February 6, 2013

Baked Chicken, Cheese, & Spinach Taquitos

My kiddos are currently occupied with a Hello, Kitty dvd so I thought I'd jump on here and update some recipes. It seems whenever my kids notice that I'm using the laptop their busy little fingers try to "type" on the keyboard when I'm working on something. At least with a cartoon distraction I can get caught up on some blogging and escape the attention of my "helpers".

Anyway, this was a recent Friday night dinner that worked out fairly well. Friday night's are tough at my house because my husband works late every week. I *try* to hold dinner until he gets home (I really dislike not having a family dinner together), but the kids get super-crazy/restless/hungry and morph into beasts before I can get everyone around the table. So, I *try* to pick something relatively easy and feed the kids ahead of time, if possible. This tactic doesn't work out all that well either, since I am less efficient at dinner preparation when the husband isn't here to help corral the kids while I cook. Dinner is always later than usual no matter which way I *try* to get ahead of the curve. I've pretty much given up on having a structured meal on this day, and it's still unpleasant no matter what. I guess Friday is just not meant to be a fun, family-dinner night for us.

So, with these challenges in mind, I made these taquitos last Friday evening and called it good. Since they are not very messy and I didn't bother making a side dish, I didn't hold to a hard and fast "sit down and eat" rule. I told my bunch that we were having an "indoor picnic" and I let the kids wander between the kitchen and tv room, eating their taquitos. This strategy really seemed to cut down on the Friday night chaos. The husband and I also just grabbed and ate our taquitos once he got home, not really bothering to have a formal dinner together. I must confess, this was a lot less stressful than our normal struggle. Going forward, I think I will decree Friday night an "indoor picnic night", and make a similar finger-friendly food, such as these taquitos, to avoid issue. Problem solved!

Baked Chicken, Cheese, & Spinach Taquitos

1 onion, diced
3 cups cooked shredded chicken (I used 2-3 chicken breasts)
6 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup plain Greek non fat yogurt
1/2 cup salsa
1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 bag baby spinach
coarse salt and fresh black pepper, to taste
9 - 10 (6-inch) tortillas
cooking spray


Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Spray skillet with cooking spray and saute onions until translucent. Add spinach to pan and wilt thoroughly. Remove spinach and onions to a bowl to let cool. Add cooked, shredded chicken. Add cream cheese, yogurt, salsa, and cheddar cheese. Add salt and pepper to taste. Set filling aside.

Spray baking rack on a large sheet pan and coat with cooking spray. Please 1-2 tablespoons of chicken filling inside a tortilla and roll. Place filled tortilla seam-side down on baking rack. Repeat with remaining filling and tortillas. Spray tops of tortillas with cooking spray. Bake for 20-30 minutes, or until tortillas are crisp and filling is warm and melted throughout.

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