Slow Cooker Buffalo Chicken Chili

This is a Betty Crocker recipe that is more of a stew than an actual chili. It’s soupier than most chilis but man is it yummy. I skipped the celery, personally. No nutritional information as your serving size and ingredients may vary. My husband and I both agreed, the blue cheese really made this recipe. He added more wing sauce to his bowl but he loves things REALLY spicy.

  • 2.5 lb boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 2 medium stalks of celery, sliced (about one cup)
  • 1 large onion, chopped (about one cup)
  • 2 medium carrots, chopped (about one cup)
  • 1 can (28 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 can (15 ounces) black beans, drained, rinsed
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup buffalo wing sauce
  • crumbled blue cheese, if desired
  1. Spray slow cooker with cooking spray, mix all ingredients EXCEPT buffalo wing sauce and blue cheese
  2. Cover, cook on LOW heat setting 8 to 10 hours
  3. Stir in buffalo wing sauce. Serve sprinkled with blue cheese.

Tasty Thai/Mexican fusion chicken soup recipe

I’m not sure what to call this. I’m not even sure where the original recipe came from. All I can say is it was goooooood.   Someone had posted it on a site I used to frequent and I thought it sounded pretty good. The recipe didn’t call for chicken broth but I thought it would add more flavor.

  • 1 envelope Coconut Ginger Soup Base paste
  • 2 tbsp mild curry paste
  • 2 tbsp Goya recaito
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 bunch chopped cilantro
  • 1 bunch chopped scallions
  • 2 cups halved baby carrots
  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken thighs cut into pieces
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups chicken broth/stock

Simmer approximately 2 hours

Sausage and Bean Soup with Escarole

There are several version of this soup online, play around with the type of  sausage and even the beans. This was super easy to prepare and delicious. We couldn’t find the sausage with Mediterranean seasonings so we used chicken and apple sausage instead. Yum. As usual, no nutrition information as your ingredients and serving sizes may vary.

 

Ingredients

  • 12 ounces chicken sausage with Mediterranean seasonings, cut into 1/4-inch rounds
  • 1 15-oz. can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 15-oz. can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 28-oz. can whole tomatoes, drained and chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups canned low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 small head escarole, chopped
  • 1/4 cup coarsely grated Parmesan
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • Salt and pepper

Preparation

Combine sausage, beans, tomatoes, broth, bay leaf, thyme and red pepper in slow cooker and cook on low heat setting for 4 hours.

Stir in escarole and cook an additional 5 to 8 minutes, until just wilted. Stir in Parmesan and parsley. Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve.

Breakfast For Dinner

Cross-posted over on Obesity Help but I thought I’d post it here for my friends. No pictures, but I’ll try to get one later.

Chop up some chicken and apple sausage and brown it in a frying pan. Set the sausage aside and scramble an egg in the pan. Just before the egg is set the way you like it, add back in the sausage and finish scrambling. Transfer to a plate and put a slice (or two!) of smoked gouda on the top to melt.

YUM!  There’s no way I can eat this whole ‘serving’ at one sitting but that’s just fine. If it’s good enough to eat now, it’ll be good enough to reheat tomorrow. LOL

And, heeeeeeey, this gives me an idea. I think this would be awesome adapted as one of Shelly’s Bites. I’ll have to do that tomorrow with some of the left over sausage. If I do, I’ll post an update on the experiment.

Cauliflower Crust Pizza

I included this recipe in my first newsletter for my readers there. I first discovered it on the Obesity Help forums. Pizza crust made from cauliflower? Really? Turns out, it’s pretty darn good.  The original recipe can be found here: http://blog.yourlighterside.com/2008/02/i-cant-believe-its-cauliflower-pizza.html

1 cup cooked and riced cauliflower (I used cooked frozen cauliflower and used the grater on my food processor to break it down into a rice-like consistency)
1 large egg
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1/2tsp fennel (I omitted this but you may wish to use it)
1tsp oregano
2tsp parsley
Sauce for topping (I use Don Pepino’s pizza sauce)
Toppings – in my case I just used mozzarella and pepperoni, going traditional.

Preheat oven to 450 degrees farenheit. Spray a cookie sheet with non-stick cooking spray (or use parchment paper as I did). in a medium bowl combine egg, cauliflower and mozzarella until well combined. Press evenly on pan into desired shape and sprinkle spices evenly over the top.

Bake for 12-15 minutes (15-20 if you double the recipe). Remove from oven and spread sauce over the top, and add your toppings.

Put your oven on high broil, put pizza back in the oven under the broiler at high heat just until cheese is melted (or to your desired level of browning/not brown).

As you can see from the (crappy celphone) picture below, I like a lot of cheese (and I make my ‘weird’ with the cheese on top of the pepperoni) and I like it to be very bubbly on top and slightly browned. Next time, I will press the crust just a tiny bit thinner, but the flavor was wonderful. Your serving size will vary but, using my ingredients, the whole pizza using my ingredents broke down to: 21grams of carbs (14 net grams), 69 grams of protein and 991 calories. Your mileage on those numbers will vary according to your ingredients, so I would not rely on mine if you make it. I will say I could not eat much and it took me several days to eat the entire pizza.


A non-op friend of mine who is on a lower carb diet made the pizza crust and really loved it. My non-op husband and daughter both tried a taste and both of them gave it their seal of approval as well.

Banana Protein Mini Muffins

Sorry, I don’t have any pictures of this. If you want one, you can find the original recipe here (I will copy the recipe itself below, along with my substitutions).

