Hasselback Chicken with Spinach and Pepper Jack

I love stuffed foods – chicken kiev, chicken cordon blue, stuffed burgers, Hot Pockets. Well, maybe not Hot Pockets! But, I do love cutting or biting into stuffed meats and having the cheeses and spices create an explosion of flavor in my mouth.

The only bad thing is having to do the stuffing. It can take the majority of your prep time to stuff and roll the ingredients into a burger patty or chicken breast. Then, you have to contend with the mess that oozes out that may or may not leave the meat dry and tasteless.

This is where “hasselback” comes in. This is a term that is generally associated with potatoes – named after the Hasselbacken restaurant in Sweden which was known for the fan-cut potato dish. I find, though, that this technique makes cutting and stuffing chicken so much easier!

Seriously the easiest and fastest way to enjoy stuffed chicken breast. You won't believe how easy it is!

 

To start, make width-wise cuts along the chicken breast and approximately 1/2 inches apart. (Be careful to not cut all the way through the chicken.) There should be about 6 incisions, depending on the size of your chicken breast.
You will want to go slowly on the first chicken breast; but once you get the feel of cutting the first, the rest of them will go very quickly.

Cut width wise, being careful not to cut through the chicken breast.
Using approximately 2oz of spinach and 1 slice of pepper jack for each piece of chicken, stuff the spinach into the cuts, leaving a bit of room for the pepper jack cheese. Then, break up the cheese into smaller bits, placing on top and beside the spinach.
It’s ok if the spinach and cheese are not completely in the cuts. This gives it some character!

Easy breezy - stuff and bake!
Place each chicken breast into a 9×13 dish. Salt and pepper to taste.
Bake at 350 for 30 minutes or until chicken is done. (I cover with foil for the first 15 minutes, then cook uncovered for the last portion.)
We love this served up with broccoli, rice pilaf, and salad.

Hasselback Chicken with Spinach and Pepper Jack

4 chicken breasts
8oz frozen spinach (thawed and liquid wrung out)
4 pieces Pepper Jack cheese
salt/pepper to taste

1) Make incisions into chicken, 1/2 inches apart, being careful not to cut through the chicken
2) Stuff each incision with 2oz spinach and 1 piece of pepper jack, broken into pieces
3) Salt and pepper to taste
4) Bake at 350 for 30 minutes or until chicken is thoroughly cooked

If you liked this recipe, check out these other Trim Healthy Mama friendly recipes:
Apple Pepper Jack Chicken
Bacon Jalapeno Poppers
Spicy Jicama Fries
Low-Carb Strawberry Shortcake
Egg Roll in a Bowl

This yummy recipe is linking up at Weekend Potluck. Check it out!

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Red, White, and Blue Fruit Salad

You'll never guess the secret ingredient in this delicious (and patriotic) fruit salad!
July 4th is a day for celebrating, being with friends and family, and, for most of us, a time for BBQs and lots of good food.
For me, when I got to a church potluck, family BBQ, or gather with neighbors to partake in the annual festivities, I always bring a standard dish. It’s expected. However, this year, I may just shake things up a bit and take this super light, festive, and incredibly yummy fruit salad.

Come join me at Mommy B Knows Best as I share my recipe and secret ingredient for this patriotic dish. Just make sure you save some of the berries, so you can take along these scrumptious cupcakes.

Linking up at Thrifty Thursday

Bacon Jalapeno Poppers

Cheddar Peppers from Sonic Drive-In have always been a weakness of mine. I miss them. I really do. I miss the crunchy breading; I miss the burn-the-roof-of-your-mouth melted cheese; I miss the way you’d take a bit and the jalapeno would come out whole, leaving you with a breading shell filled only with melted cheese. Chase it with a Dt. Vanilla Dr Pepper and you’ve got yourself a delicious fast-food snack, albeit completely NOT gluten-free. So, I’ve been going through withdrawals.

Then, my sister made some jalapeno poppers the other day and everyone raved about them (via text, no less. What torture!). I knew I had to make them for myself.

Don’t they look delish? (And for all you Trim Healthy Mama‘s out there, these are a perfect S snack!)

Bacon Jalapeno Poppers from Gluten Free with Southern Charm

I googled a lot of recipes and most of them looked the same.

