Chicken Divan {A Healthified Version}

I’m a big fan of making casserole-type dishes on Sunday night because they are easy to reheat and eat throughout the week (not to mention I think they reheat really well!). Even though I’ve had a fairly quiet start to my week (I seriously don’t know what to do with myself when I don’t have plans after work and am resting from the gym!), I was so tired on Sunday night and just wanted a warm, one-dish meal.

Preparing this meal was certainly not a one dish event- in fact, the meal took a bit longer than I anticipated, but I had a nice bottle of J. Lohr wine that kept me company 😉

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I know I say this all the time, but my mom makes the best Chicken Divan, so I consulted with her on what I needed to make the dish. I also checked out a few recipes and ended up combining notes from my mom and bits and pieces from both recipes to come up with my meal… whoops 🙂

Chicken Divan- adapted from Skinny Taste and My Recipes (linked there from Cooking Light)

Ingredients

  • 1lb. boneless, skinless chicken thighs (I chose chicken thighs since they are way more flavorful than chicken breast, especially in a casserole dish)
  • about 8 oz. frozen broccoli (enough to cover the bottom of a small casserole dish)
  • salt & pepper
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1tbsp minced garlic
  • 1 cup reduced sodium chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup white wine (I used Chardonnay)
  • 1/2 can of reduced fat cream of celery soup
  • 1tbsp butter
  • 1/4 cup 1% milk
  • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese
  • bread crumbs

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Directions

1. Preheat oven to 350*. Preheat a skillet and cook the chicken thighs for about 3-4 minutes on each side, or until mostly cooked. Sprinkle salt & pepper on both sides.

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2. Place a layer of the frozen broccoli on the bottom of your casserole dish and put the chicken thighs on top. You can leave them whole or cut them up!

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3. Chop your onion. Heat up 1 tbsp. of butter in a skillet, add in the onions and minced garlic. Sautee until onions are translucent. Add in the chicken broth, wine, milk, and cream of celery soup. Stir everything together and bring to a boil and let boil for about 3-5 minutes or until the mixture thickens. Add in the cheeses and stir until they have melted.

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4. Pour the mixture over the chicken and broccoli, coat the top with bread crumbs and bake for about 30 minutes, or until the edges are bubbling.

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5. Serve yourself a nice heaping bowl of it and enjoy!

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This is certainly not the prettiest meal to photograph, but don’t let that fool you- it was delicious! I find myself eating it by the spoonful as I am heating my serving for dinner… anyone else do that? This meal has been wonderful to quickly reheat after work and the gym all week. I might have to freeze some later this week since I still have lots left over.

Questions for you: Do you combine multiple recipes when you’re making a meal? Do you snack on crackers/chips/anything while you’re heating your dinner? Do you like to freeze meals to eat later on?

Last day of being 27

Hey Burpees to Bubbly readers! Happy, happy Saturday to you! Have anything fun planned? I’ve got a busy day, but before I get to that, let’s catch up on yesterday! As most of you probably know, Friday’s are my “work from home” (WFH) days and after a full, busy week, it’s the best feeling to get home on Thursday after teaching a double and know I don’t have to pack a lunch or get up early to make the commute into the office. WFH on a Friday before my birthday is even better… treats and flowers and cards galore!

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When I finished my work day, I had plans of going to the gym near me since I am no longer teaching my Friday night UXF in Allston (so sad. I miss you guys!), but the weather was so gross that I decided to stay in and do an “at home” workout.  I was gchatting with Athena (but, let’s be honest, when are we NOT gchatting?!) and she said she was going to use the jump rope today. Ding, ding, ding! The light bulb went off and I decided that I could get a great workout done in the comforts of my own home. I can’t tell you how nice it was to have the option to go to the gym or to workout at home or to not do anything at all!

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So, I set up shop in the kitchen with my weights, jump rope and “Friday Five” Arms/cardio workout and got busy. I ended up doing about 60 minutes including warm up and cool down/foam rolling and time flew by!

  • 5 mins warm up (jogging in place, jumping jacks, squats, hamstring curls, knee lifts, etc)
  • 5 mins jumping rope (this is SO much harder when you use a real jump rope vs imaginary jump rope)- this round was tabata style with 20 seconds jumping, 10 seconds rest.
  • 15 minute Arm/Cardio/Core from April Arms Challenge (up the ladder)
  • 5 mins jumping rope (30 seconds jumping, 5 seconds rest)
  • 15 minutes down the ladder
  • 5 mins jumping rope (alternating leads and speed and direction)
  • 10 mins (abs, stretching, foam rolling)

60 minutes later, I was sweaty and tired and rope burned. Wait, what? You read that right, I clearly need work on my jump roping because I got whipped by the rope more time than I’d like to admit and boy did it hurt!

013After I showered, I headed out to the grocery store. On a cold, rainy, Friday night. REALLY not that fun, but it was dead and fully stocked, so I couldn’t really complain too much. As I was shopping, I thought about how great it would be if I could have a glass of wine. Wouldn’t that make grocery shopping so much better?

wine and groceriesI was so ready for wine by the time I got home that I poured myself a glass before I even took my jacket off! J.Lohr is one of my favorite wines- red and white. It’s delicious!

015I sipped as I put away all my groceries. It really made the process a lot more enjoyable, but then again, when doesn’t wine make things more enjoyable?

I was so in the mood for sushi last night, so I picked some up in my travels. It totally hit the spot! There is something about Chardonnay and Sushi. They go hand in hand in my book. Anyone else with me on this?

018Although I had somewhat wanted to go meet up with friends for dinner or drinks, the weather and knowing that I have lots of things on the agenda for today made me decide that staying in was more desirable than going out!

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Today’s agenda:

  • getting my BSC paycheck and going to the bank
  • tanning (yes, I tan occasionally…sorry if that offends anyone, but I want a nice glow for my birthday!)
  • teaching kickboxing
  • going to Jess’s first tasting
  • getting my hair highlighted and cut (!!!)
  • getting all done up in my birthday dress for birthday celebrations!!

A little serious talk…

So, today is my last day as a 27-year-old. It’s a little crazy to think about, but I am ready for 28. First off, I am a fan of even numbers, so right away 28 is better than 27, haha. Secondly, I am in a much better spot personally at this point than I was last year, so I am excited for what 28 will bring. I have a few things lined up (expanding and growing the blog, moving into my own place, etc- more on that later) for the next year and I hope you will all stick around with me as I share my journey. I have only been blogging for a few months, but I have had so much fun thus far and appreciate everyone who reads and follows me. You have no idea how much that means to me!

Questions for you: What’s a special meal that you’ll splurge on every once in a while? Birthdays- love them or hate them? What’s been your favorite year thus far?