Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Skincare Loves + Winter Skincare Staples


Let it be said that I am no skincare expert and I very well could go into my third decade (eeks!) with wrinkles on wrinkles on wrinkles. But let's just hope not! What I can tell you is that I rarely, raaaaarely have breakouts or pesky little pimples and my skin is one thing I have always received compliments on. I may have been at my highest weight and looked and felt terribly, uncomfortably unhealthy but strangers have always commented on my skin no matter my size. I've found that the more weight I've lost, the more glowing & healthy my skin looks and feels. 

I have also found that for me, less is more. I follow so many wonderful beauty bloggers and YouTube gurus who swear by 8 or 9 products that they use each and everyday, sometimes twice a day, and they often interchange them with different cult favorites and I wish I were the same. That just sounds luxurious, right? However, as much as I love to test out new products and browse through new skincare lines, when I stray away from the skincare staples that work for me- even to try products that are so highly recommended and loved- sometimes my skin reacts negatively to it and it definitely shows. For instance, I ventured into the world of toners a few months ago, played around with a few and started using one that is so highly loved by other beauty bloggers. Within a week, my skin was irritated and full of little tiny bumps ALL over my cheeks and chin. No thank you! So my little skincare routine, if you'd even call it that, is just that- little. 

I tend to have normal/combo skin that is sensitive. In the summer, I go for lightweight products to combat an oily t-zone when it's 1,000 degrees out and in the winter months, my skin is parched-- thanks to the 4 years of dry, Colorado air for that one. Regardless, I've used the same few products for years and I operate under the whole "if it aint broke, don't fix it" mantra regarding my skincare regimen because this little group just works for me.

During the last week of undergrad back in 2009, my best friend and I pampered ourselves each day for the week leading up to graduation #ohtobe23again and while the rest of our group of friends were cracking up saying that it was as if we were prepping for prom, I was so excited to finally enjoy my first facial! And I absolutely loved it. One of the products that my esthetician recommended for my skin type was this facial cleanser. Unlike typical cleansers, this one comes in powder form and is more of a daily cleanser + exfoliant. You lather it up with water until it's a foamy, milky paste and then you apply it like you would with any other product. It's a mixture of rice bran, rice extract and a few other fancy ingredients. But the fact is, it really sloughs off dead skin cells and beautifully deep cleans your pores. It's also gentle enough to use every day, which I love, too.  Weird that it's a powder, yes, but think about traveling with it, it makes it a breeze! And with 4.7 stars and 405 reviews, I think I'm not alone in the love affair I have with this stuff. Seriously, try this soon! I swear by it. Looking back through years of pictures, my skin has always looked and felt the absolute best when I've used it.

I alternate between the Dermalogica Daily Microfoliant and this one. I've used it for years, too, and I love the gel-like consistency and how it never clogs my pores or leaves my skin feeling heavy or greasy. It's just a great performing cleanser- nothing fancy, it just does the job and does it well.. and I love the price tag. I've tried other products in this line, especially as a teenager, and I've never been disappointed.

In the realm of moisturizers, I've used this one for the last 8 years after randomly purchasing it at Ulta on a whim and I've been obsessed with it and pretty much the entire Ahava line ever since. It's just perfect for my skin- not too heavy and just feels so perfect. I feel like it's fairly lightweight and it has never clogged my pores or made me feel more oily, I just can't say enough good things about it. I've ventured into their hand cream- spoiler alert, it's divine! And I also love their foot cream, body lotion and shower cream. So, I guess you could say that I'm a big ol' fan of everything Ahava!

During the colder months if my skin is feeling particularly dry, once or twice a week I use this moisturizer and my skin looks and feels back to life. I don't use it daily in the wintertime because for me, it's a little bit heavy for daily use with my combo skin. I find that if I use it every few days, my skin is able to get through winter with no problem, no dryness and just pure radiance. And isn't that what we all want? Again, it comes with overwhelmingly rave reviews and is a cult favorite. I highly, highly recommend it to anyone who doesn't have oily skin.  You normal to dry skin girls will adore this one! I have combo skin and it can sometimes feel a bit heavy, so I'd imagine that oily girls would find this one pretty heavy and sticky.