All you need are a few ingredients:
8 jalapenos
8oz cream cheese (depending on how much you want)
shredded cheddar cheese
garlic powder
4 slices bacon (cut in half)

The construction process is pretty simple as well.
1) Halve your jalapenos, removing seeds
2) Fill with cheddar cheese
3) Cover cheddar cheese with cream cheese
4) Sprinkle with garlic powder (to taste)
5) Wrap with half a bacon piece and secure with a toothpick

Bacon Jalapeno Poppers from Gluten Free with Southern Charm

See? You really don’t have to do a lot of work!
To bake, place on a cookie sheet and bake at 375 for 20 minutes.
I prefer to line my cookie sheet with foil and place my jalapeno poppers on top of a cooling rack. The cooling rack allows the bacon to get crispy; the foil catches all the bacon grease and makes for easy clean up.

These were so good,  I whipped up my own batch in very little time, and made another batch that same afternoon. Perfect for a upcoming tailgate parties, the 4th of July, or that fast-food fix.

My sister also suggest mixing up the cream cheese and cheddar cheese with two chopped green onions, then wrapping in bacon. Definitely on my list to try next time.

Linking up with Thrifty Thursday and Weekend Potluck. Come check it out!

Strawberry Swirl Cupcakes with Blueberry Cheesecake Frosting

Strawberry Swirl Cupcakes with Blueberry Cheesecake Icing from Gluten Free with Southern Charm

In my opinion, cupcakes are the perfect treat. Fluffy little, held-in-your-hand cakes with swirly tops of icing. Mmmm. Nothing better. It’s like you get to eat a whole cake, but not really. I think the fact that I have a whole Pinterest board dedicated to cupcakes is enough to tell you, I’m serious about these little guys.

In my secret life, I wanted to be a chef. A pastry chef to be exact. Actually, I was enrolled in a culinary school once upon a time, but never actually went. (I blame any and all food failures on this fact!) So, what’s a wanna-be pastry chef do when she has an abundance of blueberries, strawberries, cream cheese, and a box of gluten-free cake mix? She channels her inner Sandra Lee and, with some inspiration from a friend, does her best rendition of Semi-Homemade.

Now, I made the strawberry swirl from scratch. However, if you absolutely needed to, you could thin out some strawberry jelly and it would have the same effect.

Strawberry Swirl Cupcakes with Blueberry Cheesecake Icing   from Gluten Free with Southern Charm

 

Strawberry Swirl Cupcakes with Blueberry Cheesecake Frosting

Strawberry Swirl:
1 cup chopped strawberries
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup water
1 tsp cornstarch

In a small pan, combine chopped strawberries, sugar, cornstarch, and water. Stir well, and bring to a boil over medium heat. Boil for about 10 minutes, or until strawberries are soft and syrup has thickened. Allow to cool while you mix up the cupcake batter.

Cupcakes:
1 box gluten-free  yellow cake mix  (or regular if you don’t have to eat gluten free)
Accompanying ingredients for cake mix

Follow directions on the cupcake box, then fill cupcake wrappers 3/4 of the way with batter. Scoop 1 tsp of strawberry swirl into each cupcake, lightly swirling with a butter knife. (Don’t mix all the way through as it will turn pink.)
Bake according to directions on the box.
When done, allow to cool completely before icing.

Blueberry Cheesecake Icing
1 8oz cream cheese, softened
8Tbsp butter, room temperature
2 cups powdered sugar
juice of 1/2 lemon (or more if icing is too thick)
1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries, pureed  (I find that the frozen gives off more color)

In a mixing bowl, add cream cheese and butter, mixing until well combined. Sift in powdered sugar and lemon juice. Continue mixing until icing is a smooth consistency. Stir in blueberries and refrigerate until ready to use.

When cooled, ice the cupcakes and garnish with a blueberry or lemon zest.

Linking up with Thrifty Thursday

Spicy Jicama Fries with Chipotle Aioli

Spicy Jicama Fries with Chipotle Aioli

I love fries – home fries, steak fries, seasoned fries, waffle fries, even crinkle-cut fries. But, with the new diet I’m doing, potatoes are out. They raise your blood sugar too much, so they are a big no-no. (Insert very sad emoji here.)
Needless to say, I’ve been desperate to find a comparable replacement for my starchy french fries. So, I grabbed a jicama (HICK-ah-muh) the other day and decided to see if it would pass the replacement test. I’d seen plenty of jicama fry recipes online, so I was hopeful.

