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Zesty Spaghetti

Years and years ago, my younger sister made dinner for our family, I’m not even sure if she remembers it. It was supposed to be spaghetti but I thought it tasted more like some sort of tomato alfredo. It tasted good, but I never tried to figure out what it was. I’ve been thinking about that dinner lately and I thought I’d try to recreate it. I know this isn’t quite the same, but it turned out pretty tasty

5 oz uncooked linguini, cooked
1/2 pound extra lean ground beef
1/4 cup garlic, minced
1 cup chopped onions
3 tablespoons low sodium worcestershire sauce
1 cup milk
1 tablespoon butter
2 tablespoons flour
1 can no salt added diced tomatoes
1/2 cup shredded parmesan

Cook the linguini according to the package.
Put the diced tomatoes into a manual food processor for a couple minutes to turn it into a slightly chunky sauce.
In a large skillet, brown the beef, onions, garlic, and one tablespoon of worcestershire sauce. When the meat is completely cooked, set it aside.
Add the butter, flour, and remaining two tablespoons of worcestershire sauce to the pan. Whisk it together until the butter is melted. Add the milk to the pan and let it come to a boil. After it has become thick, add the ground beef mixture and tomatoes to the pan. Let it come to a boil and thickened. Before servings, add the parmesan to the pan and stir until the cheese is melted.
Serve over the pasta.

Nutritional Info
Servings Per Recipe: 6
Amount Per Serving
Calories: 355.6
Total Fat: 10.0 g
Cholesterol: 36.2 mg
Sodium: 269.4 mg
Total Carbs: 21.9 g
Dietary Fiber: 2.2 g
Protein: 13.8 g

Zesty Spaghetti-001


Guac Chicken Pasta

I kept seeing avocados at the grocery store here in Texas and decided I wanted to see if I could come up with something using them. This recipe is what I came up with. It’ll be a great cold, summertime salad. I used shredded chicken in mine, which I think worked better, but you could use diced chicken and it’ll be just as good.

6 oz uncooked pasta, cooked according to the box
8 oz boneless, skinless chicken breast
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon onion powder
1 avocado, peeled and seeded
3/4 cup greek yogurt
1 lime, juiced and zested
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved

Microwave the chicken breasts in a covered container for about eight minutes or until no longer pink. Make sure that it doesn’t dry out. Shred it and place in a bowl with the pasta and tomatoes.
In a large bowl, combine the garlic and onion powders, avocado, yogurt, lime juice and zest together until smooth.
Add the avocado mixture to the bowl with the chicken. Stir until everything is well coated.

Nutritional Info
Servings Per Recipe: 4
Amount Per Serving
Calories: 330.1
Total Fat: 9.6 g
Cholesterol: 32.5 mg
Sodium: 47.1 mg
Total Carbs: 40.5 g
Dietary Fiber: 5.3 g
Protein: 23.5 g

Guac Chicken Pasta-001

Cheesy Italian Pasta

My Cheesy Salsa Pasta was such a huge hit around our house that I wanted to try making something that was similar to it, but with different flavors. This time I decided to try it with an Italian spin on it, replacing salsa with regular tomatoes and adding some Italian seasoning. I left out the cream cheese and used a little cornstarch in white wine to thicken it up. All in all, it went over really well here.

6 oz uncooked pasta
3/4 pound extra lean ground turkey
1 cup chopped onions
1/4 cup minced garlic
2 cans diced, no salt added tomatoes, drained
2 cups low sodium beef broth
1/2 cup dry white wine
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
2 tablespoons Italian seasoning

Cook the pasta according to the directions on the box. Cook the turkey, onions and garlic together in a large skillet until cooked thoroughly. Add the beef broth, Italian seasoning, and tomatoes. Whisk the cornstrach into the wine, then pour into the skillet. Let it come to a boil. Add the pasta and cheese to the skillet. Simmer until the sauce becomes thick.

Nutritional Info
Servings Per Recipe: 4
Amount Per Serving
Calories: 415.4
Total Fat: 7.0 g
Cholesterol: 48.8 mg
Sodium: 461.6 mg
Total Carbs: 49.7 g
Dietary Fiber: 5.9 g
Protein: 35.3 g

Cheesy Italian Pasta-001

Cheeseburger Empanadas

On one of my Pampered Chef chat boards, someone was looking for a recipe for cheeseburger empanadas. I didn’t find the recipe they were looking for, so I decided to try coming up with a recipe on my own. Besides, I love grab and go meals. The last time I made empanadas I could freeze them and they reheated really well. I don’t see why this ones would be any different.

3/4 pound extra lean ground beef
6 strips bacon, diced
1 cup diced onions
1/4 cup garlic, minced
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
3/4 cup diced tomatoes (I like using cherry tomatoes)
1/4 cup barbecue dry rub seasoning
20 empananda wraps

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
In a large pan, cook the beef, onions, garlic, and bacon until meat is done. In a bowl, combine the diced tomatoes, cheese, dry rub, and meat mix.
Place a heaping tablespoon of the filling in the center of one of the empananda wraps. Fold it in half and crimp the edges with the tines of a fork.
Bake for about 20 minutes, or until the top becomes golden brown.