In the realm of eye cream, I'm picky about what I like. I want it to be not too thick but thick enough to where I feel like it's doing a little something-some tightening, some brightening, some moisturizing and lightweight.. but not too lightweight. I'm a tough critic. Me? Picky? Never. Again, I have some favorites for cooler weather and warmer months. My favorite eye cream for every day is this one. What can I say? I'm a fan of anything Ahava. And no, they're not paying me to say so. I liked the moisturizer so much that I just ventured to their eye cream and I'm glad I did. This guy just really performs so, so well and I love that it really absorbs into my skin quickly.

My favorite eye cream for the colder weather is this one. I got it as a sample once and I swore by it when I lived in Colorado where my skin needed to be dipped in moisturizer, wrapped and mummified 24/7. It's just heavy enough for when my skin is super dry and it's a huge bonus that it goes on like a dream and smells amazing. It has such a yummy, clean, spa smell and I just love the stuff. I find it to definitely be thicker than my normal eye cream and it really brightens my dark under eye circles that my genetics blessed me with. #thanksmomma

It goes without saying that I have noticed a considerable difference in my skin since cutting out lots of processed foods, diet soda and processed carbs in general. My skin really does look lit from within and I'm not as puffy and bloated as I used to be. I tend to find that if I have an off plan eating day, it shows in the clarity and brightness of my skin. Carbs can dull my skin in 2 seconds flat. Meeting my daily water goal is a constant struggle but the more I hydrate, the better my skin looks and feels. 

I'm always on the lookout for any eye creams that are lightweight but also brighten. And any new moisturizers that y'all swear by! So if you have any recommendations, let a girl know! I always love seeing what stuff people use on the daily and adore and the fact that Sephora will throw together a free sample of any product in the store is really something to love. 

Happy Tuesday! 


Friday, November 20, 2015

Low Carb Garlic & Cheddar Cheese Biscuits


Happy Friday! When I haven't been at work this week, I've been busy in the kitchen testing out new recipes to share with all of you and enjoying all the goodness that has come out of our oven in the process. And boy, has there been some goodness! I'm fairly certain that Ben has been waiting for me to start blogging for as long as I've known him, particularly for all of the food posts because they tend to be right up his alley and he is pretty much the best taste tester there ever was. He'll always tell me if a dish is lacking "just a little something" and is always known for his trademark "it's delicious". And those last two words are what I strive for. Always. 

Lucky him -and YOU- I stumbled upon this recipe earlier this week and knew that I had to try it out immediately. Ever find yourself so inspired and excited by a recipe you see that you MUST make it like an hour after seeing it? That's what happened with these biscuits. And have I mentioned that each biscuit is only 1 g net carb? Um yes. You read that right. One. 

Y'all. These biscuits. I just don't even know where to start. But for starters, if you like Red Lobster's Cheddar Bay Biscuits, you will pretty much die for these. And instead of guilt, bloat and a good, old fashioned carb coma shortly after consuming these, you'll feel like you truly had a treat.

And although I've never fancied myself as a baker (starting my baking life in Colorado with the altitude issue and the insanely horrible oven issue were two situations that just ruined me for life when it comes to baking anything), these are crazy simple and in the time it takes you to check your email in the morning, they're pretty much done. So, safe to say that I'm sold! And you will be, too. I found this recipe from a fellow low-carb follower on Instagram-- I can't tell you how many amazing on plan treats and ideas I've discovered on there from this amazing community-- but it can be found here, too. I have seen several versions of this circulating various sites and blogs online but these came out perfect! And who wants to mess with perfection? Not this girl. 


