Shredded chicken in a garlic and red pepper sauce with pearled farro

I first discovered farro when exploring the ‘healthy’ menu at the Cheesecake Factory. It is a great carbohydrate that is lower in carbs than rice. Each grain is quite ‘thick’ and crunchy and it is becoming more common in salads, soups and as a side too. It adds a great comparative texture to the shredded chicken here, and when calories are lower, I have found that different texture combinations are important to my levels of content!

Farro dish

Macros per portion (based on 5 servings, with the addition of steamed broccoli): 193kcal; 23g protein, 23.6g carbs, 1.3g fat

Ingredients

  • 375g boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 200g (approx 1 whole) red bell pepper
  • 300g (approx 1 can) chopped tomatoes
  • 1 fresh green chilli
  • 1 tbsp fajita seasoning
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 30g red onion
  • 2 tsp cayenne chilli pepper
  • 50g mushrooms
  • 110g pearled farro (feel free to add more farro, my macros limited how much farro I could use, but 1 serving is 45g dry).

Method

  1. Thoroughly rinse the farro. Bring a medium pan of water to the boil and add the farro. When the water starts to bubble, reduce the heat and cook for 25 minutes. (Keep checking the water levels as the farro absorbs water similar to quinoa).Add more water if necessary. Allow to cool.
  2. Preheat your oven to 350f. Season the chicken with the fajita seasoning and cover in foil. Bake in the centre of your oven for 30 minutes. Cooking in the foil will help to keep the chicken moist and juicy!
  3. Roughly chop the red onion, garlic, red pepper, mushrooms and chilli. Add to a small pan, along with the chopped tomatoes and cayenne pepper (this can be omitted if you don’t like spice!). Cook for approximately 10 minutes over a medium heat until the vegetables start to soften.
  4. Allow the sauce to cool. When the sauce has cooled, blend in a Nutribullet/blender (may have to do in a couple of batches) to create a thick sauce.
  5. When the chicken has cooked, transfer to a large bowl. Using two forks, ‘pull’ the chicken apart to shred it. Top the chicken with the sauce and combine well.
  6. Portion out the farro and chicken for easy lunches for the week. I steamed some broccoli to accompany, but would work well with corn, asparagus or peas too!

-Benchpressingbaubles, x

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