Avocado Chicken Bombs (Keto)

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A friend and I went out to dinner recently at Chuy’s and discovered something delicious: the stuffed avocado.  Or, at least the version of it that I had them make for me.  It’s typically breaded in panko and fried that way; however, I can’t have panko and they can’t fry it without.  The chef came out to talk to me and we worked out a similar dish, and I thought I would mess around with it once I got home.  The other thing that is like crack at Chuy’s is their jalapeno ranch dressing.  Duh.  Anyone who has been there knows that.

With the same friend coming over to our house for dinner a couple weeks later, that was the perfect time to come up with a similar recipe, try to replicate the dressing, and then unveil the final product at dinner.  This was waaaaaaay better than what they came up with at Chuy’s, so I’m pretty happy about it.  You could make this with a plethora of different layers, but I’ll list it the way I made it last weekend.  Try it–you won’t be sorry!

Avocado Chicken Bombs (Keto)

Serves 4

Nutrition for Avocado Chicken Bombs: Calories (597), Fat (54.2 g), Saturated Fat (10.6 g), Carbs (17.3 g), Fiber (13.5 g), Sugar (1.3 g), Net Carbs (3.8 g), Protein (17.8 g)

Nutrition for Jalapeno Ranch: Calories (101), Fat (10.7 g), Saturated Fat (2.7 g), Carbs (0.7 g), Fiber (0.3 g), Sugar (0.6 g), Net Carbs (0.4 g), Protein (0.2 g)

Chicken

1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs

1/2 C olive oil

2 Tbsp chili powder

2 Tbsp lime juice

2 Tbsp sugar-free maple syrup

2 Tbsp garlic powder

1/2 tsp paprika

1/2 tsp black pepper

1.- Mix everything but chicken together.

2.- Cut chicken into small strips or chunks.  Put in resealable plastic bag and cover with marinade.  Mix around and allow to marinate for at least four hours.

3.- Heat skillet to medium high.  When pan is hot, add chicken in batches, being careful not to overcrowd the pan.  Fry until cooked through and transfer to baking dish.  When all chicken is cooked, cover baking dish and put in 300′ oven for 20-30 minutes.

4.- Assemble into avocado chicken bomb.

Jalapeno Ranch

1 C mayonnaise

1/3 C buttermilk made from heavy cream

1/3 C sour cream

4 oz can chopped jalapenos

4 oz can chopped green chiles

1/3 C cilantro

1 oz ranch seasoning

1/2 tsp minced garlic

1.- Whiz everything in a blender and enjoy.

How I Layered the Avocado Chicken Bomb, from Bottom Up

1.- Avocado

2.- Chicken

3.-Shredded Cheese

4.- Table Cream

5.- Pico de gallo

6.- Jalapeno Ranch

7.- Crumbled Bacon

8.- Queso Fresco

 

Chicken Fajita Bowl (Primal with Dairy Toppings, Whole30 Compliant without)

Chicken Fajita Bowl

This is one of my favorite types of meals because there are an unlimited number of items you can add to it.  And bonus points: it all goes in the slow cooker!  That being said, it’s not really one that you can leave all day while at work, unless you choose a meat other than boneless, skinless chicken breasts.  I don’t normally use those cuts of meat, but they’re easier for the shredding in this recipe, so I chose the easier route.

For toppings, you can add whatever really.  We generally eat a primal diet, so I shredded a little cheese and added a spoonful of sour cream.  Other toppings I’ve used with this are: green onions, red onions, avocados, chopped tomatoes, bacon, pico de gallo, cilantro, pineapple, etc.  Feel free to add whatever sounds good to you in the moment!

A word about the fajita seasoning: I make my own and store it in a baby food jar.  I throw together something along the lines of this:

3 Tbsp chili powder

2 Tbsp salt

2 Tbsp paprika

1 Tbsp onion powder

1 Tbsp garlic powder

1 tsp cayenne

1 Tbsp cumin

Chicken Fajita Bowl (primal with dairy toppings, Whole30 compliant without)

Serves 3-4

1/4 C Kerrygold butter

3 green bell peppers, sliced

3 red bell peppers, sliced

2 large yellow onions, sliced

4 chicken breasts

3 Tbsp fajita seasoning

1/2 C salsa

 

1.- Turn slow cooker on low.  Add butter to the bottom of the bowl.

2.- Layer green peppers, onion, red peppers, and finally chicken on top.  Sprinkle seasoning over top and pour in salsa.

3.- Cover and cook on low for 4-6 hours.  Shred chicken, mix with vegetables, and serve with desired toppings.

Twisted Tuna Salad (Whole30 Compliant)

 

Twisted Tuna

I don’t know if you’re like this, but occasionally I feel like eating something, but I doctor up the way I typically make it.  I love tuna salad, but my favorite thing about the tuna salad is having it on a piece of toast, topped with a ring of pineapple and a slice of cheese, and then broiled for a few minutes until the cheese is bubbly.  Well, the tuna salad and the pineapple are the only parts of what I just mentioned that are considered paleo.  Besides that, I don’t have any pineapple (we ran out) at the moment.  There are those of you who would say, “so put it in a lettuce wrap!”  Yeah…I’m not huge on lettuce wraps.  Sure, I LOVE them from PF Chang’s, but they aren’t my favorite thing and they sure aren’t a substitute for tuna on a thick, crusty piece of homemade bread.  Not paleo fake bread…THE.  REAL.  THING.

 

But I still wanted tuna salad…so I went to doctoring it up in order to make it more filling and more satisfying than plain tuna over spinach.  I looked at everything I had in the refrigerator and pretty much pulled out everything that might be good together.  This is where I LOVE experimenting in the kitchen.  A general rule of thumb for kitchen experimentation for those of you new to this activity:  if it smells good together, it will taste good together.  This probably isn’t true for every single thing…but for 99.99% of food items, that rule will apply.  On the flip side, if it doesn’t smell good together, it won’t taste good together.  Why is this?  The majority of what you’re tasting is actually what you’re smelling.  Your tongue has very little to do with it, other than identifying the tastes as sweet/salty/etc.

 

So go get your butt in the kitchen and whip up some experimental food!  Until you’re ready to try that, here is my yummy-ness that transpired tonight!

 

Twisted Tuna Salad

Serves 4

2 cans Albacore tuna (I forget how many ounces each can is…it’s about twice the size of a single can)

1 celery stalk, diced

1/2 red onion, diced

1/3 C chopped walnuts and pecans (use whatever nuts you want–but tonight I had extra walnuts and pecans around)

1/3 C dried cranberries

1/2 Granny Smith apple, diced

1 medium carrot, peeled and diced (or shredded)

1/3 C chopped cilantro

1/4 C MAYO

2 Tbsp dijon

1/4 tsp ground mustard

1/4 tsp ground cumin

1 tsp citrus zest

sliced avocado to garnish

 

1.– Clean/drain/chop everything but avocado

2.– Dump everything (except avocado) in a bowl

3.– Mix everything up

4.– Serve on a plate/over greens/whatever and top with sliced avocado.  I didn’t use any “dressing” for this–I squeezed the juice of a tangerine over everything once I put it on the plate.

 

* As a side note, the picture does not include avocado because we didn’t have any left.  As soon as I took a bite, I immediately said, “this needs avocado.”  So do it!