Low Carb Garlic & Cheddar Cheese Biscuits 

Ingredients 
1/4 cup butter, melted and slightly cooled 
1/3 cup sifted coconut flour 
4 eggs
1/4 teaspoon salt 
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder (I used more because we love garlic)
1/4 teaspoon baking powder 
1 cup sharp cheddar cheese, shredded 

Directions 
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees
2. Line a cookie sheet with foil and grease *I sprayed olive oil Pam in a muffin tin to get the best shape & just for ease*
3. Whisk together eggs, butter, salt and garlic powder
4. Add coconut flour and baking powder and whisk until there are no lumps
5. Fold in cheese
6. Using an ice cream scoop, drop batter in muffin tin or on a baking sheet
7. Bake for 15-18 minutes, until slightly browned 
8. Let cool in pan for 5-10 minutes before removing and serving. Make sure that biscuits are completely cool before storage to ensure they stay crisp


I can pretty much guarantee that you have nearly every last ingredient on hand.. So simple!

For the melted, slightly chilled butter, I melted it in the microwave in a little bowl and then placed it in the freezer for about 5 minutes. Worked like a charm!

Added in the sifted coconut flour and already, the batter was starting to smell delicious.

The perfect consistency! Took a good minute of whisking for it to all come together.

Because cheese makes everything better. But cheese that you grate yourself is SO much better than the store bought stuff. Literally, no comparison. Do yourself a favor and grate your own cheese, people. You'll never go back to the bag, I promise! 

Using an ice cream scoop, I plopped the dough into a muffin pan. You could totally use a lined baking sheet but this just seemed easier and I liked the idea of getting them perfectly round.

For someone hasn't had a biscuit in.. I can't even remember when.. fresh outta the oven, these smelled incredible!

Did I tell you to get these in your life or did I tell you to get these in your life? :) 

Look at that melted cheesy goodness on the inside! The texture from the egg and the coconut flour is slightly different than that of a good ol' southern biscuit, but let's just remember for a second that for a batch of EIGHT of these.. I only used 1/3 cup of coconut flour. 

Have I mentioned that one of these glorious, melt in your mouth droplets from heaven are only one carb? Just had to reiterate. :) You could theoretically sit around on a Saturday night and have yourself a little biscuit feast for only 8 carbs.. but who would ever think about doing that? Not me. 

I left these out in an air-tight container for a few hours and then later put them in the refrigerator. We enjoyed these warmed up with a sausage patty for breakfasts and warmed up by themselves alongside dinner. They are just TOO good!

 I can't tell you enough how amazing these guys are and what a treat I felt like I was having. It's been months and months since I've tasted bread and this truly made me feel like I was going off plan and that I would for sure pay the price on the scale the following day.. only to realize that I definitely was not and that I didn't. Guilt free biscuits. Who knew that was a thing!


They keep so well in the refrigerator and we loved them so much that I'm considering taking them to my family's Thanksgiving dinner. You know it's love when a dish makes it to that level, y'all..

Make these soon and let me know how much you love them! 

Happy Weekend! 









Monday, November 16, 2015

Low Carb Sweet & Savory Bacon Wrapped Shrimp



About a month ago, my family and I enjoyed a wonderful and relaxing trip to my family's lake house on Smith Mountain Lake in Virginia. Moneta is a little, tiny town and I don't anticipate that any of you have ever heard of it, but to me, it's been a second home and one of my favorite, most beautiful places on earth and is the epitome of "growing up Liz". You know how one place can just take you back to a certain time of your life? Or a smell? Or a food? For me, that whole place holds my favorite childhood memories of cookouts, putt-putt, day trips through the Blue Ridge Mountains, family reunions with the most incredible spread of southern food you'd ever dreamed of, time with family and long, beautiful summer days spent on the boat tubing with my cousins.  And we did the latter on repeat. Every. Single. Day. For two weeks each summer. I'm fairly certain that if you counted it all up, my cousins and I have spent days upon days being pulled by that boat and every time we'd fly off of our tube, we'd laugh and laugh.. and then jump back on and do it again. And again. We'd tie up the boat long enough to come up to the house midday for a quick sandwich but we were right back on the boat through the evening and those are the memories that I cherish the most.

As I've gotten older and all of the cousins have spread out in different states, the trips have gotten quieter and the sunburns of summers past have left their permanent mark on my shoulders and arms with millions of little freckles which I'm quite certain that, any day now, will inevitably come together as one and turn into the most beautiful tan you've ever seen. But that's neither here nor there. The point is, this place is special and holds a piece of my heart and my life like no other place on a map possibly could.

