Just Crazy Enough to Work


No rest for the weary!

Wanting to make sure I could enjoy my Christmas break as much as possible, I did all the dirty work around the house today, so I’ll be as free as a bird for the next four days!

The laundry is done, folded, and every. single. room. in Casa de IGE has been dusted, mopped, vacuumed, scrubbed and/or spit shined. Ok, not spit shined…

I even got a little crazy and washed all our blankets. Right?! There’s something about clean sheets and blankets that makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside. Good stuff. :)

I caught my breath with a light lunch of Cold Sesame Noodles,


and a stack of White Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Cookies (aren’t they adorable?!)


before hitting the gym for a 35 minute, 3.75 mile Reversible Treadmill Routine:

Time Speed Incline
0-2 4.0 1%
2-5 6.0 1%
5-10 6.5 1%
10-15 7.0 1%
15-20 7.5 1%
20-25 7.0 1%
25-30 6.5 1%
30-33 6.0 1%
33-35 4.0 1%
Total: 3.75 miles  

Followed up with 15 minutes on the elliptical on Level 6. My feet didn’t go numb today – it’s a Christmas miracle! ;)

I was so excited for today’s dinner that I threw proper meal times out the window and made Lemon Brown Sugar Chicken for lunner (lunch + dinner) around 3:00. I was hungry…the recipe was exciting…you know how it goes!


This recipe comes from Jenna @ Eat, Live, Run and when I first read it I was all "Lemon? Chicken? BROWN SUGAR??? Are you SURE?!" It seemed just crazy enough to work!

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The good news is that not only is this dish INSANELY delicious, it’s super easy to boot. All you do is mix flour, paprika and salt together, then lightly coat 2 chicken breasts in the mixture.

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Sauté the chicken in a little bit of vegetable oil until both sides are crisp,


then remove to an oven-safe dish.


Meanwhile juice a couple lemons and add the juice to the hot pan,


scraping up all the bits from the chicken.


Pour the lemon sauce over the chicken,


then sprinkle with brown sugar.




20 minutes in a 350 degree oven, followed by a quick broil and you’ve got Lemon Brown Sugar Chicken, baby!!


It tasted like Sesame Chicken!!


As I was chewing I was all, "this tastes Asian?!" Then it hit me – tangy, sweet, tender sesame chicken – without the nasty breading and deep fat frying. This was FABULOUS!


I served my chicken over a bed of Israeli CousCous cooked in chicken broth.


You should be able to find ICC at the regular grocery store – I get mine out of the bulk bins.


They’re fabulously bouncy, chewy and get super creamy in the chicken broth – plus they’re a cinch to make. Just use a 2:1 ratio of liquid to couscous, bring to a boil in a small saucepan, put a lid on the pan, turn the heat down to low, and cook until soft. Same way you cook rice, really!


SUCH a surprise hit of a lunner – I will definitely be making this again! :D


Month of Holiday Giveaways

Congrats to the winners of the Your Choice of Chobani Giveaway:

Kathryn: VANILLA! OMG my favvvv by far. Love it with fruit and granola. Also, the Pom flavor is def worth trying! 

Jaime: I would for sure go for Pineapple! Definitely my favorite flavor my far!!

Chobani for daaaaaays! Email your complete mailing address to IowaGirlEats@gmail.com and we’ll get that out to you!

There are two more giveaways left in the Month of Holiday Giveaways. One tasty giveaway left this week and the final, grand finale giveaway next week! Thanks to everyone for participating! :D

In other news, a bunch of friends are in town for the holidays and we’re meeting up to catch up tonight. Should be a grand ol’ time. :)

See ya’!


What are your favorite ways to jazz up plain ol’ chicken?

I love getting new chicken ideas!

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  1. Yum to the Chobani…or I mean congrats to the winners. I’m excited to be hosting a Chobani giveaway right now too. They are such a great company, huh?

    And now that I’ve seen that chicken recipe twice, I must make it sometime soon. Simple and delicious are what cooking should always be about. Perfect!

