chicken taco chili ~ slow cooker

very delicious indeed.  as a mom, i'm always thrilled when i come across a slow cooker meal that everyone enjoys.  starting dinner in the morning and then not having to worry about it until it's time to eat is my favorite way to feed my family.  

we had this over short grain brown rice (lundberg) which i had in the rice cooker set on a timer so it would start cooking in time to be finished when the chili was ready.


chicken taco chili ~ slow cooker
1 onion, chopped
1 16 oz can low sodium black beans
1 16 oz  kidney beans
1 8 oz can no salt tomato sauce
1 16 oz can no salt added corn, drained
2 (14.5 oz) cans diced tomatoes w/chilies
3 tbsp taco seasoning
1 tbsp cumin
1 tbsp chili powder
3 garlic cloves, minced
3-4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
cheese to top

combine beans, onion, corn, tomato sauce, cumin, chili powder, garlic and taco seasoning in a medium bowl.  

place chicken in slow cooker and pour sauce mixture over the top.

cook on low 8-10 hours or on high for 5-7 hours.

an hour before eating, shred the chicken and stir to mix.

serve over cooked rice.

recommended garnish; shredded cheese, sour cream, avocado, cilantro, tortilla strips.

makes 6 generous servings
Nutrition Facts
taco chili
Serving Size: 1 serving
Amount Per Serving
Total Fat3.3g
      Saturated Fat0.1g
      Trans Fat0g
      Dietary Fiber9.8g
Vitamin A 28%Vitamin C 47%
Calcium    10%Iron 23%


the not-race

i'm feeling totally uninspired to write here but i wanted to update real quick just for funsies.

last weekend i planned on running the canyon to canyon half marathon but, that didn't happen.  not really anyway.  i wrote already about how i didn't register in time to race and i was hoping they would give me a number when i got to the start but, no such luck.

rather than pout or throw a fit, i decided to just run anyway.  my aunt and uncle were running the 10k so we took off together and then i started making my way to the front of the pack thinking i would decide at the 10k turn around if i wanted to keep going or not.  

along the way, i took some photos (above & below).  beautiful scenery and since i wasn't really racing, it didn't matter that i stopped here and there to enjoy the sunrise.

the hills on this course were a lot more intense than i had anticipated so i decided to turn around at the 10k turn around, run back to my aunt and uncle, run back to the turn around and then kept going for about another mile before i turned back to head to the finish line (which i didn't cross, obviously).  

{mile 4}

eight miles and it was an enjoyable run though i failed to consider the experiences of the other runners.  my stopping and going, to-ing and fro-ing was distracting.  i know this because a girl approached me at the finish and asked, "do you mind if i ask what you were doing?  i swear you passed me like three or four times."  oops.  my bad.  if only they'd have let me register .......



chicken scampi

olive garden's chicken scampi is one of my favorites.  i've always wanted to try making chicken scampi but i have been too lazy to recreate the dish with some healthier twists.  i.e. no cream, for starters.

when i came across the recipe below, i was excited to give it a try (with a few minor changes).   it turned out really well, something i'll make again for sure.  

chicken scampi
recipe adapted from stephanie cooks

1 tbsp butter
3 tbsp olive oil
5 cloves garlic, minced
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
salt and pepper to taste
1 cup white wine or chicken broth
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 medium red bell pepper, seeded and sliced
1 medium green bell pepper, seeded & sliced
1 medium onion, chopped
pasta, cooked and drained (i used 8 oz barilla plus spaghetti and 8 oz whole wheat thin spaghetti)
shredded parmesan cheese to top

season chicken breasts with garlic powder, onion powder, salt and pepper.

heat butter and olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.  add chicken breasts and brown on each side for 3-4 minutes or until golden but not necessarily cooked all of the way through.

remove chicken from the pan and set aside to rest.

add veggies to the same pan and saute for 6-8 minutes until they begin to soften.  add garlic and saute until fragrant. 

in the meantime, chop the rested chicken into bite sized pieces and cook and drain the pasta.

once the veggies have started to soften, deglaze the pan by adding the white wine and lemon juice, stirring gently to pick up any bits from the bottom of the skillet.  

