Skillet Chicken with Mexican Green Rice

This is a really flavorful meal and has no dairy in it, which is a plus for me because my pregnant body has decided to complete reject it. It's also really quick and only uses one pan. Yippee!

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (1 1/2 to 2 pounds)
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 poblano peppers, cored, seeded, and chopped (these are usually next to jalapeno peppers - don't worry, they're much less spicy than jalapenos)
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 2 (10 oz.) cans green enchilada sauce (I recommend mild for those who don't want much heat)
  • 1 1/2 cups long grain white rice
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro (we hate cilantro, so we left it out and upped the spinach)
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh spinach leaves

  1. Gently pat the chicken dry and season lightly with salt and pepper. In a large (12-inch) skillet, heat the oil over medium heat until it is rippling and hot. Brown the chicken on each side for 1-2 minutes until it is golden but not cooked all the way through. Transfer the chicken to a plate and set aside.
  2. In the hot skillet, add the onion and poblano peppers and cook for 3-4 minutes, until the vegetables are softened, stirring occasionally. Stir in the garlic and cumin and cook for 30 seconds. Add the enchilada sauce, rice and water, stirring to combine. Bring the mixture to a boil and set the chicken breasts in the simmering rice mixture, nestling them in a bit. Cover the skillet, set the heat to low and cook for about 15-20 minutes, until the rice is tender and most of the liquid is absorbed and the chicken is cooked through, stirring every five minutes or so to ensure the rice isn’t sticking to the bottom.
  3. Stir in the cilantro and spinach and season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve.

Recipe from Mel's Kitchen Cafe


Slow-Cooker Chili

I made this a couple of weeks ago and it was great.  It's has a little more prep on the front end than most slow-cooker recipes but it makes a lot. It's from my favorite cookbook, America's Test Kitchen Cookbook.

Slow-Cooker Weeknight Chili

This recipe uses 1/4 c chili powder, which sounds like a lot.  However, after 6 to 7 hours in the slow cooker, the heat diminishes.  For a spicier chili, increase the cayenne and serve with hot sauce.

2 T vegetable oil
2 onions, chopped medium
1 red bell pepper, stemmed, seeded and chopped medium
1/4 cup chili powder
1 T cumin
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
6 garlic cloves, minced
2 lbs (85% lean) ground beef
1 (28 oz) can tomato puree
1 (28 oz) can diced tomatoes
2 (15.5 oz) can red kidney beans, rinsed

1) Heat oil in a large Dutch oven over medium heat until shimmering.  Add the onion, bell pepper, chili powder, cumin, cayenne, and 1/2 tsp salt.  Cook until the vegetables are softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook for 15 seconds.

2) Add the beef and increase the heat to  medium-high.  Cook, until no longer pink, about 10 minutes.

3)  Stir in the tomato puree and diced tomatoes with their juice, scraping up any browned bits.  Bring to a simmer, then pour into the slow cooker.

4)  Cover and cook, until the meat is tender, 6 to 7 hours on low or 4 to 5 hours on high.  Stir in the beans during the last hour of cooking.  Before serving, season with salt and pepper to taste.