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Stovetop Taco Chicken

Stovetop Shredded Taco Chicken

This Mexican-style shredded chicken is my go to for tacos or burrito bowls. It's super easy to throw together and uses simple ingredients that you probably already have on hand! You can easily sub ground chicken, turkey or grass-fed beef (see Tips and Tricks at the end of the post).

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How do I make shredded chicken?

Making shredded chicken at home is a great way to cook chicken for meal prep and it's super simple! Place it in a pot filled with enough water or broth to cover the chicken. Bring it to a simmer and cook, covered for 10-20 minutes, depending on the size of the chicken. Remove from the pot and use two forks to shred it up!

How do I make my own taco seasoning?

Making your own taco seasoning at home is super simple! You might be surprised to know that those little taco seasoning packets you buy have fillers, sugar and other nasty ingredients you don't need in your life. I keep it simple and use equal parts cumin and oregano, but you could add in chili powder, onion powder and garlic powder. 

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Stovetop Shredded Taco Chicken

Serves: 4

Ingredients:
2 tbsp avocado oil
1 small onion, chopped
1 tsp salt
2 cloves garlic, smashed
1.5 tsp cumin
1.5 tsp oregano
2 tbsp tomato paste
1/2 cup water or chicken broth
1 lb chicken breast, cut in half lengthwise if very thick 

Instructions:
In a medium pot, warm the oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion and salt and sauté until softened, about 5 minutes. 

Add the garlic, cumin, oregano and tomato paste and cook for 1 minute, using a wooden spoon to stir and mash the tomato paste around so it's coating all of the onions. Add a splash of oil if it looks to dry in the pot (this will help bloom the spices and caramelize the tomato paste).

Add the water or broth and chicken and nestle it in the liquid. Sprinkle the chicken with an additional generous pinch of salt. Bring the liquid to a simmer, cover, and cook for 15-20 minutes, flipping the chicken halfway through. This may take longer depending on the thickness of your breast.

Once cooked through, transfer chicken breasts to a cutting board and use two forks to shred them. Return to the pot and simmer for another minute, to reduce the liquid into a thicker sauce. Add more salt and/or spices, to taste!

Serve it up on tacos or as a burrito bowl!

Tips and Tricks for Perfect Stovetop Shredded Taco Chicken

  1. Be careful not to burn the tomato paste and spices by making sure there is still some oil in the pot, adding more if needed
  2. Want some heat? Add 1/4 tsp on cayenne pepper
  3. This will keep in the fridge for up to 5 days or freeze for up to 1 month
  4. Make sure to taste and add more salt or spices if you think it needs it (I usually end up adding more salt, depending on how much chicken is in there
  5. If using chicken, make sure its really nestled in the liquid so it cooks/steams evenly
  6. If using ground meat, use half the amount of water, adding more if you think it needs more moisture. There is no need to cover the pot, just add the meat to the pan and let it brown, then break it up into chunks and continue to cook until its cooked through and the sauce has thickened.

Ginger Coconut Brown Rice + Banh Mi Bowl

GINGER COCONUT BROWN RICE

I must have made this rice at least 10 times before nailing it (and probably made it 10 more times since then because I couldn't stop eating it!). It's sweet, salty, nutty, heaven! 

The coconut milk adds a mild sweetness and creaminess, the ginger makes it burst with warming, spicy flavor, and the cilantro adds a fresh, bright herby note. All of these elements paired with some delicious nutty, slightly chewy brown rice? YES PLEASE!

What do I eat it with?

So it's just rice...but what do you eat it with? Make a bowl!

M favorite combo is a banh mi bowl. Banh mi is a common Vietnamese sandwich that is full of pickled vegetables, fresh herbs, usually pork, and a spicy creamy sauce all nestled inside a French baguette. 

I make it by assembling a bowl as follows: Coconut Ginger Brown Rice, Pickled Carrots + Daikon, shredded chicken, some sort of vegetable (roasted veg, massaged kale), a ton of herbs (cilantro and mint are best), my Sriracha Yogurt Sauce, and some peanuts for crunch. 

Guess what? Recipes are all below!

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Ginger Coconut Brown Rice

Serves 4-6

Ingredients:
1 1/2 cups short grain brown rice
2 tbsp minced ginger
1 can full-fat coconut milk
3/4 cup water
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup chopped cilantro

Instructions:
In a medium saucepan over high heat, add the brown rice, ginger, coconut milk, water and salt.

