Sunday, March 2, 2014

Enjoy the Taste of Eating Right! With Chicken minus Noodle Soup with Quinoa

It's National Nutrition Month #NNM!!!! You have to get excited when you see that hash tag! And of course, instantly think of fruits on fruits on veggies (well, I do) and picture  yummy veggie powered meals. This month, while I navigate the start of my clinical and last rotation in the dietetic internship, I'll try to put into words what enjoying the taste of eating right means to me. 

Even though it was a lazy Sunday, the dog and I got out to an early 7:30AM run due to the forecast of snow on snow on snow. It seems like it won't stop snowing in Pittsburgh. Typically, if I start the day right with either a good workout or a power breakfast, the rest of the day is set up for success. And success it was! While looking on twitter, I kept seeing #NNM. What does National Nutrition Month mean to me as an RDtoBe? I kept thinking of my plate the past week and it wasn't so hot. Mainly, being busy running around doing intern things, I had come up with few excuses for why I hadn't had ANY substance that resembled a full serving of veggies by dinner time. I want to challenge myself during the #NNM to eat more veggies by incorporating them in fun ways throughout the day :).

 Hopefully, I will try a recipe I've been eying, get crazy in the kitchen, and gasp....cook with a veggie I've never handled before. I don't strive for a perfect diet, but I'll strive for a well balanced diet that doesn't exclude foods... I love chocolate ;). So for lunch, I heated up leftover quinoa with black beans, carrots, and summer squash. I had just finished an easy swim and wasn't craving a salad, so instead I sauteed 2 cups of spinach and threw an egg on top. Yum! 

National Nutrition Month (NNM) Tip #1: If adding veggies to your meal doesn't seem appealing....try a different method of preparation such as sauteed, steaming, roasting, or just plain raw with a new type of dip. Have you ever tried the greek yogurt dips?!

After this delicious dish, I took the dog out for a snow covered walk. We found some deer beds, found the deer, and then a raccoon!

I see you raccoon!

Due to my roommate being sick for the past 2 days, I've been thinking of making soup for said individual. What better than a crock pot soup? I've been on a quinoa kick lately, so I subbed out the noodle for this hearty, protein packed whole grain and added kale to add an additional Vitamin C power punch.

Chicken minus Noodle Soup with Quinoa

  • 3-4 chicken breasts
  • 6 cups chicken stock (low sodium if you have it)
  • 3 sticks of celery, sliced
  • 2 small yellow onions, chopped
  • 3 large carrots, chopped
  • 1 full cup quinoa
  • 3 tsp minced garlic (3 cloves)
  • 1/2 tsp thyme
  • 1/2 tsp oregano 
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 2-3 cups of kale, shredded
  • sprinkle of parsley (fresh or dried)
  • sprinkle of mozzarella cheese


Add the chicken to the crock pot (I had six breasts so I just added them all and took three once they were cooked. I now have 3 chicken breast full of flavor for the rest of the week. I only had bullion cubes (6 cubes plus 6 cubes of water) for the stock which worked just as well. Chop up the celery, onions, and carrots and add to crock pot.   

Add quinoa, garlic, and seasonings and cook for 3.5-4 hours on high. After it has cooked, take out the chicken breasts and shred, and add back to the pot. If the carrots are done to your liking (it might have to cook longer if carrots aren't tender), then add the kale for 10-20 minutes. Sprinkle with parsley and cheese. Enjoy!



Your dog picture of week. I couldn't decide which selfies to use.