The Lazy Chef: Smokey Maple [insert protein here] + 5 New Things…

by Jenn (eating bender) on August 20, 2008

Happy hump day, everyone! For my first edition of The Lazy Chef, I’m featuring an unoriginal dish with a new twist via a special ingredient! My protein choice for this post was chicken, but the recipe can be adapted to meet any and everyone’s dietary desires – whether it be made with tofu, “chicken,” beef, fish…you get the picture. The point is to focus on the flavor and the fact that it’s an incredibly easy – or in my case, lazy – dish to create. I served the chicken on a bed of corn and spinach succotash.


Smokey Maple Chicken

Ingredients (serves 2):

For chicken:


For succotash:

  • 1.5 cups frozen corn
  • 2 cups fresh spinach



Preheat the oven to 400* while prepping. Rub each chicken breast with roughly 1/2 tbsp. of sweet mesquite. Dash with ground pepper until seasoned to your liking. Then comes the key ingredient: Annie’s Smokey Maple BBQ Sauce! Seriously, this sauce is amazing – and it’s also vegan and gluten-free! It has a rich maple flavor, but also stays true to what you would normally associate with barbecue sauce. And it makes a GREAT marinade when you’re baking something in the oven!! I coated each chicken breast with 2 tbsp. (one serving) of the sauce, and prep time was DONE!

Stick it in the oven and then do as The Lazy Chef does and FUGGHEDABOUTIT :mrgreen: for approximately 30 minutes. During that time, you can get in some quality blog reading or perhaps start reading that book you’ve been meaning to crack open…just enjoy yourself! After 30 minutes, take it out of the oven and cut one breast in half. If the juices run clear and the meat is white, you’re good to go. Otherwise, put it back in the oven for another 10-15 minutes, but keep a good eye on it so it doesn’t get too dry. When you’re done, the smell of smokey maple will permeate the kitchen – take a big breath in for me, ok? Thanks!

To create the succotash, all that is required (besides the food, of course) is a pan and cooking spray. Place both the corn and spinach in said pan and turn the burner on medium heat. Continue stirring occasionally until the corn is cooked through and the spinach has wilted into next-to-nothingness. Ready to serve!

Nutrition Information (per serving):

  • 320 calories
  • 5g fat
  • 38g carbohydrates
  • 10g fiber
  • 46g protein


5 New Things…

First of all, I found a new and fantastic way to respond to comments thanks to Mark Salinas, MN. I was always impressed by how he comments right underneath each person’s name, and I finally figured out how to do it! If you’ll notice on my last post, I was able to go in and “edit” your comments, and underneath I added a line of underscores that looks like ______ and then was able to type in my reply underneath that. I like this way a lot more because then you no longer have to scroll back and forth. Thanks, Mark!!

Next, I wanted to say thank you to all of the bloggers who have introduced me to cottage cheese oatmeal – you know who you are πŸ˜‰ I finally got around to having a bowl this morning, and all I have to say is YUM!

The little birdies were singing the oatmeal’s praises, too πŸ˜‰ Seriously though, it was a very filling addition and the cheese cooled down the oats to the perfect temperature!

Alright, moving on to nΓΊmero tres! Holy moly, did you know that it’s possible that your tongue could TASTE CALCIUM?! You know sweet, sour, salty and bitter (hm, I feel like I’m singing Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer over here!). There’s also that recently discovered savory taste that is apparently called “umami” – I have to admit, I hadn’t heard of that one. And now, scientists think they have found a calcium taste which sort of tastes…oh, I don’t know…calcium-y?! Who knew?

The fourth thing to discuss is a list of ancient Olympic facts that I found today. Did you know, for instance, that in the ancient Olympics, the athletes completed in the nude?! For that and more interesting information you never thought you needed to know about the games, click this link!

And finally, I have to say that I tried yet another recommendation today – and it was “FIGGIN'”AMAZING.

Wow, what a treat! Figamajigs are even better than chocolate-covered raisins!!

Have a great night, everyone!!

1 VeggieGirl August 20, 2008 at 9:13 pm

You always plate your meals so elegantly – gorgeous presentation!!

Yep, I remember learning about umami in my psychology class about 2 years ago – interesting stuff!

Oooh, Figamajigs! Those look pretty good – I wish they made a carob-covered version… πŸ˜‰

VeggieGirl ~ Thanks, chica! I wish they made a carob-covered version for you, too! I still have yet to try that…

2 jenngirl August 20, 2008 at 9:15 pm

Another awesome post…I will definitely be trying that lazy chef recipe soon! Also, I definitely saw the your comment responses earlier today and snagged the idea as well, it works so much better i think!

