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she's a beaut, clark! {parmesan chicken}


Happy Birthday to my oldest daughter tomorrow! THIRTEEN!

In that snapshot taken eleven years ago, I can spy about 100 memories that make me lose my breath.

Oh - and Happy Birthday to my husband today. Love you babe. Someday, this day that I watched National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation as I labored all those years ago, will once again be yours.

Or maybe, let's call it...ours. There is something about my her birthday that also feels just a little bit like mine.


Currently watching: Harry & Meghan (just like everyone else) on Netflix. Ok cringy thing first; that 'bow' was rough to watch right?! I mean, Harry's face. But other than that (and who among us hasn't had a moment like that of their own), I think they are lovely and adorable and deserve to tell their story any way they want. Trailer here.

Currently reading: Still on my Taylor Jenkins Reid bender and I am on to Maybe in Another Life. I have major reading ADHD and won't read books that give me nightmares (anything gruesome or having to do with kids or animals are in an instant NO), so it's a very narrow lane when it comes to holding my interest, but not filling my head with images I can't shake. Her books are so easy to get into and always hold my focus.

Currently listening: Another week another awesome podcast from Glennon, Abby and Sister. Listen here. I never feel more seen then when I am listening to her stories. 'How (Not) To Party' is had me nodding along and laughing out loud and I didn't want it to end.

Currently baking: I don't do much gluten free baking anymore, but my husband still appreciates it, so this week I made him these and they were a huge success. In the photo here they were still warm, so the glaze sunk right into the top. But once fully cooled, they firmed up and have the best texture at room temp.

Currently drinking: coffee with this creamer. I've been a black coffee kind of girl all my coffee-drinking life, so this feels incredibly indulgent - what a simple pleasure. Who knows if/when I'll stop now that I'm in?!

Currently following: this instagram account. I am fascinated and want to know everything.


Throwback to one of my favorite pictures ever, taken 9 years ago today when he was 37, the girls were 3, 2 and 3 weeks old, and I was of course hanging on by a thread.

But apparently I did bake a cake!

I am always reminded this time of year, when birthdays and holidays all collide, of these early years parenting. Or it would probably be better termed 'surviving.' I wouldn't trade my memories or even the sleepless nights for anything.

What a magnificent reminder that all the seasons we live through, even when they feel insurmountable, often come back to us as memories that make us feel vaguely wistful or even so dang lucky to have made them in the first place.

It's also nice to be reminded that these ARE the good days. The ones we are living in and present for today.


No red sauce in this one (ew, tomato chunks is what I hear from my kids), so I'm calling Parmesan Chicken.

As always, lots of latitude in the recipe. Here are a couple notes on the front end:

- I used 3lbs of chicken but if you have less, just go with it.

- I like to use cashew milk in the homemade cream of chicken soup, but be aware that the cooked result more liquidy than if you use a 2% milk (always better). I don't mind it this way because as you can see, the top bakes up perfectly and any residual liquid just gets stored with leftovers to keep them moist. But if you want it thicker, use a dairy milk with fat.

Parmesan Chicken


  • 3lbs chicken breasts, tenderized*

  • 3/4 cup chicken broth

  • 1/2 cup cashew milk (2% for best results)

  • 1/2 tsp onion powder (or 1 tsp dried onion)

  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder

  • 1/8 tsp black pepper

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 1 tsp dried parsley

  • 1/8 tsp of paprika

  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour

  • 1/2 cup (56 g) Parmesan cheese (freshly grated or from a bag)

*To tenderize, place chicken breast one at a time in a ziplock bag and pound using the smooth side of a meat mallet until thinned. You could also filet breasts to make thin cutlets or simply use tenderloins.


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat 9x13 pan with nonstick spray.

  2. Once chicken is tenderized, pat dry with a paper towel, salt + pepper liberally, and sandwich it in the pan side by side. It’s ok if it is crammed in there (as it cooks it will 'shrink'), just don’t overlap the pieces.

  3. In a small pan over medium heat, bring chicken broth to a simmer.

  4. In a measuring cup, measure in cashew milk. To that cup, add all the seasonings and flour. Whisk vigorously until flour is absorbed.

  5. Pour mixture into simmering stock and whisk continuously for 1-2 minutes until thickened.

  6. Pour sauce over prepared chicken, top with parmesan, cover with foil and bake for 15 minutes. Remove cover and continue baking another 15, or until internal temperature reaches 165 degrees. Remove foil and broil 3-4 minutes.

  7. Let chicken cool, uncovered, for 10 minutes if you can. The sauce will thicken up and more so in leftovers, which are excellent cold or reheated.


8 servings: 200g each

Calories: 211 | Carbs: 3

Fat: 3.5 | Protein: 42 | Fiber: 0

Katie Crokus Parmesan Chicken

I love serving with jasmine rice and broccoli. As much as I don't endorse basic steamed veggies, there is SO much flavor and umami to the chicken that I think a steamed veggie works just fine on the side of this entree.

Turn leftovers into an excellent chopped salad by combining with greens, grape tomatoes, more parmesan and caesar dressing! Or reheat in the airfryer for another cozy meal.

Parmesan Chicken
Download PDF • 547KB


Started off the week using up 4 old bananas and this recipe from the Magnolia cookbook. I wasn't optimistic because I kind of hate bananas. I topped mine with mini chocolate chips.

But Elle, my only banana bread lover, took one bite and wanted to share it at her class 'Ivan Day.' The kids were celebrating one of the greatest even children's books ever, The One and Only Ivan. Have you read it?

