Crazy Good Grilled Chicken Souvlaki Skewers

For most of us, it’s completely unrealistic to jet off to Greece on a moment’s notice. I’m still waiting, and fervently hoping, that teleportation is going to be a real thing soon – but I’m not exactly holding my breath. We can all dream . . .

Since heading over to the islands and eating copious amounts of amazing food isn’t an option, I will have to settle for a good bake by the local pool followed by a Greek dinner with chicken souvlaki, cooked on the grill, with all the fixins. Load this chicken souvlaki on good pita bread, serve it up with a great Greek salad, hummus, tzatziki, and feta cheese and you’re halfway to Greece. At least in your mind.


Chicken Skewers/Marinade

2 lb. chicken breast, cut into bite-sized pieces

5 garlic cloves, minced

¼ c. olive oil

Juice from 1 lemon

1 Tbsp. oregano

2 tsp. rosemary

2 tsp. cumin

1 tsp. paprika

1 tsp. red pepper flakes

1 large onion, cut into bite-sized pieces

1 red bell peppers, cut into bite-sized pieces

Salt and pepper

Serve with:

Pita bread

Greek salad

Hummus and/or tzatziki sauce

Feta cheese

Combine the chicken and all of the marinade ingredients (except for the onion and red bell pepper). Marinate for a minimum of 4 hours or overnight, if possible. 

Add the chicken, onion, and red bell pepper to skewers, alternating between the chicken and veggies. 

Heat the grill to medium high heat. Brush the grate with oil and cook the chicken and veggie skewers on the grill until they are brown and cooked through. Be sure to turn the skewers periodically so that all sides cook evenly. Remove the skewers from the heat and set on a platter. 

Serve with pita bread, Greek salad, hummus and/or tzatziki sauce, and feta cheese. Enjoy!


New Mexico-Style Chicken Tamale Pie

While tamale pie isn’t really like a pie or a tamale, it’s one of the most comforting and delicious meals out there. I’d say it’s a bit more like a cornbread-based casserole, and an amazing one at that. I could eat the whole thing, but thankfully my kids are glad to help me polish it off so that I don’t devour the entire meal all alone.

This recipe for tamale pie one-ups the rest of the recipes out there because 1) it includes Hatch green chiles and actual corn kernels in the cornbread base, 2) it contains enchilada sauce made from New Mexican red chile, and 3) it’s very easy to make, especially when you use rotisserie chicken (and only Costco’s chicken works for me, but that’s your call). With very few steps and a little time, you can make this amazing meal that your family will certainly rave about and request again and again.


1 8 oz. box Jiffy corn muffin mix

½ c. sour cream

1 egg

½ c. corn kernels

2 Tbsp. Hatch green chiles, chopped

2 Tbsp. butter, melted

1 onion, chopped

3 cloves of garlic, minced

1 Tbsp. olive oil

2 tsp. cumin

2 tsp. chili powder

2 tsp. oregano

1 tsp. paprika

1 c. New Mexican enchilada sauce

2 c. shredded chicken, I like rotisserie!

1 c. shredded cheddar

½ c. monterey jack

Salt and pepper

Fresh cilantro, green onions, jalapenos, for topping

Sour cream, for topping

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Grease a deep pie dish with oil or cooking spray. 

Mix together the muffin mix, corn, green chiles, sour cream, egg, and melted butter in a large bowl. Then, pour into the deep pie dish and bake for 15 minutes, or until the cornbread base is firm and golden.

While the cornbread base is cooking, heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium high heat. Add the onions and cook for 5-6 minutes, or until soft. Add the garlic and cook for one more minute. Add the cumin, chili powder, oregano, and paprika and stir to combine. Then add the chicken and ½ c. enchilada sauce and stir again. Remove from the heat and set aside.

Remove the cornbread base from the oven. Using the bottom of a wooden spoon, poke several holes in the cornbread and then pour the remaining enchilada sauce over the top, allowing it to go down into the holes. Then, top with the chicken mixture and cheeses. Bake for 15 minutes, or until the cheese is bubbly and lightly browned. 

Top with cilantro, green onion, and jalapenos if desired. Enjoy!


Buffalo Chicken Tacos with Blue Cheese Slaw

Aren’t tacos everything? I could definitely eat tacos, in some form or another, for every meal for the rest of my life. And I’m seriously loving this newish trend of tacos being filled with all sorts of amazing things outside of the realm of regular ol’ Mexican taco fillings. More and more, tacos are being stuffed with very interesting combos. 

Korean BBQ tacos? Delicious. Indian curry tacos? YES. Sushi tacos? Yes, and I should work on that idea. Spaghetti tacos? I bet those are actually decent. 