Anddd about the taste thing, when I was in high school bio, we experimented with umami, and apparently there is a gene that causes you to taste it and if you don’t have the gene you don’t taste it…it’s actually rather bitter unfortunately, so i obviously have the gene haha

sorry for the long comment but you present so much so well, i’ve got to recognize!

hmm cottage cheese oatmeal, my brain’s breakfast wheels are already turning…

jenngirl ~ I’m glad you like the comment trick! And that’s so interesting that you did an experiment with umami! I really want to know if I have that gene! AND I love the long comments – I’m so flattered by the compliment :) Give those cottage cheese oats a try!

3 Sarah August 20, 2008 at 9:25 pm

mmm i love maple anything! i actually have maple salmon on the menu for tomorrow night. and i have to admit that sometimes i eat it maple syrup plain!! haha, oooops….

i feel like “umami” was in a Friends episode once, hmmm.

i’m glad you finally tried and enjoyed cottage cheese oats! it’s funny that you thought it made it the perfect temperature though, my one complaint about it was that it cooled it down TOO much. That’s probably just because I’m crazy though and like my food super duper hot. It drives my family crazy because I always have to reheat my food halfway through a meal!

I’ve been meaning to try those figamajigs ever since I saw them at Target last time I was there. Not much can top a chocolate covered raisin, so if you think these are even better then I HAVE to give them a try!

Sarah ~ Haha, I’m totally guilty of eating sauces plain. Love ’em all :) If umami was in a Friends episode, I’d love to know which one!! I’ve seen every episode, but my memory fades, you know. And I definitely like my hot stuff – but I think you must like it scorching! That’s so funny that you get up halfway through a meal to reheat your food!!

4 Foodie (Fab and Delicious Food) August 20, 2008 at 9:31 pm

Love the chicken recipe! So simple, yet looks so delicious!

Scientists think they have found a calcium taste?! Interesting!

Thanks Jenn (and Mark!) for explaining how to do the new comment format! I’m definitely going to do that on my blog from now on!

I’ve never tried figs, but I bet chocolate-covered figs are amazing, especially if it is dark chocolate! I need to find those Figamajigs so I can try them!

Foodie ~
I’m glad you like the comment trick! And I think the reason the Figamajigs are so amazing is because they are dark chocolate, so if you like dark chocolate, you’re going to love them!

5 Fitnessista August 20, 2008 at 9:47 pm

what an awesome recipe! i can’t wait to try it- super easy, and looks super delicious :) i’m lovin the “lazy chef”

that’s very interesting about the calcium- i had no idea! i keep telling myself i’m going to try the cottage cheese oats.. i need to just do it already!

those figgie delights look like heaven.. i’m on a mission to find some!! i love all things fig! where did you get them??

have a fantastic night!

Fitnessista ~ Thanks so much! And yes, try those cottage cheese oats. I just need to try your breakfast cookie already! Sheesh! I found the Figamajigs at Tar-jay :)

6 Andrea August 20, 2008 at 10:07 pm

‘figgin amazing’ – heheh that made me laugh πŸ˜€ i remember learning in school about how the Greeks used to compete in the olympics in the nude. maybe we should reinstate that rule haha jk.

ps your new blog theme is so fun to read!!

Andrea ~ Haha it sure would be interesting if that rule was reinstated πŸ˜‰ And thanks!!

7 All Vegged Out August 20, 2008 at 10:19 pm

Mmm, I can’t wait to try this with some protein, I’m thinking tempeh? Ahhhh yummy!

All Vegged Out ~ Tempeh sounds glorious. Although I’ve never tried it :)

8 glidingcalm August 20, 2008 at 10:20 pm

I’m guessing that other piece of chicken went to Sir Bobby….but you should have given it to me.

Still haven’t tried cottage cheese….so I also haven’t tried cottage cheese oatmeal. I’m not going to lie… I’m kind of concerned about the high sodium content of cc. Should i not worry about that? Ugh. Maybe I’ll buy some this weekend.

Figamajigs. nice. haven’t tried those either, but they sound good!

Olympians competing in the nude, eh? Can you imagine figure skating in the nude? I would die. And get some serious ice burn…which, let me tell you, IS SO PAINFUL. The ice is not smooth!! I’d also probably freeze to death…. but I didn’t want to state the obvious.

take care jennifurrrrrrrrrr up in hurrrrrrrr

glidingcalm ~
Haha, it DID go to Bobby! Next time, I’ll be sure to send it your way instead :) And actually, as far as the cottage cheese goes – my WF sells “no salt added” versions, so no need to worry about the sodium!! And DON’T FREEZE TO DEATH!! πŸ˜‰

9 blueberryhil August 20, 2008 at 11:35 pm

I love insert-protein-of-choice-here dishes. Thanks!

blueberryhil ~ You’re most welcome!

