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chicken abruzzi

A few weeks ago, one Saturday afternoon, while shopping in the US (we live near the border and go across often), Kyle asked to have lunch at the Olive Garden. In my mind, I said good-bye to yesterday’s burnt 800 calories and off we went. You can imagine my eyes (we don’t eat out often, especially at Italian restaurants, duh) when I saw a lighter menu. Whaaaat?!

Chicken Abruzzi was one of them. The description: Grilled chicken breast in a savoury broth simmered with cannellini beans, kale and garden vegetables. Let me explain to you my excitement, if you didn’t grasp it yet a.k.a let’s speak Insanity nutrition guide language: lean protein + complex carbs + veggies.

chicken abruzzi

Honestly, the dish was very, very, very good! Better than I expected. Crispy veggies were floating in a delicious broth, the kale was raw and chicken breast had no nonsense sauce on it. The broth coating everything was huge. I still can’t believe it happened.

Of course, I left the restaurant inspired to re-create Chicken Abruzzi at home. Alex left promising he will order the same next time (he never does, he never remembers what we ate, and he never knows what to order). My version came out delicious as well, just like at the restaurant, less sodium for sure.

I panfried chicken breasts with a few spices and cooking spray. You can use any chicken, grilled or any leftover cooked chicken will work. Then I simmered veggies in a broth for a bit, cooked but still tender. I added kale at the end and just stirred into the vegetable mixture. And, I finally got a hand of organic cornstarch, so this dish is gluten free. Enjoy!

chicken abruzzi

Healthy Chicken Abruzzi

Healthy Chicken Abruzzi

Ingredients

  • 4 chicken cutlets, 6 oz each
  • 3 garlic cloves, crushed & divided
  • 1 small onion, minced
  • 9 oz zucchini, cubed
  • 1 small bell pepper, cubed
  • 2 cups chicken broth, low sodium
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch or 2 tbsp whole wheat flour
  • 14 oz can (2 cups) cannellini beans, rinsed & drained
  • 3 cups (3 - 4 oz) kale, coarsely chopped
  • 1 tsp olive oil, extra virgin
  • 1/4 tsp + a pinch salt*
  • 1/2 tsp + a pinch ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp thyme, dried
  • Cooking spray (I use Misto)

Directions

  1. In a medium bowl, combine chicken, 1 crushed garlic clove, a pinch of salt and black pepper. Mix to coat the chicken. Preheat large non-stick skillet on medium heat and spray with cooking spray. Add chicken and cook for 7-9 minutes per side or until cooked through. Transfer to a plate and set aside.*
  2. Return skillet to medium heat (wash if necessary), add olive oil, remaining garlic, onion and saute for 1 minute, stirring once. Add zucchini and bell pepper, and saute for 3 more minutes, stirring once. In the meanwhile, make a slurry by whisking together, in a medium bowl, chicken broth, cornstarch or flour, remaining salt and ground black pepper, and thyme. Pour over vegetables in a skillet and add the beans. Stir, bring to a boil, reduce heat to low-medium and cook for 5 minutes. Remove from heat, add kale and stir again. To serve, spoon 1.25 vegetable mixture in a soup or deep plate and place sliced chicken breast on top. Serve hot.
  3. Storage Instructions: Refrigerate vegetables and chicken separately for up to 3 days.

Notes

*You can use any cooked chicken, grilled or boiled works great. *Adjust salt to taste. If using canned beans, you might need to add less salt. I used homemade cooked beans.

http://ifoodreal.com/chicken-abruzzi-recipe/

Nutritional Info

Servings Per Recipe: 4

Amount Per Serving = 1.25 cup vegetables + 6 oz chicken breast:
Calories: 383.5
Total Fat: 3.5 g
Cholesterol: 83.6 mg
Sodium: 320.1 mg
Total Carbs: 33.6 g
Dietary Fiber: 1.6 g
Protein: 51.5 g
WW Points+: 9

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18 Comments

  1. Danielle @ theCHARMITspot

    Wow! This looks so delicious and healthy! I would definitely try this recipe out. It sounds relatively easy to make, and I love that you provided the nutritional info. Thanks so much for sharing this, I’m going to save and try out your recipe!

