chicken tetrazzini with rutabaga noodles

rutabaga noodles
shiitake mushrooms and parsley
tetrazzini chicken over rutabaga noodles
tetrazzini chicken over rutabaga noodles
tetrazzini chicken over rutabaga noodles

Does everything happen for a reason or does a haphazard thing merely set something in motion making it appear as though it does? I don’t have the answer to that but I will say rutabaga is amazing. Okay perhaps a rather bizarre way to start a blog post but it always fascinates me when one seemingly insignificant event leads me to make a dish that turns out to be a favorite - maybe of all time.

If you follow this blog or my Instagram stories, you probably know all about my infatuation with produce; my need to obsessively photograph what I see. A rutabaga, which I would often pass over as not being particularly striking, on that day, caught my attention. The details and subtle colors of this large root demanded to be captured. There was something about it…a depth I hadn’t before noticed.

That evening while looking for ways to use leftover chicken, I came across a recipe for chicken tetrazzini - the classic style, which includes milk, flour, butter, breadcrumbs…in essence all the things I cannot have. It was something I didn’t give a second thought to and moved on until I woke up the next morning convinced that I had to make chicken tetrazzini the paleo and whole30 way and not only that but that I would be using rutabaga noodles instead of pasta.

I admit, I’d never made rutabaga noodles prior to this dish but thought, why the hell not? And so an idea was born and I couldn’t stop thinking about it. At 8am I was at the market buying rutabaga, shiitake mushrooms and chicken with vehement determination to make my version of paleo chicken tetrazzini come to fruition.

It is so very rare that something I envisioned so clearly actually turns out to match the idea. The earthy flavor of the rutabaga works incredibly well with tender chicken thighs and creamy mushroom sauce finishing the whole dish with almond crumble, which gives it depth.

Since milk is out of the equation, I opted for coconut milk. I wasn’t sure how this would work out as I didn’t want an overly coconutty flavor but the salt and lemon cut through the forward coconut taste, leaving only the creaminess behind.

I knew I was going to love this dish the second I smelled the shallots, garlic, wine and mushrooms and I hope you will love this creamy chicken tetrazzini just as much.

italian parsley
tetrazzini chicken over rutabaga noodles
tetrazzini chicken over rutabaga noodles

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chicken tetrazzini over rutabaga noodles

  • prep time: 10 minutes

  • cooking time: 40 minutes

  • makes: 4 servings


For rutabaga noodles:

  • 1 large rutabaga

  • 1 tbsp olive oil

  • pinch salt

For chicken tetrazzini:

  • 2 tbsps olive oil divided

  • 1.5 lbs skinless, boneless chicken thighs

  • 3/4 tsp salt, divided

  • 1/2 tsp ground, pepper divided

  • 1/2 lb shiitake mushrooms, sliced

  • 1/2 lb cremini mushrooms, sliced

  • 2 large shallots finely chopped

  • 2 garlic cloves, minced

  • 1 tsp fresh lemon juice

  • 1 rounded tsp fresh thyme, chopped

  • 2 tbsp fresh Italian parsley, chopped, divided

  • 1/2 glass dry white wine (use broth is whole 30)

  • 1.5 cups full fat coconut milk

For almond crumble:

  • 1/4 cup toasted almonds, ground

  • 1 tsp olive oil

  • pinch salt



Spiralize rutabaga and set it asides.

In food processor or blender add toasted almonds and grind finely. Add to small bowl with olive oil and salt and set aside.

Remove chicken from package and pat dry with paper towels and season with 1/2 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp pepper. Heat cast iron skillet over medium heat. Add olive oil and chicken and cook for 7-8 minutes per side until cooked through. Cover with foil and set aside to rest.

In the same pan, add 1 tbsp olive oil, shallots and a pinch of salt. Cook for 2-3 minutes until shallots are translucent. Add garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Increase heat to high, add wine or broth (if Whole 30) and deglaze pan by scraping off the brown bits. .

Reduce heat back to medium, add mushrooms, 1/4 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper thyme and parsley and cook for 10 minutes until mushrooms are soft but still have a bite.

Add coconut milk and lemon juice, turn heat down and simmer for 10 minutes.

Cut chicken into bite size pieces and add it back to sauce and heat through for 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat medium frying pan, add oil and rutabaga noodles and cook stirring continuously for 3-5 minutes until noodles have softened.

To plate, add rutabaga noodles, chicken and mushrooms sauce, sprinkle with almond crumble and top with additional fresh chopped Italian parsley.

I haven’t been this smitten over a dish in a long time. This creamy chicken tetrazzini over rutabaga noodles, topped with almond crumble will wow you and you won’t believe it’s paleo and whole 30 too! #paleo, #whole30pasta #whole30 #paleopasta #mushrooms #chicken #chickentetrazzini #calmeats #eatrealfood #grainfree #glutenfree #dairyfree

stuffed mushrooms with rice, walnuts, bacon and raisins

rice bag, mushrooms and parsley
mushrooms and parsley
rice, mushrooms and parsley 

Mushrooms hold a certain mystery. Earthy, magical and delicious.

