Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Healthy Dutch Oven Recipes - Part I

My wife and I had quite the wake-up call at the doctor's office the other day. She's been diagnosed diabetic for a long time, but her sugars were way out of control. We decided it's time that we both lose weight.

I know that a long time ago, I said I don't cook in the dutch oven to be healthy. I also know that sometimes, I'm still going to cook things that aren't. But during the week, and many of the dutch oven sundays, from now on, we're eating healthier.

So, I went out and bought a diabetic cookbook, called "Prevention Diabetes Diet Cookbook: Discover the New Fiber-Full Eating Plan for Weight Loss". The basic premise of the book is that to eat healthier, you first want to focus on "whole foods". That means any food that doesn't have a lot of processing or ingredients. Between that and watching your carbohydrate/sugar intake and fats, too, you'll lose weight. My dear wife has already lost 5 lbs in the first week and a half.

In the menu plan for the first week, there was this plan for lime marinated chicken. There were no special ingredients at all in the list. All whole foods! All low fat, and it looked great! So, I tried it!

Dutch Oven Lime Marinated Chicken with Salsa Fresca

12"Dutch Oven

8-9 coals below
16-17 coals above

The Chicken

  • 4-6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • Juice of 3 limes
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 1/4 tsp cumin powder
  • Liberal shakes of salt and pepper

The Salsa

  • 3 Medium tomatoes
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 avocado
  • 1 Medium onion
  • 3-4 green onions, chopped into the greens
  • 1/2 Cup fresh chopped cilantro
  • 2 jalapenos, seeded and cored
  • Liberal shakes of salt and pepper

In one bowl, I started by mixing all of the ingredients in the first set, except the chicken. I took two tsp of the mixture and set it aside in another bowl. I stirred it all up and poured it into a ziplock baggie. I added the chicken and shook it all up and set it aside to marinade. Since it was still frozen, I used that as an opportunity to thaw it, instead of marinating it in the fridge.

In retrospect, I might have cut the chicken into strips about an inch wide, kinda like stir-fry size. I don't know that it makes that much difference...

Once it was thawed and marinated, I put the chicken into a 12" dutch oven. I actually put a fold-out steamer basket in it, because I wanted the chicken juices to drain off, leaving the marinade as a sort of glaze. Since the moisture was still trapped inside the dutch oven, the chicken didn't dry out.

I put the chicken on the coals. It only took 20 minutes or so to cook. In the meantime, I made the salsa.

Which was really easy. I just chopped up all the ingredients, some minced pretty fine, like the cilantro and the garlic. I put them into the bowl with the reserved marinade and stirred it all up. I don't remember if I put in more lime juice or not.

When the chicken was done, I served it up with the salsa on top, and with some seasoned cucumbers. The combination of the hot chicken and the cool salsa, with the lime flavor in both sure made it taste GREAT! My kids just kept ranting on and on about it, and Jodi liked it, too. Brendon couldn't believe it was healthy and tasted so good!

Mark has discovered a love of Dutch Oven Cooking. Mark also has other sites and blogs, including and his MoBoy blog.

Mark's Other Blog Posts: The AD/HD Quiz, Social Book of Mormon?, I invoke Godwin's Law


  1. That is so cool. I am proud of you guys. My cholesterol is a little elevated, so I think I'll just stand in the wake of your healthy food speedboat and nab some good recipes!

  2. I love your recipes. Would love to post some of them on our website with appropriate credit and link.



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