Nutritional Info
Servings Per Recipe: 20
Amount Per Serving
Calories: 182.6
Total Fat: 7.4 g
Cholesterol: 14.2 mg
Sodium: 275.3 mg
Total Carbs: 23.9 g
Dietary Fiber: 1.2 g
Protein: 7.9 g

Cheeseburger Empanadas-001

Taco Bake

I bought a huge pork loin a while ago. I cut into managable chunks and froze it. Well, I figured I better start using some of it. I’ve been crazy Tex Mex food lately, so I thought I’d try making something new. Admittedly, the last part of this does take a little bit of work, but it’s worth it. You can adjust the spice factor a little by using hot or mild salsa. You can also put a little sour cream or greek yogurt on top.

1 pound pork roast
2 cans no salt added diced tomatoes, undrained
1 can reduced sodium black beans, undrained
1 tablespoon chili powder
1/2 tablespoon cumin
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon cayanne pepper
14 small corn tortillas
1 cup salsa
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese

Put the tomatoes and black beans in the bottom of a slow cooker. Add in the spices and stir. Put the roast on top and cook on low for about seven hours. Shred the pork and put it back in the slow cooker. Let it cook for another hour. (The time can be shortened depending on your slow cooker. Just make sure that the pork it fully cooked when you shred it)
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a deep baking pan, place two tortillas. Using a slotted spoon to drain the liquid, fill the tortillas and fold in half. Layer the next two tortillas, fill them and fold them in half. Continue until all of the tortillas have been used. Pour the remaining filling in the slow cooker over the tortillas. Top with the salsa and cheddar cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and bubbling.

Nutritional Info
Servings Per Recipe: 8
Amount Per Serving
Calories: 398.6
Total Fat: 18.5 g
Cholesterol: 63.3 mg
Sodium: 570.6 mg
Total Carbs: 37.7 g
Dietary Fiber: 8.1 g
Protein: 23.2 g

Taco Bake-001


Cowboy Pot Pie

I happen to like pot pie or shepards pie, but The Man isn’t much of a fan.  I thought maybe I could put a Tex-Mex spin on it, he would like it.  Turns out he really liked it!  I made our version of it with extra liquid because The Man like to have extra juice to soak up with the bread. If you prefer it that way, just don’t drain the cans. He also wanted to add some cheese to it, so I had him just add it to his bowl. Then I don’t have to have the extra calories. If you aren’t a big chicken fan you could trade the chicken for steak, just make sure the steak is tender.

For the filling:
8-10 oz boneless skinless chicken breast, diced
1 cup onions, chopped
1/4 cup garlic, minced
1 red pepper, chopped
1 can (14.5 oz) no salt added diced tomatoes
1 can (15 oz) enchilada sauce
1 can (14.5 oz) chili beans in sauce

For the topping:
2 cups flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
2 jalapenos, diced (without seeds for less heat)
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup milk

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
In a large, oven safe skillet, cook the chicken, onions, and garlic together until the chicken starts to brown. Add the red pepper, drained tomatoes, can of sauce and chili beans, undrained. Let it heat all the way through, then set aside.
In a bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, cream of tartar, jalapenos, and cheese. Cut in the butter until the dough looks like flour but will stick together if squeezed. Add the milk and mix well.
Spread the topping over the skillet. Bake at 450 degrees for 25 minutes, or until the center of the topping is cooked all the way through.

Cowboy Pot Pie-001

Pinterest Wednesday: Spaghetti With Creamy Sun-Dried Tomato Sauce

This week’s Pinterest Wednesday recipe comes from Yum Sugar. The Spaghetti with Creamy Sun-Dried Tomato Sauce looked incredibly delish. Unfortunately, The Man and I didn’t care for it as much as I thought we would. It was good, just not great. The comments under the recipe said that the sauce to pasta ratio was off, and I totally agree. There wasn’t hardly any sauce, not to mention the serving sizes seemed really big. I think this recipe will be a great starting point to develop the recipe a little more.

Spaghetti Creamy SunDried-001

Pinterest Wednesdays: Taco Pasta

Pinterest has been a life saver when it comes to finding easy and tasty dinners.  Taco Pasta from Overworked Super Mom just looked too good to not pin!  It was easy and I had pretty much all of the ingredient in my kitchen.  I did add plain greek yogurt instead of sour cream because I didn’t have any sour cream in the fridge, and I used regular bow tie pasta instead of shells because that’s was I had.  Oh, and I only have 1/2 or 3/4 pound packages of ground beef, so I used a 3/4 pound instead of a full pound.  But I think the results were the same as her’s, just a touch less beef and I don’t think it was missed.

The Man wanted to add some shredded cheese to it.  I just threw a little  in his bowl while it was still hot so I didn’t have to have the extra calories.

Taco Pasta PW

I figured the nutritional values based on four servings since a standard serving of pasta is two ounces, figuring eight ounces in the recipe makes four servings.  The recipe can be found on Overworked Super Mom’s blog.

