Pesto Chicken Lasagna

Hey all, I wanted to share my recipe for pesto chicken lasagna that I made this weekend. I will try to break it down by each layer to make it pretty simple. It is chicken based so it is protein packed. I went easy on the cheeses and used some Greek yogurt to add moisture and flavor as well.

First: here is everything that I used in this picture. I had boiled and shredded the chicken the day before.

  • 4 handfuls fresh spinach leaves
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped mushrooms & white onion with some EVOO
  • 1 15 oz can of fire roasted diced tomatoes
  • 3 or 4 medium chicken breast boiled and shredded
  • 4 medium stem tomatoes sliced and salt & peppered
  • 1 cup Greek yogurt, 2 cups ricotta cheese & a blend of mozzarella, Gruyère & parmesan cheese….or whatever you have 😉 you don’t need that much
  • Homemade pesto or a small jar (about 8 or 10 oz.)
  • Lasagna noodles-I used 9/4 bottom then 3 and 3 for the next 2 layers
  • Seasonings like parsley, red pepper flakes, oregano & basil, salt & pepper

pesto-lasagna-1

Second:  cook your mushrooms, onions and warm half of the already cooked chicken in a skillet for about 15 min on medium heat with a little bit of olive oil. Then add half of the pesto and season with parsley, salt, pepper, red pepper flakes, basil, oregano to your liking. Meanwhile, boil your noodles according to package directions.

pesto-lasagna-2

Third: pre-heat your oven to 350 & begin your assembly line by having your tomatoes sliced and ready, your spinach close by, noodles, the other half of the shredded chicken mixed with the rest of the pesto and the 1 cup of Greek yogurt. Your can of fire roasted tomatoes ready with the liquid (don’t drain) and your 2 cups of ricotta cheese along with the shredded cheese options near by.

pesto-lasagna-3

To assemble:

  • Coat your pan with a spray or whatever non-stick option you like
  • Spread some fire roasted tomatoes and liquid on the bottom
  • Place 4 lasagna noodles overlapping each other’s edges just a bit
  • Place warm chicken & mushroom mixture on top
  • Add a layer of ricotta cheese and shredded Gruyère cheese
  • Then add a layer of spinach leaves and sliced tomatoes
  • Top that with 3 more noodles
  • Then the chicken, pesto and Greek yogurt mixture (this can be room temp)
  • The rest of the ricotta cheese and the shredded parmesan cheese
  • Another layer of spinach and sliced tomatoes
  • Finish with 3 more noodles, the rest of the liquid and diced fire roasted tomatoes and shredded mozzarella cheese

pesto-lasagna-4

Cover with foil and bake for 30 min in 350 degree oven, then remove foil and bake for another 25 to 30 min. Let cool for 30 min before cutting.

pesto-lasagna-6

I hope you will try this and I really hope you enjoy it!

xoxo, Adrienne

 

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Easy Baked Eggs

easy baked eggs

The egg…..in all its glory…..the perfect little protein punch!! Most eggs average 7 g of protein each and I aim for about 20 g at breakfast time. So this am I made 3 baked eggs in muffin tins just to test this idea out.

To make:

1. Pre heat oven to 350 degrees

2. Crack egg into muffin tin (spray if not non stick)

>>>add nothing

>>>add spices

>>>add cheese

>>>add veggies

3. Bake for 15 min.

>Eat now

>Save some for later in the week

>Freeze for even later in the month

>Add to an English muffin with meat, cheese, tomatoes, spinach and wrap up in foil for a grab and go healthy option (no drive thru here) later. (reheat)

Enjoy!! I know we all need constant inspiration  and new ideas to keep going on the healthy train so I hope you will try this and love it!

xo-A

September “ABC” Be Better Challenge Check in!

checking in

Checking in with you all to see if you accepted my September Challenge and how you are doing??

It is already Sept 18th, wow that went fast! You know what, I have truly committed to the 5 challenges of being better and I feel great! Craving less sweets-zero stops at the local to die for bakery that I can literally walk to from my house! Eating more PROTEIN-this has been the biggest game changer! Protein keeps you so much fuller, which I really contribute to me craving less sweets and cheats! When you are hungry you will start to crave. So, don’t get hungry (by ensuring you get enough protein at each meal)…..don’t crave!! YES!!!

