Wednesday, 8 April 2015

7 Irresistibly Healthy Chicken Taco Recipes

Get Your Taco and Eat it Too!
The great news is that it’s still possible to enjoy food while eating healthy. The biggest factor is having a solid repertoire of recipes on hand.
To help you stay on track while still enjoying delicious and satisfying food, let’s look at 7 different and delicious chicken taco recipes that are totally healthy and pack a nutrition punch!
When it comes to these kinds of comfort foods, it only takes a few simple steps to optimize their nutritional content in a way that supports a healthy lifestyle.
First, make sure any processed or bleached grains are replaced with whole grains where possible.
Second, you’ve got to cut down on the fat. You can easily do this by baking or grilling meats rather than frying them, and use healthy oils like extra-virgin olive oil or this fat-burning Nutiva Organic Extra-Virgin Coconut Oil.
Third, you want to make sure that you maximize the amount and variety of vegetables in these foods. Go for fresh ingredients only, including fresh herbs, peppers, and leafy greens, all of which are great for boosting metabolism.
Lastly, always make sure you include a healthy side dish, like a leafy green salad or one of these Quinoa Salad Recipes. This ensures that you’re getting all the rich nutrients and vitamins you can get.
Chicken Taco Recipes to Enjoy on a Healthy Diet
For all of these recipes, you’re going to prepare the chicken the same way. Depending on the number of people you’ll be serving, aim for 2 to 4 skinless boneless chicken breasts.

I recommend first tenderizing the chicken with a meat tenderizer, then coating it in a bit of olive oil (1 teaspoon per chicken breast). Then season the chicken with oregano, chipotle chilies, and Cajun spice (as desired). Place the chicken on a piece of parchment paper in a shallow baking dish, and bake at 350 degree for about 30 minutes.
When cooked through, remove the chicken from the oven, slice into strips, and use in the following taco recipes:

1. Green Chicken Tacos with Guacamole
Ingredients: 2-4 whole grain tortilla wraps, 2 ripe avocados (peeled, pits removed), 2 tablespoons of olive oil, ½ cup of chopped cilantro, 1 teaspoon of salt, ½ red onion (chopped), ½ jalapeno (chopped, seeds removed), 1 cup of fresh baby spinach
Directions: In a small bowl, mash avocado and mix with olive oil, ¼ cup of chopped cilantro, salt, onion, and jalapeno. Refrigerate the guacamole for 30 minutes. Top the wraps with chicken, guacamole, baby spinach, and cilantro.

2. Hard Tacos with Black Bean & Corn Salsa
Ingredients: 4 hard corn taco shells, 1 can of black beans (drained and rinsed), 1 can of sweet corn (drained), 1 cup of premade medium salsa
Directions: In a bowl, mix together salad, black beans, and corn. Refrigerate for 30 minutes, then top chicken with salsa in hard taco shells.

3. Soft Chicken Tacos with Sautéed Veggies
Ingredients: 2-4 large whole grain wraps, 2 tablespoons of olive oil, 3 cloves of garlic (minced), 1 red bell pepper, 1 green bell pepper, ½ onion (chopped), 1 jalapeno (chopped, seeds removed), 1 small zucchini (chopped)
Directions: Heat the olive oil in a pan to medium heat, then add garlic and veggies, then cook until veggies are softened. Add to chicken on whole grain wraps and enjoy.

4. Cilantro and Lime Chicken Tacos
Ingredients: 4 small whole wheat wraps, 1 can of black beans (drained and rinsed), ½ cup of fresh cilantro (chopped), 1 red bell pepper (chopped finely), fresh squeezed juice from 2 limes
Directions: Place the chicken on the wraps, then top with black beans, red pepper, cilantro, and drizzle in lime juice. Enjoy!

5. Tex-Mex Chicken Tacos
Ingredients: 4 hard corn taco shells, 1 small bunch of green onion (chopped), 1 can of black beans (drained and rinsed), 1 can of sweet corn (drained), ¼ cup of salsa, 1/3 cup of shredded low-fat Tex-Mex cheese, low-fat sour cream for topping
Directions: Place chicken in taco shells, then top with veggies, salsa, and cheese, adding a little sour cream as desired. This one is especially satisfying.

6. Chicken Tacos with Roasted Veggies & Yam
Ingredients: 2-4 large whole wheat wraps, 1 yam or sweet potato (peeled and diced into ½ inch pieces), 1 zucchini (chopped), ½ onion (chopped), 1 red bell pepper (chopped), 3 cloves of garlic, 2 tablespoons of olive oil, salsa and sour cream as desired
Directions: In a mixing bowl, combine all veggies and garlic, coat with olive oil, and mix well. Spread veggie mixture onto a baking sheet, and bake at 400 degrees for 20-30 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool for 5 minutes. Place chicken on wraps, top with roasted veggies, and add salsa and sour cream as desired.

7. Lettuce Wrapped Chicken Tacos
Ingredients: 1 head of ice berg or romaine lettuce, 1-2 tomatoes (diced), 1 small bunch of green onion (chopped), grilled red and green peppers, salsa as desired
Directions: Carefully remove a few of the biggest leaves of lettuce, making sure you don’t damage them. Rinse and dry them, then use them as your wraps. Place chicken and veggies inside, top with salsa, and carefully wrap and enjoy. This is a great way to cut down on unwanted carbs!

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