In my younger years, my parents often took 2 vacations a year. It was the beach during the summer months and mountains in the fall. Since I have an utter obsession with water, the beach was always my preferred place. While it was packed with people, laughter and excitement exploding all around, the mountains offered the opposite. I viewed them as an enigma - intimidating and humbling. 

Our vacations generally involved a lot of hiking; long days filled with my searching for edible clover, drinking fresh water from tiny creeks and stopping to investigate every mushroom I spotted. 

rice, mushrooms and parsley
stuffed mushrooms with parsley, rice, bacon, walnuts and raisins
rice, mushrooms nd parlsey 

Mushrooms fascinated me. I never was allowed to touch them. As relaxed as my parents were about things, that was the one thing they wouldn't budge on. And naturally, being told that I couldn't do something made me want it all the more. I would get on the ground, admire the shapes, the earthy colors, the drops of dew slowly making their way off the cap. My parents waited. They understood. Kids need the time to explore. 

But let's fast forward to today. I don't forage for mushrooms, though maybe some day I will. I pick them up at the farmers market or grocery store and sauté them with ghee and herbs. 

Today I wanted to try something a little different. An appetizer that's easy to make, with simple ingredients that are accessible to everyone. Whether you're hosting a March Madness party, making them for Easter or just entertaining friends and family, this is an easy one to throw together. I'm using one of my pantry staples and create this delicious appetizer that's sure to please a crowd.

I've been using Mahatma rice for some time now. It's flavorful, versatile, delicious and affordable. You can check out Mahatma rice here. For this dish, I decided to infuse the rice with green tea, golden raisins and toss it together with a combination of sautéed shallots, reduced white wine and bacon and top it with some fresh parsley. Then I take the mixture and stuff it in baby Portabella mushrooms and bake it for 15 minutes. An easy appetizer you can toss together even as your hungry guests arrive. Happy March everyone! 

stuffed mushrooms, parsley 
stuffed mushrooms on board with parsley 
stuffed mushrooms on board

stuffed mushrooms with rice, walnuts, bacon and raisins 

  • Prep time: 5 minutes
  • Cooking time 30-35 minutes
  • Serves 6-8


  • 1/2 cup Mahatma rice thoroughly rinsed 
  • 1 green tea bag (optional)
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1/4 cup golden raisins 
  • 2 pints baby Portabella mushrooms, stems removed and hollowed out
  • 2 slices of uncured, nitrate free bacon chopped
  • 2 shallots, chopped
  • 1/4 cup white wine (optional use broth)
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped walnuts
  • 2 tbsp chopped parsley
  • 1/2 tsp salt 
  • 1/4 tsp pepper


  • medium sauce pan
  • large frying pan
  • parchment paper
  • baking sheet


In sauce pan combine rice, water, tea bag and raisins. Bring to a boil, remove tea bag, cover and turn heat down to a simmer. Cook for 15 minutes, turn off heat and let sit for 5 minutes. 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In frying pan, add bacon and cook for 5 minutes on medium heat, stirring continuously. Remove bacon pieces with slotted spoon and rest on paper towel lined plate, leaving bacon drippings in pan. 

Add shallots and pinch of salt and sauté on low heat for 5-7 minutes, stirring continuously, until shallots caramelize. Deglaze with wine and increase heat for 1-2 minutes until wine reduces. Turn off heat. 

Once rice is cooked, add to frying pan, along with walnuts, salt, pepper and 1 tbsp parsley. Add most of the bacon back in reserving a little to top mushrooms once they finish baking. Stir to combine.

Place mushroom caps on parchment paper lined backing sheet and top with as much of the rice filling as you'd like. Bake for 15 minutes. Once mushrooms are baked, top with leftover bacon and additional parsley. 

(This post is sponsored by Mahatma Rice)

apple sweet potato and mushroom hash

apple sweet potato and mushroom hash

It's fall. In our house we take this time of year very seriously. By that I mean, we want to do as many fall activities as possible. One of them involves apple picking. It's been a long standing tradition my husband and I started years ago. It generally involves eating 3 or 4 while picking (You know you do it too) to the point of nausea. There isn't a time in my daily life where I would consider eating that many apples but things are different when you're in the orchard. 

Anyway, apple picking this year was slightly different. I didn't consider what it would be like with a 16 month old and a 4 year old. We certainly couldn't linger about and take our time, blissfully picking apples. My son was good about it, but was mostly laying in the orchard complaining that he's tired or running through a nearby pumpkin patch, while my daughter was busy attempting to eat everything form apples to rocks and whatever else she could find in her path. Meanwhile, my husband and I were speed picking 10 lbs of apples. 

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chicken thighs with strawberries and mushrooms

chicken thighs with strawberries and mushrooms

I know what you're thinking: "Strawberries, mushrooms and chicken?" I realize it's a very unlikely combination but I recently heard a chef talk about some unusual ingredient pairings and that piqued my interest. There are several compounds chicken, strawberries and mushrooms share, which makes this trio work quite well together. I'm intrigued whenever there is a deviation from the norm. Something that defies the standard way of cooking. 

I set out to try a recipe which would either be a disaster or would completely surprise me. I was stunned and delighted at how beautifully the ingredients worked. This recipe is quite quick to do and won't disappoint. The longest part is just marinating the chicken. If you're really pressed for time, 15-20 minutes will do but ideally an hour is best. 

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