Whether you were busy watching the kids all day, working all day, or a bit of both, finding the time to make a tasty and healthy dinner can often feel overwhelming. But before you reach for the phone to call for takeout, consider this easy-to-make recipe that’s low calorie, packed full of lean proteins and whole grains, and way more affordable than takeout.
- cooking spray
- 2 cups whole grain pasta dry
- 1 lb chicken breast thin sliced
- 1 cup water
- 3 cups tomato sauce
- 1/4 cup whole grain bread crumbs
- 2 tsp minced garlic
- 2 tsp parmesan cheese
- 3/4 cup part-skim mozzarella cheese
Coat the bottom of your slow cooker with cooking spray. Add in the dry pasta, water, and ½ of the tomato sauce.
Place chicken breasts on top of pasta. Next, sprinkle bread crumbs over top of chicken. Pour on remaining tomato sauce and top with garlic, Parmesan cheese, and mozzarella cheese.
Place the top on the slow cooker and set the cook setting to high. Allow to cook for 4 hours, then serve warm with your favorite vegetables on the side.
This whole recipe takes about 5 minutes to assemble and then cooks itself- it doesn’t get much easier than that! And it takes great as well!
Note: You can also choose to add the noodles and ½ tomato sauce during the last 30-40 minutes of the recipe cooking. The above recipe allows for faster assembly and “set-it-and-forget-it cooking,” but if you prefer your noodles a bit more al dente or will be home while this meal is cooking, try waiting to add them instead.
Although Joey has, for the most part, been really good about trying new foods, lately he seems to prefer some textures to others. For instance, he loves carrots and broccoli pureed or baked into foods, but if you hand him a slice of the vegetable, he will pick it up, feel it for a while, then drop it on the floor while giving me a look like “what are you trying to feed me here?!” So for some of the more “unique” textured foods that he doesn’t seem to want to self-feed anymore, I figured mixing them in with foods he loves may help.
I hope you all had a fantastic Thanksgiving! Ours was wonderful and Joey thoroughly enjoyed his first Turkey Day. He gobbled up turkey, stuffing, carrots, and mashed potatoes faster than I have ever seen him eat anything else! However, after multiple days of family celebrations, even though I tried to keep an eye on my portions, I couldn’t help but feel like a stuffed turkey myself!
Getting back on track with healthy eating and exercise were my priorities this week. Based on that, I figured a post on getting in shape and staying in shape while caring for your baby may be in order. After your baby was born, no doubt even if you were an avid exerciser in the past like I was, it’s hard to find the time to exercise on a regular basis with a needy baby (unless of course you have a baby who is a great sleeper and napper, and if that’s the case I am VERY envious of you!).
Thanksgiving is here and I can’t wait to celebrate with our families! But I have to say, I’m a little sad when I realize that this is Joey’s last “first” holiday. I mean, technically I still feel like this will be his first Christmas since he was born Christmas Eve night (and we were in the hospital for Christmas), but he was “here” for Christmas. So this Thanksgiving will be the last time I can say this is Joey’s “first” about a holiday.
I know this is probably a ridiculous thing to get slightly sad over, but it just highlights how fast this year went (although at times it felt like it was moving very, very slowly haha). And I am even more bummed out that I was unable to find any “Baby’s First Thanksgiving” outfits or PJs. He does have an adorable “Gobble Until You Wobble” shirt and a very cute “Grandma’s Little Turkey” bib from his Grandma, but I won’t be able to buy any more “Baby’s First” stuff. Oh well, I guess I can take solace in the money I will save 🙂