My Chef's Hat - Blackened Chicken with Cilantro Lime Quinoa

Yes, I realize in my last post I talked about how I'm not a huge fan of chicken breast.  But, I am trying to branch out and cook with it at least once a week.  Like I said before, it's usually really dry. But I figure if I can find recipes that have enough flavor and stuff to keep it moist, I'll be in business.

We had Mexican for lunch today, which of course meant chips & salsa.  So I didn't want to do any carbs for dinner.  I had one recipe in mind, but when I opened up Pinterest to find it, I saw a recipe for blackened chicken with cilantro lime quinoa and decided to give it a shot.

Until a few months ago I'd never even heard of quinoa.  And then once I did, it seemed that from everything I heard and read, people either loved it or hated it.  My friends Jack & Betty said they use one that's a blend with rice, and they really liked it.  So a few weeks ago I was at Whole Foods, and decided to buy a small amount of it from the bulk food section.  I figured if I didn't like it, I wouldn't have spent too much.

For some reason, my brain was telling me that quinoa was very low carb.  I'm really not sure why, because it is a grain and grains are mainly carbs.  And when I looked up the nutrition, as I was eating it, I realized that it's almost as high as pasta.  But it's healthier than pasta, and a complex carb, so I feel a little better about myself.

Here's the official recipe picture:

And here's my version:

I was very pleasantly surprised with the quinoa!  I'm pretty sure that if you just make it plain it will taste like cardboard.  But I loved the flavor from the lime and cilantro.  The chicken definitely had a lot of kick from the spice. But it was really good.  I forgot to add the avocado cream sauce before I took the picture.  It was good, but the only yogurt I had was vanilla Greek yogurt and the vanilla was a little overpowering, and it was kind of thick...more like guacamole than sauce.  But it was still really tasty. 

I'm definitely going to add quinoa to the "pass" list.  I've found some recipes on Pinterest that looked good, but I always hesitated.  But now that I know it won't test my gag reflexes, I'm going to try them out.

Will I make this recipe again?  Definitely!

Recipe found on Sarcastic Cooking