Let’s have a heart-to-heart…about noodles.
A big plate of warm noodles topped with savory sauce is classic comfort food. There’s the nostalgia of family dinners past coupled with the naughty, feel-good effect that accompanies a mouthful of starchy carbs. But let’s be honest. Eating noodles, as comforting as it may be, is not something that we are able to do with a clear conscious and a healthy, lean body.
As much as I’d love to serve noodle filled dinners to my family, these dinners would put us on the fast track to obesity and health issues. But I wasn’t ready to give up on noodles just yet. There had to be a way to create healthy, delicious noodle dishes that would not only taste good and deliver comfort, but would be grain-free, fiber-filled and easy to make.
From where I’m sitting, there are two main problems with traditional, grain-filled noodles.
Noodle Problem #1: Making Noodles Takes Too Long. As a little girl, growing up in the rural Northwest corner of Washington State, I’d watch my mom roll out dough and then crank it through a pasta-maker. If you pulled too hard, which I did, the dough would break and you’d have to roll it out again and start over. Once the noodles were formed they had to be boiled until fully cooked.
I remember thinking that it was a lot of work to produce enough noodles to feed our family of five.
Even if you purchase pre-made noodles it still takes a good while to boil the water, cook the noodles and then try to decide if it’s over-cooked, under-cooked or perfectly done. Whheeeww…there’s got to be an easier way!
Noodle Problem #2: Grain-filled Noodles Are Fattening. For those of us who aren’t professional athletes or growing children, the calorie and carb load in a plate of pasta will cause weight gain. It’s just a fact. Sure, you could get away with eating it once in a while, but if noodle-based dinners are a regular part of your diet, you are opening yourself up to move up a few pant sizes. There’s also that not-so-pleasant after pasta feeling. You know what I’m talking about … your belly is fully of starchy carbs and begins to ache, then your pants feel a little too tight and soon a lethargic feeling settles over you. No. Energy. To. Do. Anything. I’ll. Just. Sit. Here.
Oh noodles, you have put us in a serious pickle here.
Well, I’m excited to say that I’ve found the solution to BOTH noodle problems! And it’s so simple, you’re going to love it.
A simple, raw, zucchini can be turned into long, thin, angel hair noodles in under 60 seconds using a spiral slicer! Eat a pile of these noodles and you’ll skip that lethargic, carb coma as well as the accompanying weight gain. Zucchini noodles are fast, easy, low carb, fiber-filled, nutritious and delicious.
I can’t stop raving about this innovative new concept of noodles! The noodles taste just as delicious as traditional ones, while being extra wholesome and nutritious. Which brings us to this awesome new recipe for Creamy Chicken Pasta with Mushrooms and Broccoli…
This hold-me dinner is 100% grain, gluten and dairy free, which you’ll find hard to believe when you dig into it. Remember to come up for air…and enjoy this tasty noodle dinner with zero guilt! Enjoy 🙂
- 2 organic, free-range chicken breasts
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- ¼ teaspoon onion powder
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon sweet paprika
- ½ teaspoon dried basil
- ½ teaspoon dried oregano
- ¼ teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 lemon, zest and juice
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 1 organic, yellow onion, chopped
- 4 cups organic broccoli florets
- 2 cups organic fresh mushrooms, sliced
- 1 Tablespoon coconut oil
- 1 Tablespoon coconut flour
- 1 (13.5 oz) can organic coconut milk, full fat
- ½ cup nutritional yeast
- 2 teaspoons gluten-free Dijon mustard
- 1 Tablespoon mirin or white wine
- ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon onion powder
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- dash of black pepper
- 6 organic zucchinis
- Rinse the chicken breasts and pat dry. Combine all of the spices in a small bowl and add the lemon juice and lemon zest. Rub the spice combination over both chicken breasts then place in a slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 3 hours, or on high for 1.5 hours.
- Once the chicken has cooked, remove it from the slow cooker and chop into bite-sized pieces.
- Place the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and cook for 3 minutes, until soft. Add the broccoli and continue to cook for 5 minutes, until bright green. Add the mushrooms and cook for another 3 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
- In a large skillet melt the coconut oil over medium heat, whisking constantly. Add the coconut flour and continue to whisk until browned. Add the remaining ingredients and continue to whisk frequently until the sauce begins to boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and continue whisking for 5 minutes, as the sauce thickens.
- Combine the cooked chicken pieces, veggies and sauce in the slow cooker. Cover and cook for 1 hour on low heat or ½ an hour on high heat.
- Meanwhile, trim the ends from your zucchini and use a veggie peeler to strip off the green skin. Cut each zucchini in half, across the middle, and then run through a spiral slicer to create long, angel hair-like strands. Do this with each of the 6 zucchinis, placing the noodles aside in a large bowl. Season lightly with salt and pepper.
- Once your chicken and veggies are done cooking in the slow cooker, place a heaping pile of zucchini noodles on each plate and top with a scoop of the creamy chicken and veggies. Enjoy!