Chicken and Kale Wrap with Buffalo Dipping Sauce

chickenkalewrapIf you’re from Nebraska, you go to Amigo’s, and it’s not because they have amazing Mexican Fast Food. You go because you would give your first born child for their ranch.
A great wrap is similar, the secret is in the dipping sauce!! You can make the most simple combination of ingredient, but if you have that dipping sauce, that’s where you bring it home!

Most people go to a casual dinning restaurant or a bar and get a burger, right? Don’t get me wrong, I think they’re great, but wraps have always had this pull on me I can’t resist, which is the first place I look on any menu. IIt makes me feel about getting something…sorta healthy…until…I slather it ranch or some other form of heaven in small cup they’ve placed on my plate. Now that I can bathe it in sodium, empty calories, fat, and preservatives, I feel better. I don’t care, it’s my splurge, so I order fries for  my side too instead of cottage cheese. I’m gonna dip those fries in ranch too. Shut up, I’m weak. Don’t act like you don’t. It’s amazing. (Periodically throughout the meal I’m telling myself ” I work out, I deserve this)

I love working out, it’s a hobby, it’s a passion. You know what else I love? Pizza, burgers, ranch, cheesecake, cookies, chocolate, french fries, mozzarella sticks, tortilla chips. This is my life.  Although  i don’t splurge a lot, and when I do, I almost always regret it, or feel like a waste of space afterwards…BUT,I love every second I’m dipping my pizza in ranch and stuffing it into my face too.

Anyways, now that I’ve dumped that out. Healthy things! 🙂 As much as I love everything I listed above, they actually make me feel horrible afterwards, or the next day. If I carb load anymore after 4pm, I feel it for the next two days, not awesome. This is why I’ve taken one of my favorite guilty bar-food pleasures and turned it into something quick, easy, and healthy at home.

As always, feel free to substitute or remove certain ingredients.If you don’t want to plan this meal ahead, just ditch the yellow squash. Grilling your chicken is also a great and quick way to get these to the table!
These can be as simple or as complicated as you want. The secret weapon here, maybe to your surprise, isn’t the sauce, it’s throwing them on the stove top to seal the wrap and to melt everything cohesively together along with giving your tortilla the perfect crunch! Wrap it up.wrapsauce

Chicken and Kale Wrap with Buffalo Sauce
Yield: 4 wraps

4 Flat Wraps, or tortillas
2 pieces of boneless chicken, sliced in half the long-way to make them thinner
1/2 cup balsamic salad dressing
2 tbsp of lemon
2 tsp crushed red pepper
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 small yellow squash, peeled, seeds removed, sliced into even 1″ pieces
1 red onion diced
1 cup of kale, chopped
shredded cheese as desired per wrap (I used a small palmful of mozzarella per)
fresh basil (extra addition if you have some in your garden, 1 tbsp)

***At least 2 hours prior, or the day before is fine too
1.Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees
2. Peel, scoop out seeds, and chop yellow squash. Season lightly with salt and pepper and 1 tbsp oil.
3. Spread onto baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes. Toss the squash, leave in the oven, but turn the oven off after the 20 minutes. (or grill these too!)
You want your squash to be in the oven for about an hour with the oven off. This will cook them firm without overcooking, and they won’t be mushy,
4. Slice the two pieces of chicken into four, the add the balsamic, lemon, crushed red pepper, salt, and pepper in a shallow dish. Cover and marinate in fridge until you’re ready to cook.

*** READY!
5. Preheat heat to 425 degrees (or fire up the grill, and grill your chicken!)
6. Bake your chicken for 20 minutes or until done
7. While chicken is baking, chop your kale, basil, onions, and whip together your buffalo dipping sauce.

ASSEMBLE
8. Arrange your kale and basil (optional) and onions on the wrap leaving a 1-2″ gap at one end.
9. Then add your chicken. I do chicken here, because your other ingredients are loose and the meat helps hold it in place.
10. Now your cheese, add as much as you want, make sure the inch gap you left now as a little cheese at the end too, this will help seal the wrap together and not come apart.
11. Roll it up!
12. Heat up a skillet on medium-high. Sear 4 sides of your wrap (sealed side first), for about 30 seconds each side. You’ll get beautiful golden-brown sear marks as it crisps up. Feel free to omit this portion if you’re in a hurry or just want it cold!

