These healthy chicken dinner ideas will be your new go-to recipes for fresh and delicious meals that are perfect for busy weeknights!
You’ll find everything from pasta to tacos, soups, slow cooker dinners, and they’re family approved!
If there’s one ingredient I can always rely on, it’s chicken. It’s versatile, full of protein, and easy to create a healthy meal everyone will want to eat, and these chicken recipes prove it.
I’m not a fortune teller, but I do foresee Pizza Chicken in your future.
Healthiest Ways to Cook Chicken
With methods like baking, grilling, and the slow cooker, it’s easy to create a well-balanced meal that’s also drool-worthy.
People often ask if I clean chicken before I start cooking. Here’s everything you need to know about cleaning chicken.
But before we can enjoy a tender, juicy piece of chicken, let’s go over the basics on HOW you can achieve the BEST grilled and baked chicken every time.
It doesn’t get any more simple and delicious than baked chicken, and it’s great for when you need a hands-free dinner because the oven does all the work.
Here’s how to achieve tender, moist baked chicken:
Place your chicken into a large zip bag with your favorite marinade. I use a blend of olive oil, Italian seasoning, paprika, and lemon juice or taco seasoning, depending on my mood.
Preheat the oven to 400F and grease a baking sheet or line a baking pan with parchment.
Place the marinated chicken into the baking dish or pan and bake for roughly 15 to 20 minutes for boneless, skinless, or 45 to 60 minutes for bone-in, skin-on chicken breasts. If using bone-in, skin-on chicken, make sure to place the bone-side down first.
Another excellent tool for measuring doneness is a meat thermometer, which can be inserted into the thickest part of the chicken when you suspect it near finished. Once the internal temp is 165F, the chicken is ready.
Need to bake your chicken faster? Butterfly the chicken breasts for quicker cooking times.
HOW TO GRILL CHICKEN
Now, let’s move onto grilled chicken- a total family favorite. It’s easy to do, and the charred grill marks add an extra depth of flavor.
Grilling is also a fun way to enjoy a family meal, and my kids like the leftovers! You can fabricate an entirely new meal by tossing it into pasta, wraps, and sandwiches.
Unfortunately, grilled chicken can be easy to overcook, resulting in a tough, dry piece of chicken. Follow these steps and you can be sure that WON’T happen to you.
This step works primarily for boneless, skinless chicken breast, so if you’re grilling legs, wings, or thighs move on to the next step, otherwise, grab your meat hammer. If the chicken breasts are thick in some areas and thin in others pound the chicken with a tenderizer (meat hammer) until even.
Choose your favorite marinade and add it to a large, zip bag along with the chicken. Refrigerate for 30 minutes or overnight.
Allow the grill to reach medium heat before putting any meat on it. You can gauge the temperature by holding your hand 5 inches above the cooking grate. If you can hold it there comfortably for 6 seconds, it’s medium heat and you’re ready to start grilling.
How to Cook Chicken in the Slow Cooker
We’ve pulled off some pretty epic chicken dinners around here with the use of a slow cooker. The chicken holds up great when slow-cooked, and you can use any cut.
My favorite part is when I get to make buffalo chicken or salsa chicken, both only require two ingredients and they can be stretch out through the week for multiple meals like tacos, quesadillas, salads or power bowls.
Here’s how the magic happens for easy slow cooker chicken:
Combine 1 lb chicken breasts or boneless, skinless thighs with 1 cup of your choice of sauce:
Cook on high for 2 hours or low for 4 hours, until the chicken is tender and shreds apart easily with a fork.
PRO TIP: Double and triple the recipe then freeze leftovers for future meals. Be sure to adjust cooking time by an hour for each additional pound of chicken per cup of sauce.
Easy Healthy Chicken Breast Recipes
These recipes are a total must! Whether you like chicken breast baked, pan-seared, or slow-cooked these meals are top-notch in flavor and healthy ingredients. Let’s begin!
Healthy Chicken Tacos
I believe tacos should be enjoyed at least once and week! They’re a super delicious and well-balanced meal that fits in the palm of your hand. Think about it, lean protein, veggies, and cheese all tucked away in a tortilla- you can’t beat it!
Healthy Chicken Soups
These soup recipes will keep you well-stocked for sweater weather or whenever you need a hot bowl of goodness. Make your life easier and use a rotisserie chicken, you’ll get 3 to 4 cups tender chicken with lots of flavor to add to the soup.
Healthy Chicken Dinners You Can Make Ahead
When you need dinner in a pinch? These are the fastest, healthy chicken recipes and they’re total crowd-pleasers.
Most of the recipes here can be prepped ahead and finished right before dinner, like the Buffalo Chicken. Make it the night before and use it throughout the week for bowls, salads, and quesadillas.
Related: Health Benefits of Eating Chicken
Healthy Sides for Chicken
You have your favorite healthy chicken recipes all ready to go, but what will you serve with them? Try one of these options to round out your dinner.
It’s been a fun ride and if you liked these recipes with chicken, you’ll find “more epic chicken dinner ideas” in this post, we can’t get enough! Share the love and let me know which recipes are your favourite!
22+ Healthy Chicken Dinner Ideas
Chicken and Veggie Stir Fry
- 1 pound chicken breast, boneless, skinless
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 ½ tablespoons oil, divided
- 2 cups broccoli florets
- 1 cup sliced mushrooms
- 1 cup matchstick carrots
- 1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- ¼ cup fish sauce
- ¼ cup low sodium chicken broth or water
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
- 1 teaspoon soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon cornstarch
- 3 cups cooked rice
- Cut chicken breast into 1-inch pieces and season with salt on all sides. Set aside.
- In a large pan over medium-high heat, heat up ½ tablespoon oil. Add in broccoli, mushrooms, and carrots, and cook for 5 minutes, stirring frequently, until the vegetables are tender but remain crispy.
- Add in ginger and garlic, stir to distribute around the vegetables, and cook for about 2 minutes. Remove veggies from pan onto a plate, cover, and set aside.
- To the pan, add remaining oil and cook chicken pieces, making sure to flip to cook throughout for about 7 minutes to a safe temperature of 165F and it has browned on all sides.
- In a medium bowl, whisk the fish sauce, chicken broth, sugar, sesame oil, and soy sauce. In a small dish, combine cornstarch and 1 tablespoon water.
- Add vegetables back into the pan and cook for an additional 2 minutes.
- Pour sauce mixture over the chicken and vegetables and stir to combine. Add in the dissolved cornstarch, whisk with sauce to combine, and bring to a boil. Cook for an additional minute for sauce to thicken, turn off the heat.
- Serve chicken and broccoli stir-fry alongside steamed rice.