Friday, March 25, 2011

Eat Healthy and frugally! Chicken Tortilla Roll-Ups

Not exactly a recipe today, but more an idea of how to creatively use leftovers while still trying to eat healthy.

I made chicken the other day. I used one of my favorite (and easy) methods because it always goes over well with the poultry eaters here. It's not enough of a recipe to actually post, but I'll tell you what I do:

Cut up boneless chicken breasts into thirds (kinda). Place them in a Ziploc bag. Pour in some Wishbone Italian Salad dressing. Smoosh the bag around so they all get coated. Place Ziploc in baking pan in refrigerator for at least an hour. I like it to marinate for at least four. Remove baking dish from fridge. Pour entire contents into baking pan. Bake at 350 degrees until chicken is done. I can't remember exactly how long. Until the chicken juices run clear. You'll know.

See why this isn't a real recipe?

Okay, so we had that the other day with salad, veggies, etc. The whole dinner thing.

But I realized I'd made too much. We'd all had plenty but there was a *lot* of chicken leftover. What to do?

Well, I had some tortillas here. A whole pack in fact. Unfortunately, they weren't the whole grain kind, they were plain flour tortillas (me, I prefer corn).

A light bulb went on. I tore (er, I mean, sliced) the leftover chicken into bite size pieces, placed a scant smear of mayo on the tortilla, added fresh sliced green, red, and yellow peppers, and (CHEESE - forgot to mention this earlier... so this is a correction. I also added a little cheese!) then rolled them up. I secured them with toothpicks, covered the plate, placed them back in the fridge and whenever anyone was hungry - which happens a lot around here - they had a quick and tasty snack. Perfect.

BTW, I added onions to about 1/3 of them. I love onions on just about anything but my husband doesn't really tolerate them well anymore. I think he overdid it early in life... just saying...

Anyway, I offered these to the family and they went nuts. They loved these. I mean, they raved about them. I couldn't get over it. Honestly? I think the idea of having something quick to grab that they didn't have to put together themselves was what sold them. But I had to admit, they were pretty good. I was very happy with them, myself.

Don't you just love improvising? I do!
Speaking of which, I'm just beginning to write Grace #3 (improvisation, for sure!), which I'm tentative calling GRACE AMONG THIEVES. I like that. I hope Berkley does, too.

Have a great weekend!

By the way, I'm still offering bookmarks for GRACE INTERRUPTED - The book comes out in June and I'm asking readers to take five bookmarks to share with friends. If you'd like some bookmarks, just send me an email at JulieHyzy (at) gmail (dot) com. More than 5 is okay, too, just let me know how many you'd like and where to send them. U.S. addresses only, please!


  1. Ah, Fajita rollups!! I never got an answer from my library, Julie, which is why I haven't emailed you about bookmarks.

  2. This kind of idea always really appeals to me--cooking something once, then using it for more than one recipe. And healthy on top of it all!

    I've got a busy day today, so I think I'll give this a go for my supper tonight. Thanks, Julie!

  3. Hey, Shel - no worries. I appreciate you asking them for me!

    Elizabeth - exactly. Double duty dinner. Love it. And perfect for busy days. BTW, are there any non-busy days anymore?

  4. Improvising is half the fun of cooking. I love to go to my fridge and ask myself, what can I make with buttermilk, six olives, and bacon? I refuse to drive to the store just to pick up one ingredient. My husband really doesn't get it, though--he's a scientist, and he like instructions, er, recipes.

    Aren't you supposed to shred/tear your chicken for "Mexican" food? Get your hands in there. Sounds yummy.

  5. Anything I can make with my once a week rotisserie chicken is worth saving! Lunch the next day from last nights dinner is something I am always looking for. Great post

  6. Sheila - improvising is what brings me into the kitchen. I like to think of recipes as guidelines. And I face my fridge and cupboard (does anyone really say cupboard?) the same way you do. What can I come up with, with these...? LOL

    Dave - that rotisserie chicken is worth its weight in gold. Thank goodness it isn't priced that way!

  7. Julie, I love the challenges of improvising, too. This is a wonderful idea. I like the crunchy peppers in it. Yum. My problem is that I never have leftover chicken!

    ~ Krista

  8. Easy and great recipe. We do turkey wraps as well they are easy the kids love to make their own. I like the whole wheat ones myself. I say cupboard all the time the kids say cabinets.

  9. Krista - The peppers totally make the sandwich, IMHO. Thanks!

    Babs - turkey would be great. I just roasted a turkey breast and it was so good, the leftovers disappeared before I needed to get creative.

  10. Sometimes that happens to me. I want to make leftovers out of something and the boys and hubby eat it all up.

  11. I really like this idea. Brilliant way to discourage reaching for the *wrong* thing when the right one is there for the taking! Thanks for this. That's exactly what I'm going to do this week. :)

    ~ Cleo Coffeehouse
    Cleo Coyle on Twitter

  12. Cheese!! I just received an email who noticed the cheese in the photo. Yep, I added a little cheese, too!! Correction made above.

    Babs - I love when that happens.

    Cleo - yep. Half the battle of eating the right thing is making it accessible!

  13. Ack... the email didn't notice. A reader friend noticed.
    I should proofread before I post. But I was in a hurry to fix the mistake. So this is a correction to the correction, I guess.

  14. I love any two for one recipe and this looks easy and delish!

    Great idea about the bookmarks - I'll get a bunch from you at Malice and amaze my friends when I get home.

  15. Another way to do the chicken/Italian (or other non-creamy type) dressing chicken breast when it's on sale and put it in ziplock bags each with enough pieces for a meal. Pour in some dressing, then toss them in the freezer. As the chicken freezes, the dressing really "gets in there" to flavor the meat. Then when you want to fix some chicken, take a bag out the night before (or that morning) and toss it in the fridge to thaw.