Healthy, Mouthwatering Mediterranean Chicken Recipe

Written by Cristina Powell

Mediterranean Chicken Recipe

With the overwhelming amount of positive feedback on the Mediterranean Diet Beginner’s Guide (thank you very much!) and the influx of messages asking for recipes that incorporate ingredients favorable to this lifestyle, I wanted to find a recipe that provided all of the comfort of home but with a fresh twist. You know, one of those dishes that tastes like you spent all day in the kitchen but can be ready—start to finish—in less than an hour.

I was served this dish at a recent dinner club, and oh my goodness, this Mediterranean Chicken did not disappoint. For those who know me, when dining out, I typically either ask for half portions, or I ask for a to-go box and put half of my meal in the box before I take my first bite. With this being at a friend’s home, I asked for a half portion. But once I finished, I asked for more! Not only did I ask for more, I ate a second helping of this dish in lieu of dessert. *Gasp!*

After dinner, while everyone was cleaning up to leave, I returned to the kitchen to ask the host if she would share the Mediterranean Chicken recipe, so I could in turn share it with our lovely readers.

What can I say except, you’re welcome!

Mediterranean Chicken Recipe

Marinade Ingredients:

  • • 14 oz jar of marinated artichoke hearts, juice only
  • • 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • • 4 sprigs of fresh oregano, leaves stripped
  • • 1½ lbs boneless, skinless chicken thighs

Bake Ingredients:

  • • 2 Tbsps olive oil, divided
  • • 1 small red onion, thinly sliced
  • • 1 pint cherry tomatoes, left whole
  • • 14 oz jar of reserved artichoke hearts
  • • 14 oz can white beans, drained & rinsed
  • • ¼ cup Kalamata olives, roughly chopped
  • • 8 oz mini-mozzarella balls, drained
  • • Salt & pepper, to taste

Garnish Ingredients:

  • • ¼ cup parsley, roughly chopped
  • • 2 Tbsps basil leaves, cut into ribbons

Directions (separated)
Marinade:

  1. 1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. 2. Drain the artichokes hearts, reserving the juice.
  3. 3. Add 2 Tbsps of artichoke juice, garlic, and oregano leaves.
  4. 4. Add chicken thighs.
  5. 5. Cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

Bake:

  1. 1. Add 1 Tbsp of olive oil, sliced onions, and tomatoes (and salt and pepper to taste) to a large roasting pan.
  2. 2. Roast on the center rack approximately 15 – 20 minutes, until the onions are soft and the tomatoes begin to burst.

  3. While this is baking…

  4. 3. In a large skillet, heat 1 Tbsp of olive oil over moderate heat.
  5. 4. Add chicken (and salt and pepper to taste), and cook until brown on both sides, but not completely cooked.

  6. After 15 – 20 minutes…

  7. 5. Remove the roasting pan from the oven and add chicken, artichoke hearts, beans, and olives.
  8. 6. Return pan to the oven for an additional 8 – 10 minutes.
  9. 7. When done, add the mozzarella cheese and toss gently.
  10. 8. Top with parsley and basil leaves, and drizzle with extra artichoke juice if desired.

Chef notes & options: This Mediterranean Chicken recipe is amazing by itself and satisfies all the requirements for a well-balanced meal. You could also pair it with artisan bread or even some pasta or quinoa.

To kick up the flavor a notch, you could swap out the mozzarella cheese for feta cheese.

While I kept things simple and stuck to the gist of the recipe for the most part, you could always add additional vegetables (e.g., zucchini, cauliflower, spinach), or even some capers.

When I prepared this Mediterranean Chicken recipe, I allowed the marinade to chill for 3 hours and found it allowed the flavors a little longer to really infuse into the chicken. I know some folks marinate things overnight, but with this particular dish, I’m not so sure it would make that much of a difference after the 1 – 3 hour mark.

Another option would be to slice the chicken thighs into strips prior to cooking. I left the chicken thighs whole as I find they retain their moisture during cooking when left intact.

To simplify things, you may be able to cook the chicken with the other ingredients in the roasting pan in the oven, but I have not tested this method yet. I will try that the next time I make this and update the article accordingly.

Give this delicious Mediterranean Chicken recipe a try, and let me know if you love it as much as I did and if you tried any of the additional suggestions!

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