10 Rika August 20, 2008 at 11:45 pm

cool recipe! πŸ˜€

is “umami” Japanese? because I’m Japanese and it does mean “savory tasting” but that’s not considered a sense :S

Rika ~ I’m not sure on its origin, but that sounds about right. Haha, I’m not sure about the whole “sense” thing, I just read it in the article and thought, “Whaa?”

11 Heather August 20, 2008 at 11:45 pm

That meal looks so good! Maybe soon I’ll brave the uncertainty of NOT microwaving everything I eat. But maybe not quite yet :-)

YUM though!

Heather ~ Haha nice :) Let me know if you DO brave the uncertainty!

12 Caroline August 20, 2008 at 11:58 pm

I love Annie’s BBQ sauce–never tried that flavor though. I might have to try your recipe for my next tofu dish!

I am dying to try those Fig creations…are they available at WF?

Caroline ~ I’m not sure if they are at WF, but I found mine at Target!

13 Melissa August 21, 2008 at 12:24 am

ohhhh…the meal looks good! yay for a new recipe!!!

Melissa ~ Thanks! :)

14 Erin August 21, 2008 at 1:43 am

This is a fun new segment. I really like it!
How do YOU like the new format? Do you feel refreshed, excited, etc?

Erin ~ Thanks for asking! I am loving the new format so far – I am feeling refreshed and enjoying the posting process even more because I get to have a little more freedom day-to-day!

15 Erica August 21, 2008 at 6:08 am

yayy for that chicken, I need to try it! I have been looking for figamijigs everywhere! Gosh darn it where are they around my house? :)

Erica ~ I found them at Target in the energy bar section!

16 Christie August 21, 2008 at 6:13 am

OK now that you learned 5 new things can you share with me how to edit like you did… pass the knowledge…. Ohh and I am all about dinners that go right in the oven expecially after you get home from school/work the last thing you want to do is stand over the stove!

Christie ~ I shared the knowledge in your comment section on your blog :)

17 Jordan August 21, 2008 at 7:05 am

Costco love! =]

I love seeing other bloggers who shop there. There seems to be quite a few of us. I work there, so I’m not sure if I count, but I definitely spend a good chunk of my paycheck there every time.

Jordan ~ So cool that you work there! I would definitely spend A LOT of my paycheck there if I did :)

18 Aimee August 21, 2008 at 7:30 am

I have a pack of Figamajigs in my pantry that I packed as a Hawaii snack but didn’t eat, I’ll have to pack them in my lunch soon.

I keep seeing the cottage cheese oats, I’ll have to jump on the bandwagon soon and try them!!

Have a super day Jenn!

Aimee ~ Let me know what you think of them AND the cottage cheese oats!

19 Nicole August 21, 2008 at 8:01 am

I’ll definitely be trying this dish with tofu! Yum!

Nicole ~ Yum! The flavor from the sauce goes with pretty much anything!

20 ChocolateCoveredVegan August 21, 2008 at 10:47 am

Figs and chocolate TOGETHER?! Must get some of these!!!

CCV ~ Yes, you must! Make haste!!

21 ttfn300 August 21, 2008 at 11:12 am

yum, that looks awesome. simplicity at it’s finest :) And I think I have some similar ingredients in the freezer that need to be used up!

Aah, Figamajigs, these things are awesome!! So glad you can find them at Target now :)

ttfn300 ~ Nice! Let me know if you try it out :) It’s definitely simple!

22 hangrypants August 21, 2008 at 3:20 pm

oh I bet that marinade would be great with tofu, too.

I am totally doing that with comments from now on. Yes, Figamajigs are awesome!

hangrypants ~ I think that marinade would be great plain :)

23 wholefoodswholeme August 21, 2008 at 3:50 pm

wow, that looks great!! unfortunately, i can’t buy the marinade ingredients here :/ tough life.

i just love reading your blog, not only for the lovely food but just for your writing and to learn that ancient olympians competed in their birthday suits!! haha. wish they had video cameras in those days :)

wholefoodswholeme ~ Man, I need to figure out some recipes that you can actually use across the ocean πŸ˜‰ And thanks so much for your sweet comment about the blog!

24 Fitzalan August 21, 2008 at 3:54 pm

I fully support watching Michael Phelps and all the other swimmers naked on TV. But maybe that is just me. mmm, those hip flexors.


Fitzalan ~ Haha, I’m pretty sure you said what everyone else was thinking!!

25 Rose August 21, 2008 at 5:13 pm

Cottage cheese oatmeal! Oh my – why did I not do that before?? Love this.

I also like your step-by-step cooking.

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