Solve the problem of unhealthy restaurant food by cooking delicious chicken stir fry at home!
If you’re living mostly off of take-out or restaurant food, there’s a really good chance your nutrition is not where it could be. Restaurant food is often loaded up with unnecessary oils and less than healthy ingredients. In fact, studies show eating out can add up to 200 additional calories a day. You can solve this problem.
Cook Healthy Chicken Stir Fry at Home
It doesn’t take too much work to cook at home and it can save you tons of money and unnecessary calories that are not contributing to your fitness progress. By taking your food prep into your own hands, you have the power to remove any unnatural ingredients. Over time, you’ll also become the best chef for making food to your own taste preferences. If you’re going to get serious about your diet plan and exercise, learning a few healthy, staple meals is absolutely key.
So, here I am today to teach you how to cook a decent meal so that you can throw together this protein packed meal and save some for your next meal. If you have a girlfriend to impress; putting on the chef’s hat and showing that you’ve got some skills in the kitchen never hurt anybody!
Frozen food is loaded with preservatives and will not provide highly bio-available nutrients that you need to build muscle. This means that if you want to be healthy, there’s no way around the fact that you need some basic cooking skills. So let’s get to it.
I am going to try and keep it simple because I do not believe in overly complicated recipes or the time they take out of your day. I do always recommend that you at least cook a double portion of everything so that you can store some for a later meal. This can save you a lot of time and energy if you do it every time you cook—think about it: two meals, one cleanup session.
Let’s start with a relatively simple meal plan and then we can scale later and move to more complex choices as well. Kind of sounds like a workout routine, huh?
My Love of Cooking
Before I start with the exact way of cooking healthy chicken stir fry, I am going to share with you how lousy a cook I used to be. If we could go a couple of years back, you would find that I was a disaster in the kitchen. However, I knew that I needed to learn to feed my body in the healthiest way possible. Unfortunately, most restaurants by and large just don’t cater to a strict, clean eating fitness demographic. So I was motivated.
So, now I am a pretty decent cook and one of the best tricks I’ve learned is using healthy sauces and spices to add flavor to super clean recipes that are packed with nutrients but might be a little bland on taste—best example: kale. Kale is honestly pretty rough to get down for me, but with some garlic salt and butter, things go a lot smoother.
I can cook quite a few decent meals now but adding just a few ingredients to key foods, instead of a bunch of oils and sugar based sauces at restaurants will do wonders for your waistline.
Even if you haven’t cooked a thing in your life before, don’t worry. I am going to show you just how and after this lesson; you may be able to show off in your chef’s hat too. Ok maybe skip the hat.
Let’s Start Cooking Chicken Stir Fry the Healthy Way
So, let us start with easy chicken stir fry and I’ll spell out every single detail for you right here. Now, when I cooked the first chicken stir fry; I had absolutely no idea of the right vegetables to use or even the sauces and spices. All I knew was that I had a decent chicken and a pan and therefore I knew I was going to make a decent meal for gains!
Apart from picking out a really thick chicken breast, we had carrots, peppers, onions, cucumbers and mushrooms. To keep it simple, I just used soy sauce and some chili paste for a little kick. .
One final word before I go about with all the cooking details. This is an easy quick meal for those who might even struggle to hold a pan. So, all you cooking veterans go easy on me and the beginner folks. Obviously, if you have a smart tip, I’d love to hear it because like they say, there is no age too old for learning.
Chicken Stir Fry Ingredients And Supplies
If your goal is making chicken stir fry easy, the first step is ingredients:
- Chicken breast: if you can afford to buy hormone free, organic, free range, this is always your best bet.
- Fresh vegetables: remember to pick some for taste, some for nutrients. My favorites are: red peppers, onions, snow peas, broccoli and mushrooms.
- Cooking oil/sauce: you can use the low sodium soy sauce if you are watching your sodium. A little bit of olive oil for the pan before you stir-fry is also helpful.
- Spices: this is up to you, I recommend garlic salt and cayenne pepper because the capsaicin in chili peppers has a number of health benefits and may fight cancer.
- Sweet potato: this is not mandatory but if you are looking to build muscles or put on some weight; a couple of sweet potato cubes can spruce up the meal and make it even more delicious.
These are the ingredients that you need so now let’s review to the supplies.
- Skillet/pan: you will definitely need something in which you can cook the chicken. If you want to go easy, I prefer to go with the non-stick pans for easier cleanup.
