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Slow Cooker Chicken Enchilada and Brown Rice
You Know It is Going to Be Good!
The reason this Meal is So Good!
I admit, for those who follow a THM lifestyle these last few recipes have been "Heavy S" meals but wanted to take a step back today and share tomorrow's recipe for an incredible "E" meal that my family and I will sink our teeth into and still enjoy. For those who are not following THM, this is a low-fat, higher carb meal, so if you are a "low carb" person, just skip over this one. I have to alter recipes and make many of my condiments (such as the enchilada sauce) just to ensure I not only remain on plan but also to keep an eye on the numerous things I try to avoid. The MTHFR mutation I have has opened my eyes to the importance of further preparing from scratch.
I admit many of the things I make have always been made from scratch, but once I discovered the mutation and the need to avoid all things with "enriched," "modified," or "folic acid" I had to take the dedication to healthy to an entirely new level. Following THM, I still have a variety of foods I can and often enjoy, but the challenges avoiding sugar and all the things my body cannot process can open one's eyes to how few things you can buy for ease. Instead, you learn to create your stuff like marinades and sauces to ensure you still enjoy the flavors. In the following, I will share not only my Chicken Enchilada recipe but will also provide you with a chance to discover how simple it can be to make your enchilada sauce!
One of the number one objections I always hear is, while it is great you are so focused on eating and being healthier, I worry many of your foods lack in flavor. I often laugh because when I prepare meals for others, they are always talking about how much they enjoy the meal and never realize it is healthy. I feel this is the key to remaining dedicated to a healthy lifestyle. When food still has flavor, and you can still enjoy it, then you are on the path to success.
Another little secret I want to pass on before moving ahead is that until I prepared a fresh enchilada sauce, I was never a fan. I knew my family did enjoy the flavor, so I decided just to give in one night and prepare a dish with enchilada sauce, resolving to develop it from scratch. After that, I was an immediate fan and hooked. Some friends who have gotten copies of this recipe from my have said they would never purchase pre-made sauce again. Now, bear in mind, many of these individuals are not necessarily concerned with healthy or the many issues I have to address, but if they enjoy it and put it in their meal rotations, then I figure it has to have merits in the taste department! Especially since several of these individuals are picky eaters, who are not fans of "healthy."
For Better Flavor, Make Enchilada Sauce Fresh (It's Simple!)
The Secret to Great Enchilada
You may even have these ingredients in your home now!
- 2 Tbsp. Olive Oil
- 1 Small Yellow Onion, finely diced
- 1 c. Tomato Sauce (We can it...)
- 1 c. Chicken Broth (Low Sodium)
- 1 1/2 Tsp. Minced Garlic
- 3 Tbsp. Chili Powder
- 1 Tbsp. Cumin
- 1/2 Tsp. Garlic Powder
- 1/2 Tsp. Onion Powder
- 1 Tsp. Mineral Salt
- Heat oil in pan so you can saute the onions.
- Once browned, add in garlic and all the spices. Stirring constantly, let saute around 1 minute.
- Add in tomato sauce & broth.
- Bring mixture to simmer for 10 minutes.
- Remove from heat and strain the onions and garlic from the sauce.
- Ready to use!
I normally double this up so I can have some to store and use later. The combination prepares roughly 2 cups of enchilada sauce, and if you plan on using it again, stores well in the fridge for a week.
You don't have to cook fancy or complicated masterpieces, just good food from fresh ingredients.— Julia Child
Time to Begin the Main Recipe
Tell Me What You Think!
- 2 lbs. Boneless Chicken Breasts, or tenderloins, Hormone free
- 1 lb. black beans, soaked overnight
- 1 c. frozen corn, I remove it from the cob and just freeze it
- 2 large tomatoes, finely diced
- 1 large white onion, diced
- 2 Tsp. Minced Garlic
- 1 1/4 c. Fresh enchilada sauce, or can use a single can purchased in the store
- 2 Jalapeno peppers, diced
- 3 green onions
- 1/4 c. fresh cilantro, chopped
- 1 c. water
- Spray the slow cooker with olive oil.
- Place the chicken in the bottom of the slow cooker.
- Add in the black beans and corn.
- Combine the remaining ingredients, minus the brown rice and green onion, and pour over top the chicken.
- Cover and cook for 7 1/2 hours.
- Prepare the rice according to instructions on package.
- Once the chicken is finished, shred or keep whole, and place over the rice, topping with the green onions.
- Ready to serve!
Soup or Not?
Is This Enough Food?
Several times, people have asked if this is enough food for a meal. I will answer with a confident yes! However, I do add a side salad with the meal to get a few more green veggies in my dinner. The decision is up to you! If you are someone who does follow a plan like THM, feel free to add a couple of on-plan tortilla chips (I use Joseph's pitas and toast them after cutting them into strips). On the other hand, if you are not worried about something similar to an on-plan style meal, just wanting to eat a little healthier, then feel free to add top with some cheese.
I enjoy meals like this without added fats, so cheese is avoided. Like I often say, the choice is personal, but I am having too much success to consider veering in the wrong direction. The meal does have carbs, another reason to avoid the fats. Your body can process fats alone and carbs alone easier than if you attempt to make it transform both. The meal proves very feeling, and if the salad and mix are not enough, you may want to add in a little fruit for a "sweet" dessert (oranges are my family's favorite), but it is not necessary.
The people I have shared the recipes with have told me they enjoy just draining the excess liquid and mixing the chicken and rice into a fajita shell for a treat. Or some mention adding some additional sour cream and cheese on top with a side of tortilla chips. It proves versatile enough that if someone is not concerned with how their meals unfold, then they can adjust to their flavors. I like the "soup" version, but I know my family alters their personal preferences each time I cook it. If it is a hot day, these will be turned into wraps with cheese and sour cream by my family. No loss, they at least are having a healthier alternative!