Buffalo Dipping Sauce
1 cup of plain Greek Yogurt
4 tbsp of Wing Sauce
** I like mine spicy, and very buffalo–y. You can also start with less, add one tbsp at a time until you get a desired flavor.

1. Whisk together ingredients, then divvy out 1/4 cup to each person on the side, or you can spread the dip in the wrap if you’re not a dipper.

 

Chocolate Chip Banana Zucchini, Muffins

chocbanzucchiniI think as you grow into an adult,  you have this non-understanding of how you didn’t like certain foods as a kid. Mine is definitely zucchini. Grilled, baked, saute’, mashed, shredded. I’m in, both feet…feed me. What makes zucchini better? Match it up with a banana, or blueberries (yes, seriously, grill them with blueberries, it’ll change your life)

I have done Chocolate Zucchini Bread before, and its one of my favorite summer recipes…but there is also something to say for the convenience of a muffin for grab and go… or… chopped up and mixed in with your yogurt in the morning. (gotta get that protein in right?!) 🙂

They’re light, they’re fluffy, they contain very little sugar, no butter…no oil. I mean really. I love them, my Dad loves them, you will love them.
If you’re making these for people who claim they don’t like zucchini, or have texture issues…do what I do. Process your zucchini in a food processor, until it’s completely mushy. This gets rid of the shreds of zucchini without taking anything away from the muffins. The most comments I get on my zucchini recipes, is from people that claim they dislike zucchini. You can’t taste it. As long as it’s not shredded, there can’t be texture issues. In fact, the last time I made a zucchini snack, I intentionally handed them to people I knew didn’t like zucchini, but that loved muffins. They had no idea, and were instantly. Also a great way to sneak something in healthy for your kids.
Sometimes, secrets make friends…full.

I haven’t tried to sub in applesauce for sugar yet, but please feel free to and comment how they turn out! I have preached this time and time again, but you can’t taste the yogurt, if you think you can (crazy) then sub in sour cream. It will just add more flavor and give them the same great fluffy, texture!

Chocolate Chip Banana Zucchini Muffins Yield 15 muffins
Slightly adapted from Peanut Butter and Peppers

1 banana, mashed
1/4 cup sugar
1 egg
1/3 cup plain Greek Yogurt, or sour cream
1 cup zucchini, shredded
1/4 tsp. vanilla
1 tbsp. cinnamon
2/3 cup milk + 1 tbsp
1 1/2 cups flour, unpacked
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
3/4 cup chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375 degrees
1. Cut the ends off, and peel a small zucchini (1 cup is usually a smaller zucchini). Chop into cubes and toss in your food processor or chopper. I used to ground mine with a cheese grater which often led to me cutting myself until I got a processor. I over-process mine until it looks mushy. Then I transfer it to a fine strainer, squeeze as much water out as I can, and let it sit for about 20 minutes to dry out a bit. Fluffing occasionally.
2. Line your tin with paper liners, and give them a light spray of non-stick oil.
3. In a bowl, mix banana, sugar and egg with a fork or whisk until somewhat smooth.
4. In the same bowl, add yogurt, zucchini, vanilla and cinnamon until combined. Stir in milk with a spatula.
5. In another bowl, mix flour baking soda, baking powder, and salt with a fork or a whisk. Then, add it to the wet batter, mixing gently with a spatula. Just before it’s combined, add in your chocolate chips. This will help you to not over mix. AKA, don’t over mix/work the ingredients!
6. Fill tins just bellow full. Bake in oven for 14 minutes, test with a toothpick.I remove my muffins from the pan right away and set on a cooling rack so they don’t continue to cook in the pan.

Let cool almost completely and you won’t have a problem peeling off the paper!choczucmuf2