I'm lucky to still have family in the area when we go back and each time we visit, time with my aunt is essential. She's sweet, fun, always knows how to make me laugh and is always laughing with me, and has the exact same "up for anything" attitude that I loved most about her as a kid. (And she had horses and cows in her back yard when I was a kid- which pretty much qualified her into the Coolest Aunt Ever category for a 6 year-old suburban kid). As long as she's known me, she's held the key to my little heart: her cooking. Time with the fruits of her labor in the kitchen is even MORE essential, though, let me just tell ya. The woman can cook. She can bake. Her 7-Up cake with coconut cream frosting would make you cry and her mac and cheese is hands down the best in the south. Hands down. And then there's her peanut butter chocolate fudge that is literally better than Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, I kid you not, but I digress. She's an incredible cook and an even more incredible second mom to me, so when I give you a recipe that's straight from her kitchen to try, just know that it's an order and not a request. :) 

So there we were in the middle of October celebrating a Thursday at the lake with a luau: leis, shell necklaces, decorations, plastic pineapple cups, the whole nine yards. Because who doesn't want to luau in October? Like most of my lake memories, we laughed, we ate, we told stories and took trips down memory lane and we laughed some more. She and my uncle just returned from a dreamy Hawaiian cruise and I was a total fan of going through them on the television with a flower lei around my neck. I'm telling you, she gets me. Ben and I had just made it off that dang mountain and we were STARVING. And in came this platter of heaven AKA bacon wrapped pineapple and it's been love ever since. They were delicious little bites of savory, sweet gloriousness and they were devoured in minutes. 

Since I'm no longer on vacation and trying to stay away from as much fruit as I can, my aunt and I talked about all of the endless possibilities of things that could be wrapped in bacon and shrimp instantly came to mind. And these little guys are just as heavenly and after doing the calculations, only have 1.4 carbs per shrimp! With all the holiday parties and potlucks in your future, these are a must try and I can guarantee you will go home with an empty platter and recipe requests from your friends and family. And who can be mad about that? 


Low Carb Sweet & Savory Bacon Wrapped Shrimp 

Ingredients
1 lb. bacon, each strip cut in half vertically down the middle
22 raw jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined 
8.5 tsp Splenda Brown Sugar 
22 toothpicks 

Instructions
1. Preheat oven to 375 
2. Cut bacon strips in half so that strips are half as long
3. Peel and devein shrimp 
4. On a plate, dredge bacon in the Splenda brown sugar. (It won't completely cover bacon strips but a little goes a long way with this stuff)
5. Place shrimp in bacon to wrap. Secure with toothpick.
6. Place on raised rack on baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes 
7. Place under broiler for a 3-5 minutes to crisp and watch closely!
8. Take out of oven and let cool
9. Arrange on a platter and prepare for no shrimp to be left behind at your holiday party 

*If you want to substitute pineapple for shrimp, just use 1 can of large chunk pineapple and roll the same way*

 First things first! Any appetizer dish with this as the main ingredient is gonna be a home run, let's be real here. 

 Measuring out the Splenda brown sugar. Note: It was surprisingly hard to come by in north Texas. I found mine at Kroger. 

I just used the amount of shrimp I had on hand. It just so happened to be exactly the right amount of bacon per shrimp.

 I dredge the best when I set up stations for each step. Easy peasy.

Dredge that bacon! It won't feel like dredging with your typical brown sugar as it definitely has a different consistency. So, really get in there and don't be afraid if the sugar doesn't coat every last inch of the bacon because it won't. I tried to use as little brown sugar as I could when tweaking this recipe to lower the carb count.

Start rolling up those shrimp! 


This is a close-up of about how much sugar is on the bacon. I didn't want to go crazy with it but I promise you- these little guys are divine.

Yum, right?


 All ready for the oven! Note: Learn from me and place aluminum foil so it lies flat on top of the baking sheet. I may or may not have spent way too much time scrubbing the sugar drippings off of my favorite and oldest baking sheet after all was said and done. And watch that bacon closely! As my aunt reminded me, sugar burns easily. Very easily. So keep an eye on it. 

