Friday, April 6, 2012

New Recipe 21 - Buffalo Chicken Quinoa "Mac 'n Cheese"

Last week, while planning our weekly menu, I stumbled up IowaGirlEats.  During my quick scan of her blog, I was hooked!  She has so many different recipes - and they are healthy too!  

A few suggestions/changes from our experience:

  • Cook the quinoa the night before.  When you are read to use it, just warm it for about 2-3 minutes in the microwave
  • We used whole wheat flour, instead of all-purpose flour (that's all we had)
  • We used fat free milk - it was all we had and it cuts down on calories (I wonder if the cheese sauce mixture would have been richer with 2% milk?)
  • We didn't use green onions in it or goat cheese on top (I forgot to buy them at the store!)
  • Serve with some easy, peasy steam in the bag veggies like Green Giant Valley Fresh Steamers or Birds Eye Steamfresh (We had the Birds Eye Baby Broccoli Blend.  It isn't the hubs favorite, but he eats it because I love it!)
So, here's the recipe for Buffalo Chicken Quinoa Mac 'N Cheese for those that don't want to go to IowaGirlEats:  (You should though!  She has great pictures!!)

  • 1-1/4 cups quinoa, rinsed and drained
  • 1 chicken breast
  • garlic powder
  • onion powder
  • salt & pepper
  • 2 Tablespoons flour
  • 1-1/2 cups 2% milk, divided
  • 2 green onions, sliced 
  • 1/4 cup + 2 Tablespoons Frank’s Buffalo Wing Sauce
  • 1-1/2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 cup chevre (goat cheese), crumbled

  1. Preheat broiler. Cook quinoa according to package directions and set aside. Season chicken breast on both sides with garlic powder, onion powder, salt and pepper, and cook in a non-stick sprayed skillet over medium heat until cooked all the way through. Chop into bite-sized pieces and set aside.
  2. Whisk together flour and 1/2 cup milk in a separate saucepan over medium heat. Pour in remaining milk, and green onions. Switch to a spatula and bring the mixture to a boil, stirring constantly, then cook for one minute while boiling.
  3. Remove the pan from the heat then add in buffalo sauce and cheddar cheese. Stir until the cheese is completely melted then add in cooked quinoa and chicken, and stir to combine.
  4. Pour into a non-stick sprayed casserole dish and top with chevre. Broil for 5-7 minutes, or until the cheese is golden brown and sauce is bubbly.

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