I’ve got the weight gain cycle down to a science. Right around September when the first frost hits I begin to crave my sister’s banana bread and the comfort it gives on a chilly evening. Then I get into the baking mood and one banana bread turns into one batch every week. Then a few weeks later my husband starts asking for my Dutch apple pie after we go apple picking. “Oh sure, honey! I will make one tonight after we finish off the banana bread 😯 . I begin to notice a slight bloat, and I check the scale and I’m up a few, no biggie. Then Halloween candy hits. Then Thanksgiving. Then Christmas cookies, those rascals. By then, it’s all over. I’ve gained back the 10-15 lbs. I previously lost the Spring before. So, here I am sliding back around again, and it’s mid Spring. I’ve lost 10, but have about 3 to go to be at my happy weight. Now you know why I am posting my very fluffy “Guilt-Free Creamy Chicken Casserole” recipe…
I’m 48 and losing weight has become extremely difficult compared to my 20’s and even 30’s. This last round has been the hardest and just losing 10 pounds seems like it has taken me forever. I’ve had to reduce my calories, reduce my fat, reduce my carbs, reduce my sugar, and exercise like a mad woman. I use to be able to just pick 1 of those things, but not anymore.
The good news is, I am gaining muscle and feeling really good. The exercising has taken my back pain completely away. My ankle that I sprained over Winter is back in shape, too. However, I still can’t really “jog” too good. Right now I spend approximately 50 minutes at the gym (3 days a week) doing 10 on the elliptical, 15 on the treadmill (on an incline and walking extremely fast), 10 on a thigh/butt buster thing, and 15 more on my arms (bicep, tricep, and shoulder machines). The arms has helped my back pain the most.
Let’s not forget the FOOD. I eat 3 times a day with 3 snacks in between. I haven’t had chocolate, fries, pizza, chips since before Easter 😥 ! For breakfast, I usually eat 1 egg with a lean meat such as turkey bacon, and veggies or fruit. Strawberries are my favorite. Lunch is the hardest one for some reason, but I usually eat a lettuce wrap, or tuna with celery sticks. Sometimes- 1 piece of rye bread loaded with turkey, lettuce, tomato, lil mayo. Then dinner is easy with lots of chicken (I get the Costco rotisserie one once a week) and veggies such as mashed cauliflower, or green beans. Here’s my LOW CARB CHICKEN DINNER FEAST, too. Snacks consist of a lean protein such as light string cheese, or nuts, and lots of fruit like apples, and grapes. The grapes save both my husband and I from eating cookies after dinner. STAY AWAY FROM THE COOKIES, JULIE.
So, yah…I guess I better tell you about this yummy “Guilt-Free Creamy Chicken Casserole” that is so good you will want to hug me. My husband even asks for it now. It’s loaded with veggies and the protein in the chicken will really fill you up. The flavor is amazing and the texture takes it all over the top. Oh, and my mouth waters every time I look at that photo. It also provides an idea of how big a serving is for me. I hope you try it~
- 2-3 cups left over rotisserie chicken in shredded chunks (enough to loosely cover a 9x13 inch pan)
- 4-5 cups of leftover/fresh sautéed veggies* such as cauliflower, bok choy, mushrooms, spinach (I sautéed mine first for 10 minutes with cooking spray and s&p.)
- 1 cup mayonnaise (I used Hellman's light)
- 3/4 cup light sour cream
- 1/2 cup skim milk (add a full cup if you desire a less salty flavor)
- 1/2 cup part skim mozzarella
- 1/2 cup parmesan cheese
- s&p to taste (doesn't need a ton of salt)
- *use your favorite veggies they will all work!
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Spray 9x13 inch pan.
Spread chicken as bottom layer.
Spread veggies as second layer.
Combine mayo, sour cream, and both cheeses in medium bowl and spread it over the veggies as the third layer.
Bake 35-45 minutes until bubbly.
Tags: chicken, low calorie, low carb, low fat, recipe Posted by
This casserole looks delicious, will be making it on the weekend for company. Thanks for the recipe.
PS. I have to lose the winter weight too!!
Looks good from here, love, Mom and Dad in NY.
Try it Dad! You can put it over egg noodles, if desired.
Try to Dad! You can put it over egg noodles, if desired.
Thank you for the tips as I too hav to get serious and lose the winter 15….
It use to be the freshman 15! Time flies, girl! Thanks for stopping by & good luck! I have many other low carb recipes here if interested —>
Gaining weight over winter is just ‘normal’ for me; I’ve been doing it every winter for most of my adult life!! I am 69 years old so that’s a lot of weight gain/loss (of course, I know that yo yo thing is bad for me) but like you said when the cold winds blow we want those yummy warming comfort foods. I’m trying to loose 20 lbs and it is a battle! I don’t have the will power nor the ambition that I once had. Sounds like you are doing fantastic; you are working at it and that’s the most important part……..just stick with it…..you’ll reach your goal. Gonna pick up a chicken and try your casserole; it looks divine. Thanks Julie
Carol, this casserole is so good. It kind of reminds me of tuna noodle casserole which I know is strange, but it does. My husband said the same thing when he ate it. The veggies seem like noodles!
Julie, you a trooper and an inspiration. Keep up the good work. I’m 64 and have lost the same 100 pounds so many times I could have started a new community. My problem now is a very inactive thyroid, but I’m losing the weight slowly. Thanks for this recipe. Good luck to you and all of your fans out there!
Thank you, Elizabeth! Thyroid disease runs in my family so I have to get it checked often. Thank you for bringing this up!! Awareness is key. I hope you enjoy the casserole! ?
The mayo, sour cream, cheese combo is my go to for several dishes: hominy (add green chiles and cumin for southwest style), Hot potato salad (add cooked bacon), and yellow squash. Your chicken sounds great!
Yum yum, Sara! Thanks for the suggestions!
Julie, it’s lovely that your parents are so interested and involved with what you’re doing. Cherish them! Just saying, speaking from experience. FYI, I’m a redhead, too. So is my 41 year old daughter. Lol! Thanks again for your helpful recipes and ideas.
Oh, I definitely do, my sweet friend! I get to see my Mom in 4 weeks for our oldest daughter’s HS graduation. I am so excited!! I wish my Dad could come. He has to babysit the cat ?. Long story ?
So wonderful for your family. Yep, we have 6 cats, 3 ferrets and a chihuahua. Your life is no longer your own. Puts the breaks on the trip to England. Congratulations to your daughter.
Yup, I am on that same bloat boat cruise ship!! It begins in the fall, goes through the winter and for me lasts until Easter! Oh yes, I LOVE those Hershey pastel candy coated chocolate eggs! Why, why, Hershey do you only make these for Easter? If you would make them year round, I would never feel the need to hoard my favorite Easter treat! LOL
Thanks for sharing the yummy recipe Julie, it looks very tasty and is easy and fast too!
Bloat boat ?. Kaycee- I just made this with canned tuna instead of chicken and I added in peas. It was so darn good.
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