And look at them fresh from the oven! The shrimp are cooked perfectly and the bacon is crisp.. #getinmymouth



I can't even tell you guys how delicious these bad boys are and what a crowd-pleaser this appetizer is. I am so excited to serve them to friends and family during the holiday season and also for football parties and work potlucks. Tis the season around here! I know you will love them and can't wait for you all to make them, too. 

And a side note: One of the many things that has left me and my husband in awe during this health journey is the sheer amount of support, encouragement and recipe ideas that our friends and family have inundated us with. From my mom introducing me to my first bite of cauliflower mash, to my aunt going out of her way to count every last carb in her dishes she prepares for us, to co-workers bringing trays of meat and cheese to work parties so that I can have something, anything that is somewhat special in lieu of cookies and doughnuts, we just feel so blessed by all of you. Knowing that we're not doing this alone and that every last pound we lose and hurdle we surpass is done so with excitement and enthusiasm from our people means the world to us.

 I, personally, get so many recipe ideas from all of you and being able to share them with others who may not know that cauliflower does, in fact, have 9 lives or that there is such a thing as a sweet and savory low carb appetizer is something that I love the most about this little corner of the internet. Because you can still go to parties. You can still eat delicious food. It's just about finding something you love and doing some tweaking. Nearly 70 pounds lighter and I'm still tweaking. Always learning. Always tweaking. And that's exactly the way I like it.

Happy Monday! Make these soon and thank me later. 




Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Liz Loves: Mad for Plaid

Tis the season for all things PLAID (and I do mean all things) and I couldn't be happier for the cooler temperatures, breaking out the booties and wearing plaid everything! Every year I feel like I fall even more in love with plaid and this year was no exception. It actually probably takes the cake. Nothing warms up my fall-loving heart more than breaking out the plaid in September, so I felt like today was the perfect time to show all the little plaid things I'm currently loving! 




For starters: infinity scarves. I'm obsessed. 

This one is perfect and light enough for the fall temps we get in Dallas in the early months of the season. You can wear it out without being terribly hot and it's perfect for the price! The fringe is a cute little addition, as well. It's just a perfect, perfect plaid scarf and so lightweight. If you buy one scarf this season, have it be this one. I love it so much and have been wearing it all the time. 

And how cute is it paired with stripes? I've been all about mixing patterns these last few months. Stripes with plaid, stripes with leopard print, polka dots with leopard print- it's just fun and cute and actually looks really great paired together. Don't be afraid to mix patterns like I was. You're missing out! 



I'm also currently loving this scarf. Paired with a long sleeved shirt and a vest: such a great look in my book! And by the way, I've been loving Accessory Concierge since I discovered them over the summer. Great quality necklaces and accessories that won't break the bank. And Dallas ladies- they have a local boutique! So you'll have to check it out.
I'm also super crazy for this burgundy and navy plaid beauty. I purchased a similar scarf last year with these same colors and wore it on repeat all fall and winter long. Burgundy + plaid + fall just go together. Don't ya think?
I recently purchased this  wrap and I'm super excited about it for weekends and date nights when I want to jazz up my outfit but am bored with a typical sweater.  It's just a big ol' bonus that it's super comfy and looks and feels waaaaay more expensive than it is. 


I love the mustard, gray and pink tones of this next scarf which I bought on super sale at Old Navy a while back but, unfortunately, it's not currently in stock online. I did find a great alternative which I feel like will get the job done and is just as adorable here. I paired it with a simple long sleeved white tee, a cognac bag, skinny jeans and flats and was out the door.  


And seriously- this year is ALL about Black Watch for me. And this blanket scarf is just yummy and perfect and if I could wrap myself in this pattern all year long- I would. My navy loving heart just leaps for joy when I even look at this thing. It's pitiful. 


I wore it last weekend in Colorado to my nephew's soccer game and it was perfect for the chilly morning temps. And seriously, how adorable is he?