I have a ton more energy and with early 4:15 am wake-ups 2 times a week to train or instruct a class at the gym…I am not even tired or CRANKY-huge bonus for those around me!

I have kicked up my cardio by adding a super hard spin class just once a week and making myself hit 10 miles outside a week…it has been pretty beautiful out and the fresh air feels GREAT!! I have a fun 5K/ Obstacle course to do this Saturday morning too, can’t wait! Giving yourself goals such as, a 5K, 10K, half or full marathon to train for really helps you stay on track-because you have something to work towards! I highly recommend signing up for a “race” scheduled for a few months from now or in the spring-this will motivate you!!

I have really cut the crap-no processed boxed yuckies and no “on the go bars”-the thing is, could I grab a bar because I am in a hurry, sure, but that is not the best choice! The BEST choice is preparing the day/night before and making better choices!! I totally cleaned up my carbs too! I have only had pasta one time this month!! YAY!! I have been eating rice, oats and quinoa mostly as my carbs!

This is ALL very achievable!!! You can do this, this isn’t even hard. It is awesome, lovely and you will feel amazing once you start eating right and get/stay moving!

My biggest fear of growing older is not being able to stay mobile and energetic but I know that if I continue down the path that I am on I will be just fine!
When my son is 17 and I am 46 I want him to say, “Let’s go for a run together mom”. That would be AWESOME!

Let me know how you are doing or what you are struggling with-I am here to help!!
xo-A

Protein + Berry Pancakes

protein and berry pancakes

These are to die for!! Hands down one of the best things I have ever whipped up!

Absolutely in love with them! Great way to crank up your protein intake!

Here is the recipe:

protein pancakes 5

4 oz unsweetened applesauce

1 c unsweetened almond milk

1 and 1/2 c all natural pancake mix

1/2 c chocolate protein powder

1 c mixed berries

1 dash nutmeg and 2 dashes cinnamon

Mix well and cook about 2 to 3 min on each side-they will not really bubble up as an indicator to flip so keep an eye on them and flip about 2 to 3 min on each side.

Makes about 15 to 16 small/med sized pancakes.

My 4 year old son gobbled them up too!

I drizzled some honey on mine and made enough for left overs the next day!

Heavenly!

protein pancakes 2protein pancakes 3protein pancakes 4

Enjoy!!!

xoxo-A

Dark Green Muscle Smoothie

dark green muscle smoothie

2 handfuls fresh spinach or kale OR 1 cup frozen packed spinach

1 c unsweetened almond milk

1 scoop or approx. 18 g choc protein powder

3/4 c frozen or fresh blueberries

1/2 banana

1 tbsp. chia seeds

3 tsp. oats

1 kiwi

Add some ice, blend well!

Looks swampy BUT tastes delish like blueberries and kiwi!

 

Enjoy!

A

Strawberry & Lime Smoothie

lime strawberry smoothie 2

Ingredients:

1/2 c frozen strawberries

1/2 c frozen banana

1/2 c plain Greek yogurt (like Chobani or Fage brand)

1 c unsweetened almond milk

1/4 small lime (peeled)

1/4 c cucumber (peeled)

2 tsp flax or chia seeds

3 tsp oats

Fresh parsley (small handful)

Blend until very smooth

Enjoy! A

 lime strawberry smoothie

Chocolate, almond, coffee & cranberry smoothie

Chocolate, cranberry, almond, banana, coffee smoothie!
Chocolate, almond, cranberry & coffee smoothie!

You will need:

1 pack instant coffee-I used Starbucks VIA Blonde Roast in this one

1 scoop chocolate protein powder-I used GNC Wheyabolic Extreme 60

1 tsp Glutamine (optional-I use it to help with muscle soreness from tough workouts)

2 tsp old-fashioned oats (dry)

1 small banana

1 tsp flax or chia seeds

1/4 c frozen cranberries (can use any “berry”)

1/4 c almonds (that’s about 8 almonds)

1 tsp honey, almond butter or natural peanut butter (pick one)

3/4 c milk (almond or skim)

4 ice cubes

 

Blend until smooth and Enjoy!!!

xoxoxo-A

Healthy Enchilada Lasagna

enchalata lasagna 3Enchalata lasagna 2Enchalata lasagna 1Enchilada lasagna!

