How To: Quickie Meal – One Pan Roasted Chicken Breasts with Lemon, Brussels Sprouts, and Butternut Squash

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I survived.

I made it through the 8 days of Passover.

8 days of forgoing my usual oatmeal breakfast.

8 days of giving up muffins and granola bars.

8 days of choosing a salad over a sandwich for lunch.

8 days of Matzah pizza.

Well, that last part was okay. And I did it without eating quinoa 27 million times a day. How? With meals like this sheet pan chicken dinner.

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Not only was this meal a Passover dinner hit, it is also an easy and one-pan way to get dinner on the table with minimal fuss or clean up.

I have to confess that I did make it at around 9 in the morning while my babe was taking a nap. To quote one of my friends, I go by the motto “cook while the baby naps.” Also, you never know what the rest of the day will hold, ie. a day where they are refusing to sleep at all and need to be held at all times leaves little time to get dinner ready. So I take advantage of that first nap. But that also meant we were eating this dinner cold, the norm for our dinners these days. So if it was so good cold you can only imagine how good it would taste hot out of the oven! But, that cold dinner also proves this chicken and vegetable bake makes delicious leftovers the next day.

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The roasted lemon slices are key here – the heat from the oven really brings out all that delicious lemon juice that, along with the marinade, really flavours the whole pan. I went with squash and brussels as my veg of choice but you could definitely substitute carrots and broccoli or sweet potatoes and cauliflower.

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As delicious as this chicken dinner is, I think now that I’ve made it through 8 days of no grains, a big plate of pasta is in order! But you all should feast on this one pan chicken meal!

Dara

 

One Pan Roasted Chicken Breasts with Lemons, Brussels Sprouts, and Butternut Squash

Serves 4-6
Meal type Main Dish
Website Adapted from Eating Bird Food

Ingredients

  • 6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 4 Cups brussels sprouts (cut in half)
  • 1 red onion (chopped)
  • 1 butternut squash (peeled and chopped)
  • 4 Tbsp olive oil (divided)
  • 1 Tbsp honey
  • 2 lemons (1 sliced and 1 juiced)
  • 2 Tsp salt (divided)
  • 1.5 Tsp pepper (divided)
  • 2 cloves of garlic (minced)
  • 2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 Tsp dried thyme
  • 1/2 Tsp onion powder
  • 1 Tsp paprika
  • 1 Tsp garlic powder

Note

This one pan dish is an very easy and flavourful weeknight meal. If you are not a fan of chicken breasts, chicken thighs can easily be substituted. This is also a great way to use up whatever vegetable you have on hand - cauliflower, sweet potatoes, parsnips, broccoli or carrots would all be great in this recipe.

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Place brussels sprouts, butternut squash, red onion, garlic and lemon slices on a parchment lined baking sheet. Top with 2 tbsp olive oil, honey, lemon juice, 1 tsp salt, and 1/2 tsp pepper. Toss to coat.
2. Place chicken breasts in a zip lock bag. In a small bowl combine remaining 2 tbsp olive oil, apple cider vinegar, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, thyme, and remaining 1 tsp salt and 1 tsp pepper. Stir to combine and pour over chicken breast. Massage bag to evenly coat chicken breasts in marinade.
3. Place chicken breasts atop vegetables and bake in the oven for about 30-40 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through and vegetables are soft and browned.
4. Remove from oven and divide vegetables and chicken breasts onto plates and squeeze remaining juice from the lemons overtop.

How To: Healthy Side – Shredded Brussels Sprout Salad with Feta, Dried Cranberries, and Cashews

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I know I’ve created a good dish when my husband, after taking one bite looks at me and states “this is really good.”

This coming from a man who thinks kraft dinner is the be all-end-all to mac and cheese (I may have mentioned his large stash on the blog before). So that is how I knew I had hit recipe gold – when after taking a bite of this dish, a salad no less, I heard those very words from his mouth.

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What makes this salad so delicious isn’t just plain old romaine – just like our brussels sprouts slaw, shredded brussels sprouts are the base for this salad. It is then loaded with creamy and salty feta, sweet and chewy cranberries, and crunchy cashews. All the textures and flavours a crave-worthy salad should have.

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I have to admit I cheated a little here – sure shredding the sprouts yourself doesn’t take that much time as we mentioned before and you can do it even faster with the help of a food processor, but with two kiddos at home, I will take every short cut I can get.

