Don’t you just love the role that lemons play in Greek food? They’re not just backstage, floating in a glass of ice water or zested into a pound cake. Greek recipes are not afraid to put lemons center stage, right there in the main course! It turns out, they add a whole lot of flavor when you put them in a savory dish. Greek lemon chicken is a medley of flavors, all working together to bring out the very best in each ingredient. It’s easy to make, and when you serve it over a bed of Greek lemon rice you’ll have a complete meal…the vegetables are baked right in!
The secret to this dish is to go ahead and be bold with the lemons. You’ll slice them into very thin slices and then cook them, peel and all. You’ll want 6 boneless, skinless organic chicken breasts. Cut each breast into two parts, dividing them where the breast starts to get thick. Then cut the thick parts of the breast in half lengthwise, so that they’re thinner (you should have 3 pieces of chicken per breast, all about the same thickness). Sprinkle them with some Greek seasoning (recipe below) and set them aside. Then, slice a lemon into very thin slices crosswise, and cut each slice into fourths. Wash a carton of grape tomatoes and cut them in half, and set these aside as well.
Wash and trim a pound of organic Brussels sprouts, and cut them into fourths. Saute these in a little oil (olive, butter or coconut oil) until they start to soften and are a bit browned. Set the sprouts aside.
Heat some olive or coconut oil in a pan until it’s hot, then add the chicken and cook until it is brown on both sides. When it’s all been browned, remove it and add a cup of chicken stock and 1/2 cup of lemon juice. Use a spatula to scrape up the browned bits of chicken from the bottom of the pan as you heat the juice and stock. Add three pressed garlic cloves and bring the sauce to a simmer.
Now, add the sprouts, tomatoes, lemon slices and chicken back to the pan. If you’d like, you can add some Greek olives or some artichoke hearts to the pan as well. In our family, the people over the age of 18 love Greek olives and those younger than that loath them…so this time the younger set won and we went with artichoke hearts instead of olives.
Put a lid on the pan and place it in the oven. Bake for about 20 minutes, until the chicken is completely done and the vegetables are soft. Then, remove the pan and stir it well…yum! Serve over a bed of rice (Greek lemon rice is amazing with this). You’ll be surprised how much the lemons add, without anyone noticing that they’re eating lemon with the peel. So savory and good!
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What’s your favorite Greek food?