Spicy Orange Chicken with Apricot Orange Dipping Sauce

spicy orange chicken with apricot orange dipping sauce on rice

There are 2 things that a recipe title that long can tell you – 1) The “I can’t think of a good name for this so I’m going to just tell you everything that is in it” syndrome or 2) It’s an America’s Test Kitchen recipe. Not that I can blame them. I also find it a little hard to be creative with my recipe names and often end up in the first camp 🙂

I’ve talked before about how much I enjoy the cookbook The Best Light Recipe from America’s Test Kitchen. At this point, I am not sure how many times I’ve checked it out from our library, saving a few more recipes each time. In reality, I am not sure I ever would have made this recipe save for the jar of apricot preserves my husband randomly brought home from the store. It actually wasn’t bad on toast alone, but peanut butter and apricot preserve sandwiches just didn’t work quite as well.
Needless to say, I was looking to use up the rest of the jar.

spicy orange chicken with apricot orange dipping sauce

We enjoyed these chicken skewers with the dipping sauce over rice for our meal, but I am confident that they’d work equally as well on an appetizer tray for New Year’s Eve or any remaining holiday parties. In fact, the recipe is actually in the “appetizer” section of the cookbook. The book indicates that the recipe (as an appetizer) will serve 10. As written, we ate it for a main dish with a couple meals as leftovers. The sauce here is a little sweet but just in the right way and really compliments the chicken. In the past, I’ve been a little wary of the fruit and meat combination, but after these fajitas and this skewer recipe, I’ve found I really should keep an open mind. Enjoy!

(Printable Recipe)

Spicy Orange Chicken with Apricot Orange Dipping Sauce
From The Best Light Recipe

2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breasts, trimmed of fat
2 Tbsp. minced parsley
1-1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. grated orange zest
1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes
1/2 tsp. paprika
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
1/4 cup apricot preserves
nonstick cooking spray

Apricot Orange Dipping Sauce:
1 cup apricot preserves
2 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
1 Tbsp. minced parsley
1/2 tsp. grated orange zest
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes
1/8 tsp. ground black pepper

Slice the chicken across the grain into 1/2-inch-thick strips (about 30 strips). In a large bowl, toss the chicken with the parsley, salt, orange zest, red pepper flakes, paprika, garlic powder, and pepper. Add the apricot preserves and toss to coat. Cover and marinate in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes (can be left for up to 24 hours).

For the dipping sauce, puree the apricot preserves and vinegar together in a blender or food processor until smooth, about 1 minute. Transfer to a small serving bowl. Stir in the parsley, orange zest, salt, red pepper flakes, and pepper. Cover and let stand at room temperature for at least 30 minutes. The dipping sauce can be made up to 48 hours before and stored in the refrigerator.

Thread the chicken pieces onto skewers. If desired, the chicken can be cooked on an outdoor grill over medium heat until cooked through, flipping skewers partway through the cooking process. Alternatively, adjust an oven rack to the top position and heat the broiler. Line a broiler pan with foil and top with a slotted broiler pan top; spray the broiler pan top with nonstick spray. Lay the skewers on the broiler pan and cover the skewer ends with foil. Do not cover the chicken. Broil until the meat is lightly browned and cooked through, 5-8 minutes, flipping skewers over halfway through. Repeat the process if necessary to cook all the meat. Serve with the prepared apricot dipping sauce.


Chicken Tortilla Soup

chicken tortilla soup

This recipe idea was completely my husband’s genius. See there is this little coffee shop café right next door to the pharmacy in the hospital. Per his report, the pharmacy staff will often eat there, especially on the weekends, and the chicken tortilla soup is one of the best things they make.

Now, I haven’t tried their version myself, but I think this one has to be pretty close . When we were hunting for recipes, I found there seems to be two variations of soup that bear the name chicken tortilla soup. One that is a broth-based soup with lots of southwestern-themed veggies, and one that is a creamier, thicker version with melted cheese. Don’t get me wrong, the first version is delicious. I’ve made it many times before. This second type is on a whole different level. Probably not as healthy of a level, but everything in moderation, right? 🙂 This recipe comes from Brown Eyed Baker. Michelle states that she came up with this recipe as a homemade version of a soup from a restaurant chain in Ohio. We were definitely on the right track.

I stayed pretty close to the recipe, but I did decrease the cayenne pepper by at least half. As written, it calls for 1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper. We can handle quite a bit of heat, but that’s a lot of cayenne pepper! I’d recommend starting slow. You can always add more if you want more heat. Enjoy!