To be honest, it still doesn’t fool me enough to think that I’m eating real American fries; but it does make a unique side dish, especially if you are in the mood for something different. Give it a try the next time you grill burgers or have a BBQ. It will definitely get the conversation going!

For all of my THMers out there, this would be a perfect side for an S-meal!

Spicy Jicama Fries

1 medium jicama, peeled and cut into medium french fries
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp chipotle powder
1/4 tsp onion powder
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1 Tbsp olive oil

Preheat oven to 400. Cover a cookie sheet with foil, and grease lightly (enough so the fries will not stick).
Combine the spices in a small bowl.
In a mixing bowl, drizzle olive oil on jicama and toss, sprinkling spices onto fries as you go, until well coated.
Place jicama fries onto cookie sheet and bake for approximately 40 minutes.
While jicama fries are baking, begin mixing up your Chipotle Aioli.

Chipotle Aioli
1/2 cup mayonnaise
3 tsp chipotle powder
2 Tbs fresh cilantro
1 clove garlic, minced
2 Tbs lime juice
salt and pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients in blender and blend until smooth.
Refrigerate until time to use.

The first time I made jicama fries, I over-baked them. I was trying to get them to have a crisp outside and soft center. Jicama does not do this. It stays somewhat crunchy on the inside. Just a note, so that you don’t burn your first batch like I did!

Mango Cilantro Fruit Salad

Mango-Cilantro Fruit Salad l Gluten Free with Southern Charm
I can’t remember where I first discovered this delicious fruit salad. All I know is that I try to make it every summer for my family, BBQs, and well, I really don’t need an excuse to make it. It’s that good! There is just something about the marriage of cilantro, chili powder, lime and mango that makes me crave a huge bowl! Even my husband loves it despite “the green stuff” in it.

Also, a huge money saving tip – look at the sale ads of the stores in your area. Mangoes are often on sale in the summer, and if you are like me and hate running from store to store just to find the best deal, you can price match at Wal-Mart. I got my 8 mangoes for $4 by pricematching!!! Not too shabby.

Mango Lime Fruit Salad

8 mangoes
2 limes, juiced (or about 4Tbsp of lime juice)
2-4Tbs chopped cilantro (we used roughly 4Tbsp since we love fresh cilantro)
1tsp chili powder (this had plenty heat for my family, but you can always add more or less to your taste and heat sensitivity)

1) Cube the mangoes and place into a large bowl. (If you have never cut a mango before, it’s really not that scary once you know what you are doing. Check out this video and become a pro. )
2) Combine mangoes, the juice of 2 limes, about 4Tbs freshly chopped cilantro, and 1Tbs chili powder.
3) Toss to combine.
4) Allow to chill for at least 30 minutes before serving.

If you are following the Trim Healthy Mama lifestyle, this would be an E side. Use in moderation, though, and definitely have some protein on the side.

Linking up at:
Time Warp Wife
Mandy’s Recipe Box

Low Carb Strawberry Shortcake

Low Carb Strawberry Shortcake  from Gluten Free with Southern Charm
Strawberries have always been near and dear to my heart. I loved watching Strawberry Shortcake when I was younger. I had the Strawberry Shortcake doll which I loved to pieces (literally). I could eat myself sick on strawberries. I even begged my mom to take me strawberry picking so I could get real strawberries – which she did, at 9 months pregant.

Side note: The woman deserves a round of applause, y’all. She was scooting along the ground picking berries when she was 9 months pregnant – at the end of June! And she did it because it was my birthday wish that year.

So, strawberries. For me, nothing is better in the summer than strawberry shortcake. Our traditional strawberry shortcake included frozen berries, Cool Whip, and the Hostess shortcake cakes (that you really can’t find anymore). Later, we moved on to Sara Lee pound cake. Oh so delicious. I drool just thinking about it!

My sister whipped up this great strawberry shortcake pie the other day. The recipe is adapted from our family Mississippi Mud Pie recipe, but is now Trim Healthy Mama friendly and appropriate for an S dessert. So, not only can we eat this sweet summer treat, but we can lose weight doing it! (Keep the strawberry serving at 1 cup per serving or this will turn into a Crossover.)

