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Menu planner: Curried chicken pot pie is delicious and inexpensive

Thinking ahead to your next few meals? Here are some main dishes and sides to try.

Try a curried chicken pot pie for lunch or dinner.
Try a curried chicken pot pie for lunch or dinner.
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Curried chicken pot pie

Makes 6 servings

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: less than 35 minutes

INGREDIENTS

1 teaspoon canola oil

1 medium onion, chopped

4 medium carrots, sliced

2 cups cooked chopped chicken

1 cup unsalted chicken broth

1/4 cup flour

2 teaspoons curry powder

1/2 teaspoon coarse salt

1 medium golden delicious apple, peeled, cored and cut into 1/2-inch pieces

1/2 cup frozen green peas

1/2 cup 2% milk

1 refrigerated pie crust

Heat oven to 425 degrees. Heat canola oil in a large nonstick skillet on medium-high. Add onion and carrots and cook 4 minutes or until softened. Add chicken and cook 1 minute.

Meanwhile, whisk together broth, flour, curry powder and salt. Add to skillet and bring to a boil. Stir in apple. Reduce heat to medium and cook 2 minutes or until sauce is thickened, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Stir in peas and milk. Pour into a 9-inch deep-dish pie plate. Lay the piecrust over the top; crimp or flute edges around the rim to seal tightly. Cut several small slits in crust so steam can escape. Place pie plate on cookie sheet and bake 20 to 25 minutes or until top of crust is golden. Slice and serve.

Per serving: 319 calories, 18 grams protein, 13 grams fat (36% calories from fat), 4.9 grams saturated fat, 33 grams carbohydrate, 45 milligrams cholesterol, 457 milligrams sodium, 3 grams fiber.

Carb choices: 2.

Eggplant parmesan is a delicious vegetarian meal option.
Eggplant parmesan is a delicious vegetarian meal option.
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Eggplant parmesan

Makes 6 servings

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: less than 30 minutes

INGREDIENTS

1 medium eggplant, peeled and sliced 1/2 inch thick (1 to 1 1/2 pounds)

1 clove garlic, minced

2 tablespoons water

2/3 cup Italian-style bread crumbs

3/4 cup grated parmesan cheese, divided

3 cups cooked rice

3 cups no-salt-added red pasta sauce

1 1/2 cups shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese

Heat oven to 375 degrees. Place eggplant and garlic in a 9-by-13-inch microwave-safe baking dish; add water. Cover and microwave on high (100% power) 5 to 7 minutes or until tender; drain well. Combine bread crumbs with 2 tablespoons parmesan. Sprinkle eggplant with bread crumb mixture. In large bowl, combine rice, pasta sauce and remaining parmesan; spoon mixture evenly over eggplant. Sprinkle with mozzarella. Bake 20 minutes or until cheese is melted and lightly browned.

Per serving: 340 calories, 16 grams protein, 11 grams fat (29% calories from fat), 5.3 grams saturated fat, 44 grams carbohydrate, 24 milligrams cholesterol, 787 milligrams sodium, 4 grams fiber.

Carb choices: 3.

Corn and sausage chowder

In a large pot, combine 1 (20- to 25-ounce) package refrigerated shredded hash-browned potatoes, 1 (14-ounce) can unsalted chicken broth and 2 cups frozen corn. Bring to a boil; reduce heat. Cover and simmer about 10 minutes or until potatoes are tender; stir occasionally. Slightly mash the potatoes. Stir in 2 cups 1% milk, 1 (14-ounce) package reduced-fat cooked sausage (halved lengthwise and sliced), and 1/3 cup sliced green onions; heat through. Add coarse salt, black pepper and hot pepper sauce to taste.

Skillet pasta

In a large Dutch oven, cook 1 pound lean ground beef and 1 pound ground turkey breast for 8 minutes or until no longer pink; drain well. Return meat to skillet and add 3 cups water; bring to a boil. Stir in 8 ounces elbow macaroni. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer 10 to 15 minutes or until pasta is tender; stir often and drain. Mix in 3 cups no-salt-added red pasta sauce; sprinkle with 1 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese, 1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese and 1 (3- to 4-ounce) can sliced black olives (drained). Sprinkle with 1 more cup mozzarella and 1/4 cup parmesan. Cover and cook 4 minutes or until cheese melts.

Orange sesame roast pork tenderloin

Place 2 (1-pound) pork tenderloins in a resealable plastic bag. In a small bowl, mix together 1/4 cup frozen orange juice concentrate, 4 cloves crushed garlic, 1/2 cup teriyaki sauce, 3 tablespoons sesame oil and 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper. Pour half of marinade over pork, turn to coat evenly and refrigerate 8 hours; turn occasionally. Cover and reserve remaining marinade for basting.

Heat oven to 450 degrees. Remove tenderloins from bag; discard marinade. Place meat in shallow roasting pan; roast 20 minutes or until internal temperature is 145 degrees, basting occasionally with reserved marinade. Remove pork from oven; cover lightly with foil and let stand 5 minutes before slicing.

Moo goo rice goes well alongside. Add cooked sliced mushrooms and canned sliced water chestnuts (drained) to hot cooked rice; mix well. Serve with steamed snow peas and sourdough bread.