Salsa Verde Shredded Chicken with Rice & Beans

I love rotisserie chickens. There are so many options for the meals you can make – posole, enchiladas, tacos, etc. For this meal, I just like to shred up a breast and eat that for an easy Phase 1 meal. Mixed with salsa verde (homemade Tomatillo Salsa or Trader Joe’s Salsa Verde), avocado, and my favorite Rancho Gordo La Paloma sauce. I can’t handle any spice so this is the mild hot sauce for me!

Alternatives to a pre-cooked rotisserie chicken:

  • Poach a chicken breast in a pot of boiling water: cover a chicken breast with cold water in a pot, bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer for about 15 minutes. Shred and mix in the salsa.
  • Cook the chicken in a slow cooker with a jar of salsa verde on high for 2-4 hours or low for 8-10 hours. Shred and mix in the salsa.

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Ingredients:

  • 4-6 oz. chicken breast
  • 1/4 cup salsa verde
  • 1/4 avocado
  • 1/2 cup beans (black, pinto, white, kidney)
  • 1/2 rice (cauliflower rice for Phase 1, TJ’s frozen brown rice for Phase 2 or 3)
  • 1 Tbsp crumbled feta cheese
  • Roasted bell peppers (I love mini bell peppers – I like to buy a big bag and use them in as many meals as I can)

Directions:

1. Pre-heat cast iron pan and roast peppers until they make popping noises.

2. Mix shredded chicken and salsa verde for an even coating. Top with avocado and hot sauce of your choice (sugarfree!).

3. Warm up rice and beans. This is such a simple meal to assemble, so I use canned beans and frozen rices that can be heated up in 3 minutes. Top beans with feta.

Makes enough for 1.

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Southwestern Bowl

This is another throw-together, all in one bowl meal. This recipe works for all Phases, but for Phase 2/3 you can swap the caulk rice with brown (or even white) rice, add some jicama, and up the carbs. This bowl works no matter the ingredients – as long as you have a base of rice and beans, the rest just adds to it.

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Ingredients:

  • 3-6oz protein (steak, chicken, shrimp, fish)
  • ½ cup black or pinto beans
  • ½-1 cup cauliflower rice (sub brown rice for Phase 2, white rice works for Phase 3)
  • Romaine lettuce, chopped
  • Tomato, chopped, or tomato salsa
  • Radish, sliced
  • 1oz cheese (cotija, feta, jack)
  • 2-4 Tbsp Avocado Crema

Directions:

1. Spray protein with olive oil and season with salt & pepper. For steak (tri tip), shrimp, or fish (tilapia), grill for 5 minutes on each side in a preheated cast iron pan. For chicken, I will often use the breast parts of a rotisserie chicken.

2. Prepare the rice. I use frozen cauliflower rice or frozen brown rice from Trader Joe’s, and both take about 3 minutes in the microwave to heat up. I portion out the 1/2 and save the rest in container for later.

3. While the protein is cooking and the rice is heating up, chop and prepare vegetables.

4. Mix all ingredients together and top with the Avocado Crema. Garnish with cilantro.

Makes 1 serving.

Chicken Posole

My ultimate go-to dinner, year-round. It’s filling and full of flavor, yet light enough so you don’t feel stuffed afterwards. I usually eat it on its own, but you can add a side of rice and beans or top with tortilla strips to bulk it up. It’s also easy to individualize based on taste, since everyone can add their own toppings.

I like to buy a rotisserie chicken and separate the meat into light meat for tacos, enchiladas, etc. and dark meat for soup. If I’m not planning on using it for awhile, I’ll stick the containers in the freezer for later. I always use chicken, but pork works well too.

Depending on the day, I will either make this soup in a slow cooker, Dutch oven, or a large pot on the stove.

Ingredients:

  • Soup
    • 2 Tbsp oil (extra-virgin olive or avocado)
    • 1 ancho chile, sautéed (note: I don’t eat anything spicy, so I only occasionally do this)
    • 1 lb chicken (preferably thigh) (sub pork if desired)
    • 2 15oz (or 1 28oz) cans hominy
    • 4 cups of chicken broth
    • Add water, if needed
    • Salt & pepper
    • Optional: Add a can of chili verde or tomatillo salsa (make sure it’s sugar-free) to make a thicker soup.
  • Toppings
    • Green cabbage, shredded
    • Radish, sliced
    • Avocado, cubed
    • Cotija, queso fresco, or feta
    • Cilantro
    • Lime wedges
    • Green onion or red onion, chopped
    • Jalapeño (optional)

Directions:

1. Heat up a frying or cast iron pan on the stove. Put the pot next to it on the stove, or start heating up a slow cooker.

2. Heat 2 Tbsp of oil in a pan and brown the chile on all sides. Put chile in the pot or slow cooker. Begin cooking the chicken thighs. If using meat from a rotisserie chicken, shred the meat and put it directly into the pot or slow cooker.

3. Deglaze the pan and pour the liquid into the pot or slow cooker.

4. Add the hominy to the pot or slow cooker.

5. Add the chicken broth to the pot or slow cooker. Add more water if necessary. At this point, the soup is ready whenever it is warm enough, or you can leave it longer at a low simmer for 1-4 hours. Add salt & pepper to taste.

6. Pour soup into bowls (I use these for most of my meals), and top as you like!

Phase 2/3 Add-Ons:

  • Add a side of brown rice and black or pinto beans.
  • Add tortilla strips to turn it into a Tortilla Soup.