Tight on time? No problem. Try one of these simple yet delicious chicken recipes for dinner tonight. People love chicken for its taste, healthfulness and low-fat content, as well as how easy it is to cook with. Chicken is one of the fastest cooking meats but it’s easy to overcook chicken breasts. These recipes for quick chicken use lots of different vegetables, herbs and spices to make delicious. Once you’ve mastered a recipe, try changing it! Add different ingredients and seasonings.
Spices work well when blended together into a rub for chicken. Spices like cayenne pepper, cumin, coriander seed and black pepper make a good blend for a Spanish or Mexican dish. Indian spices include saffron, sesame, turmeric and ground ginger while many Eastern European dishes flavor chicken with spices like paprika, cinnamon, allspice and mace. Use salt sparingly for more healthful eating and rely on true spices for the majority of your flavoring.
Savory herbs such as rosemary, basil, thyme, tarragon and sage go well with chicken. Use one flavor, such as rosemary for a singular accent or create a blend, adding in lighter herbs like chives or parsley for balance. Don’t try to blend two very strong flavors, like rosemary and sage or the palate will be confused. Other good herbs for chicken include lemon balm, fennel, mint, marjoram, coriander and garlic. An alternative to applying these herbs directly to the chicken is to toss a few fresh sprigs into the frying or roasting pan and cooking them alongside the chicken to capture the strong aromas in the meat.
Basic directions for quick grilled and seasoned chicken breasts:
Rub equal amounts of Seasoning Mixture under the skin of each bone-in breast. Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper. Place chicken on grill over medium heat and cook about 25 minutes or until juices run clear when the thickest part of the breast is pierced with a tip of a knife, turning over once.
- Sun-Dried Tomato and Basil Seasoning: In small bowl, mix 2 minced sun-dried tomatoes packed in olive oil and 1/4 cup loosely packed fresh basil leaves, finely chopped.
- Garlic-Herb Seasoning: In small bowl, mix 2 garlic cloves,minced, 1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary, 1 tablespoon olive oil and 1 teaspoon freshly grated lemon peel.
- Sage-Butter Seasoning: In small bowl, mix 1 tablespoon softened margarine or butter and 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage leaves.
Chicken Caprese Style
4 servings Ingredients
- 3 large ripe plum tomatoes (about 3/4 pound), cored, seeds squeezed out, and diced
- 6 ounces fresh mozzarella, cut into small cubes
- 5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil, plus extra for garnish
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 eggs or refrigerated egg substitute
- 1/2 cup Italian seasoned bread crumbs
- 4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (about 1-1/2 pounds total)
In a medium-size bowl, mix tomatoes, mozzarella, 2 tablespoons of the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, 1/4 teaspoon of the salt, 1/4 teaspoon of the pepper and chopped basil for the Caprese salad. Cover with plastic wrap and reserve. Place flour on a large plate. Lightly beat eggs in a shallow bowl. Spread the bread crumbs on another plate.
Dip chicken first in the flour, then in the egg and finally into the bread crumbs, pressing to adhere. Sprinkle both sides with the remaining salt and pepper. Place on a large plate.
Heat remaining 3 tablespoons oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high. Add chicken and cook about 5 minutes per side or until internal temperature reads 165 degrees F on an instant-read thermometer. Turn a few times, if necessary, to avoid burning.
Chicken and Polenta
- Half of a 6 1/2 ounce jar oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes with Italian herbs
- 4 small skinless, boneless chicken breast halves (1 to 1-1/4 pounds)
- Salt and ground black pepper, to taste
- 1 cup assorted olives, drained
- ½ cup dry white wine or reduced-sodium chicken broth
- 4 small bay leaves
- 3 cups water
- 1 cup polenta
- 1 cup cold water
- 1 teaspoon salt
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Drain sun-dried tomatoes, reserving the oil. Season chicken with salt and pepper. In a 10-inch ovenproof skillet, heat the reserved oil over medium-high heat. Cook chicken in hot oil 3 minutes on each side or until browned; remove skillet from the heat. Add tomatoes, olives, wine and bay leaves.
Transfer skillet to the oven. Bake, uncovered, 10 to 15 minutes or until an instant-read thermometer registers 165 degrees F when inserted into chicken.
Meanwhile, for polenta, in a large saucepan bring the 3 cups water to boiling. In a medium bowl combine polenta, the 1 cup cold water and the 1 teaspoon salt; gradually stir into the boiling water. Cook and stir until thickened and bubbly. Reduce heat; stir occasionally. Remove chicken from the oven; discard bay leaves. Serve chicken with polenta and olives.
Braised Balsamic Chicken
This dish is good served over your favorite quick cooking rice and green beans make a nice side dish.
Servings: 6 Ingredients
- 6 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
- 1 teaspoon garlic
- Salt and ground black pepper to taste
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 onion, thinly sliced
- 1/2 lb fresh sliced mushrooms
- 1 teaspoon brown sugar
- 1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 1/4 cup chicken broth
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
Season both sides of chicken breasts with garlic salt and pepper. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a skillet over medium heat; cook seasoned chicken breasts until chicken is browned, 3 to 4 minutes per side. Remove from the pan to a plate and set aside.
Add remaining oil, onion, mushrooms and brown sugar to the skillet; cook and stir until onion is browned, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the diced tomatoes, chicken broth, balsamic vinegar, basil, oregano, rosemary and thyme. Stir well and return chicken to the pan.
Pesto Chicken Packets
4 servings Ingredients
- 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 8 plum tomatoes, sliced 1/2″ thick
- 2 cups sugar snap peas or asparagus
- 1/2 cup homemade or store-bought basil pesto
- 1/4 cup light mayonnaise
Heat an outdoor grill. Cut four 18 x 12 inch pieces of heavy-duty foil. Place a chicken breast half on each piece of foil. Divide tomatoes and sugar snap peas over chicken.
In small bowl, combine pesto with mayonnaise. Divide this mixture over the chicken on each piece of foil. Fold foil over chicken and seal edges, using a double fold method.
Cover and grill packets 6″ from medium coals or on a moderate gas grill for 25-30 minutes or until chicken registers 165 degrees F on a meat thermometer.
Grilled Chicken Kabobs Over Greek Salad
Just add some warm pita bread. Ingredients
- 1 1/2 pounds skinless boneless chicken breast halves, cut into 1-inch pieces
- 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 4 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 teaspoon dried mint
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 bunch fresh mint
- 1 red onion, cut into 1-inch pieces
- 8 12-inch metal skewers
- Greek Salad, recipe below
Mix chicken, 2 tablespoons oil, garlic, mint, oregano, salt and pepper in a medium bowl. Let marinate 30 minutes.
Whisk remaining 2 tablespoons oil and lemon juice in small bowl to blend. Prepare barbecue (medium-high heat). Pull off large mint leaves from stems.
Alternate chicken, onion, and mint leaves on skewers; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Grill until chicken is just cooked through, turning and basting occasionally with oil-lemon mixture, about 9 minutes. Serve over Greek Salad.
- 3/4 pound tomatoes, seeded, diced (about 2 cups)
- 2 cups diced seeded peeled cucumber (from about 1 large)
- 1 cup diced red bell pepper (from about 1 large)
- 1/4 cup pitted kalamata olives or other brine-cured black olives, halved
- 1/4 cup diced red onion
- 3 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 1/2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese (about 2 ounces)
Mix the first 9 ingredients in a medium bowl to blend. Gently mix in cheese. Season with salt and pepper.