Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Baked Pesto Chicken

I don't know how it's been two weeks since I've updated my blog! Well, actually I do. In looking back at my meal plans we hadn't had much new, so I wasn't posting for that reason. Then once I did have new stuff to post I just never took the time to sit down and write them out. I had planned on using my kids' naptime yesterday to update my blog, but Monday evening I started feeling like I was getting sick. By bedtime I had a fever, and that sucker held on all day yesterday. Ugh. I woke up at some point last night drenched in sweat and the fever was gone. Was that an over-share? Perhaps. Sorry about that.

Anyway, a week ago today I started on The South Beach Diet at the recommendation of my doctor (want to follow my progress? Check out my other blog...Claire's a Fat Girl's Name). I was hesitant about it because I did the whole Atkins thing ten years ago and did not like it. I lost weight, but it got to the point where I wasn't ever hungry, and I constantly felt like I was going to pass out. Not cool. Plus as soon as I started eating carbs again, all the weight I lost returned. I got the SBD book from the library and read through the whole thing before deciding if I wanted to do it. I figured it was worth a try. The book is pretty interesting, as is the diet. It's no carbs for the first two weeks, then you gradually add carbs back in--but good carbs. Whole grains, whole wheat, brown rice, fruit...stuff like that. Once you reach your goal weight you move onto a maintenance phase where you still eat only good carbs but you can splurge on "bad" food occassionally. Really I think it's pretty healthy sounding, and it's not all that different from how we normally eat.

Finding recipes for dinners has been a slight challenge, but I have the SBD app on my iPhone, and I've used the SBD website for recipes. I found a blog that's almost solely SBD recipes, Kalyn's Kitchen, and there's a SBD cookbook on (formerly I found the SBD cookbook on Ebay, but it just arrived yesterday. It's been pretty easy for my family to eat along with me...I just make some kind of carb/starch side dish for them to enjoy, and I stare longingly at it. :)

This recipe was on the iPhone app, and I thought it sounded so good. I heart pesto, and this sounded super tasty and easy--a great combination in my book!

Baked Pesto Chicken

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1/2 cup pesto (from a jar)
1/2 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
salt and freshly ground black pepper

Heat oven to 375. Season chicken breasts with salt and pepper. Spread 1/4 cup of the pesto in a 9x13 baking dish. Lay chicken breasts over pesto in an even layer and spread with remaining pesto.

Cover baking dish with foil and bake chicken until cooked through, 20-25 minutes. Uncover and top with cheese. Bake until cheese is melted, 5 more minutes.


Seriously, dinner cannot get much easier than this. My whole family loved this...we all gobbled up our portions. It's definitely something I'll make again, diet or no diet. I normally have all these ingredients on hand, so it's a great quick, oh-my-gosh-it's-5:00-what-am-I-making-for-dinner recipe.

I forgot to take a picture. :( Oh, one more thing...I didn't like it as much reheated. The texture of the cheese was weird. I poured all the remaining pesto from the pan into the container I was using, so that might have been part of it, or maybe the olive oil in the pesto on the chicken did something funky to the cheese texture...I don't know.

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