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Blue Cheese, Chicken, and Cauliflower Skillet with Bacon, Walnut, and Date Topping

I go through phases when I just don’t feel like cooking. At all.

Sometimes, if I’m really burned out, the better part of a week will go by before I feel inspired to cook. That’s when Mike gets to do one of his favorite things: live off the food from the Pakistani restaurant a block from where we live. It’s a windfall for him and a win for me too since I get a much-needed break and time to recharge.

Blue Cheese, Chicken, and Cauliflower Skillet with Bacon, Walnut, and Date Topping 2

And I have to admit, it’s not just Mike who loves it; I’d eat Pakistani every night too if I could. The only downside of living off the nectar of the gods is that it can get pretty pricey. We all know the cheapest (and generally, the healthiest) way to eat is to cook at home, right?

Blue Cheese

In order to snap myself out of a cooking rut, I like to make sure I stock my fridge with healthy perishable things over the weekend. Because if there’s a head of cauli still in my fridge by Thursday that was purchased last Sunday, you better believe I’m going to cook it before it goes bad instead of ordering out. Also, I like to keep my freezer stocked with lean proteins (like fish fillets and boneless, skinless chicken breasts) divided into meal-sized portions, so I don’t have to make a trip to the store before I can make dinner.

Another trick to getting out of a cooking rut is to play with new flavors or flavor combos. Blue cheese, bacon, and walnuts aren’t particularly interesting on their own, but pair them up with a skillet chicken dinner and suddenly it’s a meal I can get excited about. It’s a great balance of flavors…actually, it’s more than balance; it’s more like a party in your mouth, but a party where no one guest tries to steal the show.

Blue Cheese, Chicken, and Cauliflower Skillet with Bacon, Walnut, and Date Topping 3

This dish is primal, but not paleo because of the use of cheese. You can omit it to keep this meal paleo, but I love the pop of flavor blue cheese adds here.

I wanted to mention, I know this makes a strange amount; it’s basically a 2-person skillet if both people are hungry. Otherwise, you’ll probably have a bit leftover for a 1-person lunch the next day.

Blue Cheese, Chicken, and Cauliflower Skillet with Bacon, Walnut, and Date Topping 4

Blue Cheese, Chicken, and Cauliflower Skillet with Bacon, Walnut, and Date Topping
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Yield: 2 to 3 servings
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 slices turkey bacon, chopped small
  • ¾ lb (340 g) boneless, skinless chicken breast, thinly sliced
  • 1 medium head (about 1½ lbs/680 g) cauliflower, chopped into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 oz (60 g) blue cheese, sliced or crumbled (I used a mild, smooth, and creamy sliceable cheese called Fromager d'Affinois)
  • 2 tablespoons walnuts, chopped
  • 2 Medjool dates, pitted and chopped (I used Natural Delights)
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  1. Heat the oil in a large, deep skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add the bacon and cook until crisp, about 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer the bacon to a small bowl with a slotted spoon.
  2. Turn the heat up to medium-high and add the chicken to the same skillet; cook until the chicken starts to brown, about 2 to 3 minutes.
  3. Add the cauliflower, onion, salt, and pepper to the skillet with the chicken. Cover the skillet and cook until the cauliflower is tender and the veggies start to caramelize, about 8 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. You can add a splash of water if necessary if the pan gets too dry and the veggies start to get too dark.
  4. Dot the blue cheese on top and sprinkle on the bacon, walnuts, and dates. Cover the skillet until the cheese is melted (or run it briefly under the broiler).
  5. Sprinkle the parsley on top and serve.
Faith, author of An Edible Mosaic.
About Faith

I’m the writer, recipe developer, photographer, and food stylist behind this blog. I love finding the human connection through something we all do every day: eat! Food is a common ground that we can all relate to, and our tables tell a story. It’s my goal to inspire you to get in the kitchen, try something new, and find a favorite you didn’t know you had.

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  1. I made this tonight for my husband and he loved it. Great combo of ingredients!

  2. Faith, this dish looks fabulous! I have been eyeing it since you posted it on IG and once my kitchen is done being renovated, I am going to be making it! Healthy yet so flavorful!

  3. I tend to get in ruts as well and either make the same meal every day for a week (hello one pan roasted chicken) or end up eating out. I would choose this skillet over a meal out any day! Blue cheese doesn’t bother me at all so we indulge a few times a month. Next time I have a cheese craving I’m definitely making this!

  4. Some of my best meals happen when I empty the fridge! And I might add, the meals I’m most impressed with because you have to think outside the box. This looks excellent!

  5. I don’t think I have every had Pakistani food before. My husband is from India so I suspect it is similar. This recipe would definitely get me out of my cooking rut. It looks and sounds divine.

  6. Wow, that looks so flavorful and yummy. I must admit I’m very intrigued about Pakistani cuisine now, though. We have quite a few international cuisines around here, but no Pakistani.

  7. This looks fantastic. Definitely making this one night! Perfect for a weeknight meal!

  8. I also definitely go through those cooking ruts! I just did a post the other day about that and about cooking from the freezer and pantry. Love this dish – it is my kind of cooking!

  9. Well hello there beautiful. Faith, this one’s a stunner! I love the combination of textures and the salty and sweet flavor profile.

  10. That is such a wonderful dish and scrumptious combination!



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