Another love: the plaid button down. Wear it to work, wear it with cuffed jeans and booties- it's just such a great investment and addition to your wardrobe.  Foxcroft has the best plaid button downs for plus sizes in my book. They're a little more expensive but I have one in a different plaid and it washes and wears like a dream! Seriously.. love. They also have some great regular and petite options too here

These also look beautiful underneath a vest. Really, really beautiful. 

And speaking of vests, this year I've gotten back on the vest bandwagon again and I'm LOVING being able to add another layer while not dying of heat exhaustion in the process. I also just love the look of them with scarves and that fact that you can put one over a shirt and really look like you thought it out. I love that! So easy. But a buffalo plaid vest this cheap?! It happened, yall! And I love it. And every time I wear it, I get compliments on it. So plus size girls, don't think for a second that plaid will make you look bigger. And don't think that a vest will add bulk to your look. This vest in particular is so thin and won't make you feel like you look like the Michelin Man. I promise. 


And here's me rockin' it on vacation with my plaid-loving husband :)
This one is a beautiful option, too. And comes in plus sizes!

Old Navy is killin' it with the vests this season and they're all on super sale. So plaid or not, I hope you'll take advantage!

And because wearing plaid just isn't fun enough-obviously- Pottery Barn came out with these adorable buffalo plaid salad plates and they are seriously adorable. And perfect. And I can't believe I don't own them yet. I love all of Pottery Barn's sets of plates they have for different holidays and seasons and since Ben and I don't really use our dinner plates regularly since cutting down our portion sizes, the smaller salad plates actually get a lot of use at our house. They're also great for snacks or appetizers for parties. I really just love them. And who doesn't want to eat off of a buffalo plaid plate? 


Target also has some adorable options, too, and those can be found here

And speaking of plaid dishes, I came across these perfect navy and white plaid bowls at Target a few months ago and I've been loving them. They're the perfect size for getting the job done in the kitchen and..navy. #becauseimobsessed 


I know I've talked about some of the Grand Bazaar line in my previous October Favorites post (read all about that here) but I haven't mentioned how beautiful the lipsticks are both on the lips and in the adorable plaid packaging. Like the beauty junkie that I am, I am a total sucker for packaging. And plaid packaging with an amazing, long lasting and perfectly pigmented lip product is a no-brainer buy for me. I may or may not have purchased all the lip colors I could get my hands on and for someone who tends to be more of a nude-pink lip color girl, these rich colors are beautiful for fall and I've been reaching for them a ton. 


How gorgeous are these colors swatched? These three are my most favorites. The top 2 are great for daytime and Vintage Wine is beautiful for a night look. Or a day when I'm feeling sassy. Let's be real here. 



As far as plaid handbags, there are a few that I've found and love. I'm all about a tote bag-- I can't seem to get out the door without wanting to make sure I have every last essential I could possibly need and these from Barrington are simply gorgeous and get amazing reviews. And how beautiful is this one? I love all of their totes and their entire fall collection is beautiful. And this one may not be plaid, but I die for it.  Leopard is my other plaid. 

How pretty is this one?


And this one.. love.
The cognac leather details: swoon-worthy! It just reminds me of Fall. 

And a few weeks ago while looking around DSW for some booties, I spotted this beauty. Less expensive than the Barrington options and still had a ton of room, the material was so buttery and pretty and the color is spot on for fall and winter. And the tassel? Love. 
So gorgeous, right? It also comes in a black and white version, too. Just as beautiful but I have to admit that as soon as I spotted the red plaid out of the corner of my eye, I literally walked over to the handbag section with only one shoe on just to touch it/wear it/stare at it. #fortheloveofplaid

 So, there you have it, y'all. I may or may not be totally in the deep end of this love affair with plaid. But in my defense- it's versatile, it's a great fall & winter basic, it mixes well with so many wardrobe staples, it's beautiful and jazzes up any outfit and.. I'm obsessed.  



Happy Wednesday! 





