Foolproof One-Pan Baked Chicken

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Let’s face it, weeknight dinners can be a struggle. Between work, errands, and family activities, finding the time and energy to cook a healthy, delicious meal can feel impossible. That’s where this easy baked chicken recipe comes in! This recipe is a lifesaver – it’s simple enough for even the most novice cook, requires minimal prep work, and delivers juicy, flavorful chicken every single time. It’s perfect for busy families, meal prepping, or just a relaxing night in.

This article will guide you through everything you need to know about making this easy baked chicken recipe. We’ll cover the ingredients, step-by-step instructions, nutrition information, and even answer some frequently asked questions.

Juicy Oven Baked Chicken Breast - Cafe Delites
Juicy Oven Baked Chicken Breast – Cafe Delites

Ingredients

For the Chicken:

2 pounds bone-in, skin-on chicken breasts or thighs (or a combination of both)

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

  • Optional Flavor Variations:

    1/4 cup lemon juice (for a lemony twist)

  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard (for a tangy kick)
  • 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning (for a classic Italian flavor)
  • 1/4 cup honey or brown sugar (for a touch of sweetness)
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper (for a spicy kick)

  • Sides (Choose your favorites):

    Roasted vegetables (broccoli, carrots, potatoes)

  • Rice or quinoa
  • Mashed potatoes
  • Salad

  • Directions

    1. Preheat your oven to 400°F (200°C). This ensures the chicken cooks through evenly and gets that nice crispy skin.

    2. Prep the chicken. Rinse the chicken pieces under cold running water and pat them dry with paper towels. This helps the seasonings stick better.

    3. Mix the seasonings. In a small bowl, combine the olive oil, oregano, garlic powder, paprika, salt, and pepper. You can also add any of the optional flavor variations you choose at this point.

    4. Coat the chicken. Place the chicken pieces in a baking dish and drizzle them with the prepared seasoning mixture. Use your hands to massage the seasonings into the chicken, ensuring they’re evenly coated.

    5. Bake the chicken. Pop the baking dish with the seasoned chicken into the preheated oven. Bake for 40-45 minutes for boneless, skinless chicken breasts, or 50-60 minutes for bone-in, skin-on chicken pieces. The internal temperature of the chicken should reach 165°F (74°C) for safe consumption.

    Tips:

    To ensure crispy skin, don’t overcrowd the baking dish. Give the chicken pieces enough space so the air can circulate around them.

  • If you prefer your chicken breasts to be extra juicy, tent the baking dish with aluminum foil for the last 15 minutes of baking.
  • To check for doneness, pierce the thickest part of the chicken with a knife. The juices should run clear, not pink.

  • 6. Let the chicken rest. Once the chicken is cooked through, remove it from the oven and let it rest for 5-10 minutes before serving. This allows the juices to redistribute throughout the meat, resulting in a more tender and flavorful chicken.

    7. Serve and enjoy! Pair your delicious baked chicken with your favorite sides for a complete and satisfying meal.

    Nutrition Facts (per serving, based on 4 servings)

    This information is based on using boneless, skinless chicken breasts and olive oil. Nutrition facts will vary slightly depending on the specific chicken pieces used and the amount of oil.

    Calories: 250

  • Fat: 10g
  • Saturated Fat: 2g
  • Cholesterol: 70mg
  • Sodium: 400mg (depending on the amount of salt used)
  • Carbohydrates: 0g
  • Protein: 35g

  • Please note: This is just a general estimate. For the most accurate nutrition information, it’s recommended to use a nutrition calculator based on the specific ingredients you use.

    Conclusion

    This easy baked chicken recipe is a lifesaver for busy weeknights. It’s simple, versatile, and delivers delicious results every time. With endless possibilities for flavor variations and side dishes, this recipe is sure to become a staple in your meal rotation.

    Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):

    1. Can I use boneless, skinless chicken breasts for this recipe?