Hi friends! How many of you struggle with eating healthy dinners during the work week? When I was heavier I would get take out, make a pizza or snack on chips at night because, let’s face it’s time-consuming to cook dinner. You have to plan ahead, buy food at the grocery store, prep the food and then cook the meal. A lot of planning and work goes into cooking.
One of my go-to meals when I was losing weight was chicken stir-fry. Still today it’s a regular in my meal rotation. It’s simple to make and I’m all about that because during the week the last thing I was to do when I get home from work is make a meal that takes hours. Some people think I overly plan things, but the hard truth is planning ahead is necessary to maintain a healthy lifestyle, achieve weight-loss and maintain weight-loss long-term .
I enjoy all Asian foods and in particular, adore Vietnamese and Thai cuisine.
Many Asian cuisines can be healthy, but many unhealthy choices are snuck there too. For example, oils or sauces can be loaded with fat, sodium & calories – i.e. orange chicken & orange beef. And beware of the fried foods – i.e. tempura, fried rice & egg rolls. Despite a few bad things, I find more healthy options on an Asian menu than American. Be smart and pay attention to the ingredients and stay away from buffets too. If you’re not sure about something, investigate it. I consult the Livestrong website when I need information related to weight-loss and foods.
One of my goals this year is to cook more Asian meals and test recipes then incorporate the ones I like into my meal rotation. Since I lost 80 pounds, I’ve become quite talented turning unhealthy recipes into a delicious, healthy and waist-friendly meals. Hope you enjoy this one!
- 1/2 pound chicken breast tenders
- 1 green bell pepper
- 1 red bell pepper
- 1 yellow bell pepper
- 1 orange bell pepper
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 3 tbsp low sodium soy sauce
- 1 can water chestnuts rinsed & drained
- 3-4 cloves garlic
- 1 tbsp cumin
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 1 tsp ginger
- 1 tsp basil leaves
- salt & pepper to taste
- 2 cups brown rice
- 2 cups water
- Dice bell peppers into 1/2 inch pieces
- Cut chicken into 1/2 inch pieces
- In a large saute or stir-fry pan, add extra virgin olive oil to pan & bring to medium heat
- Add garlic cloves & peppers
- Allow to cook until peppers are soft
- Place chicken to pan & add cumin, paprika, ginger, turmeric, salt & pepper
- Allow chicken to cook ~5 minutes, stirring occasionally
- In a separate pot, bring water to a boil, add brown rice, reduce heat & allow to simmer on low
- Add soy sauce & water chestnuts to chicken pan and bring to medium-high heat for 5 minutes
- Reduce heat to a low simmer, add thai basil leaves & allow flavors to simmer until rice is done
- 345 calories per serving
Tips & Tricks 1 - Chop vegetables ahead of time & store in the fridge in a sealed container. Either when you come home from the grocery store, on Sundays when you’re meal prepping for the week or the night before you plan to cook this. You can also store peppers in the freezer by the way.
Tips & Tricks 2 - I purchase garlic that has the skin already removed. Nothing is better than fresh garlic in a dish, but removing the skin is a huge pain. If you prefer minced garlic, you can always use that too.
Tips & Tricks - A single serving of rice or pasta is 1/2 cup, but when you make a batch it can be hard to stick to a single serving. When making 4 servings of grains, I divide the rice in the pot into quarters so I know how much to serve on my plate. Another option is to use a 1/2 measuring cup to plate the correct serving size.
What’s your go-to dinner during a busy work week? What’s is your favorite Asian food?
Linking up with Amanada @ Running with Spoons