Pineapple Chicken Kebabs with Cilantro-Lime Slaw

Sweet and slightly-spicy chicken kebabs are paired with a creamy and bright slaw for an easy 25-minute weeknight dinner.

To make the pineapple glaze, combine pineapple juice, rice vinegar, hoisin sauce, Sriracha, honey, fish sauce and garlic and bring to a boil.  Reduce the heat and simmer to allow the sauce to slightly thicken.  While the sauce is cooking, cut chicken thighs into bite-size pieces and thread onto skewers.  Sprinkle the chicken with a little salt and brush with the sauce.  The chicken is then broiled for 6 minutes before turning and brushing with more of the pineapple sauce.

While the chicken is cooking, toss together sliced cabbage and cilantro with a simple dressing of vinegar, lime juice, salt and mayonnaise.

Serve the chicken kebabs with the reserved sauce and slaw.




Asian Marinated Chicken with Corn and Basil Faux-Fried Rice

This is one of those recipes that I’ve been holding onto for years (since September of 2012) and I finally got around to adding it to our dinner menu.  I’ve thought about preparing this dinner multiple times but I wanted to use our homegrown corn and basil so it never was the right time.  Until now.

The recipe doesn’t require a ton of ingredients and the only swap I made was using both boneless and skinless chicken thighs and I also used ginger instead of garlic.  I would have totally used garlic but I forgot to pick some up at the store.  The chicken marinates for two hours before it’s cooked and that’s where so much of the flavor comes from.  The Asian flavors come from soy sauce, mirin (you can find it on the international aisle), and ginger.  The green onions in the marinade also give it lots of fresh flavor.

The chicken is seared on the stovetop for 3 minutes before turning over and then continuing to cook in the oven at 375 degrees for about 10 more minutes.  The faux-fried rice is made by boiling your rice for 15 minutes and then draining.  The rice is then sautéed in a little olive oil with more green onions, the corn and a little more soy sauce.  The final addition of basil is perfection and adds so much brightness and flavor.


The chicken was perfectly tender and I loved the pops of corn in each bite of the rice paired with the fresh herbs.


Grilled Balsamic Chicken Salad with Spiced Pecans

This salad is the perfect summer salad!  It’s light, fresh and feel free to change up the fruit you used based on what’s in season.  I opted for raspberries because they looked gorgeous at the store – but blueberries or peaches would be amazing.

The chicken is simply seasoned with salt, pepper and I added a little onion powder.  If you have a favorite seasoning blend, go for it!  Big Guy fired up the grill and got the most perfect grill marks.  The key to moist chicken is not to overcook it.

The dressing is a simple mix of balsamic vinegar, EVOO, mustard, garlic plus salt and pepper.  One of the best parts about this salad is the spiced pecans.  I recommend doubling this recipe – Big Guy was obsessed.  Pecans are sautéed in a pan until fragrant (about 4 minutes).  Add in the butter, brown sugar and hot sauce and cook for another 4 minutes.  Remove from the heat and let cool.  They are sweet, crunchy with a little hint of heat.

To assemble the salad, put a big layer of greens on the plate followed by the raspberries, pecans and chicken.  Drizzle with the dressing and devour.


Sweet and Sour Chicken

This “take-out, fake-out” dinner is on the table in less time than it would take you to order and pick-up delivery from your local Chinese restaurant.  And it’s so much better for you than take-out.

The sweet and sour flavors come from a mix of ketchup, cider vinegar, brown sugar and soy sauce.  Fresh ginger adds a ton of flavor, too.  I adored the addition of sweet pineapple with crisp red bell pepper.


The key to making Chinese food at home is to prep all your ingredients before you start cooking.  Because once you start the cooking, it goes quickly.

My favorite bite was a little green onion, a little pineapple and SAUCE.

So good.

You could totally serve this over a bed of rice but I went with a glass of wine on the side.

What is your favorite “take-out” order?

Chicken Thighs with Ginger-Sesame Glaze + Asparagus with Sesame & Citrus Vinaigrette

The next couple of weeks are cray-zeeeee.  Fun but crazy.  There’s going to be a lot of go-go-go-ing.  And I’m fairly certain I’m not the only one.  For those of you with kids in school, well, summer is right around the corner.  And for those of you with little ones, well, life always seems crazy.  And for those of you without children, the start of the summer more often than not brings about a jam-packed social calendar.