This recipe for buffalo chicken tacos with blue cheese slaw, while it’s a little off the wall,  combines two of my favorite things: buffalo chicken and tacos . . . and these tacos are SO GOOD. Branching out is so much fun, especially when it comes to tacos.


Buffalo chicken:

2 c. shredded chicken (I use rotisserie chicken)

1 c. buffalo sauce

Blue cheese slaw:

1 1/2  c. shredded cabbage

½ c. carrots, shredded 

½ c. celery, chopped

¼ c. cilantro, chopped

2 green onions, sliced

1 avocado, diced

1 jalapeno, chopped (if you like it spicy!)

Juice from 1 lime

Blue cheese dressing


Tortillas (corn or flour – your preference)

Blue cheese crumbles

Prepare the buffalo sauce and mix into the chicken until combined. Place the chicken on a lined baking sheet and broil for about 10 minutes, or until lightly browned and crispy. 

While the chicken is in the oven, create a slaw by mixing together the cabbage, carrots, celery, cilantro, avocado, lime, and jalapenos. Add blue cheese dressing to taste and toss to combine. 

To assemble the tacos, top the tortillas with the buffalo chicken, slaw, and blue cheese crumbles. Enjoy!

Chicken/Turkey Salads

Thai Peanut Chicken Salad

Ever since I made my soba noodles with peanut sauce a couple of weeks ago, I just can’t seem to get the craving for peanutty-asian meals out of my mind. And since I am now on a healthy-food binge (is it really a binge if it’s healthy?), I decided to make one of my favorite healthy, veggie-laden salads that also happens to include lots of protein-packed chicken: the Spicy Thai Peanut Chicken Salad.

My kids and I love this salad so much because it is uber-delicious, super filling, and also makes you feel healthy and energetic. While it requires a little “chopping time,” this salad is easy to make and doesn’t take too long to prepare. I almost always take the rotisserie chicken shortcut with this salad because it just works so well and cuts down on prep time. Rev up that food processor, toss this yummy dressing into the veggies, and you’re ready to go! 



4 c. green cabbage, shredded

2 c. shredded chicken (rotisserie chicken works great)

1 c. carrots, grated

½ c. snow peas, sliced

1 c. cilantro, chopped

½ c. red bell pepper, chopped

5 green onions, sliced

1 jalapeno, finely chopped

½ c. peanuts


½ c. smooth peanut butter

2 Tbsp. toasted sesame oil

3 Tbsp. soy sauce or tamari

3 Tbsp. rice vinegar

2 Tbsp. agave

2 cloves of garlic

1 inch cube of ginger

2 Tbsp. sambal oelek or sriracha

Juice from one lime

2 Tbsp. water

Combine all ingredients for the dressing in a food processor and process until smooth. Set aside. 

To assemble the salad, add all salad ingredients to a large bowl. Drizzle with the dressing and toss until combined. Enjoy! 

Chicken/Turkey Sandwiches

Mexican Chicken Collard Wraps

I spent the last few days in Santa Fe, so naturally I loaded up (ok, overloaded up) on all of the red and green-chile covered cheesy goodness at every meal. Literally every meal. Let’s just say when it was time to come home, I wasn’t feeling on top of my nutrition game. Oh well. When in Rome, right?

On the drive back, I was very much looking forward to getting back on the healthy food, veggie-filled meal train. I was actually daydreaming about all of the salads, kale, and veggies I was going to buy when I got home. 

Apparently I was still feeling the Mexican food vibe, though, because one of the first things that sprang to my mind was a Mexican chicken collard wrap. I knew I needed to do better in the healthy food department, but I was still hanging onto Mexican food dreams. So I compromised with myself and put all of the good Mexican food stuff and rolled it up into some healthy collard green leaves. Not only was this wrap amazing and satisfying, I was kinda proud of myself for getting back on track.


Large collard green leaves, washed and dried and bottom stem removed

Shredded chicken (rotisserie chicken works great)

Tomatoes, finely chopped

Red bell peppers, chopped

Fresh cilantro, chopped

Shredded cheddar cheese

Sour cream

Avocado, sliced

Jalapenos, chopped

Hot sauce or salsa

Salt and pepper

Boil a large pot of water. Carefully drop in the collard green leaves into the hot water and blanch for 1 minute until the leaves are pliable. Drain immediately and dry the leaves. They are ready to be wrapped!

