Winter Night Dinners

Quick Winter Night Dinners

I definitely struggle with a mild form of season affective disorder from November through end of February. However this “heat wave” this week has me aching for spring!  Performing normal life functions after getting home becomes an actual struggle, all I want to do is curl up in bed with the warmest meal possible.  Every year in the winter I’d find we would start ordering in more, eating more comfort foods which would leave us gaining a few too many pounds and spending a little more than necessary.  

One of my resolutions this year was to turn around that lack of energy and find the same passion my mom had for cooking and incorporate it into our daily lives.  I always made the excuse that my apartment kitchen just wasn’t big enough but that crutch was gone.  Realistically, cooking a fresh meal at home is so much healthier for your body and your pocket.

It’s extremely hard to do all of the prep work and cook the meal anddd clean up afterwards after being out for 10-12 hours a day. So I try to scope out a few recipes and will meal prep early on during the week.  Here are for of my favorite “healthy” recipes:

White Bean Chicken Chili

Disclaimer: I am not a food blogger or chef by any means. When I follow recipes I most eyeball or taste test until I have the right salt/spice levels.

This has been a favorite new find, I shared it on my insta-story and got so many requests to share the recipe. Once upon a time I saw this recipe on Pinterest and didn’t pin it (or it was deleted) but ever since I’ve just been guesstimating -so all adjustments are totally okay as per your liking/need.

Ingredients:

1.5 lbs. of chicken (I made and used shredded chicken this time but have also used ground chicken as well)

2 onions (white or Vidalia) roughly small chopped

2 finely chopped seeded jalapeños

2 15 oz. cans of canelli beans

1 can of Trader Joe’s green chilies

1 box vegetable or chicken stock

1-2 tbsp. chopped garlic

1 lime

1-2 tbsp. ground cumin

1-2 tbsp. smoked paprika

1-2 tbsp. chili powder or flakes

1-2 tbsp. oregano

Salt and black pepper to taste

Cilantro and lemon for garnishing

Serve with : sour cream, avocado, and bread

Directions:

Add olive oil to your pot/Dutch oven, heat over medium heat

Add onions and sauté for a few minutes, add in jalapenos and can of green chilies( I don’t drain these)

Once the onions are translucent, add garlic and continue sautéing for another few minutes

Add broth, beans, chicken and spices (cumin, paprika, chili flakes, oregano, salt and pepper. and let this come to a boil.  (Take about a cup of the beans and blend with a splash of water or broth) and add this in as well

We let this come to a boil and them simmer for a little bit to thicken our consistency. Add cilantro at the end.

Serve in your favorite bowls.

Garnish with tortilla chips, avocado, sour cream, or cheese.

This recipe always makes enough for us to take for lunch the next day.  However, chili’s freeze well for a good 4 months.

Sweet Potato and Kale Soup

Here is the Trader Joe’s Recipe – our spice tolerance is a little higher than normal so I threw in a chopped-seeded jalapeno and used 3 teaspoons of the taco seasoning. 

This was by far my absolute favorite – making it again this week. 

https://www.traderjoes.com/recipes/recipe-print/lunch/sams-sweet-potato-soup

Classic Chili

Here is the recipe I have been following for years –

https://www.weightwatchers.com/us/recipe/hearty-turkey-chili-1/5626a5d2a6d5b396106fd65a

Some Key Pointers –

The protein is interchangeable – works well with ground chicken or red meat as well or can be completely omitted and made into a vegetarian meal (I have added black beans and corn to the mix)

We only own olive oil so I’m sure that’s nbd as well.

This has been a crowd pleaser – I usually make this in large batches either to freeze or for pot-lucks.  I liked cooking this on the stove and throwing it in a slow cooker but I no longer have one – I wonder if the instant pot would/could work similarly? I just push this to back burner on my stove and let it simmer (stirring every so often) until we’re ready to eat, the longer the better.

Do you have a winter favorite soup recipe? Share it in the comments below!

If you’re making these recipes – I’d love to see them – tag me!

Happy Cooking Lovies.

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