Easy Baked Cilantro Lemon Chicken


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A simple one pan meal loaded with crispy carrots, tender potatoes, and flavorful moist pieces of chicken makes an ideal weeknight meal! This Cilantro Lemon Chicken is one of my favorite one pan recipes for weeknight dinners. It’s full of delicious flavors, healthy and super easy to make. I also love that this is a recipe I can use both chicken breasts and chicken thighs in so everyone at the table has what they prefer without adding to my work.

Chicken thighs in a baking dish with veggie and lemon wedges after baking

If you’re looking for other delicious chicken recipes, why not also try my Fajita Chicken Mac N Cheese or my Best Chicken Parmesan Recipe!

Why you’ll love this Cilantro Chicken

  • A healthier and balanced weeknight meal. Protein packed chicken with potatoes and veggies, baked to perfection – so tasty!
  • An easy sheet pan meal. A quick sear of the chicken then pop in the oven with your other ingredients – so simple.
  • A fresh and zesty chicken marinade. Lemon, cilantro, rosemary and garlic are whisked together with a sprinkle of seasoning and olive oil. It makes for such a light a flavorful chicken marinade – you’ll love it!
  • Great for your weekly meal rota. I love knowing I can add a bright and fresh flavor to our meal plan!  Plus, the leftovers are amazing the next day!

Ingredients you’ll need

  • Chicken-You can use any piece you like. I tend to mix mine up sometimes.
  • Cilantro– to add up some herby flavor to the dish
  • Lemon-a must for a zesty flavor
  • Garlic– great addition to boost flavor.
  • Salt-adjust to taste as you like
  • Olive oil
  • Garlic & Rosemary seasoning (or both separately)- a ready made spice found at the super market. I used the Tones brand.
  • Carrot chips– or just slice up some regular carrots at home if you can’t find those.
  • Potatoes-use any king you like.

How to make this Baked Cilantro Chicken Thighs

  • Marinate the chicken – Whisk together your marinade ingredients, then pour on the chicken. Allow to marinade for at least 15 mins.
Pan seated chicken thighs in a skillelt
  • Sear the chicken – Pan sear the chicken on each side to give it a golden color.
Chicken thighs in a baking dish with veggies
  • Bake – Place chicken on a sheet pan and add the potatoes and carrots around the chicken. Pour the extra marinade leftover on top of the chicken and potatoes so everything gets coated. Spray with olive oil and bake in the oven on 400 degrees for 1 hour.
  • Serve and enjoy!

Recipe notes and tips

  • Use a preheated oven.
  • For the marinading the chicken, you can cover the chicken and put back into the refrigerator for up to 2 hours, or go ahead and begin cooking within 15 minutes.
  • A great way to marinade the chicken is to put it in a ziplock bag then pour in the marinade. Squeeze out all the air and allow to marinade
  • Pan searing the chicken on both sides until just browned is only to seal in moisture and add color, it is not to fully cook the meat.
  • You can check the doneness of the chicken by using a meat thermometer. Insert the meat thermometer into the thickest part of the chicken. The thermometer should read 165F.
  • Sprinkle with some chili near the end of the bake, for a spicy kick.
  • Top with some fresh cilantro and a squeeze of fresh lemon juice.
  • If you are going to use this recipe for meal prep, try dicing the chicken into bite-sized cubes. This makes reheating the chicken so much easier.
close up shot of chicken thighs

FAQ’s

What are the best vegetables for a one pan meal?

I added potatoes and carrots to mine as those were a great combination with the cilantro lemon flavor.  You can use any number of vegetables for my cilantro chicken as you prefer.  If you are following a diet plan with lower carbohydrates, you could also skip the potatoes altogether and use a different option.  Some of my favorites are below.

  • Parsnips
  • Rutabaga
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Bell peppers
  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower
  • Mushrooms

Do I have to use fresh lemons?