(Printable Recipe)

Chicken Tortilla Soup
Adapted slightly from Brown Eyed Baker

2 Tbsp. olive or vegetable oil
1/2 white onion, minced
1/4 cup minced Anaheim pepper (about 1 pepper)
1 clove garlic, minced
2 Tbsp. cornstarch
4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
2-3 cups cooked shredded chicken
8 ounces mild cheddar cheese, shredded
3 (6-inch) corn tortillas, minced
2 Tbsp. lime juice
1 can (15 oz) diced tomatoes
1/2 tsp. cumin
1/8-1/4 tsp. ground cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp. oregano
1/4 tsp. salt
Tortilla strips, sour cream/Greek yogurt for garnish

In a large saucepan or Dutch oven, heat the oil over medium-low heat. Add the onion, Anaheim pepper, and garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes or until the onion is translucent.

In a separate bowl, whisk the cornstarch into the chicken broth. Add the mixture to the pot with the shredded chicken, cheddar cheese, minced tortillas, lime juice, diced tomatoes, cumin, cayenne pepper, oregano, and salt. Increase the heat to medium while stirring constantly to help the cheese melt. When the soup begins to bubble, reduce the heat and simmer for 20 minutes. Serve topped with tortilla strips and/or sour cream or plain Greek yogurt.

Chicken and Avocado Enichiladas

Hope you all had a great Thanksgiving weekend. I missed the Friday Favorites last week due to my parents being in town, but I’ll be back on schedule this week. I worked Thanksgiving Day, so we just had a smaller meal consisting of soup, homemade bread, and definitely desserts! It was kind of nice to have Thanksgiving on a smaller scale, but I am missing those turkey leftovers. I think the leftovers may be my favorite part of the Thanksgiving meal!

If you are lucky enough to have leftovers, I’m sure you could swap the chicken in these for some of that leftover turkey. In fact, if you have turkey, I would be more than willing to take some of it so I can make these again! Avocado, cilantro, peppers, and Monterey Jack cheese. That list should speak for itself. These are good. Definitely in the running for favorite enchilada dish around here!

The recipe for these comes from Gimmie Some Oven, and I made them largely as written. My only swaps were small – plain Greek yogurt in place of sour cream and whole wheat tortillas. My other addition was to add a little shredded cheese on top of the dish. If you do this, be careful with the foil. In fact, you may want to spray the bottom of it with nonstick spray or much of your melty cheese may stick to the foil. Not that I would know… 🙂

Chicken or turkey. Greek yogurt or sour cream. You won’t regret making these. Enjoy!

(Printable Recipe)

Chicken Avocado Enchiladas
Adapted slightly from Gimme Some Oven

2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 medium white or yellow onion, diced
2 poblano peppers, seeded and stemmed, diced
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and stemmed, diced
8-10 (I had a little filling left) whole wheat tortillas
4 cups shredded cooked chicken (or turkey)
2-3 cups Shredded Monterey Jack cheese, divided

Avocado Cream Sauce:
2 Tbsp. butter
2 Tbsp. flour
2 cups low-sodium chicken broth (or stock)
3/4 cup plain Greek yogurt
1/2 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 tsp. pepper
2 avocados, peeled and pitted
1/2 cup fresh cilantro
juice of 1 lime

For the avocado cream sauce, melt the butter in a skillet over medium high heat. Add flour, whisking until golden brown and bubbly, about 2-3 minutes. Slowly whisk the broth into the flour mixture. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 5 minutes. Stir in the Greek yogurt, cumin, salt, garlic powder, and pepper. Whisk as necessary to remove any lumps. Remove from the heat and transfer the mixture to a heat-safe bowl. Add avocado, cilantro, and lime juice. Blend using an immersion blender until smooth. Alternately, you can let the mixture cool slightly and then blend in a traditional blender.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and grease a 9×13 inch pan. In another skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion, poblano, and jalapeno, and saute for 5-6 minutes until the onions become translucent. Remove from heat. Mix in the shredded chicken. 

Spread a little avocado sauce over the bottom of the prepared pan. To assemble the enchiladas, place a tortilla on a flat surface. Spread some avocado sauce on the top 1/3 of the tortilla. Top with the chicken mixture and shredded cheese. Repeat until the pan is full or you have used all the filling. Spread the remaining avocado sauce over the top of the enchiladas. Top with remaining shredded cheese. Spray a piece of foil with nonstick spray and cover the pan with the spray-side down. Bake for 20 minutes or until the dish is heated through and the tortillas being to harden. Serve and enjoy.

