Is anyone else excited for the first official week of Spring? We are! We are ready for the sun to be shining and the grill to maybe almost be ready to go!This weeks meal plan is filled with bright and delicious flavors to mimic the warm weather. From pesto “pasta” to lemon chicken, this weeks menu is loaded with Spring fresh flavors!
If you are new to the weekly meal plans, we are keeping all of them in one easy Meal Plan Tab on the blog for you to access!
This Chicken Cacciatore has the best fall-of-the-bone chicken and is packed with veggies and hearty flavor! A healthier version of the classic Italian dish everyone will LOVE, that’s made quickly in your Instant Pot pressure cooker!
I am so excited to partner with my friends at Tuttorosso Tomatoes today to show you how to make an amazing dinner in your pressure cooker! This fall-off-the-bone chicken is hearty and flavorful, and serves a crowd or makes for delicious leftovers!
The pressure cooker is one of my new favorite gadgets. Why? Because a chicken this tender and flavorful usually requires cooking low and slow, yet we made it quick!
Serve it over rice, cauliflower rice, or gluten-free rice pasta for the perfect meal!
oz can Tuttorosso diced tomatoes in juice, pulsed in a food processor or blender
tablespoons freshly parsley, plus more to garnish
teaspoon fresh thyme
cup balsamic vinegar
Pat chicken dry and sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. Set the pressure cooker to the saute setting at high heat. Add in oil. Working in batches sear chicken until golden brown, about five minutes on each side, adding more oil as necessary. The chicken should not be fully cooked at this stage but the skin should be nicely browned. Transfer chicken to a plate and set aside.
Add onion, carrots, peppers, and mushrooms to the pressure cooker and saute until vegetables are soft, scrapping up browned bits, about 4 minutes. Add garlic, oregano, and red pepper flakes, and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add bay leaf, chicken broth, tomatoes, fresh thyme, fresh parsley, and balsamic vinegar. Return chicken to pressure cooker and press into tomatoes until they are mostly covered.
Place lid on pressure cooker and lock in place. Cook on high pressure for 12 minutes. Release pressure using quick release valve and remove lid. Remove bay leaf. Season to taste with salt and pepper. (If a thicker sauce is desired, you can remove the chicken to a plate and simmer sauce until it is the desired thickness. Do this before seasoning to taste with salt and pepper.)
Garnish with parsley and serve over rice, cauliflower rice, or gluten-free pasta.
* Don't have a pressure cooker, cook this on the stovetop as well using Nanny's Potted Chicken on page 160 of the Lexi's Clean Kitchen Cookbook as a reference! In a large braising pan or Dutch oven, follow steps 1-2 as directed, cover, lower the heat to medium-low and simmer until the chicken is tender, about 90-100 minutes.
This post is sponsored by Tuttorosso Tomatoes. All opinions are always 100% my own!
This Cauliflower Baked Ziti from the No Excuses Detox Cookbook is the perfect LOW-CARB vegetarian meal! I love the idea of using cauliflower as a lower carb and higher nutrient alternative! This dish is so creamy, dreamy, and a great gluten-free, nut-free, grain-free, and vegetarian meal the kiddos will LOVE!
I was super excited when my friend Megan from The Detoxinista’s newest book arrived! It’s filled with so many family friendly recipes that I cannot wait to make. I started with this Cauliflower Baked Ziti since we are in a grove with our Meatless Monday series! If you tolerate cheese, this recipe is for you!
In a large Dutch oven, combine the cauliflower and pizza sauce and stir well to coat. Bring the sauce to a boil over medium-high heat and, once at bubbling, lower the heat to a simmer. Cover the pot to let the cauliflower cook until fork-tender, about 15 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 350°F. In a medium bowl, beat together the eggs, grated Romano cheese, ricotta cheese, Italian seasoning and salt. Set aside.
After the cauliflower is tender, stir in the spinach and simmer to cook off any excess moisture in the pot, to ensure that the final result isn’t watery. Remove the pot from the heat and stir in the egg and cheese mixture. Top with the shredded cheese.
Bake for 30 minutes, until the eggs have set and the cheese is bubbly on top. Allow the dish to cool for 10 minutes, then serve warm. Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
*If you want to add meat, sauté it separately, and then add it to the mixture before baking!
