When you cross the States from North to South, you can be truly amazed by the diversity of culinary traditions and local foods which are characteristic either to the region or to a certain state. Some of these local food peculiarities are almost unknown, while others became real gems in the crown of American cuisine. Southwest cuisine is no doubt among the last ones. Its rich and spicy meals inspired by the hot climate, ocean breathes, and close relationships with Mexicans are real must-try. Southwest Chicken is one of the meals of that kind we are going to tell you about in detail.
The Main Principles of Southwest American Cuisine: Crystallizing the Essence
To understand the essence of tastes of Southwest Chicken, let’s discover the roots of this meal. Like the whole Southwest American cuisine, Southwest Chicken was developed based on the following gastronomic traditions:
- Cuisine of local Spanish colonists who have settled there since the XVI century.
- Food of indigenous people (namely, Mexicans and Native Americans).
- Cowboy food traditions.
- Modern influence of Mexican cuisine.
This cocktail is embodied in meals which primarily consist of a large amount of meat, lots of spices and seasonings, served with corn, squash, and beans of various kinds. That’s what makes the background of Southwest Chicken recipes.
What Ingredients Are Included In Southwest Chicken Recipe
So, now let’s return to Southwest Chicken. This is a dish typically cooked in a pan with a certain combo of ingredients. The most common components of Southwest Chicken are as follows:
- Namely, chicken. You can cook this dish from chicken breasts or filet, and it will be a real dietary meal. If you like more savory tastes, you can take a whole chicken, boneless thighs, or legs. The main idea is to use boneless and skinless chicken meat.
- Special taco seasoning which you can pick up in the nearest mall as a ready-made mix of seasoning or cook it yourself (it’s simple as taco seasoning is a mix of paprika, chili, oregano, salt, and dried onion and garlic powder).
- Salsa fresco or Pico de Gallo, which are fresh veggies chopped into small cubes and seasoned with lime juice, salt, and pepper. You can also use ready-made salsas or cook it yourself using fresh tomatoes, chilies, onion, and cilantro.
- Corn, black beans, avocado, and tomatoes.
- Cheddar cheese (optionally, you can skip this stage).
- Olive oil for cooking.
- Limes and cilantro for serving the dish.
The process of cooking Southwest Chicken is so simple that even novice home cooks can do it with ease. Just prepare the meat and dry it a bit with paper towels. Coat the meat with salt, taco seasoning, and a tablespoon of olive oil. Put it in the pan and bake for 15 minutes in a preheated to 400 F oven.
Take corn seeds, shredded cheddar cheese, and beans. Place a bit of salsa or Pico de Gallo on the meat, then add a bit of corn seeds and black beans and top it with a pinch or two of shredded cheese. Then bake for 10 minutes more.
After the chicken is ready, serve the dish with avocado slices, tomatoes, and cilantro as a garnishing. Squeeze a bit of lime juice on the meal. That’s all!
The Main Merits of Southwest Chicken
The excellent tastes and rich flavors of Southwest Chicken are just the most obvious reason to cook it and try it. Just get a couple of other benefits to decide to add it to your daily menu.
- This dish can be both low-carb and high-calorie – just select what to serve with it. When you are drying your muscles and need more protein and fewer carbs, serve it with a fresh green salad and/or beans and mushrooms as garnishing. It can be extra-nutritious and rich in calories if you serve it with cilantro lime rice (one more typical Southwest meal) corn chips, or even with mashed potatoes.
- It is a great meal to use the next day. Put the leftovers of chicken in the tortilla or taco and serve it as a taco, burrito, or any other wrapped option.
- You can cook it in advance and freeze ready-made chicken (except its topping) in a fridge. It can be stored for 3+ months that way. When you want it, you simply heat it in your microwave and cover it with topping.
And its bright colors, rich tastes, spicy nature, and yummy flavors make Southwest Chicken a great idea for any occasion from your today’s lunch to holiday dining with guests.
What Features Make Southwest Chicken a Healthy Meal You Can Eat Daily
Besides its ease of cooking, Southwest Chicken is also a real source of useful ingredients. Let’s consider some facts about it.
- One serving of Southwest Chicken consists of 870 calories.
- It has a balanced amount of carbs (50 g), protein (45 g), and fat (41 g).
- Due to the use of vegetables and beans, Southwest Chicken provides you with 20% of the necessary fiber per serving.
- It also is rich in vitamin A, vitamin C, Calcium and Iron.
Besides, the baking technology allows you to cook this meal with no extra use of oils and fats, it is healthy and easy to digest. Its variability allows you to adapt the recipe to your HLS goals and you can cook it when you are on the diet, when you are training hard, or when you need a special meal regimen (i.e., keto diet, diabetes diet, high-protein meals, etc.).
That all makes Southwest Chicken a real godsend for busy HLS appreciators. Moreover, you do not even need to do experiments in your kitchen. Our healthy meal prep & delivery service can cook it and bring it to your door, hot, savory, and nutritious. Try it from our menu to ensure you can eat healthy and tasty every day.