What’s For Dinner

What's For Dinner?

Almost every night I cook a homemade gluten-free dinner for Brian and I. It can be something simple as tacos or grilled chicken with a couple sides or I could use every pot and pan I have in the apartment. I’m always trying new recipes from everywhere – online, magazines, cookbooks, etc. Every Sunday, I create a menu for the week (about five or six meals – depending on our schedule) and I always try to have at least two or three new recipes using whatever we have in the freezer. I decided to create this “What’s For Dinner?” section to show what I made for dinner tonight, where I got the recipe, how I modified it to be gluten-free (if I needed to) and what we thought of the recipe.

No fancy photo shoot here! These images are taken right before I enjoy the first bite …and sometimes maybe after. Depending on how hungry I am. So, bear with me as I learn how to use my camera phone and Instagram color correction – it’s a whole new world.

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Recipes Links & What I Did

Sesame Chicken with Broccoli and Rice. I made the recipe pretty close to the original. I baked them instead of frying them. (375°F for 10 minutes, then a quick 2-3 minutes under the broiler for each side.) I used gluten-free all-purpose flour in the marinade and chili garlic sauce in place of the chili paste. I cut the amount of sugar to 1/4 cup, but I think next time, I’ll use a 1/4 cup honey to give a little more sweetness. Turned out wonderful. Next time, we’re going to deep fry and see if we can get that fluffy coating and mix in some sesame seeds in the sauce.

Rib-Eye Steak with a Homemade Bearnaise Sauce, Bake Potato and very crispy sauteed Brussel Sprouts. Great way to bring in the New Year!

Grilled Chicken Quesadilla with Fresh Guacamole and Sour Cream. No recipe needed tonight. Just marinated some chicken breasts in taco seasoning, grilled to cook and then minced for the quesadilla building. Which included diced onions, chicken and cheese with Rudi’s Gluten Free Tortillas.  Super easy and delicious!

Parmesan Crusted Chicken with Pesto Ramen with Veggies. Let’s start with the chicken. I filleted two chicken breasts and halved the recipe. I lowered the temperature to 375°F and cooked them for about 20 minutes. I also used gluten-free panko breadcrumbs from Ian’s Natural Foods. I received the package of Lotus Foods® Millet & Brown Rice Ramen in my December Love with Food package and used the noodles from that (I’ll keep the season packet for another day) to make my pesto pasta (ramen) with veggies. I followed the directions for the ramen and rinsed with cool water to prevent sticking. Meanwhile, I sauteed my veggies (zucchini, mushrooms, minced garlic and diced red onions) over medium heat with about 1 tablespoon of melted butter. I lightly seasoned with salt and pepper and cook for about 10 minutes until the zucchini and mushrooms were tender. I placed the veggies in a bowl and heated the ramen with pesto (honestly, I didn’t measure. I used about 3 heaping soup spoons) in the frying pan and added a bit of butter to prevent my noodles from sticking to the pan. (OH! I would cut the noodles a few times, makes it easier to dish out before adding to the pan.) Once the ramen is reheated, add the veggies back in and continue to cook for about 2-3 minutes, until every thing is warm. Serve with a piece of chicken. It was really tasty. I can’t get enough of the pesto these days.

Beef Bulgogi and steamed Broccoli. I served the beef bulgogi with red leaf lettuce, white rice and chopped green onions. There was suppose to be a sauce (waited for Amazon delivery), but it wasn’t gluten-free. Not sure how I missed that or whatever, so I used a hot and spicy marinade and stir-fry sauce. It was good. I don’t think I’ll make this again serving it this way. Too much work. The meat was great, but I’ll probably look for other ways to serve it.

Pasta with Chicken Sausage in a Creamy Butternut Squash Sauce and roasted French Green Beans and Asparagus. Well…I have to say, I did a horrible job getting all the ingredients for this recipe. I managed to get pre-cooked sausage, no spinach and no fresh sage. So the recipe came out a bit different than SkinnyTaste‘s Pasta with Spicy Sausage, Baby Spinach and Creamy Butternut Sauce recipe. Everything was the same except for the sausage, I just heated up in the pan then added the shallots and garlic (variation from recipe- wasn’t reading to well tonight either), then I added the butternut squash puree with a 1/2 teaspoon of rubbed sage (all I had on hand) and a few shakes of black pepper.  It was all super tasty. I really loved the butternut squash creamy sauce. I roasted the french green beans and asparagus at 400°F for about 15 minutes. I simply drizzle with olive oil and sprinkled with minced garlic and seasoned with sea salt and black pepper.

Pork Fried Rice: I used pork chops instead (baked at 450°F for about 10-12 minutes). Next time I’ll definitely use the pork shoulder for the BBQ Pork. Few things… I didn’t use hoisin sauce- replaced with chili garlic sauce and used ketchup instead of tomato paste (I didn’t want to open one for such a small amount). To the rice, I added diced carrots after the pork was added. They were still crunchy, which is how I like them. And in the sauce, I just used soy sauce instead of dark soy sauce. Not even sure I could find that GF. Super delicious! I think if I used the right pork and cooked for longer – it would have been takeout perfect! OH- no beansprouts! I really have a dislike for beansprouts – great thing about making dishes at home!

Potato, Canadian Bacon and Onion Quiche with sauteed French Green Beans! Yumm!

