Sometimes you can get a great deal on meat when you buy in bulk. Knowing what to do with it all is a completely different thing. I want to share with you some recipes that have been staples in my family while I was growing up along with some new ones that we have discovered over the years. The next couple of posts will be recipes for a few types of meats and veggies.
Be sure to check out my post on tips for meal prepping on a budget.
Cooking the same meals over and over can get really boring no matter how much your family likes them. That is why I tried to pick recipes that are easy but unique all while being ones the whole family will love! I have collaborated with my mom and sisters on these meals and many of them we all said to start with than had a few extras. I look forward to bringing you into part of my nutty family, and what a better way to do than over food! Yum!
To start this series off, let’s talk chicken. It is probably the most cost-effective meat to purchase, is high in protein, and cooks quickly. The thing I love about chicken is that you can season it so many different ways or all one way and it is still delicious! When I buy chicken in bulk I find it easiest to season it with salt and pepper and cook it all the same way. Whatever dish you pair it with, the chicken will pick up that flavor. Now, that being said, if the Chicken it the highlight of the show, take some time and season it well and differently than if you are going to meal prep several meals. Buying a rotisserie chicken is also a great option since all you have to do is pick the chicken off! No prepping or cooking. Sams Club has really great prices on their rotisserie chicken, by the way!
1. Chicken Pizza
Y’all, this is the one recipe we all said when I asked, “what meals come to mind when I say chicken”! This meant it had to be the very first one I mentioned here! It is super easy, pretty quick- 30 minutes or less, and so freaking good! I am not sure how this meal began in our family, either Moms’ creativity or maybe a Pampered Chef recipe. Either way, thank God it came from somewhere!
This meal calls for as little as four ingredients to six ingredients. Simple. Quick. Here we go
- 3-4 Chicken Breast- Seasoned with salt and pepper (Italian seasoning is optional), cooked however you wish, and chopped in to bite size pieces.
- 1 medium Onion chopped and sautéed (optional)
- 2 table spoons minced garlic or garlic powder (optional)
- 2 cans of Pizza Sauce
- ½-1 box of Spaghetti noodles (Depending on your families noodle consumption), broke in half and cooked
- 2 cups Mozzarella Cheese
After you have cooked your chicken to 165 degrees, cut it up into bite size pieces. Sauté the onions for 1-2 minutes then add the garlic and sauté for another minute. Combine the chicken, onion, garlic and pizza sauce into the pan and heat through. Cook the noodles as directed on the package. Once the noodles are cooked, you can either leave them separate or add to the chicken combination. Mix in the cheese until melted.
That is easy, right? Now I will say this, this is a nontraditional way to do pizza. You can add more to it if you like. My kids love black olives’, so we add some to theirs when we make this. This can be a fun way to make “pizza” as a family!
2. Chicken Fajitas Bowl
I feel like taco nights are a thing at many homes and the fajitas are left to the restaurant, but I love fajitas! When it comes to the kids eating them it got a little messy. I wanted an easier way to make it fun for the family without being a hassle. This is how the chicken fajita bowl was born in my house.
The prep for fajitas can be a bit much on a weeknight when you just want to get dinner done. I prep this all on Sunday, put it in a freezer bag and set it aside until I am ready for it! It makes the busy night super quick and easy with much less mess!
- Olive Oil
- 3 Cooked Chicken Breast Or about 3 Cups
- 2 Green Peppers
- 1 Red Pepper
- 1 Medium Onion
- I can of Black Beans
- 1 box or pack of Spanish Rice
- 1 pack of Fajita Seasoning
- Shredded Mexican Cheese
- Salad, Salsa and Guac are optional but always great additions!
** Meal Prepping Tip**
Throw the chopped food into bags and stick in the fridge until ready to use. If it will be later in the week, put them in the freezer to help keep it fresh. To thaw, place the food in the fridge the night before or morning that you want to fix this meal.
For this recipe, instead of cutting the veggies into strips, I chop into bite size (yes kids bite size) pieces. Assuming I have prepped the chicken for this meal with the rest of the chicken for everything else, I chop the cooked chicken up into bite sizes as well. I keep the chicken and veggies separate since the veggies will need a little more time to cook than the chicken. I keep a can of black beans on hand and a box of Spanish rice on hand.
In a 12” skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of Olive Oil on medium high heat. Add the chopped veggies and cook until slightly tender. While the veggies cook, I cook the rice and heat the beans per the directions on the packaging. After the veggies have become slightly tender add chicken into pan with the veggies. While the combination cooks, prepare fajita seasoning and add to the chicken and veggies. This takes about 15 minutes total to prepare.
If you choose to have the optional items, it is more cost effective to buy prepared items as it has less waste than what you need to make it fresh. That is unless you just really like these and eat them for 5 days straight, at that point, make it fresh!
To assemble, put in a bowl with rice and black beans and enjoy! This is a super quick meal for the week night if you have it all prepared ahead of time, but worth it too if you don’t!
3. Italian Chicken Sandwich
Ok, so I will admit, I did not even think of this one. My mom and one sister said Italian baked chicken and my other sister said Chicken Panini! I am so glad she did too! It made me remember this meal from my college days! This is a really good sandwich and would pair nicely with a salad or even some chips! There is nothing easier than a sandwich on the weeknights and this one is no different. If this mean is on your menu when you buy the chicken, set aside a chicken breast or two. or this meal, you will want to season the chicken differently and possibly cook it different as well. I love this grilled or baked.
- 2 large chicken breasts cut in half (butterfly style, but all the way)
- 1 loaf of French Bread (frozen of fresh) warmed and cut into 4 pieces
- 1 small Red Onion thinly sliced
- 1 bottle Italian Dressing
- Mozzarella or Provolone Cheese Slices
First, you will need to cut the chicken. You will be making thinner pieces out of these chicken breasts. Marinade the chicken in the Italian Dressing for at least an hour, but longer is better! Once ready, cook the chicken however you prefer. When I was in college, I would cook this on the good ‘ol George Foreman grill! Now, I love to cook it on the grill or bake it. If you bake it set oven to 350 and cook until the internal temp reaches 165 degrees. While the chicken cooks (it should only take about 10-12 minutes since we cut them down), heat the bread up and cut into the four pieces. Thinly slice the red onion. Assemble the sandwich by placing the cooked chicken inside the French bread and topping with onion and cheese. Enjoy!
I will be the first to admit that I rarely make this meal, but when I do, it never lets me down! It has become a favorite and a treat all at the same time. You can use any kind of bread that you would like as well, like hoagie buns.
I hope that these recipes have sparked a little creativity in you and that you enjoy them as much as my family does.
Please share this with anyone that you think would like to try these. Also, please share what your favorite chicken recipes are so that we can try them out!
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