Southern Living’s Chicken and Wild Rice Skillet Bake


The weather this weekend in VA was beautiful, but confusing! I sat by the pool, baking in the sunshine with a cold iced tea, while flipping through the latest issue of Southern Living, full of crockpot meals, soups, and other fall favorites. I enjoyed one last poolside weekend, but bring on the chilly weather! This recipe from Southern Living caught my eye and didn’t disappoint. It takes a little time, but was savory and satisfying and good for a crisp fall night. Make sure to use a big enough skillet or oven-proof pan! I started off with a smaller cast-iron skillet and halfway through had to switch to a bigger pan. Oops. Enjoy!

1 1/4 tsp kosher salt, divided
6 oz uncooked wild rice
3 tbsp butter
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup skim milk
2 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1 1/2 tsp dry mustard
3/4 tsp fresh black pepper, divided
1/2 cup bacon, chopped
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, divided
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
1 large carrot, finely chopped
8 oz baby bella mushrooms, chopped
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 tbsp dry sherry
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
fresh flat-leaf parsley and sliced almonds for garnishes

1) Bring 1/2 tsp kosher salt and 4 cups water to a boil in a large saucepan. Stir in rice, return to a boil. Reduce heat to medium, cover, and cook for 30 min.
2) Meanwhile, melt butter in heavy saucepan over low heat, then whisk in flour until smooth.
3) Gradually whisk in milk, then broth and dry mustard. Turn heat up to medium and cook for 4 minutes, whisking constantly until mixture is thickened and starting to bubble. Stir in 1/4 tsp salt and pepper.
4) Cook bacon in 1 tbsp oil in a large (12-in +) cast-iron skillet or large oven-proof pan. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until beginning to brown. Stir in the onion, carrots, and mushrooms, and cook for another 5 minutes or until onions are tender.
5) Stir in garlic, cook 1 minute. Stir in sherry, and cook 1 minute until evaporated. Remove mixture to a bowl.
6) Preheat oven to 375.
7) Season chicken with remaining 1/2 tsp each salt and pepper. Add remaining 1 tbsp oil to skillet or pan you were using before, and cook chicken in oil over medium-high heat for 4 minutes on each side, or until brown.
8) Remove skillet from heat, transfer chicken to a plate.
9) Drain rice if there’s any water left over, then pour into your skillet. Mix in the bacon/veggie mixture and the sauce, and stir together.
10) Put chicken on top of the mixture and bake, uncovered, for 30 minutes. Let rest 10 minutes before serving. Serve with chopped up fresh parsley and sliced almonds!


Sweet & Spicy Chicken


1/4 cup grapeseed oil
1 package chicken tenders
kosher salt and fresh black pepper
2/3 cup cornstarch
2 eggs, beaten
1/3 cup buffalo sauce (I used Texas Pete)
2/3 cup brown sugar
1 tbsp water
2 tsps apple cider vinegar
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp sriracha

1) Preheat oven to 325.
2) Cut chicken tenders into bite-sized pieces and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
3) Place cornstarch in a medium bowl, and eggs in another bowl. Dip chicken into the cornstarch, and then into the egg mixture.
4) Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high for a couple minutes. Once really hot, add chicken to skillet and brown on all sides.
5) Grease a 9×13 baking dish and place chicken in dish.
6) Mix together buffalo sauce, brown sugar, apple cider vinegar, water, salt, and sriracha. Pour sauce over chicken in dish and bake for 45 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes.

I served this with basmati rice and soy/sriracha celery. Don’t order Chinese tonight – make it at home!



Adapted from The Recipe Critic.

White Chicken Chili



This picture is not so hot… but give this chili a try! I made it on a cold rainy spring day and it hit the spot. I like chili (and just about everything) with a little kick so I gave it some more spice, but feel free to eliminate the cayenne for a milder chili.