Early in the week I also made another loaf of bread and a turkey pot pie soup (not the prettiest but since when has that ever stopped me?). I didn't write down what I did, but I have to try and recreate it, I've been loving it for lunches all week! That's of course butternut squash in there to thicken it up!

(With grilled cheese, on a Christmas plate of course.)

Oh my goodness our new 'pit couch' arrived and it is everything. It holds everything and everyone (it's like our car, just in the house). I think it even has magical powers to make us all like each other just a bit more. If you want to check out the brand, it is Albany Park and the style is the Kova Pit Couch. Should you somehow convince yourself one of these is a necessity in your world too, here's a link for $200 off.

It's that time of the year when I get little reminders from my husband to put the breaks on spending. Particularly for the stupid shit. Of course this was a hell yes. And because I can't get enough cozy...

Quick reminder: December 13th is the last day to order Cozy Earth and get it in time for Christmas. My code Katie45 will save you 45% through the end of the month! This crew and jogger set are my favorite clothing items but the sheets (I love the Oat color) are now something I cannot sleep without!

Dentist appointments this week and they were restocking the 'fun stuff' so the girls had some prime selection options. (Side note, look how long my girls' hair is getting!!)

On the darkest of days you'll find Kenna here, living her best sunroom life.

I just love seeing this tree on the campus of my girls' school. Makes me smile on the many after hours trips back and forth for practices.

The rink is coming together on some dark nights. We hope the weather cooperates and my husband can have it ready to roll in the next week or so.

This was just annoying.

Every appointment brings us closer to braces. I didn't need them and I'm trying so hard to be cool when they are doing things, but I have no clue what's happening, and her mouth always hurts. I hate it.

Carline essentials are oddly similar to a road trip. Good podcast, cozy drink, yummy food. I hope you stocked up over black friday on your G2G bars! If not, KatieC always works for 15% off.

If you caught my stories yesterday, you saw snippets from Tess's competition day. It's emotional and thrilling and heart-pounding and...naturally, I cried three times. This moment, backstage before they went on, the girls listened to their music and visualized hitting every mark. This photo their coach shared brought tears to my eyes. I've never seen or experienced a team like this before.

Their week started out with a covid case but in the end, Team Ambition 'hit zero' which means no deductions and a first place finish in their division. More tears.

This is 47 and I say it never looked better.


So I did some scary things this week:

  1. Interviewed for a job.

  2. Closed my shopify store.

  3. Began the process of changing my website domain (while I LOVE 'Empower Nutrition', it isn't 'evergreen' for me).

  4. Changed my website and IG bios.

  5. Went to my doctor stepped on the scale for the first time in 9 months.

Did you do something scary this week? If not, I highly recommend it. Because I believe those things also lead me to:

  1. Accidentally create the most flavorful, nutrient-packed, healing, medicine-in-a-bowl meal (above - coming next week!).

  2. Take many deep breaths.

  3. Welcome almost 2000 (?!) new friends on Instagram (hi!! so happy you're here!)

  4. Begin to function in my 'zone of genius,' a concept that was SO bizarre to me less than a year ago. (Don't know what I'm talking about, read The Big Leap)

  5. Soften in ways that once felt impossible.

It's been a big week. And an even bigger weekend is underway currently. Looking forward to continuing the conversation with you next Sunday!

As always, thanks for being here!!

Warmly, Katie G E T I N T O U C H Communicate & Connect @katiecrokus


There is no bigger show of gratitude to a creator than to comment and share their work. If someone forwarded this to you, but you'd like to subscribe, click here T H E F I N E P R I N T This post may contain affiliate links. All opinions and words are my own. I only talk about products and companies I truly love! Thank you for your continued support! You can find all my affiliate codes here.

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Dec 12, 2022

Happy birthday to your husband and daughter! I started following you a few months ago after seeing your name on a reddit post. For the last few weeks I have been solely making your recipes-- this week the round up is pancake oat bars, creamy chicken enchilada soup, and zucchini lasagne! Can't wait to try this chicken parmesan next! I look forward to seeing your new blog posts on Sundays and am so excited for these new opportunities coming your way! Thanks for sharing your wonderful creations with us.

Katie Crokus
Katie Crokus
Dec 12, 2022
Replying to

Welcome, friend! Thanks so much for being here and for trying some of my past (favorite!) recipes. The pancake protein bars are a current favorite though - I have them every single day! I am so happy we've connected. Have a wonderful week!


Dec 11, 2022

Hi! I can’t wait to try this chicken parm recipe! All your advice and life notes are so spot on and beautiful. So many December birthdays- which are hard but so special too. What a time to come into the world. I love your perspective and lens on things. It helps me to appreciate all the things too. Like, when you drop eggs,.. you take a photo of it. Because, it’s a moment. We moved our couch around for Xmas tree room and it too has lended itself to more snuggles and co-viewing. cant wait for White Lotus tonight!

Katie Crokus
Katie Crokus
Dec 11, 2022
Replying to

I love you and I love this entire message. I also love that when you blow up spaghetti squash you think of me and take a picture too. Enjoy White Lotus! I need to get on that. The whole world is buzzing about it.


Wow! This was a very big week for you! Wishing your husband and daughter a Happy Birthday and hope their year is filled with all good things! So funny about that creamer- I’ve always loved creamer and always search for “the one” and this is totally it for me, too! It is so good and I hope never goes away! Have a great week;)

Katie Crokus
Katie Crokus
Dec 11, 2022
Replying to

Hi Laura, thank you so much! Not to project the scarcity mindset but I bought three today! I am sure I could find several more that I like - but this one has me hooked for now! I appreciate all the warm wishes. Have a great week!

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