Turkey Meatloaf Muffins with Mashed Potatoes and Corn. Cooked in half the time as a loaf and they are so adorable! I used my meatloaf recipe (turkey, gf breadcrumbs, egg, tomato sauce, spices, onion and garlic) and sprayed two muffin tins with cooking spray, divided the mixture into 12 equal parts (as best as I could) and baked at 350°F for 25 minutes. Piped instant mashed potatoes on top to make them fancy and served with corn.

Hamburger with French Fries. Not just any hamburger – mixed with spicy dill pickles, cheese, garlic and diced onion. Yumm!

Honey Walnut Shrimp with Rice and Broccoli: Very sweet. I would probably not candied the walnuts next to cut out on some of the sweet. Don’t get me wrong – super tasty, but too much sugar in dinner. I used Mochiko rice flour instead of cornstarch. (I bought a ton from Amazon and have been looking for a use.) I also increase the amount mayo to 1/4 cup, honey to 2 tablespoons and sweetened condensed milk to 1 tablespoon (per another recipe for the same thing). I don’t think I used a cup of oil either. I eyeballed it, I felt guilty already for frying the shrimp and not baking.

Blackened Chicken with Penne Alfredo Sauce: The only change I made was — I pan fried the chicken in the cast iron skillet and baked it in that as well. Why dirty something else, right? The Blackened Chicken was very spicy. I didn’t coat both side very well – sorta glad I didn’t. I think it would have been too spicy for me. I don’t think I’d change it next time, but I would lightly season again. The Alfredo Sauce was delicious and cooled down the spicy chicken nicely.

Saucy Chicken Lo Mein: But with Shrimp. So off the bat – changed the recipe. We just had chicken and shrimp seemed the easiest to replace it with. Other than that – noodles: I may have used less than the recipe (what I had left in the box) and vegetables: no bean sprouts (ewww!) and added asparagus, zucchini, and french green beans. (Brian got a huge bag from Costco – we’ll be eating beans over the next several days.) Oh- didn’t have sake or rice wine. I googled to find a substitute for those and sherry with 1/2 teaspoon of sugar was the first thing I saw and had on hand.  The taste was great!

Crunchy Mexican Tostadas with Shredded Chicken: Loved the pickled red onions in this. I wish I made them a couple days ago. Definitely my new favorite add to Mexican dishes. Don’t skip out on these! Few mods for this…I didn’t use as much chicken (no reason for two people), so it was a little saucier and I did add about 1/4-1/2 teaspoon of cumin to the sauce. Subbed low-fat refried black beans for the black beans in the recipe, I had them on hand. I also used corn tortillas as the tostadas…not sure that was the best idea. I baked them in the oven at 375°F for about 10 minutes on one side and 5 minute on the other. They were crunchy. Brian made a burrito instead using a flour tortilla. Next time, I’d probably eat with chips or crunchy taco. One less step. Loved all the toppings! The radishes were a unique touch and the cotija cheese is so salty!! Yumm!

General Tso’s Chicken: WOW! This recipe was amazing!! Will definitely be making again. Served with steamed broccoli and white rice. So a few mods to this one. I baked the chicken instead of frying.  (375°F for 10 minutes, then broiled each side for 2-3 minutes before adding to the sauce) I added a bit more Chinese chile-garlic sauce (about 1/2 teaspoon) and a splash of soy sauce to the chicken coating after I added the chicken. (Honestly, I was a bit worried that I had screwed up!) Delicious taste without the added calories of frying the chicken. Forgot! I also used honey instead of the sugar.

Super Delicious Zuppa Toscana: Only a few mods to this. I used turkey sausage, red potatoes (about 6), increased the red pepper flakes a pinch and no bacon. I served with BFree Rolls warmed up in the oven at 350°F for about 10 minutes. (The rolls are delicious!! Review coming this week on BFree!)

11.26 – 11.29
Thanksgiving Dinner and Leftover Thanksgiving Dinner.

Asian Chicken Lettuce Cups: I made these lettuce cups with ground turkey and tahini and added some chopped green onions. Great light dinner! Next time I’m going to try using Almond Butter and minced chicken breasts. Busy day and cooking and mincing chicken seemed like a lot of work. We didn’t care much for the sauce, so I’ll probably throw it all in with meat. I just drizzled each cup with soy sauce. Yumm!

Thai Curry Shrimp: I switched the green curry for red and used gluten-free soy sauce instead of fish sauce – just not a big fan of fish sauce, but I know it adds a lot of flavor. I guess I need to retry it.
Easy Coconut Rice : Leftover. I just added a bit of coconut milk and microwaved it until it was warm.

Classic Spaghetti (Barilla Gluten-Free Spaghetti) and Homemade Gluten-Free Meatballs (using Ian’s Panko Breadcrumbs – recipe to come) and Hot Italian Sausage (local from Colorado) with a Side Salad.

Grilled Marinated Chicken Thighs with sauteed Brussels Sprouts and Scalloped Potatoes (Idahoan Steakhouse Bacon & Ranch).

Nicolo’s Pizza : Delivery from the Lakewood location!! Nicolo’s Pizza Gluten Free Chicken Parmigiana Sandwich. OMG Good!

Chicken Fajitas : Super delicious! I used Rudi’s Gluten Free Flour Tortillas with a dollop of sour cream, salsa and fresh guacamole.

Tilapia in Thai Sauce : I doubled the sauce recipe; used minced ginger and not fresh; replaced the red chili pepper with red chili flakes in the sauce.
Easy Coconut Rice : I just omitted the dry shredded coconut.

Deep fried wings drenched gluten-free wing sauce (Cookies’ Wings ‘n’ Things) with carrots and celery dipped in Ranch dressing. Not the healthiest, but sure was tasty!