Sunday, April 14, 2013

The Winner of the Dinner Lottery is...

I choose meals to make for dinner in two ways. First, I find a few recipes that I really want to try and I actually plan for them. Second, I make meals based on the pantry staples I have stocked up on and have on hand and the recipes I have from my cookbooks, email newsletters, and favorite recipe websites.

Well, on one of the day I didn't know what in the world I was going to make for dinner, I decided to look through my cookbooks and...ding, ding, ding...the winner is...Italian Chicken with Chickpeas! I found it in my Cooking Light Weeknights cookbook. I was skeptical that this would be flavorful enough, but I pretty much had all of the ingredients on hand (including a can of garbanzo beans aka chickpeas that I had been trying to find a reason to use for months). I figured that if it wasn't flavorful enough, I could always add some spices on my own after tasting the finished product. Well, it didn't need anything else added to it. This dinner was so easy and the flavor was great. I made a few changes (which I noted in the recipe below).

Anyway, if you need an easy weeknight dinner, this is definitely a good option!

Italian Chicken with Chickpeas


1 pound chicken breast tenders
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 1/3 cups sliced onion
1 cup green bell pepper strips
1/2 teaspoon bottled minced garlic
1 (15 1/2 ounce) can chickpeas (garbanzo beans), drained
1 (14.5 ounce) can organic diced tomatoes with basil, garlic, and oregano, undrained


Sprinkle chicken with salt and black pepper. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken to pan; cook 2 minutes on each side, or until browned. Add onion and bell pepper; saute 4 minutes. Reduce heat to medium. Add garlic, chickpeas, and tomatoes; cover and cook 8 minutes or until thoroughly heated and chicken is done. 

Yield: 3 servings (serving size: 2 cups)

Nutrition information: 369 calories, 9.1 g fat, 30.9 g protein, 28.3 g carb, 6.4 g fiber, 88 mg chol, 3.6 mg iron, 831 mg sodium, 68 mg calcium.

Source: Cooking Light Weeknight cookbook, ISBN-13: 978-0-8487-3158-8 and 
ISBN-10: 0-8487-3158-1

Notes: I made a few changes. I used probably about 1/2 teaspoon each of salt and pepper. I used one large onion, and 2 green bell peppers. I used one teaspoon of bottled minced garlic. I didn't have chicken breast tenders, only chicken breasts. So, I sliced those to be the approximate size of chicken breast tenders. Finally, I used a can of Italian stewed tomatoes (what I had on hand) instead of diced tomatoes with basil, garlic, and oregano. It was really good!


  1. So...did your boys eat it? You guys wouldn't have begun to try something like that when you were 2 and 4. Looks good to me, though!

  2. The boys ate the chicken, but they wouldn't touch the vegetables. I have stopped cooking to cater to them. Even the stuff that they like...if they look at it the wrong way, they will refuse to eat it. They usually love Italian and Mexican food. However, every now and then, they will just refuse to touch it...or even look at it a second time! Picky, picky eaters! So, I am going to make what I want and still offer it to them in the hopes that somebody they will give it a try and actually like it! The battle is getting them to try the food...usually, if they try it, they love it.