BBQ Chicken Rub, Potato Skins, and Green Beans

They say surrounding yourself with great people is a key element of success.  I agree. As such, I do not hesitate to research, use, and source great recipes for this blog. This particular recipe comes from   The writer of, a friend, superintendent and food aficionado, brings his family and friends together through easy, party-friendly recipes. I think you and your family will enjoy this meal – and the blog!

Pre-prep is key to this meal.  It’s not that it takes a long time, but the rub needs time to absorb into the chicken and the potatoes need an hour to cook – all work that can be done before dinner time meal prep.

Yesterday I readied the chicken and baked the potatoes.

Preparing the Chicken

Making the Rub

Tonight I prepared the potato skins and baked the chicken. I also baked a little extra “unrubbed” chicken for lunches this week.

Baking the potatoes and chicken

The Verdict

9.5’s and 10’s!  Everyone loved the flavor, even my discerning daughter.  The chicken was moist and flavorful. The potato skins were also flavorful and went well with the chicken.  Get the pre-prep done and dinner is a cinch!


BBQ Chicken Rub, Potato Skins, and Green Beans

Serves 2 Adults and 2 Kids + 2-3 lunches

BBQ Chicken Rub, Potato Skins, and Green Beans


3 Idaho russet potatoes

canola oil spray

For the rub:

.       2 T Paprika (I used Penzey’s Smoked Paprika)

·        1/4 t  Ground Black Pepper

·         1 1/2 t  Kosher Salt

·         1 1/2 t  Sugar

·        1 1/2 t Chili Powder (Ancho Chili Powder is Very Nice)

·         3/4 t Garlic Powder

·         3/4 t Cup Onion Powder

·         pinch Cayenne Pepper (This is low heat – add more if you want it!)

For the Rest of the Meal:

1.75 lbs boneless skinless chicken breast

olive oil spray

1-2 cloves garlic, minced

salt, pepper, paprika

2 T grated parmesan (cow’s milk) or manchenga (sheep’s milk) cheese

1 T minced parsley

1 t chili powder

3 C fresh or frozen green beans

4 C salad greens

handful of sunflower seeds

1 carrot cut into disks

Make Ahead:

Potatoes – Make 1-2 days ahead of time.

Spray potatoes with canola oil spray.

Bake at 425 for 1 hour or until done – when a fork pierces potato easily

Set aside

Rub – Make up to 3 weeks ahead of time.

Mix all rub ingredients together.

Make Chicken – Make up to 1 day ahead of time.

Wash and dry chicken. Cut into 3” pieces. Make 3.5 lbs of chicken and you will have your chicken done for later in the week!

Massage rub into chicken. Wrap in plastic and store in refrigerator so chicken absorbs flavors of rub.


Pre heat oven to 425

  1. Take chicken and leftover red sauce (salsa) out of refrigerator.
  2. Cut potatoes in half and scoop out centers leaving ¼ –  ½ “ layer of potato.
  3. Cut each ½ into 3 lengthwise strips.
  4. Place on baking sheet and spray insides of potato with olive oil spray.
  5. Top with garlic, paprika, parmesan or manchenga, parsley, and chili powder.
  6. Place chicken in lightly sprayed baking pan.
  7. Bake chicken for 20 -25 minutes.
  8. Add potato skins to oven for 10 minutes to heat through.
  9. Add 2 T lime juice,  ½ t kosher salt, and pepper to taste. Stir to blend.
  10. Place green beans in microwave safe container and microwave for 3 minutes or until done.
  11. Portion greens and salad topping for side salads. Top with no oil or low fat dressing.
  12. Plate chicken, green beans, and potatoes topped with salsa.
  13. Serve! Cowboy hats optional…

Pre-Prep Opportunities

2. Combine spices and store in a dry place until ready to use.

3. Make the spice rub for tomorrow.

4. Wash and dry chicken for the week.  Rub in spices, wrap in wax paper, and store in refrigerator until tomorrow so chicken can absorb the flavor.

Avocado and Cashew Enchiladas with Mild Red Sauce and Side Salad

Avocado and Cashew Enchilada with Mild Red Sauce and Mango and Blueberries

Just when you think you have it figured out, someone changes the rules. Last week I was raving that my kids were not missing the meat in my vegetarian meals.  This week, they missed the meat! The Avocado and Cashew Enchiladas were quite good, but the food was so soft it lacked texture – my kids liked the flavor but needed a psychological proxy for meat.  Black beans or kidney beans, butternut squash chunks, more coarsely chopped cashews, peas – something to “chew on” – would have been beneficial additions.  I do think I will make these again, but will experiment with adding different “meat textures”. Do you have any ideas? Please reply and share!


You might be thinking that this meal is too high in fat / calories.  But this recipe only calls for 2 avocados for 4 servings. Avocados often get a bad rap because of their fat content.  However it is the very nature of the avocado’s fat content that makes it a heart healthy food with anti-inflammatory properties.  Avocados are also considered a “nutrient-rich” food and help with the absorption of important anti-oxidants.  Not all fat is the same…

The Verdict

The kids rated the meal an 8.  They thought with some chicken, the meal would be a 10.  My husband and I both gave the meal a 9.5 and did not have any “meat withdrawals…”

Avocado and Cashew Enchiladas with Mild Red Sauce

Getting Ahead

Tonight is the night to get ahead for the week. While the enchiladas were baking, I rubbed the week’s chicken with the BBQ rub in tomorrow’s recipe and while we ate I baked it.  I also baked the potatoes that will be used on Tuesday and Thursday. Prioritizing healthy home cooked meals for my family is easier some days than others. I think tomorrow will be easy!


Avocado and Cashew Enchiladas with Mild Red Sauce and Side Salad

Serves 2 Adults and 2 Kids


For the Red Sauce:

1 lb. tomatoes, cut in chunks

2 bell peppers, cut in chunks

2 onions, cut into chunks

2 large cloves garlic

½ t salt

¼ t cumin

1/8 t black pepper

3 T lime juice

1/4 c cilantro

1/4 t chopped jalapeno pepper (optional)

For the Enchiladas:

2 medium sized avocados – ripe

juice from 1 lemon

1 medium tomato, seeded and chopped

4 finely minced scallions

½ C finely minced cilantro (or parsley if cilantro is not for you)

1 C finely chopped cashews, toasted

1/3 C plain yogurt

1 medium clove garlic

1/8 t salt

canola oil spray

8 corn tortillas (or flour if corn is not for you)


Pre Heat Oven 325

  1. Make the red sauce OR buy enchilada sauce or salsa.
    1. If making red sauce, combine all sauce ingredients in food processor and puree.
    2. Make the Enchilada filling
      1. Mash avocados until smooth. Add lemon juice to prevent browning.
      2. Add remaining ingredients through salt.  Mix well.
      3. Make Enchiladas
        1. Pour a small amount of sauce in the bottom of the lightly sprayed baking pan.
        2. Heat griddle and lightly spray with canola oil.
        3. Place tortillas on griddle and heat 1 minutes on each side.
        4. Scoop ½ C avocado mixture  on to tortilla in a line.
        5. Roll tortilla and place in a lightly sprayed baking dish.
        6. Repeat 7 times.
        7. Pour remaining sauce over enchiladas.
        8. Place baking dish in oven for 30 minutes.
        9. While enchiladas are cooking, portion greens and make a small side salad on each plate. Top with no oil or low fat salad dressing.
        10. Serve 1-2 enchiladas per plate and serve!