I much prefer fresh lemons when cooking, but I know that it can be tough to find them at times.  If you don’t have a fresh lemon on hand, you can use bottled lemon juice.  When using bottled juice, you would calculate it to 2 tablespoons of bottled juice per 1 lemon listed in the recipe.

Can I marinade the Cilantro Chicken ahead of time?

For this recipe, since it is so high in lemon juice, the best result is to marinade no longer than two hours prior to cooking. A longer marinade time can break down the tissues of the chicken and make for an unpleasant texture once cooked.  In this instance, a long marinade time will not be a good choice for better flavor in a meal.

Is this Baked Cilantro Lemon Chicken a good freezer meal?

I love making freezer meals ahead of time, and for this recipe believe it could be a freezer meal if you are able to freeze with the lemon juice separate from the meat until right before you decide to bake the meal.  You can easily put all of the ingredients into a large freezer storage bag except for the lemon juice.  Leave that out until the day you cook the chicken, or simply pour into a separate bag to freeze outside the cilantro chicken.

MORE EASY CHICKEN RECIPES

Chicken is a go-to protein in our home.  The result is I have shared a ton of incredible recipes with you that feature this favorite option.  Check out some of them below and add them to your meal plan this week!

Two pieces of chicken thighs in a plate with veggies and fork

I hope you enjoy all the recipes I share with you, including this delicious Cilantro Chicken recipe. I hope you try it, enjoy it, rate it and share it with your friends and family!

If you try this recipe and like it, please leave a star rating and comment below. Use my hashtag to share it with me on INSTAGRAM So I can see your delicious recreations! Also, follow me at Cookin’ With Mima on FACEBOOK |INSTAGRAM |PINTEREST for all of my latest social posts and recipes.

Two pieces of chicken thighs in a plate with veggies and fork

Baked Cilantro Lemon Chicken

This Baked Cilantro Lemon Chicken is one of my favorite sheet pan recipe for weeknight dinners. It’s full of delicious flavors, healthy and super easy to make.

Prep Time 15 mins

Cook Time 55 mins

Total Time 1 hr 10 mins

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 400 F.

  • In a bowl mix together the lemon juice, chopped cilantro, salt, rosemary and garlic seasoning, 2 tbsps. of olive oil, salt and minced garlic.

  • Place the chicken in a bowl and pour in the marinade. If you have time, marinate for 30 minutes or just cook right away.

  • In a non stick skillet over high heat, add in 2 tbsps. olive oil and pan sear the chicken pieces on each side to give it a golden color on the outside. About 3-5 minutes on each side. Do not add in the extra marinade. Just the chicken pieces. Save the marinade in the bowl for the next step.

  • Transfer the chicken into a 9 x 13 inch baking dish. Add in the potatoes, carrots.

  • Add the chicken broth into the extra left over marinade and pour all the marinade over the chicken and potatoes.

  • Spray with olive oil and bake in the oven on 400 F for 50-60 minutes, depending on the size of your chicken. Internal temperature must be 165 F.

  • Remove from the oven, top with some fresh cilantro or parsley, fresh lemon slices, then serve.

Notes

  • Use a preheated oven.
  • A great way to marinate the chicken is to put it in a ziplock bag then pour in the marinade. Squeeze out all the air and allow to marinade if you have time.
  • Pan searing the chicken on both sides until just browned is only to seal in moisture and add color, it is not to fully cook the meat.
  • You can check the doneness of the chicken by using a meat thermometer. Insert the meat thermometer into the thickest part of the chicken. The thermometer should read 165F.
  • Sprinkle with some chili near the end of the bake, for a spicy kick.
  • Top with some fresh cilantro and a squeeze of fresh lemon juice or lemon slices.
  • If you are going to use this recipe for meal prep, try dicing the chicken into bite-sized cubes. This makes reheating the chicken so much easier.

Nutrition

Serving: 1g | Calories: 157kcal | Carbohydrates: 20g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 1mg | Sodium: 383mg | Potassium: 470mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 3175IU | Vitamin C: 19mg | Calcium: 59mg | Iron: 2mg






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