Boneless, skinless chicken breasts are America’s favorite cut of chicken. They’re easy to find, simple to prepare, and have a mild flavor that takes well to any preparation. But that mild taste can quickly turn from blessing to curse if you don’t add enough flavor. Here are five of our favorite weeknight chicken recipes—they all can be on the table in less than 1 hour—that are anything but bland.
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10 ingredients. 45 minutes. Quick, easy, and fresh weeknight recipes.
Lemon-Oregano Chicken with Farro Salad
The chicken breasts are rubbed with a Greek-inspired seasoning blend with lemon zest and fresh oregano before being seared in a skillet. You’ll slice the cooked chicken and then serve it on top of a hearty farro salad studded with cucumbers, tomato, feta cheese, and jarred pepperoncini peppers, all drizzled with a lemony dressing. To me, leftovers are the best part of this salad: It holds up so well and makes a great lunch the next day.
Lemon-Oregano Chicken with Farro SaladAn easy, lemony farro salad adds heft to this boldly flavored chicken breast dinner.
Penne with Chicken, Roasted Cherry Tomatoes, and Spinach
In this pasta dish, you’ll cook the pasta right in the sauce for easier cleanup and extra-concentrated flavors. The chicken breasts are cut into small pieces and sautéed until just cooked through and then added back in at the end with roasted cherry tomatoes and spinach. Top individual servings with Parmesan cheese and fresh basil for a surefire crowd-pleaser.
Penne with Chicken, Roasted Cherry Tomatoes, and SpinachSpinach and tomatoes add light, fresh notes to this summery pasta dish.
For this riff on the Philly cheesesteak, chicken breasts are sliced thin before sautéing so they cook superquickly. The thinly sliced chicken is piled into rolls with lots of sautéed onions and bell peppers and topped with two melty cheeses (provolone for sharp tang and American for creaminess); what could be better? I’ll tell you: slathering those rolls with a briny cherry pepper mayonnaise. These sandwiches are next-level.
Chicken CheesesteaksMove over, beef. These supersatisfying sandwiches feature chicken.
Cheesy Chicken and Broccoli Soup
This soup is the ultimate comfort food. You’ll cut the chicken breasts in half lengthwise for a faster cooking time and then poach them right in the simmering soup while the broccoli cooks. Pull them out, shred them, and add them back in with cream and shredded cheese. Serve the soup with black pepper and hot sauce to add some spice.
Cheesy Chicken and Broccoli SoupEveryone’s favorite soup, with a little chicken stirred in to make it main course–worthy.
Caramelized Black Pepper Chicken
This flavor-packed recipe is inspired by Charles Phan’s Vietnamese fish sauce–caramel braise. Fish sauce is the key ingredient in this salty-sweet dish, adding a balancing savory depth to the brown sugar–based sauce. Bite-size pieces of chicken breast cook directly in the syrupy mixture, thoroughly coating and imbuing the chicken with irresistible umami flavor.
Caramelized Black Pepper ChickenBoneless chicken breasts can be bland but not here, where they're caramelized and flavored with ginger, fish sauce, and chili-garlic sauce.
Trimming Boneless Chicken
Do you ever wonder why our recipes call for you to trim chicken pieces, especially if they’re already boneless and skinless?
Admittedly, there are times you don’t need to trim, but you should always check: On a boneless skinless breast, trim off fat near the tapered point and any residual connective tissue where it once met the wing. (On a boneless skinless thigh, check for rogue chips of cartilage or bone and remove any large globs of fat, especially on the underside.)
Why? In addition to removing any unappetizing gristly bits, you’re also controlling the amount of fat in the recipe.
You can do all this trimming with a knife on your cutting board, but a sharp pair of kitchen shears also works particularly well.