Spinach & Artichoke Chicken

So, yesterday was Joseph’s birthdaythe big 2-2! As part of his gift I prepared all of his meals for the day (surprised that my gifts deal with food? Didn’t think so…)The day started out with him coming over before work to have some DELISH Macadamia Nut White Chocolate organic coffee. (honestly, tasted like drinking a caffeinated candy bar…so good) I packed him a lunch of a crab salad and spinach sandwich (make with greek yogurt), some Annie’s Cheddar Bunnies and a Fiber One Lemon bar (we both love lemon…soo refreshing!)

Now here is where it gets good… DINNER.

For dinner I made spinach and artichoke chicken which I paired with spaghetti squash (yes… I am obsessed with squash… No shame!!!)  I pretty much made of the recipe. (I am starting to get good at this!) I found a few but they all called for mayo or really odd ingredients I didn’t have on hand

Here is my version.

spinach-artichoke chicken

spinach-artichoke chicken

(please note this is not my picture, it just looks similar.. we devoured it before I could snap a picture…)

Ingredients
2-3 Boneless, skinless, chicken breasts
salt & pepper
1 cup plain, non-fat greek yogurt
1 can artichokes; chopped
1.5 cup fresh spinach, chopped
1/4 sweet onion, chopped
1/2 cup low-fat mozzarella/Parmesan cheese mixture (or whatever you prefer)
1/2 tsp garlic powder

Directions

First, preheat the oven to 375. Spray a baking pan with non-stick spray and place the chicken in it. Salt & pepper the chicken then put it in the over for about 15-20 minutes.

While that is in the oven you can mix the remaining ingredients together.

Take the chicken out after the 15-20 minutes and pour the spinach & artichoke mixture over it. Place back into the oven for another 25 minutes or so.

Ta-da! finished. Simple. Quick. and oh so yummy!

I put the chicken on top of spaghetti squash that I cooked in the oven at the same time for about 45 minutes to an hour (it took kind of a long time because I got an 8.5 lb squash…. needless to say we have PLENTY of leftovers…)

For dessert I made raspberry-orange-peach oatmeal bars that I served warm with vanilla low-fat frozen yogurt (I cut the recipe in half but used too big of a pan… needless to say we ate the only edible portion which was the middle… everything else was waaay to crispy…oopise daisy…)

Everyone knows that artichokes are super healthy but not many people know  WHY.

Castroville's nickname celebrates its status a...

Castroville’s nickname celebrates its status as a producer of artichokes. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

So let me inform you.

Artichokes can…….

  • -Reduce risk of cancer (reduce proliferation of cancer cells and induce damaged cell death)
  • -Regenerates liver tissues
  • -Help digestion (natural diuretic, aid digestion, improve gallbladder function)
  • -Hangover treatment! (due to the proposed positive effects on the liver) Stock up, college kids.
  • -Fiber (more than one cup of prunes!!)
  • -Be a powerhouse source of folate, fiber, vit c and k
  • -Function as a powerful antioxidant (ranked 7 on the USDA’s top 20 antioxidant sources list!)

Fun factArtichokes are actually the buds of a large purple flower

Eat up, dearests!

 Sources

http://www.webmd.com/diet/features/amazingly-delicious-healthy-artichoke

http://www.healthdiaries.com/eatthis/8-health-benefits-of-artichokes.html

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