Low-Carb Strawberry Shortcake Pie
1 1/2 sticks butter, melted
1 cup sliced almonds
1 cup almond flour (I sometimes use more if it doesn’t cover the bottom of the pan)
8 oz cream cheese
1 1/4 cup Erythritol (or sweetener of choice)
1 pt heavy whipping cream
1 tsp vanilla
1 qt strawberries, sliced


For homemade whipped cream:
Chill a metal bowl and beaters prior to whipping the cream.
When chilled, beat 1 pt whipping cream, 1/4 cup Erythritol, and vanilla until you begin to get soft peaks.
*Do not over beat or it will become too stiff. Try to get to the consistency of Cool Whip.
**For best results, grind 1/4 cup of erythritol into a powder. Then, use 1/4 cup of the powder. This will make the whipped cream smoother.
Refrigerate until ready to use.

1st layer (shortcake):
Stir together the butter, almonds, and almond flour. Press into the bottom of a 9×13 dish.
Bake at 350 for 10 minutes or until golden brown.
Cool completely before adding additional layers.
**This should be a rather solid layer. If it looks too buttery, chances are you need to bake it longer.

2nd layer:
Mix the cream cheese, 1 cup Erythritol, and 1 cup whipped cream; spread onto the cooled shortcake.
(The original recipe calls for powdered sugar. You can put the sweetener into a food processor and it will come out a bit more smooth.)

3rd layer
Top with sliced strawberries

4th layer:
Top with left over whipped cream

Let cool in fridge until ready to eat

 

If you liked this recipe, take a peek at these as well:
Egg Roll in a Bowl
Apple Pepper Jack Chicken
Spaghetti Squash Au Gratin

This recipe is linking up at Weekend Potluck, one of my favorite linky parties,
Home Maid Simple
Time Warp Wife
Mandy’s Recipe Box

Egg Roll in a Bowl (a Trim Healthy Mama S-Meal)

Egg Roll in a Bowl @Gluten Free with Southern Charm

So, I obviously haven’t been around in a long while.
Things have been crazy hectic at school and at home. Half the time I don’t know if I’m coming or going; if  I’m awake, asleep, or somewhere in the middle of Zombieland. I’m pretty sure that we have been at home one weekend out of the last 2 months. INSANE! Even for our normal schedule.
I’m so sorry for the absence. Here’s hoping this recipe will make it up to you!
(Also, school ends in exactly 27 days! So, I plan on sharing many more delicious treats and eats once that is over.)

I recently started a diet called Trim Healthy Mama. To simplify it in the easiest way I know how, it’s essentially a low-glycemic diet. You can pretty much each whatever you want, however you avoid eating carbs and fats together. I love it. I am eating delicious food, drinking yummy drinks, and snacking on cheese, fruit, and even chocolate muffins. The best thing about this diet is that the foods within the “S meals” (the fatty, or satisfying, meals) are naturally gluten-free. So, more than likely, you will see many more of these S Meals popping up here.

One thing that I have really missed since going gluten-free are egg rolls. There is just something so delicious in the mixture of fried wrapper, pork, cabbage, onions, and celery. So, you can imagine my joy when I came across this recipe at Intentionally Domestic. Thank you Pinterest for assisting in this discovery!! This recipe is so very close that if I close my eyes, I can imagine I’m having the real thing!
**I did add my own tweaks and per a suggestion from a busy mom, I opted for the precut and measured cabbage (probably the BEST suggestion I have received lately!).

Egg Roll in a Bowl

Ingredients:
1 lb ground pork
1 package coleslaw mix
3 ribs of celery, chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 tsp fresh ginger, grated
3-4 Tbsp tamari sauce  **If you are doing THM, use Braggs Amino Acids
1-2 tsp rice vinegar

Directions:
Cook the ground pork until done and remove from pan, leaving the drippings.
Add onions, garlic and celery to the pan and saute until nearly cooked through.
Add the coleslaw mix and continue to cook about 15 minutes, then mix in cooked ground pork.
Add the freshly grated ginger, tamari sauce, and rice vinegar.
Allow to simmer for 5-10 minutes.

