Chicken Sausage With Veggies
Weeknights leave little room for making any sort of gourmet dinner, you and I both know that. But dinner also doesn’t have to be gourmet or recipe based. With work, busy schedules, the compounded effects of technology and the need to be “always on,” it’s getting harder and harder to find a work life balance … let alone get in the kitchen.
And, believe me, I never want to make cooking sound like it’s this easy act that everyone and anyone can get on board with. Cooking has to be deliberate, requires some level of preparation and the desire has to be there. Can you get there? Of course. But you also have to want to do it. And the reason why you want to do it has to be way more important than your list of complaints about doing it. The same thing with exercising, right? How you want to feel has to be your reason and then it gets paired with an action.
How do you want to feel? I want to have more energy
Action: Exercise and eat nutritious food
Why? So I can be energized in my life, for myself + for my family
A fairly simple strategy like keeping my freezer, fridge, countertop and pantry stocked with whole food go-to’s keep my habits afloat in the most hectic of times. I also wrote fairly simple because, well, strategies require implementation and work. You’ll have to actually grocery shop or order groceries ... and then use them … so the motivation has to be there.
The bright news is that the more real/whole foods you eat, the better you’re going to feel. Watch your mood shift, along with your digestion, cravings and sleep patterns. Bonus, your skin will likely brighten up too.
Here’s a simple meal using Al Fresco chicken sausages. Why do I keep pre-cooked chicken sausage in my refrigerator? So I can make weeknight dinners in under 20 minutes. Brown them in a pan with non-stick cooking spray, add your veggies of choice (hint, time + saver) they can even be frozen) and serve over anything from grains to pasta, spaghetti squash or greens.
What brings out the flavor here and takes this meal to a heightened level without being complicated is the little bit of lemon juice/zest that’s added at the end of cooking - along with a pinch of dried oregano.
One meal like this can get a family through dinner or, if you’re single like me, you can eat this as is for dinner one night, put it over eggs for breakfast, top a lunch salad or use to make a quesadilla.
Get in the kitchen!
Chicken Sausage With Veggies
*serves 3-4 or one woman many times and many ways
1 package Al Fresco Chicken Sausage, cut into thin slices *preferred: roasted garlic or sweet Italian sausage
1 zucchini, sliced into half moons
1 cubanel or bell pepper, sliced
1 onion, sliced
Juice + zest of ½ a lemon
Handful of spinach or something green
Pinch of oregano
Sprinkle of pecorino or parm cheese to finish
*note: you can use frozen veggies like broccoli or cauliflower here, along with a California blend of veggies as well; I was using what was left in my fridge before I leave town for the weekend
Heat skillet with non-stick spray and add sausage, cooking until brown - about 4-6 minutes
Remove sausage from the pan and put aside
Spray pan with non-stick spray or use 2 teaspoons of olive oil, adding onions, zucchini and peppers; sauteing until soft - about 7-10 minutes
Add chicken sausage back to the pan; season with zest, lemon juice, oregano and salt to taste if necessary (as sausage are rather salty and I do top this with pecorino/parm and I’d prefer to get my salt and flavor from there when I do)
Top with cheese
Serve as is, over grains, pasta, greens or spaghetti squash for an extra veggie hit
Use leftovers in an omelette, scramble or breakfast, lunch or dinner quesadilla