Finicky Family Recipe: Quick Orange Chicken with Extra Veggies & Brown Rice

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Manic:  Not much time before practice and my teenager has announced to me no more eating out!  Wow, he wants to get healthy.  That’s awesome!  However, I didn’t have much time.

Managed:  On my last grocery trip, I grabbed a quick fix orange chicken packet mix for days like this manic day.  I decided to give the packet a try and if the family didn’t like it, well, there is always Subway on the way to practice. 

The verdict:  Not bad, not bad at all.  Family happily ate the orange chicken along with a healthy salad and fruit, so soon we were on our way to practice with full bellies and an ontime schedule. 

Plus I was able to sneak in extra veggies and brown rice without one little comment from my personal peanut gallery. 

Here is how I did it:



Stuff You Need:

Lee Kum Lee Panda Brand Sauce for Orange Chicken (found mine at Safeway)

Boneless skinless chicken breasts (I bought strips for easy cutting)

1 chopped onion

1 chopped red bell pepper (I was out of red bell pepper, so I had to live without this)

HOWEVER – I added frozen Safeway brand Stirfry for an abundance of healthy veggies!

For a yummy side dish, I recommend Annie Chun’s Organic Asian Cuisine Chicken & Veggie Potstickers

1.  Simply follow the directions on the orange chicken packet which instructs to cook chopped chicken pieces, onion and red bell pepper in skillet with oil. 

2.  Since I was out of a red bell pepper, I added Safeway brand Stir-fry Veggies with Asparagus.  The frozen mix also includes carrots, green beans, cauliflower, celery, onions, mushrooms and more.  However, my finicky family doesn’t like mushrooms, so I took those out. 

I always keep a bag of this frozen stir-fry in my freezer for rushed days like today.  I highly recommend doing that, plus frozen foods are good for you because the nutrients are sort of frozen in time in their orignal form, so when they thaw, you get the same benefits as if you would have had them fresh!  My Mom told me that.  She always tells me that frozen and fresh are better than canned.

3.  Then when the chicken and veggies are cooked, simply pour in the packet of sauce and cook as the package directs.   

4.  Next I pulled out another staple I keep in my freezer.  This is truly the only brown rice that I can get my picky family to eat.  And brown rice is better for your body than white rice, so I was thrilled the first time I tried the Trader’s Joes Organic Brown Rice and they just kept on eating.

Did I mention that I didn’t ask them if they liked it?!  I’ve learned through the years not to do anything to raise their suspicion that perhaps the food on their plate is a healthier version.  They didn’t seem to even notice that is was brown rice.  They sure did with other brands. 

And the Trader Joe’s brand is super simple since you can cook it in the microwave for three minutes.  It comes out with a perfect consistency every time. 

5.  To finish, place your orange chicken over the rice, add the potstickers with a side of soy sauce and you are set to go.  Eat and then literally go to where you need to be.  If you are like our family, then most days there is always somewhere that you have to go! 

One last tip is to use the lower sodium soy sauce, that is shown here with the finished dish.  I just read an article in the newspaper that says that Americans are taking in way too much salt every day.  I love my soy sauce, so now I buy the kind with the green lid with the lower sodium.


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