Bring to a boil, stir, then reduce the heat to low and simmer, covered, for 35-40 minutes. You know it's done when most (but not all) of the liquid has evaporated and the rice is tender but slightly chewy. You want a little liquid to keep it slightly 'saucy'.

Remove from heat and let it sit, covered, for 10 minutes to absorb the extra moisture. 

Add the cilantro and fluff it in with a fork. Taste and add more salt, if needed. 

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Pickled Carrot and Daikon Radish (Do Chua)

Ingredients:
1 large carrot, cut into thin matchsticks
1 large daikon radish, cut into thin matchsticks (or just use another carrot)
1 jalapeno, thinly sliced (optional)
1/4 cup organic cane sugar
1 tbsp sea salt
1 cup water
1/2 cup rice wine vinegar or white vinegar (apple cider vinegar will work too)

Instructions:
In a bowl, add the carrots, daikon, jalapeño (if using), sugar and salt. Use your hands to massage the sugar and salt into the veggies until it has disintegrated.

Pack the carrots and daikon into a large mason jar. Add the water and vinegar and shake to combine. Press the carrots and daikon down so they are submerged.

Allow to sit in the fridge overnight or for at least 4 hours. 

Sriracha Yogurt Sauce

Ingredients:
1/2 cup plain whole milk yogurt
1 tbsp sriracha or other hot sauce
2 tsp lemon juice
1/4 tsp salt
Water, to thin

Instructions:
In a small bowl, whisk together the ingredients. Add water until it reaches a good sauce consistency. Taste and add more sriracha, lemon or salt if needed.

Lemon Miso Soba Noodle Bowl

LEMON MISO SOBA NOODLE BOWL

This bright lemony miso dressing is the perfect compliment to the earthy soba noodles, while the crunch from the radish and cucumber adds just the right amount of texture. Make the dressing ahead of time and throw this bowl together in a pinch.

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Ingredients:
For the salad
8 oz buckwheat noodles
1 cup edamame
5 scallions, sliced
4 radishes, sliced
1 small cucumber, sliced
¼ cup toasted sesame seeds
1 soft boiled egg, optional

For the dressing
½ cup avocado or canola oil
¼ cup + 2 tbsp tbsp lemon juice
¼ cup mellow white miso paste
½ tsp sesame oil
1 tsp tamari
1 tsp maple syrup

Instructions
To make the dressing, add all ingredients into a small bowl and whisk to thoroughly combine. Alternatively, add all ingredients to a jar with a lid and shake vigorously to combine.

Cook the buckwheat noodles according to the package instructions. Once cooked and drained, rinse the noodles with cold water.

In a large bowl add the soba noodles, edamame, scallions, radish, and sesame seeds.

Pour ⅔ of the dressing over top and toss to combine. Enjoy cold topped with an egg and drizzled with the remaining dressing.

Shaved Asparagus and Kale Socca

SHAVED ASPARAGUS AND KALE SOCCA 

I first discovered socca, also know as farinata, when I was visiting my friend in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Every pizza place we went to offered a slice of this flatbread to go on top of your pizza. What was the point of this? An extra protein boost? To soak up the oil on top of the pizza? I wasn't a fan...

However, the lightbulb went off in my head that this pizza topping would be a perfect gluten-free, high-protein, high-fiber pizza or flatbread crust. I then suddenly saw this popping up all over food blogs and sites so I decided to give it a try myself. 

Think of socca as a blank canvas for whatever you want to put on top. I love it with a pesto and some marinated veggies, but feel free to experiment with other combinations.

Chickpea flour?

It's literally just dried chickpeas that are ground into a flour -- something you can easily do at home if you have a food processor or high-speed blender. 

Chickpea flour is very high in protein and fiber, which makes for a perfect addition to any vegetarian meal or just for a boost of protein. It's also rich in lots of micronutrients like calcium, magnesium, folate, and B vitamins. 
 

Shave Asparagus and Kale Socca

Serves 4

Ingredients:
For the socca:
1 cup chickpea flour
1 tsp sea salt
fresh ground black pepper
3 tbsp olive oil
1 cup water, room temperature

For the leek pesto*:
1 medium leek, halved lengthwise and chopped
1 cup cashews, toasted
1 clove garlic
¼ cup grated Parmesan (optional)
3 tsp mellow white miso paste (I used chickpea miso)
zest and juice from 2 lemons (about ¼ cup lemon juice)
3 tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper, to taste

For the shaved asparagus and kale:
2 tbsp red wine vinegar
3 tbsp olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp Dijon mustard
salt and pepper, to taste
5 thick stalks of asparagus, shaved
1 cup loosely packed chopped kale
1 tbsp fresh chopped mint
fresh grated Parmesan or Manchego cheese (optional)

*You can use any other type of homemade or store bought pesto here!

