Dinner Tuesday was similar to something I featured in my first blog. The quinoa was the exact same, except I added some roasted corn from Trader Joe’s just because I had it and I could. The chicken and veggies were loaded with the Wildtree seasonings, chipotle lime, carne asada, and adobo, as well as some lime juice. I just threw it all in a pan with some avocado oil and voila, dinner.

The Bahn Mi bowl from http://www.paleomg.com is seriously one of my most favorite dishes. I could eat it daily. I’ve stopped using the white sweet potatoes, just because I can’t find them anywhere but Lowe’s and I don’t live near one, but the orange ones taste just as good in my opinion. One day I’ll feature this recipe, because it’s divine and complicated and I modify the hell out of it, but not today, today we are going to focus on another favorite of mine, the buffalo chicken casserole.

1 spaghetti squash I slice mine in half, take the seeds out, and turn it upside on a baking sheet and bake at 400 for about 30 minutes, until it’s soft to the touch on the outside. When it’s done I take it out and let it cool so I don’t burn the hell out of my fingers when removing the threads. Once cooled I remove the threads and transfer them to a 9×13 baking dish.
1 tsp Ghee Heat the ghee in a pan, add the chopped carrots, peppers, onions, celery, and garlic and sauté until the onion is tender.
6 oz baby carrots
1 cup red bell pepper
½ cup onion
2 stalks celery
3 tsp minced garlic
1 lbs ground chicken Add the chicken and ranch seasoning to the pan and cook until no pink remains.
1/3 package ranch seasoning
1 cup hot sauce Add the hot sauce, mayo, and cottage cheese and mix thoroughly.

 

After this is done mix the ingredients in the pan into the spaghetti squash noodles in the baking dish.

1 tbsp Mayo
¼ cup low fat cottage cheese
¾ cup egg whites Add the egg whites to the pan and mix until you can’t see them. Pop it in the oven and bake at 350 for an hour until it is set.

The original recipe calls for a Dutch oven or an 8×8 pan. I found that I had too much food for an 8×8 and used the 9×13. Based on the size of the pan I wrote this up in MFP as 12 image-1servings and usually eat two servings at dinner. I topped it with some Bolthouse Farms blue cheese yogurt dressing and green onion. The macros are pictured here, too bad I can’t eat this daily, I’d never have to worry about having good macros again!!!

The upcoming weeks are going to be interesting. I was planning on “raising my bar” this Monday, but like I said above, SHIT SHOW. The new plan is to start this Monday and just hang on for dear life while we’re in Vegas for 5 days. I’m also supposed to start the Whole 30 the Monday after Vegas, my boss and coworker are also doing it so I’ll have that support and I asked T if he was interested. I figured he’d say no, as he loves beer, but he agreed and even sent me an email this am that said, “I’m drinking my coffee black today in preparation for this cult diet you are making me do”. My plan is to take the recipes I know and love and modify them again so that they meet the Whole 30 “rules”. I also plan on blogging about it, so be prepared for an angry and sugarfree Leanne in the upcoming weeks. I am already having nightmares about not having my dark chocolate fix at night.

A tip before I go and stare longingly out the window waiting for snow, I realized this Sunday while meal prepping that egg frittatas are a perfect way to use up old, leftover veggies in the fridge. This Sunday I had some spinach and mushrooms that were looking a little “sad”, not quite bad enough to be tossed out but not good enough I’d eat them in a salad with them looking at me, so instead of tossing them in the trash, I tossed them in my frittata. Problem solved, money saved, and breakfast made.

4 thoughts on “Ringing in the New Year

  1. We had the buffalo chicken casserole tonight. Yum and it made a ton so I will get to have it many more times. Do you know if it freezes well?

    Thanks for the recipe!!!

    Liked by 1 person

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