    Reply
  2. Lori

    I had the olive Garden version tonight for the first time. It was yummy but too high in sodium. Can’t wait to make yours!

    Reply
    • Olena

      You know, after I made my own I realized the restaurant’s version was higher in sodium. Let me know how it turns out for you.:)

      Reply
  3. T

    It’s exactly the same! I added lots of lemon. I remembered it had a great lemony flavor! Thanks!

    Reply
    • Olena

      You are welcome.:) Great you could enjoy a restaurant meal at home and more likely with less sodium.:)

      Reply
  4. Deb

    I, too, fell in love with this at Olive Gatden, and am so happy to have found your recipe! Delicious!!! The only thing I remember differently is that the OG version has whole cloves of roasted garlic. But your version is so healthy and fantastic! Thank you!

    Reply
    • Olena

      Oh, really?! I think I got ripped off at my OG LOL. No whole cloves of garlic that I can remember of and I LOVE garlic. So, I wouldn’t miss it. Glad you enjoyed my copycat version. I’m sure it had less sodium.:)

      Reply
  5. BRee

    Hi Olena: Great recipe. I had this dish in Langley and was also surprised….. I make it with home cooked beans and broth too, use only a tsp of ghee for the onions and no corn starch or flour as no thickening is needed here. The one thing your recipe is missing is the 1/2 lemon that the OG serves with it. I loved the taste of the fresh lemon on the chicken…… Thank you for sharing. <3

    Reply
    • Olena

      I seriously need to start taking pictures of food I eat out. Now I can’t remember a lemon in my dish either. Maybe my chef had a huge fight with his wife that day?!:) Glad you liked it!

      Reply
  6. Kim

    Thank you! I’m dying to try this! I have had the OG version twice, and would eat it everyday if I could afford to go out that much! Thank you for posting this recipe, I’m going to try it tonight!

    Reply
  7. Colleen

    Had this for dinner last night at OG – so excited to find the recipe! Had a 1/2 roasted lemon on my plate and several whole garlic cloves.

    Reply
  8. melissa

    I tried this at OG the other night, ate half at restaurant, the other half at home next day. Was delish! Can’t wait to recreate at home with your recipe as guidance. Like a couple others above, my bowl had many many many whole cloves of garlic. Mine was also seasoned wirh rosemary, not thyme. But thyme sounds great too! Also had the grilled half lemon. Thanks!!

    Reply
  9. Cindy Webb

    I had this entrée at Olive Garden last night and loved it. My husband is diabetic, so we are always looking for delicious, healthy recipes. This one fit the bill! I was so excited to find the recipe for your copycat Chicken Abruzzi online! I can’t wait to try it! Thanks so much!!

    Reply
    • Olena

      You are welcome, Cindy! I came home and searched the Internet myself for one and couldn’t find any. It was pretty easy to recreate.

      Reply
  10. Joy

    I tried this at Olive Garden last night, and can’t wait to try at home. I did have the half lemon with mine, but no roasted garlic cloves. I am sure that will make it yummier! Thanks for the recipe!

    Reply
  11. Tami

    I went to Olive Garden last night and ordered this. It was so yummy and FILLING! How can something so light and refreshing be so hearty!? I only ate 1/2 last night and had the other half just now for lunch. I came online to find a recipe and so excited to try this out.

    Reply
    • Olena

      I can eat it all and still be hungry LOL. But I eat a lot, especially when I lift on a regular basis. Enjoy! Kale and beans are full of complex carbs and protein – making you full!

      Reply

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  1.  Chicken Abruzzi - CookGardenSew
  2.  Chicken Abruzzi with Kale and Tomatoes | Great Recipes Center

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