So clean and healthy and the whole family will love this one!

What you will need:

12 small white corn tortillas

1/2 or 3/4 lb diced chicken breast or ground turkey (or omit meat for a vegetarian dish or add black beans)

Yellow, orange, red or green pepper-pick at least 2 of those 4

1/2 c chopped onion-which ever kind you like

1 c chopped tomatoes

1/2 c corn-frozen or fresh off the cob

2 cups salsa- I used a pineapple mango flavored for extra flavor

1 c shredded mozzarella cheese

1/2 c lime juice

1/4 tbsp unsalted butter

1/4 c hot sauce

Fresh cilantro, pepper, Badia seasoning, red pepper flakes

8 oz Creamy citrus avocado dressing that I got from Whole Foods-which was the inspiration for this entire meal

DIRECTIONS:

1.Layer 5 tortillas on the bottom of the 9 by 13 baking dish then add 1/2 of the meat and veggie mixture that you cooked in a skillet already (add the hot sauce, lime juice, butter and seasonings as  it cooked down in the skillet)

2.Next, add the tomatoes and half of the salsa, half the cheese and then half of the avocado dressing.

3.Layer 4 more tortillas and add the rest of the meat and veggie mix, then repeat step 2.

4.Layer 3 more tortillas and sprinkle remaining cheese on top

Bake uncovered at 400 degrees for 20 to 25 min.

Enjoy!! A

Lemon Pepper Tuna Bake

Well, it’s official…I am obsessed with making different Tuna Casseroles/Bakes!!! My mom used to make them when we were little but with Velveeta and always the same! I like to make them healthier and mix them up with different flavors.

I made this one with 2 lemon pepper tuna (from Starkist) pouches pictured below!

starkist lemon pepper tuna

Directions:

Cook 2 cups dry pasta-I used Dreamfields Rotini (just under cook it according to the directions because you  are then going to bake it) I love Dreamfields pasta-it is a smart way to eat pasta because it is high in protein and fiber too!

Add the drained pasta to your casserole dish filled with tuna, 1 small can reduced sodium cream of celery, one c skim or almond milk, 1/2 c chopped green pepper, 1/2 c chopped celery, 1/3 c chopped onion, the juice if one half lemon, season with parsley, garlic powder, pepper, add 1/4 c parmesan cheese-Mix all together well. Top that sparingly with 3 tsp whole wheat breadcrumbs or panko bread crumbs, more parsley and pepper,  1/4 c shredded mozzarella cheese and last finish off with the zest of the half lemon you juiced!

***As a rule I always go easy on the cheese and also the breadcrumbs-this is how you can still eat what you want by just tweaking it to make it more figure friendly!! I also try to use almond milk or skim to cut some fat out there too!  Eat smarter!!

Bake at 350 degrees for 45 min

lemon pepper tuna bake

ENJOY!! A

SALMON with BLACK BEAN spaghetti

 

blackbean spaghetti and salmon

What you will need:

1 lb salmon

Black bean spaghetti-3 to 4 servings

1/2 c chopped yellow pepper

1/4 c chopped sweet or white onion

1/4 c chopped walnuts

Olive oil-drizzle

Honey-1 tsp

Hot sauce and/or combo with Sriracha sauce-3 tsp or more if you like it really spicy

Garlic-2 tsp minced

Lime juice-2 tsp

Wasabi mustard-2 tbsp

 Lite sodium soy sauce-1/4 c

Seasoning: Crushed red pepper, black pepper, ginger

Directions:

Bake salmon in oven approx 10 to 12 min on 400 degrees

Boil water and cook spaghetti for 6 min

In skillet over medium heat drizzle olive oil and add in yellow peppers, garlic, onions and walnuts let cook out for 5 min then add honey, wasabi, lime juice, soy sauce and hot sauce. Mix together well and add spaghetti again mixing around well or another 5 min or so. Add the salmon on top of the plated spaghetti mixture and serve-pouring any remaining juice/sauce over top.

Full of flavor and so good for you!!!
Enjoy!

xoxoxo-A