Who says dairy gets to have all of the fun? Whether you’re cutting dairy because you have allergies, preparing for a bodybuilding competition or just simply wanting to reduce the amount of animal products in your diet, you can still enjoy delicious, nutritious food that feeds your body and muscles.
Coconut milk is lactose free so you can enjoy it if you are lactose intolerant. Additionally, coconuts are loaded with vitamins such as C, E, B1 & B6 as well as iron, sodium, calcium and magnesium. Don’t be alarmed by the high amount of saturated fat content. The reduced fat coconut milk can be enjoyed much more in moderation, and the fat in coconut milk is mostly in the form of medium chain saturated fatty acids (MCFAs), which studies have found are utilized more quickly by the body – as energy – thus making it less likely to be stored as fat.
Here’s a quick & easy recipe that will quickly become a household favorite.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Ingredients for at least 4 servings:
- 1lb (454g) chicken breasts
- 6oz (170g) whole grain pasta
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1.25 cup (296ml) lite coconut milk
- 3/4 cup (177ml) low sodium chicken broth
- 5 cup (355ml) chopped asparagus
- juice from 2 lemons
- fresh lemon zest
- 1 garlic clove
- 1 tablespoon oregano
- 1/3 cup chopped parsley
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh dill
- sea salt & pepper to taste
- 1 tablespoon wheat panko crumbs for crunch (optional)
- Boil and cook pasta according to instructions given (on the package) and set aside.
- Season chicken breasts with a few pinches of sea salt, pepper and oregano. If you have it available, I’d toss in some freshly chopped rosemary as well.
- Add half of the olive oil to a (non-stick) skillet and set on medium heat. Once the skillet is hot, add the chicken breasts and cook on both sides for about 8 minutes each side or until the chicken breasts are completely cooked.
- Tip: if your skillet is all metal or can withstand high temperatures, I recommend searing both sides of the chicken breasts, then placing the entire skillet in the oven at 420F for about 8 minutes (depending on the size of the chicken breasts). This will help them cook much faster and this is especially recommended if the pieces of chicken breast are way too thick.
- Once the chicken breasts are cooked, remove them from the skillet. Place the skillet back on medium heat and add the remaining olive oil. Toss in garlic and chopped asparagus and cook for about 5 minutes.
- Add chicken broth, lemon juice, lemon zest and coconut milk. Allow it to simmer for a few minutes and then add cooked pasta. Reduce the heat and allow the sauce to begin to thicken.
- Add oregano, dill and fresh parsley. Stir and shake the pan, careful not to break the pasta.
- Finally, fold in chopped chicken breast and stir.
- Garnish with a little more dill, parsley and fresh lemon juice.
395 calories, 39g protein, 36g carbs, 11g fat, 6g fiber, 3g sugar