Tag Archives: CHEF recipes

CHEF Recipes: No-Bake Veggie Pizza

We’re back with a recipe that is versatile and handy year-round.  This is a fresh take on an old favorite– pizza! Click to read more!


Healthy Recipes for Your 4th of July Cookout!

Grilled Chicken KebabsThanks to the help of Chatham County staff members and blog readers, we are bringing you some great healthy recipes to try out for your 4th or July celebrations this weekend. A lot of these recipes feature summer vegetables, which are fresh and abundant at farmers markets and road-side stands this time of year. We hope you enjoy these recipes – let us know how they turn out for you by leaving a comment or e-mailing us at social.chpa@chathamnc.org! And, please do celebrate safely this weekend- drive safely, wear sunscreen, drink plenty of water, and use those food safety tips we posted earlier this week!

——Marinated Veggie Salad, from Jennifer Gillis——
¾ cup apple cider vinegar
½ cup salad oil
½ cup sugar
1 tablespoon ground black pepper
1 tablespoon water
Salt to taste

1 can very young early peas, low salt version
1 can French-style green beans, low salt version
1 can white shoepeg corn
1 cup diced celery
1 green pepper, diced
1 sweet red pepper, diced
1 bunch scallions, sliced

Combine the marinade ingredients in a sauce pan. Bring to a boil to dissolve the sugar, then cook for one minute. Remove from heat and allow to stand until cool. Meanwhile, combine the prepared veggies in a very large bowl. Pour the cooled marinade over the veggies, stir, and refrigerate for at least two hours.

Cool and refreshing!

——Campfire Potatoes (cooked on the grill), from Nancy Leaver——
Serves 4-6

5 medium potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
1 medium onion, sliced
1/3 cup shredded low fat cheddar cheese
2 tablespoon minced fresh parsley (or fresh cilantro, for a little different flavor)
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1/3 cup low sodium chicken broth
Pepper or hot sauce to taste

Place the potatoes and onion on a large piece (about 20 in. x 20 in.) of heavy-duty foil or use a double layer of foil to avoid leaks. Combine the cheese, parsley, Worcestershire sauce, and sprinkle over the potatoes. Fold foil up around potatoes and add broth. Seal the foil tightly. Grill, covered, over medium heat for 35-40 minutes or until the potatoes are tender.

This recipe also works great with mushrooms and bell peppers added into the mix, so get creative!

——Marinated Chicken and Vegetable Kebabs——
Marinade recipe from Ann Zellmer, Kebab recipe from Marissa Jelks

½ cup catsup
1/8 cup vegetable oil
1.5 tablespoon brown sugar
1.5 tablespoon vinegar
¼ teaspoon curry powder

Whisk until all ingredients are blended, then brush this on anything!

This will make children love their vegetables!

To use with the kebabs recipe, either let the chicken marinade in this sauce refrigerated overnight OR brush this sauce on the kebabs right after they come off the grill.

Kebabs (Serves 4-6)

I lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts, or boneless, skinless chicken thighs
1 onion
2 bell peppers (any color you like)
8 oz. button mushrooms
(Optional) ½ to 1 cup fresh or canned pineapple

If using bamboo skewers, soak skewer in water while you prepare the ingredients.
Cut chicken into one inch cubes. Cut peppers and onions into chunks. Small button mushrooms can be used whole.
Alternate the chicken and vegetables on each skewer.
Place the skewers on a warm grill. Let cook for approximately 10-15 minutes while turning so the kebabs don’t burn. The chicken should be browned and the vegetables should be tender but still firm.

This recipe also works with shrimp and other vegetables like zucchini, summer squash, and cherry tomatoes- so again, let your creativity lead you to new delicious flavor combinations!

And, check out these other great cookout dishes from our        CHEF Recipes series:

Panzanella Salad
Warm Green Bean and Potato Salad


CHEF Recipes- Chicken and Vegetables Stir-Fry

Eat a Rainbow Week may have ended, but it’s important to keep up with that goal of eating a rainbow of colorful, nutritious fruits and vegetables every day. This CHEF recipe is perfect for helping to meet that goal! Not only is it cheap, healthy, easy, and fast, but this chicken and vegetable stir fry features a variety of vegetables such as red peppers, broccoli, green beans, and carrots to give the dish an array of colors. The beauty of this recipe is that you can use whatever vegetables you like. Although we made it here with frozen vegetables, it’s also perfect for summer when many fresh vegetables are in season.

CHEF Breakdown

Cheap: We cooked this recipe for $9.36, enough to serve four people.

Healthy: This recipe features a rainbow of vegetables.  Frozen vegetables can be just as nutritious as fresh because they are processed at their peak ripeness, when they are at the most nutrient rich.

Easy: We used instant rice and there were few other steps besides making the sauce.