**This is also nicely complimented with some Sriracha sauce. It gives it a nice kick!

This recipe is also linking up with all the lovely ladies of  Weekend Potluck and Home Maid Simple

Not Your Average Broccoli and (Blue) Cheese

Broccoli and {Blue} Cheese l Gluten Free with Southern Charm

My sister-in-law and mother-in-law came to stay this weekend. It had been a crazy week (and payday didn’t come until Friday anyway), so I had not had time to run to the store to get any groceries.
So, we quickly mapped out a dinner plan – I would run to Wal-Mart and grab a rotisserie chicken and some potato wedges for my veggie hating husband. Meanwhile, Mary (my sil) would get some veggies together.

When I got home and dinner was ready, I was greeted with this wonderful concoction of hers.

How did she know I was craving broccoli and cheese…but not really?

Broccoli and Blue Cheese

Ingredients:
1 1/2 heads broccoli, cleaned and cut
1 package Kraft blue cheese dressing mix
3/4 – 1 cup mayonnaise
fresh blue cheese for garnish

Instructions:
Mix the mayonnaise, dressing mix, and broccoli together until broccoli is well coated. (The amount of mayo is dependent on the size of broccoli heads and your mayo preference.)
Turn broccoli onto a greased cookie sheet (I prefer my sheets to be foil lined as well) and bake at 350 for about 30 minutes or until broccoli is cooked to your liking.

**Kraft is typically good to highlight potential reaction causing ingredients. This package does not state “wheat” under the MAY CONTAIN list, however it also does not state “Gluten Free”. Use at your own discretion. I have never had an allergic reaction, but I am not overly sensitive.

**Blue Cheese has long been on the “Do Not Eat” list. This is because traditionally, the cultures used to create blue cheese were grown on rye grains. Now days, few use this method. A study in 2009 showed that the majority of blue cheese contained “undetectable” traces of gluten (less than 1ppm), therefore they should be safe unless you are extremely sensitive. Do your homework and be sure the blue cheese you are using is safe.

Again, I am not an expert. I just create based on what I know does not bother me. I do try to look for gluten-free labeling, but if I happen to look it up on Google and it states it is safe, I will try it.
As always, these are just suggestions. Please use your own judgement.

Pineapple Express Omelette (A Jimmy’s Egg Copy-cat Recipe)

Pineapple Express Omelette l Gluten Free with Southern Charm
Apparently, I’m in the mood for weird combos. My last weird combo was chicken, apples, and pepper jack cheese for my Apple Pepper Jack Chicken. Today, it’s a strangely delightful combo I discovered while eating at a restaurant in Oklahoma.

Last year, the hubby and I were in Tulsa for a wedding. We were headed to IHOP for breakfast, but being a Saturday morning, it was crazy packed. However, just around the corner was an unknown (to us) restaurant called Jimmy’s Egg. Not many options were available to us in the area we were (and I was STARVING by that point), so we decided to jump in and try this place.
So, how was it?
Well, let’s just say that since our visit, we have made plans eat at one whenever we go visit my in-laws.
This omelette was on the menu when we went the first time, and I was pretty nervous to try it. But, I’m so glad I did. I love the combination of the ham, pineapple, green onions, and smooth cream cheese. I loved it so much that we made plans the next day to eat there before heading home!

Anyway…
Here’s my pretty darn close copy-cat to satisfy my craving when we aren’t near Oklahoma.
But, if you are ever going through Oklahoma (and a few other places in Texas, Kansas, and Nebraska) stop in and try their version. I haven’t seen it on the menu since that first time; however, if you ask for it, they will still make it.

Pineapple Express Omelette

Ingredients:
2 eggs
2 slices lunch meat ham, diced
1 green onion, sliced
about 5 pineapple chunks, sliced into 3 pieces each
1 Tbsp butter
2 slices of cream cheese
salt, to taste

Instructions:
1) Crack eggs into a bowl. Season with salt and beat them until they are a pale yellow color. You actually want a lot of air in the eggs so that they are nice and fluffy.
2) Melt butter in the bottom of the skillet and quickly saute the green onions, ham, and pineapple chunks.
3) Pour eggs over the meat, onions, and pineapple.
4) Let the eggs cook until the bottom begins to set.
5) Gently lift one side of the eggs and tilt the pan so that still liquid egg flows underneath. Continue to do this around the sides until there is no liquid left. It should resemble a pancake right now.
6) Gently flip the eggs over and allow the eggs to cook on that side. (This should take only about 30 seconds or so.)
7) Place cream cheese in the center of the egg and fold the sides over to cover the cheese.
8) Transfer to a plate and garnish with pineapple and green onions if you desire.