How To: Quickie Meal – Oven Baked Sweet Chili Chicken with Eggplant & Zucchini

IMG_3723

Erin and I have been having a moment with sweet chilli sauce.

We’ve been putting that red and sweet sauce on pretty much everything. Have you tried it? It’s addictive. I had never thought to make my own before. I mean, why would I when the store bought variety is so darn delicious. But then I came across this recipe and it just looked too good and too easy to pass up.

IMG_3687

IMG_3688

Now, you are probably asking the same thing I did – why make it myself? When you make this sauce from scratch you can control the sweetness. So you don’t have to use a boat load of sugar – here we use a mere half cup of honey to add that familiar sweet flavour. Now don’t misunderstand me – honey and sugar – the same thing. Your body processes all sugar in the exact same way. Sugar is sugar people! My point is that you can control how much of the sweet stuff you add, just like you can also control the heat in this recipe. So if you like things super spicy, throw in a little extra red pepper flakes. If it’s too much, dial it back. That’s the benefit of the “make your own” category – you know exactly what’s going in it and you get to have full reign over the finished product. The type A dietitian in me likes this very much!

So now that you’ve made a quick and delicious homemade sweet chilli sauce, we’re going to pour it all over some diced chicken breasts, zucchini, and eggplant. Now chicken breasts can be tricky – they have a tendency to dry out pretty darn fast. So that’s why we are baking them at high heat for a very short period of time and turning the broiler on for the last little bit so you still get that crispy texture and brown colour without ending up with rubbery and flavourless chicken. Because that is no fun.

IMG_3689

IMG_3691

I love Japanese eggplant and zucchini in my traditional stir fry, but you can use other quick cooking veggies like green beans or peppers. Make sure to cook up a batch of quinoa or rice to go with this chicken. You need something to soak up all that delicious sauce you just put your blood, sweat, and tears into, right?

IMG_3693

IMG_3696

Did I tell you this was a one pan wonder? My other new obsession. Two thumbs up for less clean up.

Dara

IMG_3704

Oven Baked Sweet Chili Chicken with Eggplant & Zucchini

Serves 4
Meal type Main Dish
Website Adapted from Sallys Baking Addiction

Ingredients

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (cut into cubes)
  • 2 zucchini (sliced)
  • 2 Japanese eggplant (sliced)

Sauce

  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp cornstarch
  • 2 Cloves garlic (minced)
  • 2 Tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 Tsp sriracha
  • 1/2 Tsp salt

Note

You can prepare the sauce a day or two in advance if you would like. Red peppers or onions would work well in place of the zucchini and eggplant. If you don't want it too spicy, reduce the red pepper flakes to 1 tsp.

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees and spray a 9 x 13 inch baking dish with cooking spray.
Sauce
2. In a small sauce pan whisk together all sauce ingredients. Bring to a simmer and continue to whisk, for about 3 minutes, or until thickened. Set aside.
3. Place chicken, zucchini, and eggplant in the prepared baking dish. Spoon sauce over top until all the chicken and vegetables are evenly coated.
4. Bake for 25 minutes, until vegetables are soft and chicken is mostly cooked through. Switch oven to broil and cook for another couple minutes, until chicken and vegetables begin to brown.
5. Remove from oven and serve chicken and vegetables with sauce over your grain of choice to soak up all that delicious sauce.

 

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

FullSizeRender 8

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.

IMG_8676

IMG_8678

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.

IMG_8679

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.

IMG_8684

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.