Friday, November 6, 2015

Perfect Autumn Food: Chicken & Mushroom Alfredo

I have found so much inspiration from other people's low-carb and health journeys on Instagram these last several months and truly love the little community I have found. It is so incredibly motivating and encouraging to see other people making healthy choices and fighting the same fight and I love learning from others who are doing what I'm trying to do: live a healthier life. 

From sharing recipes to encouraging each other on bad days, it's been so rejuvenating for me to scroll through and feel like it's really not just my husband and I over here tossing our toaster in the pantry and saying no to the bread basket all. the. time. More than that, though, I can't tell you how many times I've made and/or shared a recipe these last several months that was introduced to me by someone else and how many fun, delicious things I've been introduced to that I had no idea even existed. Low-carb'ers are probably the most creative bunch on the planet in the realm of substituting ingredients but keeping it delicious. I'm telling you, these are my people! And they know good food. Good food that doesn't make the scale go up, at that. So many meals I've cooked up in the kitchen have come from something I saw on my Instagram feed- some amazing ingredient I'd never thought to use or some dish I never knew a low-carb version of it existed.  For starters: Chicken & Mushroom Alfredo. 

I found this recipe a few weeks ago from Kristen's blog, "Low Carb Kristen", and after seeing hundreds of people make it and post their own pictures, I knew it had to be good. And it is. Y'all, pump the brakes! There's a new "pasta" dish in town and I am in LOVE. I did make some changes to it and I have some suggestions for you if you're going to make it soon. Which you absolutely should because it's a showstopper if you've been craving a hearty, creamy pasta dish but can't afford to go off the wagon on the carb count. This one is tried and tested and husband approved! We went nuts for it & you will too.




Chicken & Mushroom Alfredo 

Ingredients
2 cups rotisserie chicken diced (Can be omitted. I found the chicken soaked up every last bit of the sauce and made it extremely thick)
7-8 large button mushrooms sliced into thin pieces
1/2 large onion diced onion 
3/4 cup heavy cream (we tend to like lots of sauce, so add or subtract until you get your desired consistency)
4 cloves of garlic
3 tbs butter
Parmesan cheese depending on liking 
2 tbs. Olive Oil to cook mushrooms/onions in
Salt
Pepper
Basil (I used parsley because I had it on hand & it was perfect)


Instructions
1. On medium heat, cook sliced mushroom and onions until tender/brown in olive oil
2. Once browned, place butter in pan and stir to combine
3. Add salt, pepper and basil. Stir again.
4. Add chicken and garlic, cook until chicken is warm and garlic is brown/done.
4. Add heavy cream and stir until cream bubbles
5. Add Parmesan cheese and stir until sauce becomes thick. If sauce is still thin, add additional cheese.


Super easy to prep for this dish on busy nights

Adding the butter to the pan of sauteed mushrooms and onion. Note: let the onions get more brown than I did. Another note: is there anything more glorious than the sound of sizzling butter in a pan? 

Add the chicken and garlic to the butter, mushroom and onion mixture and let it heat up and the flavors meld

 Add the cream, Parmesan and basil or parsley to the mix and you've got one delicious, thick and creamy alfredo sauce. But see how the chicken soaked up ALL of the sauce? I recommend going very light on the chicken if you like your sauce on the thinner side. It was, however, still delectable. 


I put the sauce on top of a bed of roasted spaghetti squash and good grief, it was out of this world. I also added a dash of Lawry's season salt out of habit. I grew up with it sprinkled on top of my mom's (amazing) white pasta sauce and it just reminds me of home. So leave it out or add it, it's superb either way.

I've also seen some variations where it's just in a bowl with no noodles.. but that's not my style. And as my husband was eating (and loving) it, he mentioned how great he thought it'd be over cauliflower rice and chicken breasts and baked in the oven until it's all hot and bubbly.. I think he's on to something with that one! 

So, if you find yourself this weekend with mushrooms, onions, chicken and cream on hand- make this recipe and enjoy every last bite! 

Meanwhile, I'll be finding myself in Colorado for the weekend visiting family and celebrating my adorable, perfect nephew's second birthday. Have a wonderful weekend! 

And if you make this recipe, share it, post it, or let me know what you think of it! I love hearing from you guys.
 
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