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Chicken Lasagna ~ Nacho Style ~

THE " F " WORD ....

Not that one, silly.  I  thought I would take this opportunity to talk a little about FIBER. Eating a diet high in fiber can help prevent many types of diseases, can help lower your blood cholesterol and can also help you lose weight! Fill up on healthy high- fiber foods and you are much less likely to overindulge on Cheetos and Peanut M&M's.

The recommended daily fiber level is 30 - 40 grams per day, but most people only get 10 - 15 grams. It is easy to incorporate high fiber foods into your diet. Eat foods that are as close to their natural state as possible -  an apple instead of a glass of apple juice, is one example. Check out nutritional labels - some types of high fiber pasta have as much as 10 grams of fiber per serving. The best sources of fiber are found in fruits, vegetables, beans, whole grains and high fiber bran cereals.

I recently discovered that one of my favourite foods is loaded with fiber. Did you know that one medium California avocado has 11.8 grams of fiber! It is also loaded with heart- healthy mono and polyunsaturated fats. It may be higher in calories than most other fruits and vegetables, but it is much lower in calories than other high fat foods like butter and mayonnaise. Try using it as a substitute for mayonnaise in sandwiches or using avocado in place of oil in a homemade salad dressing.

Chicken Lasagna ~ Nacho Style
Nacho Mama's Lasagna!

I wouldn't call cheesy lasagna "diet" food but this is a little healthier than a big ol' plate of greasy nachos. If you really want to increase the fiber in this lasagna, add a can of drained black beans to the sauce. One cup of black beans has 14 grams of fiber!

12 lasagna noodles, preferably a high fiber brand
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 Spanish onion, diced
1 green bell pepper, diced
6 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. smoked paprika
pinch of sugar
 26 oz. can diced tomatoes, drain off liquid
2 Tbsp. tomato paste
14.5 oz. jar thick salsa ( I used a chipotle salsa)
4 oz, sliced pickled jalapeno, reserve 1 oz.
4 oz. sliced black olives, reserve 1 oz.
3 cups diced rotisserie chicken, skin and bones discarded
hot sauce, to taste
salt and pepper
4 cups (total) shredded mozzarella and cheddar cheese


sliced avocado or guacamole
sliced green onion
chopped cilantro
sour cream or plain Greek yogurt
diced fresh tomatoes
chopped red onion
diced pickled peppers

Cook lasagna noodles in a large pot of boiling salted water, draining the noodles when they are about three minutes away from being fully cooked.  Meanwhile in a large saucepan, heat oil over medium heat. Add the onion and green pepper and cook until soft. Add the minced garlic, cumin and smoked paprika, cook another couple of minutes. Add drained tomatoes, tomato paste, pinch of sugar, salsa, jalapenos and olives. Simmer for 10 minutes. Add the diced chicken. Remove from heat. Season with salt and pepper. Add hot sauce if desired.

Preheat oven to 400 F. In a 13 x 9 inch lightly greased pan spread a little of the sauce on the bottom of pan. Lay 3 noodles lengthwise and one noodle crosswise, cutting the noodle to fit. Top with one/third of the sauce, one/third of the cheese. Continue layering the lasagna until you have 3 layers of noodles, four layers of sauce and three layers of cheese. With the final layer of cheese, add the reserved jalapenos and olives. Bake uncovered until bubbly and golden, 35 - 40 minutes. Let stand for at least 10 minutes before serving. Garnish with desired toppings. Serves 6 - 8

Tags: Tex-Mex,Lasagna, Chicken, 

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