This week is my back to school week for my big kid. And that adds one more lunch into the mix. I send off my hubby with his (he is super easy), my toddler (picky cracker and air eater), and now my 3rd grader. I'm getting good at throwing stuff into bags real quick during bath time to be done with it. But I stumbled upon a tasty crock pot dinner, that does double duty as lunch!This chicken is so flavorful, it also falls apart into stringy chicken. It just asks to be used in many ways. Holla!
I incorporated the healthier DIY version of ranch mix... HOLLA! (I am in a holla mood, so feel free to holla back).
FYI it's OK to publicly display back to school happiness.
This is about right. I love this picture. Holla for this Chick... (click to see her blog)♥
This recipe can be easy to change up for the size of your family. Change the amount of potatoes for your needs, or add extra chicken! I switch it up depending on if I am serving a whole meals from the crock, or pre-making lunches. The ingredients are easily changed for your needs. Don't sweat the small stuff.
4 chicken breast
4 medium potatoes
3 large carrots (optional)
7-8 ounces of pesto (small deli tub)
1/2 cup chicken broth
3 tablespoons ranch mix (or more to taste)
Light olive oil to coat
Sea salt to taste
Lightly spray your crock with non-stick cooking spray.
Cut your potatoes in to 1 inch pieces (I am not a peeler, I try to retain as much of the nutrient value as possible!)
Place potatoes in bottom of crock (or a mixing bowl, they will need to be coated I went to town in my crock.)
Cut carrots, set aside.
Fillet the chicken for smaller pieces place in a mixing bowl
First lightly coat your potatoes in olive oil, use your hands to get the oil evenly distributed.
Now do the same to your chicken.
Add your pesto and ranch mix to the chicken again using your hands to make sure they are all coated. This will be messy.
See all that mess stuck to your hands, grab your taters and rub a dub dub!♥
I essentially cleaned all the left over pesto and ranch off my hands on to the potatoes. Best decision ever! Feel free to add more ranch too, I did. I really just kept on adding until I had a nice coating! Since I make my own ranch mix I had to Google how much is in a ranch packet. 3 tablespoons is a good starting point.
Add a layer of carrots over the potatoes (my first batch [pictured] , I steamed corn on the cob!)
Pour in the broth, add chicken.( I add my broth before the chicken is because I want as much of the pesto and ranch to stick... hence the use of
Crock it for 5-6 hours, until your veggies are soft.
It just gets better...
The day after was when I got an unsolicited rave review from hubs about his sandwich!
All I had on hand was frozen hamburger buns. I threw them together with butter, a piece of salami and mozzarella cheese (Hubs loves his salted meats). I tossed them back into the freezer individually wrapped before the bun defrosted (that quick girl). A great pre-made lunch option!
Another left over lunch idea (used for my 3rd grader).
♥A cold noodle salad. All that is needed make up some noodles, toss with oil, add chicken. (That will get the yumm-ness all over the noodles). Top it off with a few olives and cheese (parm or mozz).
♥For the picky toddler: (she just likes cold chicken). Done. Added crackers, and apple sauce.
♥And for Mama, cut up or shred chicken and sprinkle on a spinach salad.
I hope you enjoy, it's nice to see you.