recipe

One-Dish Mediterranean Chicken

 One-Dish Mediterranean Chicken (simple and healthy!)

THIS CHICKEN you guys. The recipe was inspired by a Mediterranean fish packet recipe - you know, the type you cook in cute little foil packets with everything in one easy-to-clean-up meal. After having added it to my meal plan for the week, I noticed I already had fish in the rotation multiple times so I grabbed some chicken at the last minute (along with a few other ingredients to make this really sing). The result was a super simple one-dish meal where all of the flavors just work. I think it might be a new weeknight staple for many of you!

 One-Dish Mediterranean Chicken Recipe

These are the main ingredients you need to get this dish going besides your usual olive oil, salt and pepper.

  • Chicken breast (it’s a blank canvas, which I love)

  • Pesto (salty and delicious)

  • Pint of grape tomatoes (the ones that are super flavorful all year around)

  • Feta cheese crumbles (for more substance and because cheese makes everything better)

  • Capers (a beautiful, briny flavor bomb)

  • Lemon juice and zest (for added brightness just before serving)

 One-Dish Mediterranean Chicken
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The awesome thing about this recipe is that you could basically look at the photos and understand how to make it, no recipe required. Just layer everything together and I promise it will work! It would be great served with your favorite whole grain, alongside some potatoes, or on top pasta. Customize it by mixing up the vegetables!

 One-Dish Mediterranean Chicken

Did you make this recipe? Don’t forget to share photos on Instagram and tag me (@LeanneRayRDN) so I can see your awesome creations.


One-Dish Mediterranean Chicken

Author: Leanne Ray, MS, RDN
Yield: 6 servings | Prep time: 10 minutes | Bake time: 30 minutes | Total time: 40 minutes

ingredients

  • 1 lb boneless skinless chicken breast

  • 1/4 cup jarred pesto

  • 2 Tbsp capers

  • 1/4 cup feta crumbles

  • 1 pint grape tomatoes

  • 1/2 lemon (zest and juice)

  • salt & pepper to taste

instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

  2. Coat a rectangular baking dish with cooking spray and set aside.

  3. Lay chicken breasts on a sturdy cutting board, cover with plastic wrap and pound to 1/2 inch thickness. Cut into 6 pieces. Season the chicken with salt and pepper then transfer to baking dish.

  4. Spoon about a teaspoon of pesto on top each piece of chicken, then spread to cover as much of each piece as possible. Next, evenly distribute the capers and feta on top each piece of chicken. Add the tomatoes to the baking dish and scatter them evenly around the bottom of the pan. Drizzle the tomatoes with a bit of olive oil and season with salt and pepper.

  5. Cover the dish with foil and bake for 30 minutes or until chicken is cooked through (an instant read thermometer should register 165 degrees). Add the juice and zest from the lemon just before serving.

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Instant Pot Cranberry Sauce with Pears

 Instant Pot Cranberry Pear Sauce for Thanksgiving

I figured it was about time to drop a Thanksgiving recipe here and you know I’m not about to get all complicated on you now! So here we are, with a super simple cranberry sauce recipe that will leave your friends and family totally impressed with minimal effort on your part. This recipe also leans more heavily on the fruit component for sweetness and has less added sugar than a lot of the other versions you’ll find. Actually, it has about half the added sugar and I didn’t even miss it! Just tart enough, plus more texture from the addition of dried cherries.

 Instant Pot Cranberry Sauce with Oranges and Pears

The Case for Going Homemade

So it seems like every year I cross paths with at least one person who didn’t know homemade cranberry sauce was a thing. The canned stuff is such a staple and let’s be honest, it is one less thing to worry about when you have a lot of other dishes that require attention: brining, chopping, oven coordination, all of the things. I get it!

But cranberry sauce is so dang simple to make and better yet, it’s one of the few items that can be prepped ahead of time (like days ahead of time) so I say go for it. With just six ingredients, you can make a colorful and nutrient-packed sauce that everyone will love. Plus, I would argue that this is the most versatile item to re-purpose in leftovers (more on that below).

If you have an instant pot you can set it and forget it. Literally just dump everything in, stir to combine, lock the lid in place and cook on high pressure for two minutes. If you don’t have an IP, you can certainly use the old tried-and-true saucepan method, it just requires a little bit more hands-on time. Use this recipe for an estimated cook time if you do it that way!

 Instant Pot Cranberry Sauce with Oranges and Pears

One reason I cut back on the added sugar is because there’s extra fruit, juice, and citrus zest to make up for it - you don’t want it to be too tart after all! The end result is really bright and fresh tasting - a nice balance of orange, pear, cranberry and cherry.

Repurposing Cranberry Sauce

If you end up with leftovers, here are a few different ways to use up it without eating it on top of turkey for the next week:

  • Oatmeal or toast topping (pairs great with nut butter)

  • Smoothie add-in

  • Sandwich spread - I especially love the look of this turkey club!