I love Shelly’s recipes over at The World According to Eggface. They’re simple, easy to follow and delicious. I often find myself tweaking them a little according to my own tastes and the ingredients I have on hand so they serve for fantastic inspiration.

I made the banana protein mini muffins today for the second time. I gave one to my one year old grandson and he devoured it in about five minutes flat. I think they have the seal of approval.  Below is my version of the recipe (sorry, no nutritional information right now, your portion size and ingredients may vary).

  • 1 Egg, beaten
  • 3 Tablespoons Milk (I used unsweetened almond milk this time)
  • 2 Tablespoons Sugar Free Torani Syrup (I used SF Caramel)
  • 1 whole Banana, mashed
  • 1 Tablespoon Canola Oil
  • 3 Tablespoons Atkins Baking Mix
  • 1 teaspoon Baking Powder
  • 2 Tablespoons Almond Meal
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoon Cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon Nutmeg
  • 1 scoop Vanilla Protein Powder (I use Gladiator Vanilla from Smoothie King)
  • Pinch salt
  • Optional: 2 Tablespoons Chopped Nuts

In a measuring cup mix egg, milk, syrup, banana and oil and combine thoroughly. In a separate bowl, mix pancake mix, almond meal, cinnamon, nutmeg, protein powder and salt. Tip dry into wet and stir till combined. Pour into a non stick mini muffing tin that has been sprayed with Pam. Optional: Place a nut on the top of each muffin.

Bake at 350 for 8-10 minutes, until knife inserted comes out clean. Makes 12.

There’s a fantastic recipe on the same page for ricotta banana filling for the muffins, which is also delicious, but I like to heat mine up a little and smear with some butter. My favorite indulgence is Kerrygold  Pure Irish Butter.

Edit: Put this into spark people. Here’s my nutrition information per each mini muffin:  Calories: 44.3, Fat: 2.4g, Carbs: 3.2g, Protein 3.2g – NOTE: Yours may vary depending upon your ingredients.

My Name is Jeanette and I’m a Foodie

Yes, I am a foodie. I enjoyed my food pre-surgery (perhaps a bit TOO much). I enjoy what I’m eating now. Saying you enjoy your food post surgery is almost like kicking a puppy or poking sharp sticks at kittens. Enjoy your food? How dare you? That’s how we got fat! And before anybody gets up in arms, I have not been attacked or anything like that, it’s just a general attitude I’ve seen along with a general fear of actually enjoying food (and thus eating their way through their surgery) or that someone who had surgery will never be able to enjoy food again.

Enough I say! No more fear. No more mourning your enjoyment of food. You can and will enjoy food again. I’m not even a month out and can barely eat four tablespoons of food and I enjoy every single bite. Yes, for those of you who have never had weight loss surgery or do not know anybody who has had it, you read that correctly – four tablespoons.

How you might ask can I enjoy eating when I can eat so little? It’s not hard, I promise. Since I can eat so little, I have to make what I can eat count and I do not just mean nutritionally. It also has to taste good. Yes, this is possible eating a low carb, high protein diet. Low carb in my case does not mean no carb. I can have up to fifty grams of carbs a day which, I admit, does not sound like much but remember: four tablespoons of food at a time.

I do not feel as if I need to sacrifice flavor, taste or texture (barring having cottage cheese with some sugar free fruit preserves for breakfast, but I happen to like cottage cheese) in order to eat healthily. Yes, there will be times when I do have to be more conscious of what I eat because of that, by making sure of my choices, but that’s what it will take to be successful with my sleeve. I do not feel deprived and, for me, that is one of the keys. The minute we start feeling deprived, we will find ways to sabotage ourselves, even if that is unconscious.

Nearly a year ago, I weaned myself off processed sugars, rice, potatoes, pasta and bread. This was a huge thing for me because I was (and still am) a carb addict. I knew that I, personally, could not eat those things and be successful. Because of that, I was able to lose an amazing sixty pounds pre-surgery, all by myself. During that entire time, I never felt deprived. I never felt as if I was dieting. Now that I am not limited solely to liquids, I do not feel like I am dieting now. Yes, I have a diet, I am not on a diet. To me, that’s a big difference.  Yes, I journal everything I eat. You read that correctly, everything. It is important to myself to be accountable. It is too easy to lose track over the course of a day of what exactly you are eating. Too easy to lose focus. I’m not perfect, you know.

If you are unsure of tasty choices, there are plenty of weight loss surgery blogs written by foodies out there. They have recipes, pictures, stories to share. Many of them are in my blogroll, draw inspiration and encouragement from them as I did. In reading the stories these people had to share (as well as recipe and food ideas), I learned that I did not have to give up my enjoyment of food.

So, yes, I am a foodie. I will continue to be a foodie. I will not apologize for that and I refuse to feel guilty for enjoying food even after having weight loss surgery. I urge others to let go of your guilt, stop mourning the fact you could eat an entire large pizza in one sitting or can no longer cover a huge dinner plate with food. Embrace your tool whether it is a gastric sleeve, a DS, an RNY or a gastric band. Use your tool and enjoy the food you put in your mouth. Make good, healthy choices but do not deprive yourselves by sacrificing taste or texture.

Food is not the enemy. I’ve come to learn it never really was. The real enemy was my head and the way I looked at food. The real enemy was my relationship with food. It never was a healthy relationship in the past but, that is changing. Slowly but surely. All I have to do, all anybody has to do, is believe.

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