To assemble, spread out the collard greens on a flat surface. Top with chicken, cheese, tomatoes, red peppers, cilantro, avocados, jalapenos, sour cream, and hot sauce. Season with salt and pepper. Fold the ends in and roll from front to back (like they do at burrito joints). Cut in half, if you wish, and enjoy!


Chicken with Dijon-Wine Sauce

Chicken with Dijon-wine sauce is one of those meals that takes me back to childhood dinners. For me, it’s a very comforting meal that reminds me of the time when my mama lovingly made my dinner every night while I relaxed after school. Back then, I was oblivious to the hard work moms do on a daily basis and I was certain that I was the one who needed to relax at the end of a school day. Now that I’m a mom, I appreciate more than ever the hard work my mom always put into making our delicious dinners. 

This chicken recipe combines some of the best French-influenced flavors: Dijon mustard, dry white wine, and shallots. It’s a very simple meal that doesn’t take long to make, but tastes absolutely divine. I like to serve this chicken with roasted potatoes or over mashed potatoes, but it would taste great with pasta rice or a side of veggies.


3-4 chicken breasts

1 Tbsp. olive oil

2 Tbsp. flour

⅓ c. Dijon mustard

2 shallots, chopped

2 cloves of garlic, minced

2 tsp. thyme

¾ c. dry white wine

2 Tbsp. cream

Salt and pepper

Pound the chicken breasts until they are uniform in thickness. Season the chicken with salt and pepper. Coat with a very light layer of flour. 

Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Cook the chicken breasts for 3-4 minutes on each side, or until cooked through and browned on the outside. Remove the chicken and set aside on a plate. In the same skillet, cook the shallots for 2 minutes, or until soft. Add the garlic and cook for one more minute. Add the thyme and stir to combine.

Whisk in the white wine and make sure to scrape the bits of browned chicken from the bottom of the pan. Add the Dijon mustard and whisk until the sauce is creamy. Add the cream, stir, and heat through. Season with salt and pepper.

To serve, place the chicken breasts on a platter and cover with the mustard sauce. Enjoy!


Thai Basil Chicken (Pad Krapow Gai)

Thai basil chicken boasts the trifecta of awesomeness: simplicity of preparation, healthy ingredients and amazing flavor. There’s sort of no excuse not to make this at home on a regular basis if you’re a fan of this dish. 

The best versions of Thai basil chicken meals I have had are loaded with basil, green onions and a light garlic sauce. Many restaurants tend to “oversauce” Thai basil chicken, which I believe really takes away from the natural flavor of the basil. In this version, the chicken is lightly coated in sauce so that the natural flavors of the basil, chiles, garlic, and onions really stand out. Serve with jasmine rice, and if you’d like, a fried egg. 


2 chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces

5 green onions, sliced 

2 c. basil leaves, Thai holy basil is best!

5 garlic cloves, minced

1 Thai chile, minced (or serrano pepper)

1 Tbsp. canola or peanut oil

3 tsp. oyster sauce

3 tsp. soy sauce

1 tsp. dark soy sauce

1 tsp. fish sauce

Pinch of sugar

1 Tbsp. of water

Combine the oyster sauce, soy sauce, dark soy sauce, fish sauce, sugar, and water in a small bowl. Set aside. 

Heat the oil in a large wok over high heat. Add the garlic and chili and stir quickly. Add the green onions and chicken and cook for about 4 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through. Add the sauce and cook until it reduces just a bit, about 1 minute. Remove from the heat, toss in the basil leaves and stir until they are wilted. Serve immediately with jasmine rice. 

Chicken/Turkey Salads

Greek Chicken Kale Salad with Tzatziki Dressing

My favorite lunch is, without question, a big, satisfying salad full of fresh ingredients that make me actually look forward to my lunch break instead of that dreaded “oh, I have to eat (insert day three of leftovers here)” feeling. I guarantee you’ve all been there. This Greek chicken kale salad with tzatziki dressing is snap-of-a-finger quick to prepare for lunch at home or to make in advance for pre-prepped weekday lunches. 

Greek cooks definitely have the art of chicken flavor down to a science: olive oil, lemon, garlic, onions, oregano. So good. So simple. So fresh. And the ever-present Greek combo of tzatziki dressing and feta? Don’t even get me started. All of this on top of a mixture of lacinato kale, cucumbers and chickpeas. If kale isn’t your jam, you could definitely opt for mixed greens instead. Either way, I’m guessing your salad craving just kicked in.