  • Swirl it in plain yogurt or cottage cheese for extra flavor

  • Jazz up a grain bowl

  • Make an appetizer in a pinch: just open up a block of cream cheese, spread the sauce on top, serve with seedy crackers

  • Try it in a glaze on fish or chicken

 Instant Pot Cranberry Sauce with Pears

Did I convince you to try giving this one a go?

If you are contributing something to your Thanksgiving meal but feel overwhelmed with taking on one of the major items, I think this would be an excellent choice. I have a good feeling that once your guests try it, they’ll never go for the canned stuff again! Just be sure to circle back around and let me know how it goes.


Instant Pot Cranberry Sauce with Pears

Author: Leanne Ray, MS, RDN
Yield: 2 cups (16 servings) | Prep time: 5 minutes | Cook time: 20 minutes | Total time: 25 minutes
Nutrition info: 52 cals | 0 g fat | 13 g carbohydrate | 0 g protein (per 2 Tbsp serving)

ingredients

  • 12 oz fresh cranberries

  • 1 orange, zest and juice only

  • 1 pear, cored and chopped

  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar

  • 1/2 cup 100% orange juice

  • 1/4 cup dried tart cherries

instructions

  1. Add all ingredients to instant pot, stir well to combine and lock the lid in place.

  2. Cook on high pressure for 2 minutes.

  3. After 5 minutes, release the steam valve manually.

  4. Once able to safely open the lid, stir well and transfer sauce to a storage container or mason jar to cool. Cranberry sauce will thicken as it sits. Refrigerate and use within 5 days.


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Breakfast-Worthy Apple Crisp

 Breakfast-Worthy Apple Crisp

Well this is a fall recipe if I’ve ever seen one

I’m just going to go ahead and say it - I’m one of those weird people that doesn’t really care about dessert. It’s not that I don’t like it, more so I could “take or leave it” and nine times out of ten I would go for a glass of wine after a meal instead. Apple crisp is one seasonal treat that I really do enjoy and one of the few “desserts” that I actually make at home. Probably because you can’t really mess it up. Those always tend to be my favorite dishes!

Once I start seeing apples back in the spotlight at the grocery store, I always get the itch to make a crisp.

Even better, I LOVE to eat it for breakfast with a side of eggs for quite possibly the most satisfying meal of all time. It’s called moderation people. Anyways, this breakfast-worthy crisp… It has all of the same great flavors and textures of a traditional apple crisp but it’s taken down a notch to make it more on the hearty/fiber-y side and less on the indulgent/sweet end of the spectrum. It’s mostly apples so it would make a great topping for oats. It’s also vegan for my plant-based friends out there! Of course if you don’t have coconut oil on hand you can use butter and it would still turn out great.

 Breakfast-Worthy Apple Crisp

So here’s how you make it.

I chose to use a cast-iron skillet, mainly because I don’t own a casserole dish. How is this even possible? I’m not sure. Regardless, I think it’s kind of fun to use your cast iron for recipes like this and it also makes for a fun presentation - perfect for a hosted brunch.

When I said you couldn’t mess it up, I wasn’t joking. All you really have to do is:

  1. Peel and slice your apples

  2. Toss them with a little bit of coconut oil, brown sugar and cinnamon

  3. Top with the crumbly mixture (made out of ingredients you probably have on hand!)

  4. Bake.

Check out the full recipe below and let me know if you give this (or your own variation) a try. It’s a little more time-intensive than my other recipes but it’s mostly hands-off and as a bonus, it makes your house smell BOMB.

 Breakfast-Worthy Apple Crisp

Breakfast-Worthy Apple Crisp

Author: Leanne Ray, MS, RDN
Yield: 6 servings | Prep time: 15 minutes | Bake time: 45 minutes | Total time: 1 hour

ingredients

  • 5 honeycrisp apples, peeled and sliced (cores removed)

  • 1/4 cup brown sugar (divided)

  • 1/4 cup coconut oil (divided)

  • 1/2 cup old-fashioned rolled oats

  • 2 Tbsp chopped walnuts

  • 2 Tbsp ground flax seed

  • 2 Tbsp whole wheat flour

  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon

  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt

instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees

  2. Toss apples with 2 Tbsp each brown sugar and coconut oil. Add them to an oiled cast iron skillet.

  3. In a small bowl, mixed the oats, walnuts, flax, flour, cinnamon and salt. Then add the remaining brown sugar and coconut oil and mix until well-combined (it’s easiest to use your hands for this step!). You want a crumbly but moist mixture.

  4. Spread the crumble mixture evenly over the top of the apples. Cover with foil.

  5. Bake for 45 minutes or until bubbly and browned on the top. Let rest for at least 10 minutes before serving.


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