So regardless of which category you fall in – this easy, 20-minute dinner is the ticket to ease your weeknight, dinner worries.  You can mix together the glaze in the morning and then all you have to do come dinner time is warm up the grill pan and pull together the asparagus.  

The glaze is a mixture of green onions, brown sugar, soy sauce, sesame oil, garlic, ginger, sesame seeds and sambal oelek.  Basically the glaze = flavor.  The chicken thighs are marinated in half of the mixture while the other half is saved for glazing the chicken before serving.

The asparagus are simply roasted and then tossed with orange segments, a little fresh orange juice, sesame oil, salt, pepper and then sprinkled with sesame seeds.

I loved the the brightness that the orange juice and pieces brought to a salty, savory and slightly spicy dinner.


So good!  So flavorful!

Let the craziness begin….

Lemon Chicken with Feta Rice

Three years ago we were celebrating Cinco de Drinko, I mean, Cinco de Mayo, on our honeymoon in Scrub Island.  A frozen margarita never tasted so delicious.  This throw back has been dreaming of another tropical vacation. #wanderlust  Especially since it’s been incredibly rainy and messy ALL week long.  (Saturday best be GAWGeous to make up for it.)

I don’t have any guacamole or tacos or quesadillas to share with you today but if you need some inspiration, I suggest checking out How Sweet It Is and What’s Gaby Cooking.  Both will have you running out the door to pick up tequila and avocados.

Since this week has been lacking sunshine, I brought some sunshine to the kitchen with this light and bright chicken dinner.  The ingredient list is so SHORT and it literally takes 20 minutes from start to finish.  ANYONE can make this easy yet delicious dinner.

Before you do anything, marinate your chicken (I used chicken tenders) in an easy mixture of lemon juice, olive oil, and lots of garlic.  Marinate the chicken in a large ziplock back to make clean-up a breeze.

While the chicken is marinating, heat your grill pan or skillet and bring water (or broth) to a boil to cook your rice in.  I used a 5-minute brown rice but you can use the boil-in-a-bag rice if that’s what you have on hand.

Make sure to sprinkle the chicken with salt and pepper before cooking about 6 minutes on each side (or until there’s no pink).  While the chicken is cooking, chop your herbs (I used parsley).  Once the rice is finished cooking, toss the warm rice with lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper and finally some feta (I used a mediterranean feta).  For even more flavor, I added some lemon zest – because throwing it away is such a waste of BRIGHTNESS.

Simple serve the chicken on a bed of the feta rice.


Zippy and bright, the perfect bit of sunshine on a dreary day.


Flattened Chicken with Almond & Paprika Vinaigrette + Manchego Grits

Good morning!  I’m hoping that all the rain today means that we’ll have a nice and sunny Saturday.

We enjoyed this chicken dinner last Friday night and it’s definitely worth sharing.  There are so many flavors and textures going on – the perfect way to jazz up “basic” chicken breasts.

The chicken breasts that I used were quite large so instead of pounding them thin, I cut them in half to make cutlets.  The chicken is then seasons with salt and pepper and seared in a  little olive oil until cooked through – about 3-4 minutes on each side.

In that same pan, a warm vinaigrette is made chicken stock, garlic, chopped almonds, lemon zest, lemon juice, smoked paprika and Dijon mustard.

While the chicken cooked, prepare the grits.  I used the stovetop method and 5-minute grits.  Either follow the recipe or saute a little chopped onion in the olive oil.  Once softened, add the chicken stock and bring to a boil.  Slowly add the grits and whisk until thickened.  Before serving, stir in grated Manchego cheese, salt and pepper. The chicken is served over the grits  with the vinaigrette spooned on top and then finished with chopped green olives and fresh parsley.


I loved the crunch of the almonds, the herbaceous parsley and the burst of brininess from the olives.  And well, grits are always a good idea.

Enjoy this Spanish-inspired dinner any night of the week.  And in case you were wondering, a Sonoma Pinot Noir pairs perfectly with this dinner.