Tuesday, March 19, 2013

the fit beast feasts: oven-baked chicken parmesan

compared with a traditional deep-fried restaurant version, this recipe packs killer flavors with waist-line friendly macros.  try it.  you'll thank me.

ingredients for the sauce:
2 tsp olive oil
1/2 large onion, chopped
2 tbsp low-sodium tomato paste
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
1 28-oz can organic unsalted whole tomatoes with juice
1 large sprig basil
1/4 tsp sea salt

ingredients for the chicken:
olive oil cooking spray
1/2 cup white whole-wheat flour
1 large egg
1 large egg white
1/4 tsp fresh ground black pepper
1/2 cup whole-wheat panko bread crumbs
1 1/2 ounce grated parmesan cheese
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp dried rosemary
4 6-ounce boneless, skinless chicken breasts, pounded 1/2-inch thick
2 ounces low-fat grated italian cheese blend
2 tbsp chopped fresh basil leaves

prepare sauce: in a medium saucepan on medium heat, heat oil.  add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft and lightly browned, about 7 minutes.  add tomato paste, garlic oregano and red pepper flakes and stir until combined, about 1 minute.  add tomatoes and crush with a spoon.  add basil sprig.  bring to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until thickened, about 25 minutes.  remove from heat and discard basil.  carefully puree with an immersion blender, stir in salt and set aside.

prepare chicken:  preheat over to 400 degrees.  line a large baking sheet with foil and mist with cooking spray.  line up three wide, shallow bowls on a work surface.  to first bowl, add flour; to second bowl, add egg, egg white and black pepper and whisk to combine; to third bowl, add panko, parmesan, oregano, thyme and rosemary and stir to combine.  dip each breast in flour, shaking off excess, then quickly dip in egg and press into panko mixture, turning to coat all sides; transfer to sheet.  bake for 16-20 minutes, until chicken is no longer pink in center and juices run clear.  switch oven to broil setting.

mist a 3-qt baking dish with cooking spray and add chicken in a single layer.  spoon about 1/3 cup sauce over each piece and pour remaining sauce around chicken.  sprinkle italian cheese blend evenly over top.  transfer to center rack of oven and broil until cheese is melted, 2-4 minutes.  sprinkle with chopped basil.

try serving over whole-grain pasta for a complete, italian-inspired meal.

nutritional facts   before         after
calories              590            421
total fat (g)         31              10
sat. fat (g)          10              4
carbs (g)            39              23
fiber (g)             2                4
sugars (g)          14              5
protein (g)         39              53
sodium (mg)      1,260         562

you save 169 calories, 21 g fat, 6 g saturated fat, and 698 mg sodium

need any better reason to start eating clean?

eat clean.  live lean.  live better.  live longer.

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