Baked Chicken

I know that chicken isn’t the most fascinating culinary option in the world, but I also know that it is one of the most versatile and readily-available options out there.  I love my chicken and turkey on the grill, in the oven, on the hob, on skewers, ground up, in sauces… you name it.  It goes well with most diet plans and programs like AIP, Paleo, elimination, and Weight Watchers, and I love finding new ways to use it.

For this diet I had to go back to the basics.  I love my curries, my baked enchiladas with veggies, and my stir frys, but right now loads of usual flavor enhancers are off-limits.  I can’t use my beloved tamari or soy sauce, any corn products (including corn starch), or anything with added sugar.  This recipe is super easy, super simple, and super fast, and I’m going to share how to do it two ways: with breasts and with a whole chicken.

Baked Chicken Breasts

Ingredients

  • Four chicken breasts
  • Juice of 2-3 lemons
  • 3/4 cup olive oil (You could use melted coconut oil here.)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 2-3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 to 1 tbsp spice blend of your choice (I like tagine spice or Ras al Hanout–loads of flavor with warm spices and seldom with sugar.)
  • Glass baking dish

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 400F.
  2. Take out the chicken and leave to warm up.
  3. Mix all the spices and wet ingredients together in a glass baking dish big enough for the chicken.  Taste and adjust accordingly.  I have had the best luck with more of the runnier marinades, as this seems to make the chicken moister.
  4. Add chicken to the dish and flip to coat in the marinade/sauce.
  5. Put in the oven for 18-20 minutes for medium-sized breasts.  I have had to go up to almost 30 minutes for large breasts before.  Cook until no longer pink in the middle; juices should run clear.
  6. Let rest for 30 minutes.
  7. Serve or slice to use later in the week for lunch.

 

Roast Chicken

Ingredients

  • One whole roasting chicken, any giblets removed
  • One lemon
  • Salt to taste
  • Black pepper to taste
  • Spice blend of choice or fresh herbs (I like this 10,000 Lakes No-Salt Blend which is mild, herby, and has some extra lemon in it.)
  • Olive oil to coat the bird
  • Roasting pan
  • Meat thermometer

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 475F.
  2. Take out chicken and allow to warm up on roasting pan of choice.
  3. Coat the chicken in olive oil, including inside.
  4. Combine salt, pepper, and the seasoning blend/chopped fresh herbs.  Pat all over the chicken, including inside.
  5. Prick the lemon with a knife or fork all over.  (Tip: Roll the lemon on the counter before pricking to release more juices.)
  6. Insert the lemon whole into the cavity of the chicken.
  7. Put chicken in oven.  Immediately turn down the oven to 400F.  Bake for 1 hour 30 minutes or until internal temperature registers at 165 degrees on the meat thermometer.  Juices should run clear if the meat is pierced with a knife.
  8. Take out chicken when done.  Cover whole bird with aluminum foil and rest for 10-15 minutes.
  9. Carve chicken and enjoy!
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