SRC: Sweet Chili Lime Chicken with Cilantro Couscous

sweet chili lime chicken with cilantro lime couscous

My blog assignment this month for SRC was Shelby’s blog The Life & Loves of Grumpy’s Honeybunch. While I had heard of GHB (as she calls it) before, Shelby’s blog was still relatively new to me. I can honestly tell you that I loved it. She has a great list of recipes, and her stories in each post really can’t be beat. 

While I still really want to make this banana bread, the recipe I picked for SRC is her Sweet Chili Lime Chicken with Cilantro Couscous. The hubs and I love anything remotely “southwest” flavored, so I was confident it would be a hit. I did end up using the “puspus” as Shelby indicates Grumpy calls it. Rice would work great too, but you just can’t beat the 5 minute cook time of couscous!

sweet chili lime chicken couscous
sweet chili lime chicken
I followed her recipe pretty close, subbing only brown sugar for the white sugar and adding a little lime juice to the couscous as well. I also left my chicken breasts whole, mostly because I felt like it that day. If you leave them whole, be sure to pound them a bit with a meat tenderizer. Chicken just seems to cook so much more evenly that way! As for the dried pepper flakes, I added just 1/2 teaspoon, and there was a fair amount of heat in the dish. My only advice would be to add slowly. Once the spice is in, you won’t get it out (I have learned this the hard way in the past…).

Enjoy the dish and be sure to stop by GHB to say hello! 

(Printable Recipe)

Sweet Chili Lime Chicken with Cilantro Couscous
Adapted from The Life & Loves of Grumpy’s Honeybunch

2 chicken breasts, pounded even with meat tenderizer
salt and pepper
1 Tbsp. olive oil
6 Tbsp. low-sodium soy sauce
3-4 Tbsp. brown sugar
1/2-1 tsp. red pepper flakes
juice of 1 lime
zest of 1 lime

Cilantro Couscous:
1-1/4 cup vegetable or chicken broth
1 cup whole wheat couscous
3-4 Tbsp. chopped cilantro
juice of 1/2 lime

Heat a non-stick skillet over medium heat. Warm the oil in the skillet. Pound the chicken breasts until even. Season with salt and pepper. Cook in the pre-heated skillet until cooked through. Remove to a plate and keep warm.

Meanwhile, combine the soy sauce, brown sugar, red pepper flakes, lime juice, and lime zest in a small bowl. Stir until the sugar has dissolved. When the chicken is finished cooking, pour into the hot skillet and bring to a boil. Cook for 3-4 minutes or until the sauce is beginning to reduce. Return the chicken to the pan, cooking for 2-3 more minutes and turning the chicken breasts to coat.

For the couscous, bring the broth to a boil in medium saucepan. Remove from the heat, add the couscous, and place the lid on the pan. Let sit for 5 minutes. Remove the lid and fluff with a fork. Stir in the cilantro and lime juice. Serve with the chicken.

Crockpot Cheddar Beer Chicken Tacos

crockpot cheddar beer chicken tacos

Well, it happened. Something I never though I’d see in my lifetime. 

I. Forgot. To. Eat.

Seriously, I am typically not one to miss meals. My stomach is quite the time keeper, even letting me know a couple hours early (most of the time) that it is time to eat. Lunch at 10:30AM, why not? Nonetheless, there I was perched on my couch studying BCPS material, and before I knew it, it was 4:30 in the afternoon and I hadn’t eaten since breakfast. Who knew? Apparently the gastrointestinal section (comically enough) really was that enthralling.

crockpot cheddar beer chicken tacos shredded chicken

Anyway, forgetting to eat doesn’t have much to do with this post other than the fact that there is no way you’ll forget about dinner with this cooking in the crockpot. Mexican food, in some way, shape, or form, almost always makes it onto our weekly menu, and this is a great way to do it fuss free. Chicken slow cooked in beer and spices only to be shredded and mixed with cheese. Where do I sign up? Bonus points that it is perfectly acceptable to finish the rest of the beer 🙂 

crockpot cheddar beer chicken tacos2

This recipe is from Jessica at How Sweet It Is, and it really is nothing short of genius. Make it next time you know you’ll be rushed around dinner time. You certainly won’t regret it, just don’t forget the taco toppings. Enjoy!