Nutritional Info
  • Servings Per Recipe: 4
  • Amount Per Serving
  • Calories: 631.1
  • Total Fat: 33.4 g
  • Cholesterol: 133.1 mg
  • Sodium: 532.3 mg
  • Total Carbs: 50.9 g
  • Dietary Fiber: 1.8 g
  • Protein: 31.2 g

Although it was quite delicious the way Overworked Super Mom did it, I think I’d make just a few changes next time I make it.  I’d drop the pasta down to six ounces, and use only half a pound of extra lean ground beef.  I’d also use fat free greek yogurt and cream cheese instead of regular sour cream and cream cheese.  And to give it an extra kick of veggies, I’d add a cup of frozen peas when I add in the pasta.  Plus it helps make the servings a little bigger.  Making those changes cut down the calories and fat a little.

Nutritional Info
  • Servings Per Recipe: 4
  • Amount Per Serving
  • Calories: 377.6
  • Total Fat: 10.6 g
  • Cholesterol: 54.8 mg
  • Sodium: 584.3 mg
  • Total Carbs: 45.9 g
  • Dietary Fiber: 3.1 g
  • Protein: 24.1 g

Balsamic Veggie and Chicken Pasta

Once in a while when you’re experiementing in the kitchen, you may have one idea for what the recipe is going to be and it turns out completely different. That’s how this recipe came about. I love the summery salad of fresh basil, fresh mozzarella, tomatoes, and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar. It’s one of my favorite salads, but it really is better suited for warm months. So I wanted to try creating a pasta based dish that combined those flavors. Unfortunately, this doesn’t quite make it. But it’s quite delicious in it’s own right.

6 oz linguini noodles, uncooked
8 oz boneless skinless chicken breast
1/4 cup minced garlic
1 cup chopped onions
1 cup sliced zucchini
1 cup chopped red peppers
2 cups reduced sodium chicken broth
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
2 teaspoons dried basil
1 teaspoon cornstarch
1 cup grape tomatoes, cut in half
1 cup shredded mozzarella

Cook the pasta according to the directions on the box.
In a large pan, cook the chicken, garlic, onions and zucchini until the vegetables are tender and the chicken starts turning golden brown. In a measuring cup, combine the chicken broth, balsamic vinegar, basil, and corn starch (make sure the corn starch is completely dissolved into the liquids). Pour into the pan with the chicken and bring it to a boil. Turn the heat down and cook for a few minutes, stirring often. When the sauce starts to thicken, add the tomatoes and cheese. Continue to cook until the sauce starts to stick to the noodles.

Nutritional Info
Servings Per Recipe: 4
Amount Per Serving
Calories: 325.9
Total Fat: 0.5 g
Cholesterol: 31.3 mg
Sodium: 634.5 mg
Total Carbs: 50.6 g
Dietary Fiber: 3.9 g
Protein: 21.5 g

Balsamic Chicken and Veggie Pasta

Slow Cooked Beef and Tomato Soup with Herbed Bread

There’s something about hot soup when the weather is cold and nasty. A nice chunky soup served with some tasty bread just warms you up like few other things. I love slow cooked soups because they give the ingredients plenty of time to intermingle and brings out all the flavors. The red wine adds an extra layer of flavor. The husband doesn’t normally like soups, but he liked this one so much he was double checking that I took pictures of it to share with all of you! It’s especially good with the Herbed Bread dunked into it. Unfortunately I didn’t get a picture of the bread, but it just looked like white bread machine bread.  I wish there was some way I could share the smell that the combination of these two cooking had.  It was really delicious!

Slow Cooked Beef and Tomato Soup

12 oz beef stew meat
1 cup chopped onions
3 cloves minced garlic
2 cans (14.5 oz) diced, no salt added tomatoes
4 cups low sodium beef broth
1 cup dry red wine

In a saute pan, lightly sear beef. You don’t have to cook it all the way through, just enough to seal in the flavor. Put it in a slow cooker with all the rest of the ingredients. Let it cook on low for eight hours. Serve with Herbed Bread.

Nutritional Info

•Servings Per Recipe: 6
•Amount Per Serving
•Calories: 221.5
•Total Fat: 10.7 g
•Cholesterol: 37.5 mg
•Sodium: 123.9 mg
•Total Carbs: 12.5 g
•Dietary Fiber: 2.8 g
•Protein: 12.2 g

Herbed Bread Machine Bread

1 cup warm water
2 teaspoons sugar
2 1/4 (one packet) yeast
3 cups flour
1/4 cup melted butter
1 teaspoon rosemary
1 teaspoon basil
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon garlic powder

Put the yeast and sugar in the water and let it sit for a few minutes.  Put the butter, flour and herbs in the bread machine.  Create a small hole in the flour and pour in the yeast (it should be foamy by now).  Set the machine to 1 1/2 pound white (or basic) bread settings.  Let the machine go to work and enjoy.

Nutritional Info
•Servings Per Recipe: 12
•Amount Per Serving
•Calories: 156.2
•Total Fat: 4.2 g
•Cholesterol: 10.3 mg
•Sodium: 1.8 mg
•Total Carbs: 25.8 g
•Dietary Fiber: 1.2 g
•Protein: 3.5 g