Thursday, April 11, 2013

Mandarin Orange Chicken

Last week I posted a yummy Mexican meal, so this week I thought we could go Chinese. Who doesn't love some good Chinese take out? I know that MY family loves it. Every time we visit back home, we want to eat at the local Chinese restaurant. I swear, they have the best crab rangoon I've ever eaten. Buuuuuut, it's not so great for the clean eating thing...or any kind of healthy eating for that matter.

I got this recipe a few years ago from my Moms Group. We had a recipe exchange and swapped some really good recipes. This has been one of my family's favorites, but since starting our clean eating adventure it didn't totally fit the bill. So I thought I could clean it up a bit. This was the first old recipe I've reworked to fit eating clean, and luckily it turned out pretty good! It's nice to know that all of our old favorites don't have to be scrapped, but instead can be changed. Yay! 

First, you want to chop up your onions and mushrooms. The old recipe called for canned mandarin oranges, but to cut back on sugar and add freshness, I used clementines. Along with chopping your veggies, peel your oranges and check for any seeds. 

Saute your mushrooms in a large skillet on medium heat stirring repeatedly. Add flour. 

Add in chicken broth, onions, and frozen orange juice and bring to a boil. 

Then add your chicken and simmer for a few minutes. Once it is simmered, add your oranges and pour the mixture over some brown rice. 

There is a freezer meal option for this recipe, too. After the mixture has simmered, let it cool and pour it in a freezer bag. When you are ready, thaw and reheat the mixture, then add the oranges and pour over rice. Easy!

Serve with some veggies and you have a whole meal ready to go. Just don't forget the chopsticks!

So here's the one caveat. The frozen orange juice. As I have previously stated, we are not 100% clean and probably won't be for a while yet. But we are taking steps. So this recipe isn't completely clean because of the frozen orange juice. Even though it doesn't have a million ingredients that you can't pronounce, it is still a processed food. I found this interesting post about the orange juice you buy in the store, if you are curious, then check it out. The only way to make this meal completely clean is to use fresh squeezed orange juice....which A) I don't have time for and B) I would have to play with it to get the right taste. So there it is. It's a "cleaner" recipe than it was previously, but I'm not trying to sell this as 100% clean. For those of you that aren't necessarily looking for clean, but rather looking for healthy, this will work just fine!

Mandarin Orange Chicken

  • 5 cups cooked chicken, cubed
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 3 cups fresh mushrooms, sliced
  • 4 tsp whole wheat flour
  • 1 1/2 cups homemade chicken broth
  • 1 can frozen orange juice, from concentrate
  • 1 cup green onions, sliced
  • 3-4 fresh clementines, peeled and separated
Do your prep first: slice mushrooms, slice onions, and peel and separate oranges.

Cook mushrooms in a large skillet over medium-high heat, stirring continuously to prevent burning. Add flour and stir well.

Gradually add broth, onions, and orange juice and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and add chicken. Simmer for 3-4 minutes.

Add oranges to mixture and serve over brown rice.

If anyone tries to replace the frozen orange juice with fresh, please let me know! I'd love to hear how it turns out!

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