How to Prepare Healthier Chicken Dinners


By: , SparkPeople Blogger
  :  27 comments   :  17,210 Views

By Regina Ragone, Family Circle

On any given night almost half of all Americans—43 percent—are eating chicken for supper. As a dietitian, that stat makes me happy, because this versatile, low-fat meat is packed with protein and is a proven source of iron, zinc, and B vitamins. But in my heart I know a lot of those plates are filled with chicken nuggets, which parents rely on as a go-to fix, because, frankly, they know kids will eat them without argument.

There's nothing wrong with the occasional nugget, but you can do better, both in terms of nutrition and taste. Try one of our simple, good-for-you recipes tonight and add the following tips into your cooking arsenal.

Chicken Express: Healthy Family Dinners

Great chicken recipes, and more:

Click here to to redeem your SparkPoints
  You will earn 5 SparkPoints
See More: family circle,
Got a story idea? Give us a shout!
NEXT ENTRY >   Is Your Diet Making You Cranky?


  • 27
    The Family Circle links just take you to a log-in page. What a wast of time. Would much rather be able to see a few recipes without registering to another site :( - 3/31/2011   6:19:24 PM
  • 26
    Pecan breaded and baked chicken, yummy!! - 3/31/2011   1:40:19 PM
    Although disappointed with the link to Family Circle, I still liked reading the comments and ideas from our Sparks Family! And got some good ideas that way. Thanks you guys! - 3/31/2011   11:46:13 AM
  • 24
    Soup! Add 10-12 ozs. of white meat (leftovers or canned) to two packages (64 oz.) of low-sodium chicken broth, add loads of chopped carrot, celery (including leaves), onion, smaller amounts of frozen corn, and some finely chopped spinach, spice it as you like, simmer about an hour, and 10 minutes before it is ready, cut open and dump in one packet of Minute Boil in Bag Brown Rice.
    Salad! Cut or shread leftover white meat, chop together celery, sweet onion (just a little), walnuts and mix with chicken with just enough Kraft Olive Oil Mayo to moisten and hold it together, For a sandwich, spoon onto whole grain bread lined with lettuce leaves. If you want to just eat it with a fork, add some grapes and chopped apple for a Chicken Waldorf.
    Chicken Caesar! Cut up Heart of Romaine, top with cubed leftover white meat, (optional: some chick peas, chopped mushrooms, avocado, whatever you like) and serve with Ken's Lite Caesar Dressing.
    I'm lazy,only easy-peasy, no-fail recipes will do. - 3/31/2011   10:03:03 AM
  • 23
    My families current healthy favorite is Chicken piccata-quick, easy and tasty
    Our unhealthy favorite is Sticky Chicken.
    Both are in my Sparkpeople cookbook --Sharon C's. - 3/30/2011   9:05:29 PM
  • 22
    I love curry, brown stewed, brushed with honey and mustard and baked (on a slotted pan). - 3/30/2011   8:51:49 PM
  • 21
    I cut a boneless chicken breast into bitesized pieces, saute with onion, garlic and chopped celery, then dump in a bag of frozen "stirfry mix" vegetables. Cover the pan and lower the heat. Steam for a few minutes, shake on a little low-sodium soy sauce and some chopped parsley and cilantro from the garden. Serve over brown rice. - 3/30/2011   7:28:32 PM
  • 20
    Talk about a dangling carrot. Is SP in cahoots with Family Circle? Look at this delicious dish. Want the recipe? Not without your registration! Free or not, there are too many other sites with no strings attached and no redirects. Forget it! - 3/30/2011   7:21:04 PM
  • 19
    I had the same experience as Sparker poster #11. Couldn't get to recipes without registering, not doing it. - 3/30/2011   6:51:10 PM
  • 18
    I love chicken breasts, done almost any way, except for a fruity sauce. I like a roast chicken as well, but then there is the gravy...not so good. - 3/30/2011   12:39:11 PM
  • 17
    Article? What article? This was just a ploy to get e-mail addresses for additional newsletters and other junk in my in-box!

    I realize that SparkPeople is free because of advertisers and advertisements, but at least give us something more than a tease in the Blog section. - 3/30/2011   11:47:39 AM
    Even pastured free-range chicken and pork have an unhealthy balance of omega-3 to -6. So keep them as occasional treats, but the majority of your meat should be ruminants (red meat) and fish! - 3/30/2011   9:55:01 AM
    You can build a better nugget! When my son was small, he loved chicken nuggets - but I truly think they are disgusting. So, I experimented by cutting chicken breast into chunks - no breading - and baking. Our favorite is to bake the "nuggets" in Newman's Own Light Honey Mustard salad dressing. My son is now 12 and can't stand traditional nuggets, but he asks for these all the time! - 3/30/2011   9:40:23 AM
    I like to sear the chicken on the stove in an oven-proof skillet in a few drops of olive oil, then I put a little water or white wine in with the chicken and the skillet goes into a 350 degree oven for about 20-25 minutes. Delicious and simple! - 3/30/2011   9:18:46 AM
  • 13
    I love my George Foreman I Grilled my veggies & chicken in it. - 3/30/2011   9:11:48 AM
  • 12
    I like to get the broasted chicken from Costco. It lasts a long time for the two of us used in varied ways. - 3/30/2011   7:59:51 AM
  • 11
    I love new recipes and was excited to see a blog with some new ideas for chicken. But when I clicked on the links, I was bombarded by Family Circle advertisements, survey requests and subscription requests. Then I couldn't even view the recipes without registering! I guess I will stick to SparkRecipes. - 3/30/2011   7:33:26 AM
  • 10
    Whole chicken in the crockpot. Sometimes with a little Italian dressing, sometimes with a rub & a little water. MMMMMM. - 3/30/2011   6:59:40 AM
  • 9
    1. Start with a free-range chicken raised by a local farmer I know personally.
    2. Brine overnight.
    2. Roast with herbs and butter under the skin. - 3/30/2011   6:07:40 AM
  • BTRX71
    Spray with cooking spray , roll in crushed crackers (any kind), and bake. mmm - 3/30/2011   6:00:45 AM
    Sounds good. - 3/30/2011   3:38:34 AM
  • 6
    Grilled on the George Foreman. - 3/30/2011   12:52:01 AM
  • 5
    Spray pan with Pam, put in chicken breast and about half way through baking I baste on some Sweet Chili sauce - yum yum! - 3/29/2011   11:42:44 PM
  • 4
    baked in the oven with lemon juice and tasty spices - 3/29/2011   11:10:33 PM
    I like to marinate them in italian dressing and cook them on the George Foreman grill. - 3/29/2011   9:33:14 PM
  • 2
    Love roast chicken, other chicken is so boring so I'm always looking for good recipes that we like. - 3/29/2011   9:29:35 PM
    I love slow cooker recipes! They are the bomb! - 3/29/2011   9:17:17 PM

Please Log In To Leave A Comment:    Log in now ›


x Lose 10 Pounds by September 6! Sign up with Email Sign up with Facebook
By clicking one of the above buttons, you're indicating that you have read and agree to SparkPeople's Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy and that you're at least 18 years of age.