Food

SHEET MEALS: HONEY BALSAMIC CHICKEN & VEGGIES

I hate messy kitchens; no, I loathe them. No one knows this better than my very patient husband.

Crumbs on the counter? Rage.

Dishes in the sink? Double rage.

If only I could direct that fervor to the rest of our home’s cleanliness…

Anyway…

I enjoy cooking, but the cleanup can be a nightmare. When I’m just too damn lazy to clean, but not lazy enough to order takeout, I turn to sheet meals.

As I mentioned in a previous post, I go batshit crazy over anything involving balsamic vinegar; so, when I stumbled across a recipe by Chungah from Damn Delicious, I knew I had to try it immediately. 

The beauty of a recipe like this is that it’s incredibly versatile, and it uses some seriously awesome herbs. Preparing this dish had the Italian in me doing the tarantella.

You can find Chungah’s full Honey Balsamic Chicken Breasts & Veggies recipe here. This recipe can feed four and incorporates tasty foods like tomatoes, asparagus, and baby red potatoes!

Now, my main goal tonight was to use whatever I had in the house in an attempt to not have to put on pants and go to the grocery store. Classy.

Fortunately, I had all of the ingredients to make the amazing marinade and I had some zucchini and sweet potatoes just looking to be ~roasted~.

In order to help those out who are cooking for only two, I’ve trimmed the original recipe down. You can look at this as the “kitchen sink” (i.e. toss in whatever you’ve got) version of the heartier recipe in the link above:

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1-2 sweet potatoes peeled and cut into 1″ cubes (this depends solely on whether you want a whole potato to yourself or if you’d like to go 50/50)
  • 2 medium zucchini (about 200g total)
  • 1-2 tbsp of olive oil depending on how many veggies you end up using (amount comes down to taste. If you’re looking to trim the fat a bit, you can use an olive oil spray. PAM has a great organic one. Be warned: nothing compares to real EVOO. NOTHING).
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste. Feel free to add other spices. If you sprinkle some cinnamon or nutmeg on your sweet potatoes, you won’t be disappointed.

FOR THE CHICKEN

  • 1/8 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1/2 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried basil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

DIRECTIONS:

  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together balsamic vinegar, honey, Dijon, garlic, oregano, and basil; season with salt and pepper.
  2. In a Ziploc bag or large bowl, combine the marinade and chicken; marinate for at least 30 minutes to overnight, turning the bag occasionally. Drain the chicken from the marinade.
  3. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Lightly oil a baking sheet or coat with nonstick spray.
  4. Place sweet potatoes in a single layer onto the prepared baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper to taste (I like to toss them in the oil and seasonings in a separate bowl before transferring to the baking sheet). Place chicken around sweet potatoes (do not put zucchini in yet, but leave some space for it) in a single layer.
  5. Place into oven and roast until the chicken is completely cooked through, reaching an internal temperature of 165 degrees F, about 25-30 minutes (oven times vary. My food was absolute perfection in exactly 25min). Add in zucchini (after tossing with remaining EVOO and spices) during the last 15 minutes of cooking time.
  6. Serve immediately, garnished with parsley, if desired.

Some things to note:

  • I’m not kidding when I say this marinade is seriously fire. I am a Damn Delicious convert after tasting it. I only marinated the chicken for 30min. Next time, I plan on marinating overnight like Chungah suggests. I could bathe in this stuff. I won’t…but I could.
  • Speaking of the marinade: if you don’t have all of the ingredients, your shopping trip will be a little pricey. However, these are all kitchen staples. Once you buy a bag/bottle of dried oregano, you’ll have it for a while; that same train of thought applies to every other ingredient that makes this marinade kick serious ass. Invest in the herbs and spices.

Enjoy!

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