Winner Winner, Four Chicken Dinners

Recipes - A Cup of Kathy

What to make for dinner…what to make for dinner. Meal planning can be stressful enough, but add in a heat wave, and making tasty, satisfying meals can be downright confounding. And since I had a large package of boneless chicken breasts ($1.69 a pound at Aldi) in the fridge, I needed a heavy dose of inspiration that would produce dinners for Tuesday to Friday.

Hoping that an idea would hit me, I washed and diced a large baking potato and microwaved it for five minutes on Monday night. I cut the fat off of all the chicken and diced it. I also diced an onion. It was too hot to light the oven, so I decided to use the wok, which has become one of my go-to kitchen favorites, and extra light olive oil.

I decided to cook in two batches. The first contained chicken, the potato, a can of mushrooms and half an onion. The second batch contained only chicken and onion.

As I readied both cooked batches for the fridge, a bolt of inspiration hit me – cooking sauce to the rescue. I knew I had Classic Roasted Chicken Oven Sauce by Cook House on hand. I’ve used it in the past as the directions state, baking boneless chicken breasts, potatoes, carrots, mushrooms and sauce in the oven. This time, since I hadn’t used the sauce in the traditional way, I needed to put my own spin on the recipe. For dinner on Tuesday, I mixed the potato/onion/chicken/mushrooms with the roasted chicken oven sauce and served it with mixed vegetables and chicken stuffing.

Because I had a package of eight tortilla wraps on hand, Wednesday’s dinner dilemma was solved with the combining of some of the chicken and onion with diced green grapes, shredded lettuce, green onions, shredded Cheddar cheese, diced celery and olive oil mayo…and a “dusting” of Rosemary.

Good fortune smiled on me because we had leftovers from each meal, so Thursday and Friday were also sorted. The leftover chicken/sauce from Tuesday, with the addition of mashed potatoes and broccoli, made for a pleasing Thursday dinner. We rounded out the work week with chicken salad wraps, this time made with shredded Cheddar cheese, dried cranberries, shredded lettuce, sunflower seeds and olive oil mayo.

I made four meals I felt good about serving my family and that they enjoyed…and they weren’t labor or heat intensive. That’s what I call a win win win win!

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What are your suggestions for hot summer dinners?

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I’d love to hear from you.

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5 thoughts on “Winner Winner, Four Chicken Dinners

  1. Juli Hoffman says:

    Sometimes when chicken breasts go on sale. I’ll boil them in just enough water to cover, cook them, then immediately cut them up into bite-sized pieces, throw them on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper, and stick them in the freezer. Once the cooked chicken is frozen, I’ll place the pieces in zip-lock bags. This way, I have my own precooked chicken for meals when I’m feeling lazy and I just want to throw something quick together. I keep the chicken water in butter tubs in my freezer as well. Basically, it’s free chicken stock. Perfect for soup or to cook with rice.

    I also cook up ground meat when it goes on sale. Cook it, drain it, throw the ground meat on a parchment lined cookie sheet, and toss it in the freezer. Presto! You’ve got cooked ground meat for easy tacos or even to throw in with tomato sauce if you’re making spaghetti. I’ve done this with ground beef, chicken, and turkey. 😀

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    • acupofkathy says:

      I agree – making your own pre-cooked fresh chicken is a great idea. That allows us to take advantage of sales as well as having the chicken on hand for “those times.” The humidity this summer has been oppressive, so having pre-cooked chicken handy has been a blessing for skillet dishes as well as chicken salad and chicken wraps.

      I’ve cooked rice (another staple in my kitchen) in chicken broth and I’ve made chicken soup – both winners with my family – but I’ve only used store-bought broth. Your suggestion about using free chicken stock is a good one and I see me using it this winter.

      I haven’t pre-cooked ground meat, yet…but you’ve inspired me, Juli. I always have pasta on hand, so being able to make an easy spaghetti sauce or have tacos on the table quickly appeals to me.

      Thanks for taking the time to share your tips.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Shannon says:

    I am going to put the chicken breasts and oven sauce in the crockpot and hope to pour over biscuits. How would you suggest thickening the sauce? A flour/water combo in the last few minutes of cooking?

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    • Kathleen M. Pulek says:

      Hi Shannon. Thanks for checking out my blog.

      Though I own a crock pot, I’ve yet to use it. When I want to thicken something (like strawberry gelatin for my Strawberry Pie), I use a bit of cornstarch to get the consistency I want.

      Please let me know what you decide to try and how it comes out.

      Like

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