When more than five people who read your blog on the regular make the same comment, you should probably listen. “Everything you cook sounds good, but I’m not going to do all that”.  Recently, a friend told me that she would love to make some of the dishes I post, but if any meal has more than like 3 steps, na-ah.

Friends, here you are:  A simplified….

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3 Step Healthy Meal.

Step 1Gather and chop.

Ingredients of Ckn Parm Pasta

Mince 1 medium yellow onion and 3 cloves garlic (toss in 4 Tbsp dried minced onion and 1/2 tsp garlic powder instead to save time).  Measure 1/2 cup parmesan cheese and 1 cup mozzarella cheese.  Feel free to use pre-shredded cheeses.

*note: packaged, pre-shredded cheeses do not melt as smoothly as block cheeses, cost more and do not keep as long in the fridge.  If you prefer to use block cheese but, don’t want to deal with the burden and extra time involved in hand-shredding, you’ll need a salad shooter!  It is the easiest and fastest way to shred cheese for any recipe.  Plus, you can throw it in the dishwasher.

Mincing onion and garlic in a mini-food processor has saved me more time in the kitchen than you could imagine!  But, no pressure; if you want your family to eat healthy, but would rather eat a bug than spend time in the kitchen, use dried herbs and seasonings!

Place 1/2 tsp garlic powder, 1/2 tsp salt, 1/8 tsp pepper and 1 tsp dried Italian seasoning in a small bowl.  Grab 1 lb short-cut pasta, such as shells, macaroni or rigatoni and a 24 oz jar of marinara sauce.  Fresh or dried parsley and basil for garnish, optional.  Have some cooking oil handy (olive oil, avocado oil or canola).

Step 2:  Cook chicken.

In a large skillet or stock pot, add a hefty drizzle of oil and heat over med-high heat.  Add chicken to skillet and sprinkle prepared garlic powder, salt, pepper and Italian seasoning mixture onto chicken.  I used frozen chicken breast and followed the directions on the package.  It came out surprisingly juicy!!  Remove chicken from skillet when temperature just reaches 165°.  Chop cooked chicken when cool enough to handle.

Add Garlic to Onions

Step 3:  Let’s throw this dish together!

Using the same skillet or stock pot, add onion and garlic, scraping up browned bits from the cooked chicken.  Cook 3 minutes or until onions are softened.

Pour in marinara, then fill jar with water and add to pot.  If using dried onion and garlic, add with marinara, cook 2-3 minutes and then add water.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce to simmer. Add chicken and pasta.  Cover and cook 15-20 minutes or until pasta is al dente. Stir in cheeses.

If desired, add parsley, basil and parmesan to garnish.

Chicken Parmesan Pasta w:Fresh Parm and Basil

DONE!  This is a 30 minute meal.  If you use pre-shredded cheeses and dried seasonings, you’ll have dinner on the table even faster!

For a vegetarian version, skip the chicken.  This was fast, easy and delicious!

Some items you may be interested in:

If you feel overwhelmed by all the nutrition advice, calorie recommendations and diet trends, read these: Fact. Not Fad.Let’s Crunch Numbers!Help Me To Help You!

*this site contains Amazon affiliate links which support this site at no cost to you.

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