You know you’ve created something special when a brussels sprouts salad can outshine a box of KD.

Dara

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Shredded Brussels Sprout Salad with Feta, Cranberries, and Cashews

Serves 2-3
Dietary Vegetarian
Meal type Salad, Side Dish

Ingredients

  • 9 oz bags shredded brussels sprouts (You can also buy whole brussels sprouts and shred them yourself)
  • 3/4 cups cashews
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup feta (chopped)
  • 6 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp honey
  • 1 Tsp dijon mustard

Note

This salad can easily be doubled or tripled to feed a crowd. Any nut could be substituted for the cashews - walnuts, pecans or almonds would all be great. If you can't find pre-shredded brussels sprouts, use your food processor attachment to shred them from whole.

Directions

1. In a large bowl combine brussels sprouts, cashews, cranberries, and feta.
2. In a small jar with a tight fitting lid, add olive oil, vinegar, dijon mustard and honey. Shake until thoroughly combined.
3. Pour dressing over salad and toss until evenly coated. Serve immediately.

 

How to: Healthy Side – Simple Brussels Sprout Slaw

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Simple is best, don’t you think?

When it comes to food and using quality ingredients, I am definitely on team KISS.

Recently, friends had me over for dinner (word up Amy and Gord!) and as we chatted and sipped on wine, I watched Gord casually prepare a simple side salad with finely chopped brussels sprouts.  It was perfectly elegant for a dinner party, yet simple enough for a week nighter.

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I’ve made a few more involved versions of this salad in the weeks since, but I’m always drawn back to the most basic version, using high quality ingredients.

Yup, really good extra virgin olive oil (or canola!) costs a little more, as does parmesan reggiano.  Pine nuts aren’t cheap either. But! These are what make a humble bowl of wee little heads of cabbage taste… *kissing the tip of my thumb and index finger*.

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The brussels sprout chopping is the only real work here, which took about 5 minutes for the ½ pound.

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Pine nuts are sweet and creamy and really delicious when toasted, and a couple of tablespoon won’t break the bank, either.  I’ve used toasted sliced almonds and walnuts for this salad, too.  Both really great alternatives.

As for a parmesan substitute, you could try pecorino romano or grana padano. Something hard, salty and sharp is the ticket.

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You’ll also notice the recipe calls for cold pressed canola oil. While the canola oil you may know and love is very very mild in flavour, a cold pressed canola oil can have an incredible range of flavours (as can olive oil) depending on where the seed is grown. I’ve done a couple of canola oil tastings and I’ve tasted everything from butter to grass to sesame seed to asparagus in the oils grown across Manitoba alone!

You may be able to find cold pressed canola oil at a specialty food shop near you, but you can also use a good quality olive oil in its place.

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Enjoy,

Erin

Brussels Sprout Slaw

Serves 3-4 as a side
Prep time 15 minutes

Ingredients

  • ½lb brussels sprouts (about 12 medium, trimmed of any spotted leaves)
  • 2 tablespoons pine nuts
  • ½ cup finely grated parmesan cheese
  • 1½ tablespoon cold pressed canola oil or extra virgin olive oil
  • 1½ tablespoon fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ⅛ teaspoon pepper

Note

This salad is best served within a couple of hours.  You can prep all of the ingredients up to a day in advance and toss with oil and lemon juice just before serving.  Leftovers can be spruced up with an additional splash of oil and lemon juice just before serving.

Directions

1. Cut each brussels sprout in half. While holding on to the stem end, slice crosswise very thinly.
2. In a dry frying pan, toast pine nuts over medium heat, stirring or tossing occasionally until lightly browned.
3. In a medium bowl toss brussels sprouts, pine nuts, parmesan cheese, oil, lemon and s&p until well combined. Serve within a couple of hours for best results.

How to: Recipe Makeover – Kale and Brussels Sprout Caesar Salad

I’m suffering from an airplane cold.  The kind that sneak attacked me on my way home from a relaxing and sunny vacation, thus ruining my healthy glow and all that extra sleep I caught up on. It’s also wreaking havoc on my taste buds. Which is clearly the worst part.

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So I’m in search of big, bold flavours. Preferably in a healthy format, since I’m feeling a little sluggish from pina colada overload.