  2. I love Israeli Couscous – so much better than the other kind!

  3. told you you’d love it…i can’t stop thinking about that lemon chicken either! it’s amazing :)

  4. Chicken does get boring! My favorite way to eat it would have to be with buffalo sauce.

    • P.S. The lemon and chicken party totally reminds me of Everybody Loves Raymond. Lemon Chicken was Deborah’s signature gift!
      I also love chicken sprinkled with salt and pepper, and then rolled in breadcrumbs and coconut flakes. It’s great with a sweet potato. I haven’t had it in forever!

  5. shandy (@webgals) 12.22.2010

    My favorite way to make chicken is to just pour some salsa verde on it before baking for 30 minutes. Then I slice up avocado to eat with each and every wonderful bite of chicken. heaven.

  6. Dee 12.22.2010

    Wow. That chicken does look fabulous!

  7. Alyssa 12.22.2010

    Ooh, I want to try that chicken recipe.
    I love Israeli cous-cous so much, it’s great…the perfect texture.
    It’s not really a new idea but I love doing a lemon/caper sauce over chicken breasts.

  8. Eve P 12.22.2010

    Season Chicken Breast with garlic powder and lawrys. Fry in a little olive oil. When chicken is cooked through top with chopped crisp bacon, sliced scallions and mexi-shredded cheese. Simple and delicious.

  9. Cynthia 12.22.2010

    Those cookies look amazing!

  10. Shawn 12.22.2010

    When you say “Reversible Treadmill Routine:” what exactly do you mean?

    And the chicken looks great!!

  11. dmcgirl 12.22.2010

    I can’t wait to see the recipe ideas for chicken! ;-)

  12. brittany 12.22.2010

    Ok, so this sounded weird to me at first, but it turned out to be my absolute FAV way to make chicken jazzy :) Try combining a little salt, cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg and rub it over the chicken. Then grill it (I use a stove-top grill pan) while brushing it with a mixture of apricot preserves and lemon juice to give it a glaze. OMG. Even better with a topping of chopped red pepper, green pepper, green onion and peaches (or pineapple!) A little sweet…full of flavor…surprisingly healthy…and such a vacay from same-old same-old chicken seasonings. You have to try this!

  13. Amanda 12.22.2010

    So, this is really random.. but i remember you take flintstones vitamins for anemia, i also just started taking them for the same reason. I’ve found that I have to eat a BIG breakfast to take it in the morning..otherwise it makes me feel sick! What meal do you usually take it with?.. if you wait to take it at lunch do you feel sluggish through the morning? thanks for your help:)

  14. I love getting all my cleaning done first thing. I usually spend Friday nights cleaning, so I don’t have to worry about it the rest of the weekend. Sounds lame, I know, but it makes me happy.

    I also love Israeli couscous!!

  15. Anna @ ciaotochow 12.22.2010

    After reading this post, I’m gonna have to try some Israeli couscous! And that chicken looks so yummy – sometimes weird-sounding flavors end up being really tasty together (like this one!).

  16. Dream Mom 12.22.2010

    Congrats on getting everything clean and ready for the holidays! Love the reverse treadmill routine. I used to do that routine and mix it up with some interval training the other times. LOL on the button popping yesterday. It reminded me of a friend of mine who had a massive sweet tooth like you-she was a tiny thing but was always telling me about her button popping off on her pants because she overate.

    As for chicken, I think lemon chicken or parmesan chicken is my favorite. I am not much for Asian food. I think your sesame noodles looked better today-they looked like worms to me in those wraps and I was a bit grossed out by the picture. Sorry, had to tell you:(
    Most of the time, your food looks delicious!

  17. Kristin from MN 12.22.2010

    That chicken sounds so good and easy! I have been wanting to make sesame chicken. I love sesame chicken from the hy-vee deli. I know it’s bad for you but it’s soooo good! Do you have a recipe for sesame chicken? Thanks!