*Make this a freezer-friendly meal: Follow steps 1-3, instead of baking it, pour the ingredients into an oven-safe dish. Cover well and freeze for up to 3 months. When ready to serve, thaw in the fridge overnight and bake!
*Adapted with permission from the No Excuses Detox Cookbook by Megan Gilmore
Happy Sunday! This week’s dinner plan is here, and if you haven’t tried my Spaghetti Squash Pad Thai, this week is your week! If you are new to the meal plans here, you can find them all, equipped with free printable shopping lists, in our easy Meal Plan Tab on the blog!
Make some side dishes this week from the Lexi’s Clean Kitchen Cookbook this week! The Garlicky Green Beans are always a favorite, the Spinach Dip Stuffed Mushrooms on page 116 can be a side or an appetizer, and the Shredded Brussels Sprouts Salad on page 154 is a reader favorite!
Looking for a great on-the-go eggless breakfast idea? These breakfast cookies have been my go-to! Dairy-free, egg-free, and done in 15 minutes! Check out the video HERE!
As always, if you have meal plan feedback, please send me an email at Lexi@Lexiscleankitchen.com! I’d love to hear from you!
Meatless Monday is here with these hearty and delicious Meal Prep Mediterranean Bowls. They are gluten-free, vegetarian, packed with the perfect flavors, and are great for meal prepping on Sunday and having lunches for the next number of days!
We’re taking the Mediterranean Veggie Fritters from last week’s Meatless Monday post and piling them over the best cucumber tomato salad, crispy za’atar roasted chickpeas, and marinated feta! Put a dollop of the No-Bean Hummus from the Lexi’s Clean Kitchen Cookbook on top (or your favorite store-bought hummus) and devour these delicious bowls!
Cucumbers, tomatoes, roasted red peppers, pepperoni, red onion, marinated artichokes, and fresh herbs make up this fabulous salad base! The dressing is made from the marinated feta and it’s divine!
Place all marinated feta ingredients into an air-tight container. Refrigerate for at least 24 hours before using.
Make the dressing: Place all dressing ingredients into a small bowl and whisk to combine. Set-aside.
Pre-heat the oven to 350℉. Line a sheet-tray with parchment paper and set aside.
Drain cooked chickpeas and pat dry with a towel.
Add chickpeas to a medium mixing bowl with oil, za'tar, and sea salt. Toss until chickpeas are well coated.
Spread chickpeas onto the parchment lined sheet-tray in a single layer. Roast for 40 minutes, or until the chickpeas have started to harden.
Let cool for at least 20 minutes to let the chickpeas firm up. They will be soft when you first take them out. Store in an air-tight container.
In a medium mixing bowl, add in base salt ingredients. Pour 2 teaspoons of lemon vinaigrette over ingredients and toss to combine. Taste and adjust dressing as desired.
Top with roasted chickpeas, hummus, feta, veggie fritters, and a dash of za'tar. Serve warm or cold!
To make this paleo-friendly: Roast sunflower seeds instead of chickpeas, omit the marinated feta, and make the Garlic Roasted Cauliflower No-Bean Hummus from page 90 of the Lexi's Clean Kitchen cookbook!
The roasted chickpeas are best eaten within two days, but will keep for up to one-week.
Tips for cooking dried chickpeas to aid in digestion and reduce the gas producing properties:
Place beans in a large container with a generous amount of water. Cover and soak for at least 8 hours or overnight in the refrigerator. The beans expand during this soaking process, so make sure there is a good amount of space in the container. Soaking the beans both decreases cooking time and helps remove some of the sugars that are hard to digest!
Drain soaking liquid from beans and rinse them under cold water. Add beans to either a pressure cooker or large pot and cover with two inches of water or stock. Add a 2-inch strip of kombu to the pot or pressure cooker. Kombu, an edible sea vegetable high in iodine, iron, and calcium, has enzymes that further assist with breaking down the sugars in beans that can cause gas or intestinal complaints!
Cook for 25 minutes in a pressure cooker or for about 1 hour on the stove until soft. Take off heat and serve as desired.