I am always looking for cooking shortcuts. Then again, I also look for healthy recipes when I can. The last time we went to Subway, my husband wanted the Chicken Parmesan sandwich. I noticed all they did was take the breaded chicken breasts, put hot spaghetti sauce over it, top it with shredded mozzarella cheese, and pop it in the oven for a minute.
That gave me the idea to make “fake” chicken parmesan at home. I bake the Tyson Southern Chicken Strips as directed, heat spaghetti sauce in the microwave, pour some of the chicken strips, top it with shredded mozzarella, and pop it into the oven for 5 minutes. I hope that the real Italians out there will forgive me for cheating. However, it saves time for the delicious Italian Veggie Bake I serve with my fake chicken parmesan.
For this recipe, you will need one medium onion, one small, unpeeled eggplant, one medium zucchini, one large red bell pepper, 16 ounces of sliced fresh mushrooms, one 14 1/2 ounce can of Italian style stewed tomatoes, Italian dressing, and shredded parmesan cheese.
Chop your onion and red bell pepper. Cube your eggplant and zucchini. If you are unlucky like me and cannot find sliced mushrooms at the grocery store when you go, clean and slice your mushrooms.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Pour 1/3 cup of Italian dressing in a skillet and turn it on medium to low heat. Put your chopped onion in and let it cook for 5 minutes. Then add the cubed eggplant and let the cook for 5 minutes. Add the cubed zucchini, chopped red bell pepper, and sliced mushrooms and allow those to cook for 5 minutes. Add your can of Italian stewed tomatoes and let the ingredients simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Pour that mixture into a casserole dish and top with 1/3 cup of shredded parmesan cheese. Let the veggies bake in the oven for 25 to 30 minutes then serve.
I made this last night (see picture below) and it was so delicious!