(Printable Recipe)

Crockpot Cheddar Beer Chicken Tacos
From How Sweet It Is

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 1 lb)
3/4 cup beer (I used Blue Moon)
1 Tbsp. chili powder
1-1/2 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. smoked paprika
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 tsp. onion powder
pinch of cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
3/4 cup freshly grated Monterey Jack or Cheddar cheese
taco shells or tortillas
Toppings: Greek yogurt (or sour cream), avocado, cilantro, salsa, onion, lettuce

In a bowl, combine the chili powder, cumin, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, caynne pepper, salt and pepper. Measure the 3/4 cup of beer and stir 1-1/2 tablespoons of spices into the beer. 

Place the chicken in the crockpot. Pour the beer mixture over the top. Cook on low for 4-6 hours (mine was done closer to 4 hours). The time will depend on the size of your chicken breasts.

When cooked, remove the chicken from the crockpot and shred. Do not drain the liquid in the crockpot. Add the chicken back to the liquid and mix until combined (there shouldn’t be much leftover liquid, although the chicken will be moist). Leave in the crockpot to cook for an additional 15 minutes. Remove the chicken from the crockpot and immediately mix in the shredded cheese. Assemble the tacos as desired.

Crockpot Teriyaki Chicken

crockpot chicken teriyaki

Every time I use my crockpot, I wonder why we don’t use it more often. I probably don’t have to sing it’s praises to anyone here – ready made meal, typically little “active” cook time, and let’s be honest, it doesn’t heat up the house. The heat factor alone could be enough to sing its praises when its >100 degrees every day!

This is a recipe that I found on Lake Lure Cottage Kitchen. We have a teriyaki recipe we love, but the crockpot version here was intriguing. This recipe definitely surprised me. Asian-flavored dishes are almost always a hit around here (have we discussed my husband’s Chinese buffet addiction in undergraduate?), but this exceeded my expectations. It uses boneless skinless chicken thighs which help keep the meat moist. The chicken here basically shredded itself! Even with that, I have to note my one negative point, although this is common to many chicken dishes in the crockpot. Cooking time during the work week. A 4-5 hour cook time just doesn’t work very well with my work schedule. Nonetheless, this still makes for an easy dinner on the weekend!

Enough about work, back to the food 🙂

crockpot chicken teriyaki close

As written, this recipe calls for 3 lbs. of chicken. That’s a lot of food! We halved the recipe with good success. One more tip. Be sure to concentrate the cooking liquid. It makes a great sauce served over brown rice. Enjoy!

(Printable Recipe)

Crockpot Teriyaki Chicken
From Lake Lure Cottage Chicken

3 lbs. boneless skinless chicken thighs
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
6 Tbsp. cider vinegar
3/4 tsp. ground ginger
3/4 tsp. minced garlic
1/4 tsp. pepper
4-1/2 tsp. cornstarch
4-1/2 tsp. cold water
brown rice, cooked according to package directions

In a large bowl, combine the sugar, soy sauce, cider vinegar, ground ginger, minced garlic, and pepper. Add chicken to the bowl of the crockpot and pour the sauce over the chicken. Cover and cook on low for 4-5 hours or until chicken is tender. 

Remove chicken to a platter, keep warm. Skim fat from cooking liquid. Pour the liquid into a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. In a small bowl, mix the cornstarch and cold water. Slowly add to the boiling pot, stirring until the sauce has thickened. Serve the chicken over rice, topped with the teriyaki sauce.

Mexican Chicken Casserole

Mexican chicken casserole piece

We got quite the surprise in our garden this year. The plan was to buy 4 bell pepper plants, as we eat quite a few bell peppers every week. Apparently someone at the nursery had a little fun because when the plants finally started producing peppers a couple of weeks ago, we found ourselves with a crop of banana peppers. Good thing we like Mexican food!

This is my “more complicated” Mexican recipe that I promised. In reality, the dish is not that hard to make, but it does have several steps. Some of which would be easy enough to make ahead of time if you did not want to make it all at once. 

Mexican chicken casserole salsa ingredients
Mexican chicken casserole

The recipe comes from Amber at Chocolate Broccoli, and she indicates this is a recipe she has been making for quite some time. It is basically a Mexican-themed lasanga filled with vegetables. She makes her own roasted salsa for the sauce which is amazing. I made very few modifications to the recipe – mostly using my banana peppers rather than the poblanos. 