Instructions:
For the leek pesto, in a food processor or high-speed blender, add the leek, cashews, garlic, Parmesan (if using), miso, and lemon juice. Blend until it reaches a uniform consistency, then add in the olive oil and blend until smooth. Taste and add salt, pepper, or more lemon juice, to taste.

For the socca, preheat the oven to 450 and place your cast iron skillet in the oven. In a medium bowl, combine the chickpea flour, salt, and pepper. Add in 1 cup of room temperature water and 2 tbsp of olive oil and whisk to combine. Let sit for 15 minutes, or until it resembles a thinner pancake batter. Add water if too thick.

Remove the pan from the oven, add 1 tbsp olive oil and swirl to coat. Pour in the batter and let bake for about 15 minutes, or until the center is firm and edges begin to turn golden. Set aside and let cool while you prepare the shaved asparagus and kale salad.

For the shaved asparagus and kale, in a mason jar, combine the red wine vinegar, olive oil, garlic, Dijon, salt, and pepper. Shake vigorously to emulsify. Place the kale in a medium bowl and pour half of the dressing on top. Using your hands, massage the kale for about 1 minute to break it down. Add in the shaved asparagus, mint, and remaining dressing. Toss gently to combine.

To assemble, spread about ½ cup (or more) on top of the socca in an even layer. Then top with the shaved asparagus, kale salad, and fresh grated Parmesan or Manchego cheese, if desired. Slice and serve immediately!

Chickpea Beet Patties with Tahini Sauce

CHICKPEA BEET PATTIES WITH TAHINI SAUCE

Grain bowls are my go-to dinners most of the time. All you need to do is a little prep and you can enjoy them all week. Batch cook some quinoa, make a sauce, roast some veggies, fry an egg and VOILA! 

Anyone else not a fan of roasting beets? Ya they can take a while and then you have to peel the skin off and all of a sudden you find yourself with irreversible shirt stains and very unpleasantly pink tinted fingernails and skin. Well, don't wear your favorite shirt and accept the fact that your hands still might get stained -- it's oh so worth it. 

These little patties are perfect on grain bowls slathered with this creamy tahini sauce. These patties are packed full of protein, fiber, iron, calcium, and magnesium, and potassium to name a few. 

BEETS BEETS BEETS!

I love cooking with beets, not only for the beautiful color they create but they're also jam-packed full of nutrition. They're rich in folate, manganese, fiber, iron, and potassium.  

Beets are commonly used medicinally for liver detoxification. They contain a substance called betaine and a fiber called pectin, both of which help the liver get rid of any harmful toxins.

LASTLY, beets are high in nitrates which your body converts to nitric oxide. Nitric oxide dilates your blood vessels, increasing blood flow to your muscles allowing them to use oxygen more efficiently. Simply put, your muscles take longer to fatigue. So eat beets, they just might make you run faster! 

Chickpea Beet Patties with Tahini Sauce

Makes 8 small patties

Ingredients
1 can chickpeas, rinsed, drained
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 cup grated beet, about 1 medium beet
¼ cup chopped herbs (parsley, cilantro, basil all work)
½ cup oats, pulsed into flour
1 egg
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp garlic powder
½ tsp salt
Oil, for frying

Tahini Sauce
½ cup tahini
¼ cup water
¼ cup lemon juice
2 cloves garlic, minced
½ tsp salt
Water to thin

Instructions
Add the chickpeas to a large bowl and use a fork or your hands (highly recommended) to mash them all up. Add the rest of the ingredients to the bowl and use your hands to mix and mash thoroughly. Form into 8 small patties. If patties aren't easy to form it's probably because you need to mash up the chickpea some more!

In a large skillet over medium heat, add enough oil to coat the pan. Place the patties in the pan, press down gently and cook for about 5 minutes, or until golden brown and crispy. Flip, gently press again and cook another 3 minutes, or until golden brown. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towel.

To make the sauce, whisk together all of the ingredients in a small bowl. If too thick, add water to thin out. The sauce will thicken up in the fridge, so just add water until it's to your desired thickness.

Enjoy these patties over a bed of quinoa with roasted veggies and slathered in tahini sauce.