Cider Marinated Chicken
with quinoa and roasted vegetables
A sweet, tangy apple cider marinade gives seasonal flavor to chicken breast and roasted vegetables. Smarts: To help keep chicken breasts juicy and tender while roasting, place a piece of parchment paper over the top of the baking dish. This seals moisture in while allowing the chicken to cook fast and evenly.
Apple Cider Marinade:
- Garlic - 3 cloves , crushed
- Lemons - 1 , zest and juice of
- Apple cider - 1/2 cup
- Oil, cooking - 3 Tbsp
- Mustard, Dijon - 1 Tbsp
- Thyme, fresh - 2 sprigs
Cider Marinated Chicken and Roasted Vegetables:
- Apple cider marinade (ingredients listed separately) - 3/4 cup
- Chicken breasts, boneless and skinless (enough for 2 nights) - 2 lbs
- Quinoa - 3/4 cup
- Brussels sprouts - 1 lb , quartered
- Parsnips - 1/2 lb , peeled and chopped
- Carrots - 1/2 lb , peeled and chopped
- Oil, cooking - 1 Tbsp
- Salt - 1/2 tsp
- Black pepper - 1/2 tsp
- Oregano, dried - 1/2 tsp
- Paprika, smoked - 1/2 tsp
- Sugar - 1/2 tsp
- Make marinade - Peel garlic and crush with the palm of your hand. Zest and juice lemons. Whisk together garlic, lemon zest and juice, apple cider, oil and mustard. Divide in half. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
- Marinate chicken - This makes enough chicken for 2 nights. Place chicken in a baking dish. If chicken breasts are thick, halve them to encourage faster cooking. Cover in half the marinade (reserve the other half) and tenderize with a fork. Add thyme sprigs and marinate for at least 30 minutes and up to 1 day. (Can be done up to 1 day ahead)
- Quinoa - Combine quinoa with 2x the amount of water (or stock if you prefer) in a saucepan. Add in some salt. Bring to a boil covered. Lower heat, keep covered, and cook until liquid is absorbed, 8 to 10 minutes. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
- Brussels sprouts / Parsnips / Carrots - Prep as directed, chopping the vegetables into similar size pieces for even roasting. (Can be done up to 4 days ahead)
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- Heat oven to 450F / 232C.
- Toss veggies with cooking oil in a large baking dish. Season with salt and pepper. Roast until vegetables are beginning to get tender and lightly browned, ~15 minutes.
- While veggies roast, combine salt, pepper, oregano, paprika and sugar.
- Remove veggies from the oven and pour reserved marinade over top. Nestle the chicken breasts in the vegetables (discard the portion of marinade from the chicken) and season the top of the chicken with spice mix. Lay a piece of parchment paper on the top of the baking dish so that it covers the pan completely but just rests on top (this is an optional step but will help prevent the chicken from drying out; check your parchment first to insure the brand you are using is approved at high cooking temps).
- Return pan to the oven and roast the chicken and vegetables until a thermometer inserted in the center of the chicken breast reads 165F / 74C degrees, 15 to 18 minutes. Remove pan from the oven and let the chicken rest for 5 minutes before slicing it. Remember to reserve half of the chicken for Wednesday.
- If quinoa was prepared ahead, reheat briefly in the microwave.
- Serve sliced chicken over quinoa with vegetables on the side. Enjoy!