add the chicken to the skillet and bring everything to a simmer.  lower the heat and continue to simmer for 10 minutes (or until chicken is cooked all of the way through).  toss drained pasta into the skillet until combined.

enjoy topped with parmesan cheese if desired.

serves 6
Nutrition Facts
chicken scampi
Serving Size: 1 serving
Amount Per Serving
Total Fat12g
      Saturated Fat2.2g
      Trans Fat0g
      Dietary Fiber8.1g
Vitamin A 18%Vitamin C 123%
Calcium    4%Iron 15%


exciting to me

what's up yo?  
i've spent my morning blogging about our summer thus far when really, i should be doing more productive things.
like grocery shopping.  and vacuuming.
sometimes being responsible is a drag.

before i start being responsible again, i want to share some things i'm excited about right now. but first, let me recap the little 10k i ran on saturday.  it was another race put on by riverton city.  i think they call it "town days" or something like that.  

that's me in the middle.

the image is probably not legal but, i wanted to share it anyway for three reasons.

1. neighbor/friend/running buddy was my race partner.  we took each step together and finished within one second of each other.  she's there with me, in red.  i heart her.

2. to my left in the white tee is 68 year doug.  i know his name because i looked it up (is that legal? please lawyers, tell me what laws i'm breaking). he finished just a couple of minutes behind me which is really something.  this dude runs none stop. i swear it.  for years he's ran up and down our street carrying his disc-man in his hand.  always with his knee socks and tightly clenched fists.  recently, he's been running over to the gym from where he lives.  once there, he runs around the track over and over again (11 laps = a mile).  then he lifts some weights and runs back home.  i want to be like doug when i grow up.

3. this photo shows where my running form needs improvement.  note to self: release shoulders from ears and lower arms to hip height rather than holding them at my rib cage.  noted.

finish time was 53:13.  26th out 131 women and 10th out of 44 in my age group.  not nearly as well as i hoped to do but, i'm a novice.  i am not comfortable racing this distance.  really, it amazes me that i prefer the longer distances.  another topic for another day.

so that's that.  tomorrow i will run another race either officially or unofficially. it's the canyon to canyon half marathon. i missed the registration cut off time and now i'm waiting for an email or phone call back from the director.  their loss if they ignore my request to register late because i'm running either way.  they can either pocket my entry fee or, lose money every time i utilize their port-a-potty and aid stations.

moving on to things i'm excited about.  in no particular order.

1. squeezable applesauce.  my kids are digging these big time.  the fun factor is high so this helps to make them ask for another and the nutritional factor is even higher so this helps to make me happy.  even baby nephew loves himself some sauce.

2.  coffee mate came out with a new creamer.  
thank you coffee mate for reading my mind.
it's uber sweet so a little bit goes a long way which is good. 
i think.

3.  a local builder is about finished with the construction on a replica of the house from the disney movie "up."  we went and checked it out recently and i have to admit, it's super cool.  
i would love to live there for like a week.

as soon as it's done (for the parade of homes), we'll take the official tour. i'm abnormally excited.  this sort of thing doesn't usually float my boat.  i.e. extreme makeover home edition just finished a house for a family the next city over.  it's been the talk of the town.  i could care less. does that make me bad person?  don't answer that.

4.  my mom asked me to put a weight training workout together for her.
this excites me beyond imagination.  she did not give me permission to post photos of her on the world wide web but i don't worry about a lawsuit because she knows suing me would be pointless. the most she would walk away with is three kids and an orange/blue pickup truck.

now it has new tires so, it's really quite valuable.

5. and i save the best for last. 
i had this amazing idea the other day that i hoped would help cure my cookie dough eating problem.
cookie bars!
i found an awesome recipe that is so good, it will blow your mind (not that i tasted any of it myself. clear. throat. now).  the problem i have when i make cookies for my family is that damn bowl filled with dough waiting for the next batch to finish baking.  the bowl sits on the counter screaming at me.  not just calling my name, no, it screams at me.  so how brilliant are cookie bars?  BRILLIANT i tell ya! the entire batch of dough gets baked at once.  no more temptation torturing me as i bake like i love to.

simply brilliant.

don't worry folks, i'll post the recipe soon-ish.
happy weekend.

any fun plans? 
any new and exciting discoveries lately?

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