Despite the steps, I promise it is delicious. It made a wonderful dinner and lunch for several days afterwards. Enjoy!

(Printable Recipe)

Mexican Chicken Casserole
Slightly Adapted from Chocolate Broccoli

For the salsa:
8 plum tomatoes, halved and seeded
3 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
1 small onion, peeled and chopped
2 jalapenos, seeded and quartered
Cooking spray
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
3 Tbsp. lime juice (1 lime)
1/8 tsp. black pepper
1/8 tsp. kosher salt

For the casserole:
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup frozen corn kernels
1 cup diced zucchini
1 cup chopped red bell pepper
3 large banana peppers, seeded and chopped
2 cups shredded cooked chicken 
1 Tbsp. minced garlic
2 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 (10oz) can green chile enchilada sauce
12 (6-inch) corn tortillas, cut into quarters
1 cup (4oz) shredded Monterey jack cheese
1 cup (4oz) crumbled Cojita cheese

Preheat broiler. To prepare salsa, combine the first 4 ingredients on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Broil 20 minutes or until charred, stirring once. Remove from oven; cool slightly. Place tomato mixture in a food processor; add cilantro, lime juice, salt and pepper. Process until smooth. Set aside.

Decrease oven to 350 degrees. Heat a non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Lightly coat the pan with cooking spray. Add 1 cup onion, corn, zucchini, banana peppers, and bell peppers. Saute until tender, about 6 minutes. Add chicken and other ingredients through the enchilada sauce. Cook until heated through. Remove from heat and set aside. 

Just cover the bottom of a 9×13-inch baking dish with the salsa. Arrange half the tortillas over the salsa, tearing if needed to cover the entire dish. Spoon 2 cups of the chicken mixture evenly over the tortillas. Top with half the remaining salsa. Sprinkle with half of each of the cheeses. Repeat layers, starting with the remaining tortillas and ending with the remaining cheeses. Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 25 minutes until bubbly.

Crockpot Chicken Tortilla Soup

chicken tortilla soup (2)

I don’t feel like I need to speak to the beauties of the crockpot too much. A hot meal ready when you walk in the door? Not too many complaints there! 

While crockpots are wonderful dinner tools, one of the things I still struggle with is cooking times. Even on the best day, the crockpot is likely to be cooking whatever meal it contains for at least 10 hours. Yes, this has resulted in some over cooked meals… Because of this fact, one of the things I find myself using the crockpot for the most is soup. It is much harder to overcook soup (unless you run out of liquid – haven’t done this yet…)

chicken tortilla soup in crockpot
chicken tortilla soup close

Like many other classic recipes, there are about a million variations of chicken tortilla soup. This adaption is based off a recipe from one of my co-workers that I adapted somewhat to our tastes. I left the chicken breasts whole to cook with the soup, shredded them, add added them back to the soup. Does not get easier than this! Enjoy!

(Printable Recipe)

Crockpot Chicken Tortilla Soup
Adapted from Shannon

2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (thawed if frozen)
1 large bell pepper, chopped
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup frozen or fresh corn 
4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1-2 tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. chili powder
1 Tbsp. lime juice
1 cup Black Bean and Corn salsa
1-1/2 cups cooked brown rice
8 oz. corn tortilla chips
1/2 cup shredded Monterey jack cheese
light sour cream, garnish

Add ingredients through the salsa to the bowl of a crockpot. Cook on low for 8-10 hours. Remove chicken breasts and shred. Add back to soup with cooked rice. Turn the crockpot to high to heat through, if needed.

Roughly crush the tortilla chips. Place in the bottom of each bowl. Spoon the soup over the chips. Top each bowl with Monterey jack cheese and sour cream if desired.  

SRC: Coconut Chicken Soup

coconut chicken soup with roll

Well, the Secret Recipe Club is back! After taking the month of January off, I am excited to be back with the group to start our February reveals. This month, my blog assignment was Culinary Adventures with Camilla. Camilla has a fun blog with a ton of different recipes with influences from all over the world. 