6 cups chicken broth
3 cups cooked shredded chicken (I used chicken thighs)
2 15-oz cans Great Northern beans, drained
2 cups salsa verde
2 tsps cumin
1 tsp cayenne
kosher salt and fresh black pepper to taste
chopped cilantro leaves (garnish, optional)
crumbled tortilla chips (garnish, optional – I baked a few corn tortillas in the oven and broke them up)
chopped avocado (garnish, optional)
sour cream (garnish, optional)
cheese (I used crumbled Cotija, but you could also use shredded Mexican or Monterey Jack)

1) Combine chicken broth, shredded chicken, beans, salsa verde, cumin, and cayenne pepper in a large soup pot over medium heat. Taste and season with salt and pepper.
2) Bring to a boil for a few minutes, then reduce heat and simmer for 10-15 minutes.
3) Serve with garnishes of choice! I’d recommend using them all.




Adapted from Damn Delicious.

Thai Basil Chicken



I love Thai food. Love love love Thai food. There are a few dishes at some local Thai restaurants that I keep trying to duplicate but I’ve not had much luck. This is the closest I’ve come and it was so stinkin’ good. Tasted like the real thing! The key is the Thai chili peppers and the fish sauce. And a boatload of basil!

1 /2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1 to 2 inch pieces
2 tbsp fish sauce
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp water
1 1/2 tsp sugar
2 tbsp canola oil
1 large white onion, thinly sliced
4 fresh Thai chiles, thinly sliced
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups basil leaves

1) In a large ziplock bag, marinate chicken with fish sauce, soy sauce, water, and sugar. Let marinate for abut 30 minutes.
2) In a wok, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook for 2 minutes. Add chiles, garlic, and cook for 1 more minute.
3) With a slotted spoon, remove chicken from marinade and add to the wok (don’t throw away the marinade). Cook until chicken is done, for about 5 minutes or more. Add marinade back in and cook for one more minute.
4) Turn off heat and stir in 1 1/2 cups basil. Serve topped with 1/2 cup basil. Try with coconut rice!



Adapted from Food and Wine.

Gouda and Pimiento Stuffed Chicken Breast


This was surprisingly easy! I’ve never attempted to stuff chicken breast before for fear of a kitchen disaster, but it worked out just fine and was delicious to boot. Serves two, took about 45 minutes!

1/2 cup Gouda
1 tbsp sliced pimientos
1 clove garlic, crushed
2 tbsp diced white onion
1/2 cup diced mushrooms
1/2 tsp smoked paprika (more to taste)
2 chicken breasts (small ones if possible – I got the individually packaged ones at Trader Joes and they were the perfect size)
kosher salt
fresh black pepper
2 tbsp olive oil

1) Preheat oven to 400.
2) Mix together Gouda, pimientos, garlic, onion, ‘shrooms, and paprika.
3) Slice chicken breast carefully with a very sharp knife. Make a long slit along the edge of the breast, going almost to the other side, and then open like a book.
4) Season both sides with salt and pepper, and then stuff with the filling. Sprinkle a little more salt and pepper and paprika on top.
5) Heat olive oil in an oven proof skillet on medium high heat.
6) Add chicken and cook for 2 minutes on one side.
7) Carefully flip chicken (I used tongs to make sure everything stayed held together), and place pan in the oven.
8) Bake for 15 minutes.

Chicken Cacciatore

chicken cacciatore

1/2 cup olive oil (more as needed)
3 garlic cloves
2 red peppers, sliced
2 green peppers, sliced
1 large onion, thickly sliced
3 celery stalks, peeled, sliced diagonally into 2-inch pieces
1/4 cup white wine
1 15-oz can favorite tomato sauce (I like Rao’s)
salt and pepper to taste
3 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
10 fresh basil leaves, chopped
6 to 8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
egg noodles


1) Preheat oven to 400.
2) Heat oil in large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic, peppers, onion, and celery and stir until vegetables just barely soften, about 5 min.
3) Stir in wine and let absorb.
4) Stir in tomato sauce, salt and pepper, and then parsley and basil. Let simmer for 15 min.
5) Meanwhile, in large, greased roasting pan, brush a little oil onto chicken and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast for 45 min.
6) Pour vegetable mixture over chicken and bake for another 30 minutes.
7) Serve over egg noodles!