Baking with Buddy: Grilled Chicken Squash and Zucchini Bake

One of my favorite things to do on a Saturday morning is visit the local farmer’s market. I take my Thirty-One Market Tote and head out with my husband to find some produce. Recently, we picked up zucchini and squash, two vegetables I absolutely love. I usually saute them, but I wanted to try something a little different. Behold, the grilled chicken squash and zucchini bake!

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I found a recipe on Relish.com for a squash and zucchini bake and then tweaked it. Here’s that recipe:

Ingredients

4 small zucchini, diced (about 3 cups total)
2 cups (about 5 1/2 ounces) club cracker crumbs
2 tablespoons butter
3 eggs
1 small onion, grated
1/2 cup 2% reduced-fat milk
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Grease a 9-inch deep-dish pie pan or 9-inch-square baking dish.
  2. Bring 4 cups water to a boil in a large saucepan. Add zucchini; reduce heat, and simmer, covered, until tender, about 3 minutes. Drain well in a colander.
  3. Press cracker crumbs on bottom of prepared pan to form a crust. Dot with butter. Spoon zucchini on top.
  4. Whisk eggs in a medium bowl until fluffy. Stir in onion, milk, 2/3 cup Cheddar cheese, salt and pepper. Pour over zucchini and sprinkle with remaining 1/3 cup Cheddar and Parmesan.
  5. Bake, uncovered, 35 minutes, or until golden on edges.

As I’ve mentioned before, I’m gluten free so the first thing out the door were the cracker crumbs. Instead, I substituted in two cups of gluten free bread crumbs. I then used organic eggs and milk and reduced fat cheese. I didn’t buy enough squash and zucchini at the market, so I added in some organic ones purchased at Wegmans. I also added in Bare Naked chicken tenders.

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Here’s my recipe:

1 package of Bare Naked chicken tenders

2 zucchini

2 squash

2 cups (about 5 1/2 ounces) gluten free bread crumbs

2 tablespoons organic unsalted butter

3 organic eggs

1 small onion, grated

1/2 cup 2% organic milk

1 cup shredded reduced fat Cheddar cheese

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Grease a 9-inch deep-dish pie pan or 9-inch-square baking dish. I figured the chicken would add some size to the dish and I didn’t want it to be too thick so I used my Pyrex 9 x 13 baking dish. I sprayed it with Pam Organic Olive Oil to keep the casserole from sticking.
  2. Melt one tablespoon of organic butter in a large skillet and add chicken, cook until golden brown.20140707_190613
  3. While the chicken is cooking, slice the zucchini and squash into triangular pieces. I first cut it into slices and then cut those slices into fourths. Why? I don’t know, it just seems to be the best size for a casserole. You don’t want the chunks to be too big.20140707_190817
  4. Bring 4 cups water to a boil in a large saucepan. Add zucchini and squash; reduce heat, and simmer, covered, until tender, about 3 minutes. Drain well in a colander. 20140707_193821
  5. With the zucchini and squash ready, the chicken should be finished cooking. Put the grilled tenders into a food processor (I used the 7-cup Cuisinart Food Processor (which I love)) and pulse them until finely chopped.
  6. Press the bread crumbs on the bottom of the prepared Pyrex dish to form a crust and dot it with the remaining butter.  Spoon zucchini and squash on top.20140707_192518
  7. Whisk eggs in a medium bowl until fluffy. Stir in onion, milk, 2/3 cup Cheddar cheese, salt and pepper. Pour over zucchini and squash and sprinkle with remaining 1/3 cup Cheddar and Parmesan. 20140707_195024
  8. Bake, uncovered, 35 minutes, or until golden on edges.
  9. Enjoy!

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I absolutely loved this dish and I hope you will too. It offered a new way to cook some old favorites. Let me know if you try it. I want to hear what you think!

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It’s app-solutely fabulous…

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve encountered apps. They can be games you play on your phone or maybe your bank has it’s own app or you use a weather app to avoid a Dorothy moment during a big storm. Either way, you’ve used an app or seen an app. What you may not know, however, is that there are apps that can save you money or even make you money and that, my friend, is app-solutely fabulous. 

Behold, my top five money saving, or money making, apps:

Cartwheel

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I can not say enough good things about Target’s Cartwheel app. Using the app, you add offers to your cartwheel which then save you money on the items you’re buying in Target. Your cartwheel app then creates a barcode within the app that gets scanned at the register in the store and the savings come off. It’s pretty amazing. You can find out more about it in my previous “How to Save Money at Target” post.

 

Ibotta

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Ibotta is kind of like an extra coupon on top of your manufacturer and store coupons. Using the app, you perform tasks on offers. The task can be anything from watching a super short video to sharing an item on Facebook. Each task then unlocks a coupon you can use on that item. So let’s say there’s an offer in the app for Heinz ketchup at Target. If I watch a short commercial video about Heinz and also post about in on Facebook I’ll unlock $1.00. I complete my tasks and purchase the product at Target. I then come home, open my Ibotta app, scan the barcode on the ketchup bottle and take a photo of my receipt. Ibotta will then add the $1 to my account. Once I have enough money in my account, I can cash out to my Paypal account. I just earned extra money on the item I was already buying. Plus, Ibotta sometimes offers bonuses in which if you buy a certain item or certain combination of items, you can get extra money added to your account. You definitely want to check this one out. It’s available in the App Store via iPhone or the Play Store for Android.

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Checkout 51

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Checkout 51 works very similar to Ibotta, but usually has different offers. Plus, while the Ibotta offers are valid for up to several weeks, Checkout 51 offers end Wednesdays at midnight with all new offers released Thursdays. Plus, they usually have deals on fresh produce whereas Ibotta doesn’t. Also, with Checkout 51, you don’t have to scan the barcode on the back of the item. You just submit a photo of your receipt which saves you a step and makes things a little easier. Like Ibotta, your money goes into your in-app account until you hit a certain threshold when you can withdraw it. Also like Ibotta, Checkout 51 can be used with manufacturer and store coupons.

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Shopmium

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Shopmium operates much like Ibotta and Checkout 51 in that you purchase a product and then submit proof of that purchase to earn cash back. The money goes into your in-app account and can be withdrawn once you meet the required threshold. Like Ibotta, you have to scan the barcode on the object and also take a picture of the receipt to get your money. Funds can be distributed to your bank account or via Paypal.

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SavingStar

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SavingStar is very similar to the other apps, but with a twist. You add offers to your account in the app and then, like the other apps mentioned in this post, you purchase those products to earn the savings. The twist is that for some stores, you can add your savings card information (think Wegmans, Food Lion, etc.) so that the app automatically tracks your purchase eliminating the need to submit a photo of your receipt. For other stores, you’ll still need to go the traditional route and submit the photo. Also nice about SavingStar is that new offers are added frequently, plus they offer a different item free every Friday. You can add that offer in your app, make the purchase and then get reimbursed for the full amount. Plus, they have a healthy offer each week. As an example, this week’s healthy offer is tomatoes. Buy a tomato and receive 20 percent cash back on your purchase. 

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Perhaps the best thing about all of these apps is that you can use them on top of your in-store savings via sales and clearance prices, plus combine them with manufacturer and store coupons. Every little bit helps!