A few weeks back, I got a specific request to attempt creating a healthier version Kona Grill’s avocado egg rolls. My first thought was “IT CAN’T POSSIBLY BE DONE.” Then, I realized that it would actually be super easy to do. Why? Three reasons:
- Avocados are amazing, so anything with avocado as the primary ingredient will probably be pretty tasty
- I have an oven. If I can make baked crab rangoons that taste good, I can make baked egg rolls and save the extra fat calories that come from frying them
- All of the flavors in the version from Kona Grill are VERY basic. Avocado, cilantro, and a few common spices (easy peasy)
Challenge accepted, completed, and utterly delish. I held off on posting the recipe until this week specifically because I think these would be AWESOME for a Memorial Day Party appetizer. (And because I’ve been too busy to post anything for the last week and a half… Life gets crazy sometimes.) If you happen to be going to a pot luck party over the upcoming holiday weekend, bring these. For real.
Nutritional Overview (for 1 whole egg roll):
Cook time: 40 minutes
- 12 egg roll wrappers (found in the produce section by the microwavable bags of vegetables)
- 3 avocados, pitted and diced
- 1lb ground chicken
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 1/2 tbsp low-sodium Lawry’s seasoning salt
- 2 tsp garlic powder
- 2 tsp black pepper
- 1/2 cup medium pico de gallo (I bought the prepared HEB kind, also in the produce section)
- 1/4 cup chopped red cabbage
- 1/3 cup chopped red onion
- 1 egg
- 2 tbsp liquid egg whites
- 1/2 cup fat free Greek yogurt
- 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
- 1/4 cup honey
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees and line a baking sheet with foil or parchment paper
- Heat olive oil, ground chicken, garlic, salt, and pepper in a skillet over medium heat and cook until chicken is no longer pink
- Combine cooked chicken, diced avocado, pico, cabbage, and red onion in a bowl and stir until combined
- Lay egg roll wrappers out on your baking sheet and drop about 3tbsp or 1/4 cup of the chicken-avocado mixture into the center of each wrapper
- Stir the egg and egg whites together in a small bowl until evenly mixed
- Roll ’em up: if you’re looking at the wrapper straight on, it should be in a diamond shape. Fold the bottom corner over your filling and up toward the top corner. Tighten the filling by cupping your hand over the filled portion of the wrapper and pushing the filling into the fold. Wrap your left and right corners over the filled section and dab a little bit of the egg mixture over the folded corners to seal them together. Roll the bottom (filled and sealed section) to the top corner until everything is sealed together.
- Repeat step 6 with each wrapper
- Brush the remaining egg mixture over each roll
- Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the wrappers start to brown
- While your egg rolls are baking, mix the yogurt, honey, and cilantro in a blender or food processor to make your sauce
- Remove from oven, cut in half diagonally (they’ll be HOT), and serve with dipping sauce
If you get totally lost when rolling your egg rolls up and end up with a giant mess instead of something pretty, watch this short video to see how it’s done.
In case you’re curious about how these stack up to the original, here are the nutritional facts for Kona’s egg rolls (pulled from konagrill.com):
The Weekend Ahead: Bikinis, Boats, Brides, and Booze
I don’t know about you guys, but I’m so excited to have a three-day weekend. Saturday and Sunday will be packed with cooking, a boat party, and a wedding, but I’m planning to relax as much as possible on Monday. Hell, I might even treat myself to a pedicure. What I do know for certain is that I’m not going to deprive myself of any specific food or drink this weekend. I’m going to take the opportunity to relax and let loose. I’ve been on point with my diet these past few weeks, I’ve been consistently nailing my workouts (two- and even three-a-day sessions in some cases), and I know that a day or two of indulgence won’t undo all of the effort that I’ve been putting in. My advice for everyone planning to indulge a little bit this weekend:
- Be mindful, but don’t tell yourself no to EVERYTHING. It’s a holiday weekend, for Pete’s sake. Less-than-healthy food is okay in moderation every once in a while.
- Commit to jumping right back on track this coming Tuesday if you know you’ll be a little bit “off” this weekend. Plan your meals and do your grocery shopping on Monday if you have the day off!
- Eat when you’re hungry; put the chips down when you’re not. Listen to your appetite.
- Fill your plate up with the barbequed meat before grabbing chips, dip, and cake. Get that protein in! It’ll make you feel fuller, longer.
- Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. Alternate a glass of water with your drink of choice.
Saturday will be the first time for me to wear a bikini since last summer. My, how things have changed in the past year. I went shopping last weekend and actually had fun trying things on. Prepare yourselves for a shameless selfie in my new swimsuit! (Spoiler alert: I’m starting to see a little oblique V, which I’m super pumped about.) (Pardon the crummy dressing room lighting and awesome socks.)
I’ve come a ways in the last year, and I still have a ways to go. The most badass part is that I’m happy with where I’m at and I love my body, but I’m hungry to keep growing my strength. The strenuous workouts and health-conscious food choices aren’t an effort to change my appearance these days. I do it because I love competing with myself. I want to be the best version of me, and I know I can keep improving.
Happy Memorial Day, everyone! And if you have random recipe requests (like these egg rolls were), send ’em my way! I like the challenge. :o)