- Chef’s knife: in order to slice both the vegetables and the chicken, you need a sharp knife. This is a clutch item for any aspiring home chef.
- Spatula: This will come in handy for flipping the chicken and mixing your ingredients in the wok or frying pan.
- Stove top: If I need to explain this one, you’re in trouble.
- Oven: you only need this if you decide to put in the sweet potatoes.
- Cookie sheet: again only needed for sweet potatoes
Ready to get moving? Let’s get started before you get too hungry and grab for the frozen lean cuisine.
- Wash your hands: this one is a no-brainer.
- Preheat your oven: once again, you only need to do it if you add the sweet potatoes, but I will tell you, they are worth the effort.
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and cut your sweet potato in thin and tiny round discs.
- This step is again needed only when you want the sweet potatoes. Line your cookie sheet with a layer of foil. Put the potato discs over the tray and slowly pour olive oil over it. Flip over and repeat. Add salt and pepper to your taste.
- Wash the vegetables.
- Chop your vegetables into tiny little pieces. Make sure that the pieces are of the size of a slice and try and have them evenly shaped too.
- Cube the chicken breast or cut into strips. (You can also buy strips of chicken to skip this step).
- Make sure to finally wash your hands again at the end, especially after handling raw chicken.
Healthy Chicken Stir Fry Cooking Directions
- Put the sweet potatoes in the oven and set a timer for 15 minutes.
- Put the pan on the top of the stove and keep the temperature at medium.
- Make sure to pour all the chicken pieces in the pan. You can use the spatula to even out the pieces.
- If you are using soy sauce, put a little on the top of your chicken pieces. If you are using olive oil, sprinkle the pan before adding the chicken same on your chicken. A point of caution here is not to bathe the whole chicken in sauce.
- Add your spices.
- The chicken is roughly going to take around 10 to 15 minutes to cook. You could obviously flip and toss it from time to time.
- Next, you should check if the chicken is cooked. (150 degrees inside is done).
- When you find that the chicken is ready, dump it on a clean plate.
- The oven timer will be ready with your sweet potatoes, so use the spatula to toss them on the other side and the set the timer for another 15 minutes.
- Now, take the vegetables in the pan and repeat the whole flavoring process which you used for the chicken. I prefer dumping all vegetables together rather than doing it separately because I am cooking for myself and not to win a chef title.
- If you want to get really professional, start by cooking the hardest vegetables first and adding the others in sequence. Mushrooms should go in first though!
- Once again, you can flip and toss the veggies in soy sauce and spices and get ready to add your chicken.
- Now, take the chicken from the plate and put it back into the pan. Cook it for a brief period of only a minute or two with all the vegetables–this is the stir fry part!
- Turn off the stove and dump all the content on a clean plate.
- Once the 15-minute timer is done, take out the sweet potatoes and serve them too along with your freshly prepared plate of chicken stir fry healthy.
- You’re officially a cook.
Healthy Chicken Stir Fry Tips And Tricks
Here are a few tips to consider trying that could turn out to be handy:
- Ovens work differently. So, go a little easy on the timing and make sure to peep in once in a while to assess if the potatoes are already cooked.
- Sweet potatoes can be a pain in the butt because they are easy to burn. So, be a little cautious when you handle them or else you might find yourself starting over.
- You might try adding sliced almonds to improve the taste and make your meal a little more stylish. These also will add a healthy, natural fat to your meal.
- This is one of the simplest of recipes. Feel free to get creative.
- Last but not the least; you should definitely be proud of yourself. It is not easy to cook a healthy meal, so you should feel a sense of pride for taking healthy initiative and creating your own healthy chicken stir fry.
That was pretty painless wasn’t it? Even if you burnt the chicken,laugh it off and start over. You will get it, relax. You probably didn’t feel like Arnold leaving the gym after your first time either.
It doesn’t take a scientist to make a meal, but it’s easy to fall into the trap of going out to eat all the time or going the frozen food easy route. These habits work against you in the end. The sooner you become your own favorite chef, the more your muscles and waistline will thank you.
When you’re getting started, use recipes like this to help you out, but before you know it, you’ll be whipping up your own creations and even healthier chicken stir fry.
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I love Chicken. Every chicken recipe has it’s charm. I actually only ate beef and before I discovered that the true muscle building power comes from chicken. With the fitness and die program I used I managed to gain 40 pounds of muscle in 2 months time. http://www.fitness-nutritious.net/mi40-muscle-program.html
Right on George! I love Chicken as well…