    Two things come to mind for ways to jazz up chicken that I like:
    (1.) roll chicken in ranch or honey mustard and coat in seasoned bread crumbs and bake, or (2.) bake chicken topped with salsa, cheese, tortilla chips and a dollop of sour cream (kraftfoods.com).

  18. kelly 12.22.2010

    Try this: Get some Trader Joe’s Soyaki marinade and chicken breasts. Pound the breasts a bit to flatten them out and marinade the breasts in the soyaki for a few hours. Grill outdoors or on a stove-top grill pan. Serve w/ rice and brocoli–fast, flavorable and delish!

  19. Jenn 12.22.2010

    My go-to chicken staple is definitely crock-pot pulled BBQ chicken. I’m only feeding my husband and myself, so I use 2-3 chicken breasts, a bottle of spicy Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ sauce and one small white onion cut julienne, and – if there happens to be one on hand – 1/2 can of beer. Served with steamed broccoli… OMG! Plus, the leftovers are to die for.

  20. Lauren 12.23.2010

    That chicken does look pretty amazing. I wonder how this would be on fish?

  21. Ashley 12.23.2010

    This chicken looks divine!

    I eat chicken constantly it seems like. I love it with BBQ sauce, Buffalo Sauce, or Lemon Pepper! :).

    I’m definitely always up for new recipes though! So, thank you!

  22. Kari 12.23.2010

    i love lunner!

  23. Carrie 12.23.2010

    I wanted to let you know that I tried your Crock Pot Buffalo Chicken Wraps recipe last night – it was a HUGE hit! Soooooo good. Thanks for the recipe, keep ’em coming in 2011!! Merry Christmas!

  24. Allison 12.23.2010

    You’re chicken looks delicious…and I am a vegetarian! :)

  25. Nicole (the other one) 12.23.2010

    I usually cube up chicken breasts and saute it in a nonstick pan with Thai Peanut Sauce. I either serve the chicken over a salad with mandarin oranges and crispy noodles with soy ginger salad dressing, or as lettuce wraps with cold sesame noodles and matchstick carrots.

  26. Leesh 12.29.2010

    I just also discovered Israeli CousCous, it’s awesome! I think the chicken makes the two a great combo.

  27. […] to do it, with or without my bum knee! Me and the treadmill reunited yesterday and I borrowed an interval training from Iowa Girl Eats (love her blog!). I tweaked it a little to finish a 4 mile run in 37 minutes. […]

  28. […] It is a recipe that mixes the flavors of lemon & paprika.  This recipe was also featured by Kristin at Iowa Girl Eats, and she said it tasted like Sesame Chicken…so I added toasted sesame seeds for good […]

  29. […] real food around this house.  Mainly the 30 Minute Lemon Chicken that has been featured here, here, and […]

  30. […] got home and couldn’t get dinner on the table fast enough. Luckily it was a quick one – 30 Minute Lemon Brown Sugar Chicken – […]

  31. Alyssa 02.18.2011

    I had gotten some frozen chicken breast on sale and always LOVE Israeli Couscous (can we pretend it’s a whole grain and not a pasta…?) so I’m making this tonight for my roommate and her mom.
    Also steaming some sugar snap peas as a side. Om nom nom!

  32. […] saw the recipe that is the amazingness of Lemon Brown Sugar Chicken on Eat Live Run and then saw Iowa Girl Eats make it, and I knew I had to try it. With the rave reviews floating around the internet, I knew I […]

  33. […] dinner is a Frankenstein combination of Jenna’s Lemon Brown Sugar Chicken and my Orange Tofu, and is seriously […]

  34. […] other news, I whipped up another just crazy enough to work recipe for dinner tonight – Honey Lemon […]

  35. […] might be my new favorite whole chicken breast recipe, actually (a title previously held by Lemon Brown Sugar Chicken!) Plus it comes together in no time at […]

  36. Dory 03.15.2012

    I’m going to start logging my running like yours too! It looks like it’s very helpful for tracking progress.


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