I found this recipe on Repinly where it’s #20 on the all-time most popular pin list. It was originally pinned by Alexandria Harrison, but the recipe is from Real Simple and it seemed like an easy option for a midweek meal. With just about 20 minutes of prep time, minimal dishes to wash, and the result being a complete meal for four people (or in our case, a meal for two people plus leftovers for lunch the next day), I want to find 10 more recipes just like this and make them in a rotation during the workweek.
As I said, the amount of prep time was actually not that much more than the 15 minutes the recipe claimed. Generally, I assume that anything that says 15 minutes of prep time really is more like 15 minutes of assembly after I spend upwards of a half hour chopping things. In this case, even with all the washing, chopping, and mixing included I went from nothing to having the pan in the oven in under 20 minutes. As a disclaimer, I did use green beans that were already trimmed and washed by Trader Joe’s, so I didn’t have to do much to those, which made things that much faster.
The other benefit of this recipe was the lack of dishes it used, and as a result, the minimal amount of time it took to clean up. I used the same cutting board for slicing the lemons, cutting up the potatoes, and mincing the garlic. The same large bowl was used for mixing up the garlic-lemon sauce, and then for coating the green beans, potatoes, and chicken in it. Finally, everything was layered and roasted in the same casserole dish. And that was it. Living in an apartment without a dishwasher, having to wash this few dishes after cooking such a full meal was awesome.
My one complaint about this recipe is that bone-in chicken breasts with the skin on were surprisingly difficult to find. They didn’t have them at Trader Joe’s or Safeway, although I must say that the latter seemed sparsely stocked the day I checked, so it might have just been a fluke. I ended up buying them at Whole Foods, and they turned out to be from a more well-endowed chicken than the ones used in the Real Simple recipe – the four chicken breasts the recipe called for were just shy of four pounds. It was a bit of a task to get them all to fit in the pan, and while they were cooked all the way through, it probably wouldn’t have hurt to leave them in the oven for a bit longer.
Finally, I should note that there were a number of people who commented on both Pinterest and the Real Simple site that this recipe was too lemony, but both my boyfriend and I thought the lemon flavor was great. It was nicely concentrated on the beans, so that there was just a hint of it on the chicken. Using the same marinade for the beans, potatoes, and chicken, it seemed like there was the potential for everything to kind of taste the same, but I thought there was a nice variance of flavors between each component of the dish. I was more concerned that the beans would get overcooked and mushy since they were left in the oven as long as the potatoes. In spite of losing their bright green color though, I was pleasantly surprised that they still had a good amount of rigidity to them by the end of the full hour of cooking. All in all, this is definitely another recipe to add to the “make again” list, although I might try to find some smaller chickens next time.
Pan-Roasted Chicken with Lemon-Garlic Green Beans and Potatoes
from Real Simple | serves 4
6 Tbsp olive oil
2 lemons, 1 thinly sliced, 1 juiced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
3/4 pound trimmed green beans
8 small red potatoes, quartered
4 chicken breasts (bones left in, with skin, about 3 1/4 pounds)
Preheat the oven to 450°F. Coat a large baking dish or cast-iron skillet with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Arrange the lemon slices in a single layer in the bottom of the dish or skillet. In a large bowl, combine the remaining oil, lemon juice, garlic, salt, and pepper; add the green beans and toss to coat. Using a slotted spoon or tongs, remove the green beans and arrange them on top of the lemon slices. Add the potatoes to the same olive-oil mixture and toss to coat. Using a slotted spoon or tongs, arrange the potatoes along the inside edge of the dish or skillet on top of the green beans. Place the chicken in the same bowl with the olive-oil mixture and coat thoroughly. Place the chicken, skin-side up, in the dish or skillet. Pour any of the remaining olive-oil mixture over the chicken. Roast for 50 minutes. Remove the chicken from the dish or skillet and cover with foil to keep warm. Place the beans and potatoes back in the oven for 10 minutes more or until the potatoes are tender. Serve warm.