Healthy on a Budget

So the Hubs and I recently decided we want to try and cut our spending down. A huge area we can cut down is at the Grocery Store. Some months, the money we've spent at the grocery store is ridiculous. Due to the Great Grocery Budget Slash, we've started shopping at a Walmart Market store. Definitely not my favorite, but damn I just love the low prices.

One problem with this store is they don't have as good of a selection as other Grocery Stores. In the past, if we shopped there, I'd always end up making another grocery run to get the stuff I needed. Last week however, I stuck to the budget and didn't go any where else. So, that led me to a problem. I wanted to make Chicken-Orzo Salad with Goat Cheese except they didn't have quite a few of the ingredients. That didn't stop me though. Below is the recipe with my substitutions - which turned out fabulous! I will most definitely be making this again and again. It was also delicious for lunch (and dinner) the next day.

Chicken-Rotini Salad with Blue Cheese
Based on Chicken-Orzo Salad with Goat Cheese - Cooking Light April 2008


1 1/4 cups uncooked orzo (rice-shaped pasta) (I used 1 cup rotini and chopped it after it was cooked)
3 cups chopped grilled chicken breast strips (such as Tyson)
1/2 cups trimmed arugula (I used spinach)
1 cup grape tomatoes, halved (I used whole)
1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper (I used 1 cup)
1/4 cup prechopped red onion (I chopped a white onion I had on hand)
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil (dry)
1 teaspoon chopped fresh oregano (dry)
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon extravirgin olive oil
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
6 tablespoons (1 1/2 ounces) crumbled goat cheese (I used maybe 1 tbsp of blue cheese, the hubs and I don't like goat cheese)


1. Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat; drain well.

2. Combine pasta, chicken, and the next 6 ingredients (through oregano) in a large bowl; toss well.

3. Combine vinegar, oil, salt, and black pepper in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk. Drizzle vinegar mixture over pasta mixture; toss well to coat. Sprinkle with cheese.

6 servings (serving size: 1 1/3 cups salad and 1 tablespoon cheese)

Nutritional Information
CALORIES 295(23% from fat); FAT 7.7g (sat 2.9g,mono 2.8g,poly 1.1g); PROTEIN 24.4g; CHOLESTEROL 55mg; CALCIUM 40mg; SODIUM 788mg; FIBER 2g; IRON 2.4mg; CARBOHYDRATE 32.1g

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