Fast: To make this recipe even more quickly, you could use store bought sauce instead of making your own, but that will likely increase the amount of sodium in the recipe. This recipe takes under 30 minutes.


  • 2/3 lb. chicken breast
  • 2 cups instant brown rice
  • ¾ cup orange juice
  • ¼ cup low sodium soy sauce
  • 2 Tbs. cornstarch
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 16 oz. bag frozen stir fry vegetables


1.      Make rice according to directions on package.

2.      Peel and chop two garlic cloves.

3.      In a bowl, combine soy sauce, cornstarch, and orange juice.

4.      Add the garlic and stir the sauce until it’s mixed.

5.      Cut the chicken breast into small pieces.

6.      Cook over medium heat until browned.

7.      Add frozen stir fry vegetables and stir until cooked.

8.      Add sauce.

9.      Stir again and allow sauce to boil.

Serve and enjoy!

Nutrition Analysis (4 servings):

505 calories

24g protein

6g fat

92g carbohydrate

592mg sodium


Warm Green Bean and Potato Salad

(Adapted from recipe in Fresh Food Fast by Peter Berley)

This recipe is a hearty meal for cold days. Even though it is winter, all of the vegetables in the recipe can easily be found at your local grocery store.  This is also a great summer recipe that would be a delicious addition to an afternoon picnic. In summer, you can pick up ingredients at your local farmer’s market.

CHEF breakdown:

Cheap: We cooked this recipe for $9.87, enough to serve four people.

Healthy: This recipe features three vegetables which are good sources of fiber and vitamin C. If would like to reduce the cholesterol in the recipe from the egg yolks, you can use an alternate protein such as chicken.

Easy: There’s not much more to do besides boil vegetables and chop. Simple!

Fast: For even more speed, use frozen green beans instead of fresh. This recipe takes under 30 minutes to prepare.


1 large red onion, peeled and sliced thinly
3 Tbs. vinegar
1 Tbs. mustard
1 tsp. thyme
3 Tbs. oil
2 lbs. red skinned potatoes
4 large eggs
1 lb. fresh green beans


  1. Cut the potatoes into 1-2 inch cubes.
  2. Trim the ends off the beans and cut in half.  String them if necessary.
  3. Thinly slice the onion.
  4. Warm oil in a sauté pan on low-medium. Add onions and cook until caramelized, 10-15 minutes. When finished move to serving bowl.
  5. Fill a large pot and a medium pot with water and bring both to a boil. Into the large pot, add potatoes and cook for 10 minutes. Add the beans and cook for 2 more minutes.  Drain and place in serving bowl.
  6. Into the medium size pot, add the eggs. Simmer for 10 minutes. Use a slotted spoon to remove the eggs and transfer them to a bowl of cold water.
  7. While the potatoes and eggs are boiling, prepare the dressing. Whisk the mustard oil and vinegar together in a small bowl.
  8. Also, remove the thyme leaves from the stem by running your pinched thumb and forefinger from the bottom to the top of the stem. Chop thyme leaves.
  9. Mix the dressing and thyme in with the beans, potatoes and onions in the serving bowl.
  10. Peel and chop the eggs and add place on top of the salad.

Nutritional Value:

If this dish is split 4 ways, each serving will contain:

383 calories

13 g. protein

16 g. fat

49 grams carbohydrates


And, for more holiday entertaining ideas…

Appetizers and sidesWe had another great recipe submitted into the CHEF holiday recipe contest that might come in handy when you are entertaining this holiday season.  Debbie Kotoris submitted a recipe for a Tuna Ball, which is a delicious and healthier take on all of those high fat dips and spreads we find at holiday parties. Using low fat cream cheese or “Neufchatel” helps make this a healthier appetizer option, and is a good substitution to keep in mind for other dip recipes. This is one of those recipes where you just have to open up packages and mix the ingredients together, so it’s very easy and fast.  Serve with whole grain crackers and carrot sticks and you’ve got a delicious healthier party treat for your friends and family!

Tuna Ball


1- Large can tuna, drained

1- 8 oz. block of low fat cream cheese, softened

1- Small onion, diced

Couple dashes of garlic powder

Couple dashes of Worcestershire sauce

Hot sauce to taste

½ cup chopped walnuts or pecans (optional)


  1. Flake tuna and mix well with cream cheese, garlic powder, chopped onion, Worcestershire sauce and hot sauce.
  2. Refrigerate for at least 15 minutes to help it firm up.
  3. Serve as is or if desired roll into a ball and roll in chopped nuts.
  4. Serve with crackers or vegetables.

Nutritional Value:

If this dish is split 5 ways, each serving contains approximately*:

177 calories

7.9 g. fat

452 mg. sodium

5.86 g. carbohydrates

*This nutritional analysis does not include optional ingredients.