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All hail Caesar! (I seriously have to google the spelling of Csasar every time)

This caesar’s got a couple of twists though.  Raw kale and brussels sprouts take the place of traditional romaine lettuce and a lightened up version of the dressing makes use of greek yogurt as the base.

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Raw kale and brussels sprouts are great make-ahead salad greens; a little wilting improves the flavour and texture of the finished product. Need help prepping your kale? Look no further than our previous kale post!

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I have finally discovered the microplane as a kitchen tool.  Dara’s been telling me it’s her favourite kitchen tool for ages.  I used it for the parmesan and the garlic in this recipe.  It grates the cheese so finely, you can make a small piece go really far.

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The crouton recipe is as simple as it gets.  I spiced mine up a bit by using Vulcan’s Fire Salt from The Spice House in Chicago. Muy Caliente.

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I also used an ACE bakery roasted onion bread. Go flavour!DSC_5408

 

I would love to hear how you personalize this recipe…

Erin

Kale and Brussels Sprout Caesar Salad

Serves 6
Prep time 20 minutes
Cook time 15 minutes
Total time 35 minutes
Website Adapted from Skinny Taste

Ingredients

  • 1 Small bunch of kale (stems removed and thinly sliced)
  • 8 - 10 brussels sprouts (cored and very finely sliced)
  • 1 Small clove garlic (finely grated or minced)
  • 1/3 cup parmesan cheese (finely grated)
  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 cup fresh squeeze lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (divided)
  • 1/3 cup low fat greek yogurt
  • 3 slices whole grain bread (cubed. About 120g)
  • salt and pepper to taste

Note

This salad is even more delicious when made a day in advance.  Perfect for dinner parties or potlucks!

Directions

1. Preheat over to 400 F
Combine brussels sprouts in a large bowl. In a separate small bowl whisk to thoroughly combine: garlic, cheese, mustard, worcestershire, lemon juice, 2 Tbsp olive oil and yogurt. Pour over salad and toss to evenly distribute. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour before serving.
2. For the croutons, toss the cubed bread, 1 Tbsp olive oil and salt and pepper (or other desired seasonings) to taste.
Spread bread out evenly on a cookie sheet and bake for 12-15 minutes until golden brown.
Combine with salad once ready to serve.

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How To: Brussels Sprouts

Besides the ever popular kale, brussels sprouts seem to be popping up on restaurant menus everywhere. I’ve had them shredded raw in a salad, shaved on top of pizza, and stir-fried with soy sauce and chili oil. But, whenever I see roasted sprouts on a menu…my heart leaps with joy!

Yes, these small green cabbages really do get me that excited!

Roasted until browned and tender, the crispy leaves and soft interior are perfect for popping in your mouth as a snack or appetizer.

They are also super easy to prepare. Simply trim the stem end, remove any outer browned leaves, cut in half, and they are ready to roast.

Brussels ready to get their roast on

My absolute favourite brussels sprouts experience occured at a neighbourhood restaurant from my Brooklyn-ite days. These brussels were like none other…flash fried and tossed with some sort of sriracha based sauce, they were a crave-worthy dish that I went back for again, and again, and again (I think you get the picture). So obviously, I had to fill that void in my life and set out to re-create my perfect roasted brussels sprouts dish.

Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Sriracha, Honey, and Lime

Serves 4
Meal type Appetizer, Side Dish, Snack

Ingredients

Brussels sprouts

  • 20-30 Brussels sprouts (ends trimmed and outer leaves removed, cut in half)
  • 1 Tbsp Olive oil
  • 2 Tsp Sesame seeds

Sauce

  • 1 Tsp Sesame oil
  • 2 Limes (juiced)
  • 1 Tbsp Honey
  • 1/2 Tsp Fish sauce
  • 1/2 Tsp Sriracha
  • 1 Clove of garlic (minced)

Directions

Brussels sprouts
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees
2. Pour olive oil on a sheet pan and place brussels sprouts on top, toss to coat.
3. Bake in oven for about 10 minutes. Toss with sesame seeds and bake another 10 minutes.
4. Switch oven to broil and cook for about 5 minutes, until nicely browned. Toss with sauce and prepare to eat the best sprouts you have ever tasted.
Sauce
5. Combine all ingredients in a bowl and set aside.

The perfect substitute for popcorn at your next movie, these babies are addictive!

Dara