Since she has so many different recipes, I wanted to try something that was a little bit out of my typical comfort zone. I looked for awhile at this recipe for kadu bouranee, but as it is winter, I went with my cravings and chose this recipe for coconut chicken soup. In her post, Camilla mentions that this is a recipe that she just put together quickly from the things that she had in her kitchen. I certainly had to buy a couple things as this is actually the first time I have ever actually made anything with swiss chard. 

coconut chicken soup cooking
coconut chicken soup

The recipe here is really more of a guide as Camilla does not list ingredients. I used all the ingredients she suggests, but varied amounts based on what I had and to taste. I’ll list my approximate measurements below but feel free to add or vary ingredients as you prefer. For the two of us, there was plenty of soup for dinner and several days of lunch, and as most soups do, this seemed to get better and better after storing it. A hit here, and I certainly have a great new (to me) blog to check out for ethnic dishes! 

(Printable Recipe)

Coconut Chicken Soup
Adapted from Culinary Adventures with Camilla

1 Tbsp. olive oil
1/2 cup fennel bulb, chopped
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts, cooked and shredded
3 whole carrots, peeled and sliced 
1 pkg. swiss chard, leaves removed from stems and torn
3 cups baby spinach, torn
1 (14.5oz) can light coconut milk
2 cups water
2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1/2 – 1 tsp. cardamom
3 Tbsp. lemon juice (or juice from 1 lemon)
2 cups brown rice, cooked
2 Tbsp. soy sauce

Cook the brown rice according to package directions. Fluff and set aside. Boil water in a medium saucepan and add raw chicken. Boil until the chicken is cooked through. Shred with 2 forks or by mixing the hot chicken in the bowl of a stand mixer on low for about a minute. 

Heat the oil in a stockpot over medium heat. Add the fennel and garlic and saute until they begin to soften. Add the chicken, carrots, chard, spinach, cooked brown rice, coconut milk, water, and chicken broth. Season with spices, lemon juice, and soy sauce. Bring to a boil, turn down heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes until the greens are wilted and the vegetables are cooked through. Taste and adjust seasonings if needed.

Mexican Chicken Enchilada Casserole

Cheesy. Enchilada. Casserole. Not the terms that you would typically think of in a January meal. Surprise, this recipe is actually based from Cooking Light, although I found this adaption on Iowa Girl Eats this past summer. Not sure it would actually classify as “health food,” but when a Mexican craving strikes, this could certainly fulfill the requirements without doing too much damage to your diet. Good news in our book as Mexican is one of our favorite types of cuisines.

This recipe starts by cooking chicken breasts on the stove top in a mixture of chicken broth and green chiles. The cooked chicken is shredded and set aside as the chile mixture turns into your cheesy enchilada sauce. On a side note, did you know that you can shred a cooked chicken breast in your stand mixer? It works here or if you’ve boiled them on the stovetop. Just place the hot breast into the mixer with the paddle attachment and go. Perfect if you’re like me and always end up burning yourself while trying to shred the hot chicken 🙂

Our verdict: cheesy, lighter, and delicious! Looking through the ingredients, the dish is really a deconstructed enchilada layered lasagna-style into a baking dish, so if you have that soft spot in your heart for enchiladas, these should float your boat. Enjoy!

(Printable Recipe)

Mexican Chicken Enchilada Casserole
Adapted from Iowa Girl Eats (originally adapted from Cooking Light)

1 cup low-sodium chicken broth 
2 (4.5oz) cans chopped green chiles, divided
1-1/4 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 tsp. olive oil
1 cup onion, chopped
1 cup skim evaporated milk
1 (10oz) can enchilada sauce
2oz. 1/3-less fat cream cheese
1 cup (4oz) Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
1/2 cup (2oz) 2% sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
9 (6 inch) corn tortillas
1-2 oz tortilla chips, crushed

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray an 8×8-inch baking dish with non-stick spray and set aside.

Heat the chicken broth and one can of the green chiles in a large skillet on medium-high heat. When boiling, add the chicken breasts and cook for 7-8 minutes per side, or until the chicken is cooked all the way through. Remove the chicken, shred, and set aside. Reserve the cooking liquid and set aside. 

Re-heat the skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and second can of green chiles. Saute until the onions are soft, then add the evaporated milk, enchilada sauce, cream cheese, Monterey jack cheese, and reserved cooking liquid. Stir until sauce is combined, then add in the shredded chicken. Stir well, and remove from heat.

Lay 3 corn tortillas on the bottom of the baking dish, tearing them when necessary to cover the entire bottom of the dish. Top with 2 cups of the chicken mixture. Repeat the layers 2 more times, ending with the chicken layer on top. Top with the crushed tortilla chips and shredded cheddar cheese.

Bake for 20-30 minutes or until cheese on the top is golden brown. Let sit for 10 minutes before serving.