Chicken Strips (Ketogenic Diet Friendly)

Chicken strips were one of my favorite foods as a child and I am a bit ashamed to say that I enjoyed them once or twice (or a dozen times) from Safeway during my pregnancy. It was absolute junk comfort food for me at that time! Now that I know they can be made quickly, easily and deliciously at home I no longer have cravings for the commercial stuff with wheat and CAFO chicken.

Behold:

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Yes, they are as tasty as they look. I promise!

My dear sweet husband actually made these. He really wanted to try them out and Bunkers and I were out, so he whipped them up before we got home. What a guy!

So, the ‘breading’ he used is pork rinds. We buy pork rinds on Amazon for general snacking (Bunkers gets some in his lunch each day. I think DH eats some each day, too. I just eat them when I am feeling snacky, which doesn’t happen very often but I am happy to have pork rinds available for when it does).

We actually buy a product called ‘Pork Dust’ (I still can’t decide if that’s a genius name or a revolting one…) on Amazon to use specifically for recipes such as this (it also works to replace bread crumbs in things like meatloaf!). It’s a little pricey, but this is something we make relatively infrequently (I don’t know why! It’s so tasty!) so the cost is not a burden. We used about 1/2 of the bag to make a ton of chicken strips. You can, however, just crush up pork rinds. I haven’t done this, but I have heard tell of people blitzing their pork rinds in the food processor until they were a bread crumb consistency and that sounds like it would work just as well!

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Ingredients:

2 chicken breast (1 lb of chicken)

1 egg

1/2 Tablespoon water

1/2 pound of ‘pork dust’ (crushed pork rinds)

Method:

Mix together in bowl egg and water.

Cut chicken breast into strips (1/2 inch by 3-4 inches).

Dip chicken breast into egg mixture and then into bowl containing pork rind bread crumbs, coating chicken strip in pork rind bread crumbs.

Place on baking sheet (recommend parchment paper on sheet).

Cook for 15-18 minutes in pre-heated 425 degree oven.

These are fabulous dipped in mayo (add some chipotle peppers in adobo sauce and make a kickin’ sauce!) or mustard!

Chicken Zoodle Soup

I wanted to share this recipe because it’s seasonally perfect, it’s tasty AND it’s grain free. We are on a ketogenic diet (I wrote about that here) so we have to modify things often. I switched out wheat flour noodles for spiralized zucchini noodles and you can hardly tell the difference, I think!

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This recipe is enough to feed four adults, or have leftovers for lunch the next day if there’s just two of you!

You’ll need to have chicken stock on hand and it’s *really* not the same without homemade stock! So see my post here about oven roasting a chicken and using the carcass to make stock.  You will also need pre-cooked chicken pieces, so, really, just make the oven roasted chicken the night before and you’ll be set for this recipe. Often, we make our oven roasted chicken one night and eat some with dinner, then start the crock pot with the carcass after dinner and then the stock/broth is ready by the time I am making dinner the next night. It works out great!

Ingredients:

4 cups loosely packed pre-cooked chicken chopped into bite size pieces

2 quarts chicken broth

6 tablespoons butter

6 cups loosely packed spiralized zucchini (about 4-5 small zucchini or 2 large zucchini)

1 cup chopped carrots (you can do more if you prefer, but carrots are a high sugar vegetable, so we keep the quantity low)

1 onion, chopped

Optional: celery. I know that’s a common chicken soup ingredient, we just prefer it left out. Also optional is a diced tomato. Not a common chicken soup ingredient, but it is so lovely to add in July or August when tomatoes are so yummy!

1.5 tsp garlic granules/powder (NOT garlic salt. Just dried garlic. Or use fresh garlic, I just prefer dried garlic in soups)

2 tsp dried basil or a handful of fresh chopped basil (I prefer fresh, but that’s not always available to me)

1 tsp turmeric (this not only adds a classic chicken soup color, but is a nice way to get some turmeric in! It’s so good for you!)

1 tablespoon Himalayan salt (do not sub table salt. Himalayan or Celtic sea salt. I don’t use table salt, so I can’t vouch for a straight across sub! It’s not good for you anyway. You can find both Himalayan and Celtic sea salt on amazon for great prices!)

1/2 tsp red pepper flakes (more or less depending on if you want it spicy or not. this amount isn’t overwhelming)

Pepper to taste

Method:

Melt butter in a large stock pot and add carrots and onion (and celery if using). Cook until almost done.

Add in zucchini noodles and fry together for 2-3 minutes.

Pour in broth. Add in all spices (EXCEPT if you are using fresh basil, that gets added later). If you were adding tomatoes, you would add them now as well.

Cook until simmering and all vegetables are soft to your liking.

Add in chopped cooked chicken and fresh basil if using. Remove from heat asap.

Allow to sit for 4-5 minutes before dishing up.

Sometimes I like to sprinkle a little parmesan cheese on top!

This soup reheats really fabulously as well. I hope you enjoy!

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