2 chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces

1 Tbsp. olive oil

½ yellow onion, chopped

Juice from 1 lemon

3 garlic cloves, minced

2 tsp. oregano

2 tsp. cumin

2 tsp. paprika

Salt and pepper

Tzatziki Dressing:

⅓ c. plain Greek yogurt

1 Tbsp. olive oil

2 tsp. water

Juice from ½ lemon

1 garlic clove, minced

1 tsp. oregano

Salt and pepper


1 bunch of lacinato kale, torn into small leaves and massaged

1 cucumber, sliced

¾ c. chickpeas, drained and rinsed

¼ feta cheese, crumbled

Combine all of the ingredients for the dressing and whisk to combine. Set aside 

Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium high heat. Add the chicken, onion, garlic, oregano, cumin, and paprika and cook until the chicken is cooked through and browned. Season with salt and pepper. 

To assemble the salad, place the massaged kale in a large serving bowl. Top with cucumbers, chickpeas, and feta cheese. Drizzle with the tzatziki dressing and top with chicken. Enjoy!


French-Style Shallot Chicken

Are you in a boring chicken rut? Do you make the same recipe over and over again and your kids are complaining? I have certainly been there, and if you are currently struggling in the area of menu creativity, try adding this French-style shallot chicken to your weekly dinner menu this week. 

This oh-so-flavorful chicken is simple to make and tastes like something you would get at a small country restaurant in France. I would recommend serving it with a side of roasted garlic potatoes and green vegetables, such as fresh green beans. Your whole family will thank you for trying something new, and they will certainly be begging for you to make it again.


2 chicken breasts, boneless and skinless

3 Tbsp. flour

2 Tbsp. olive oil

4 shallots, sliced

3 cloves of garlic, minced

2-3 green onions, sliced

2 tsp. Herbes de Provence

¾ c. red wine

¼ c. chicken broth

½ c. fresh parsley, chopped 

Salt and pepper 

Pound the chicken breasts so that they are thin and even in thickness. Salt and pepper both sides of the chicken breasts. Dredge the chicken breasts in flour. 

Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. When the oil is very hot, drop in the chicken breasts and cook on each side for about 5 minutes, or until browned on the outside and cooked through. Set the chicken breasts aside on a plate. 

Add the shallots, green onions, garlic, and Herbes de Provence to the same skillet and stir, being sure to get all of the brown bits of chicken from the pan for flavor. Add the wine and broth and stir. Add the chicken back into the skillet and cook for 2-3 minutes, or until sauce is reduced. 

Season with salt and pepper. Top with fresh parsley and serve!


Poulet Basquaise (Basque-Style Chicken)

Basque Country, which straddles a large area in the western Pyrenees Mountain currently inside the borders of Spain and France, is one of the most truly enchanting places I have ever visited. Believed to be one of the oldest peoples in Europe, the Basque people are proud, most still speak their original language, and happily embrace their culture so profoundly. And their culture is truly remarkable. 

The Basque people are passionate, lively, and much like me, love wonderful food and drink. It is the center of their lives. At some point, I read that there is a higher concentration of Michelin star restaurants within the Basque Country than anywhere else on earth.  

While I was in the Basque Country a few years back, I enjoyed some of the most ridiculously amazing meals of my life – from very high-end, multi-course meals to pintxos in traditional bars to street food. 

One of the most memorable meals I enjoyed while I was in Basque Country was the ubiquitous, traditional dish called Poulet Basquaise, which I had at a restaurant on the French side of the region. This meal, while very simple and straightforward, is so homey, flavorful and just made me feel like my Basque granny cooked it just for me. This embodiment of comfort food is delicious served with rice, noodles, potatoes, or even all by itself.


1 whole organic chicken, cut into pieces

2 Tbsp. olive oil

2 yellow onions, sliced

1 green bell pepper, sliced

1 red bell pepper, sliced

¾ c. diced ham 

2 cloves of garlic

2 14 oz. cans of diced tomatoes

½ c. red wine

1 tsp. Hungarian paprika

2 tsp. cayenne pepper

2 bay leaves

Salt and pepper

Heat 1 Tbsp. of the olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Season the chicken with salt and cayenne pepper. Cook the chicken in the skillet until it is browned on one side, flip it, and brown the other side. This will take 10-12 minutes. Set the chicken aside on a plate, scrape the oil and browned bits of chicken off of the skillet and on top of the chicken. 

Add 1 Tbsp. olive oil to the same skillet and heat over medium high heat. Add the ham, onions and peppers, and cook until the veggies are soft, or about 5-6 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for one more minute. Place the chicken and its juices back into the skillet. Add the tomatoes, wine, bay leaves, and paprika. 

Cook uncovered on medium low for about 15 minutes, or until the sauce liquid has reduced by about half. Turn the heat to low, cover and cook for 40 more minutes. Season with salt and serve.