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:
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!
Recipe: Mediterranean Chicken Farro Bowls
Marinated chicken, feta cheese, veggies all on top cooked farro with Tzatziki sauce- you’ll crave this over a salad any day!
Recipe: Low-Carb Chicken & Sausage Jambalaya
A low-carb version of Louisiana’s favorite rice dish, it has all the bells and whistles with chicken and sausage- minus the carbs.
Recipe: Pizza Chicken
All the cheesy, saucy goodness of pizza without the carbs and it’s made with the 2 ingredients kids love: pizza and chicken.
Recipe: Chicken & Vegetable Teriyaki
Skillet chicken teriyaki that tastes like takeout without the energy crash 30 minutes later.
Recipe: Chicken & Ramen Stir-fry
Another take-out favorite made healthier with chicken breast, homemade sauce, and lots of veggies!
Recipe: Slow Cooker Parmesan Chicken
Much healthier and easier to make than the breaded and fried version. Serve it over regular pasta or a bed of zucchini noodles.
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!
Recipe: Salsa Chicken Tacos
Grab some salsa, toss it in the slow cooker with chicken breasts and dinner will be done in 2 hours. Meanwhile, get the taco party celebration started with chips and guacamole.
Recipe: Slow Cooker Thai Chicken Lettuce Cups
Tangy sauce, tender chicken, and Asian slaw in a fresh lettuce cup and don’t forget the Thai peanut sauce- it’s mandatory.
Recipe: Chicken Fajita Tacos
Like the huge sizzling platter of meat and veggies you get from the local cantina, but in your own house. Marinate the chicken overnight and prep the veggies ahead of time, come taco night, these will be ready in no time.
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.
Recipe: Easy Stovetop Chicken & Rice Soup
Rotisserie chicken, veggies, and rice make this delicious meal something you can whip up in 30 minutes.
Recipe: Paleo Chicken & Veggie Chili
When you want chili but need to stick to those keto/paleo goals, this is your fix!
Recipe: Chicken Pot Pie Soup
A light, broth-based soup with all the flavors of a chicken, veggies, and herbs, you’ll be doing yourself a favor. Serve it with hot biscuits, they soak up that last bit of broth nicely.
Recipe: Chicken Noodle Soup
Good for winter, head colds, flu season, or whenever you need a hot, delicious bowl of 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.
Recipe: Buffalo Chicken Bowls
Remember those Buffalo Chicken Tacos? Yeah, we dropped the tortilla but added cauliflower rice, avocado, tomatoes, and more cheese for an epic meal your whole30 and keto pals can enjoy too.
Recipe: Buffalo Chicken Salad
Same thing as the bowls but more crunch and crispness from the lettuce. I call this the ULTIMATE office lunch and you can prep the entire meal 2 days ahead.
Recipe: Salsa Verde Chicken Pasta
Made from leftover Salsa Verde Chicken from Taco Tuesday, this creamy, cheesy pasta will change your life. Oh, and you’ll need to make the tacos first, it’s only proper.
Recipe: Buffalo Chicken Quesadillas
If you haven’t noticed a trend yet, here it is: Buffalo Chicken is epic and we want you to enjoy it as much as possible. This time it’s in between 2 grilled tortillas and lots of cheese.
Recipe: Chicken Burrito Bowls
You love Chiptole. I love Chiptole. We love Chiptole. Why not recreate the burrito bowl at home? Pro tip: Use a rotisserie chicken.
Recipe: Chicken & Broccoli Alfredo
Who doesn’t love a good chicken alfredo and this is one of those 30 minutes, one skillet deals. If your kids don’t like broccoli, leave it out or serve it on the side.
Recipe: Asian Chicken Salad Lettuce Cups
Make this one ahead and keep it on hand for the lettuce cups one night and wraps another day.
Recipe: Greek Chicken Panzanella Salad
An all-in-one Mediterranean meal you can toss together in one bowl and instead of lettuce, you toss it with toasted bread ;). Another good idea for leftover grilled chicken breasts.
Recipe: Copy Cat Chick-fil-a Nugget
“But I’m tired of chicken nuggets”- said NO kid ever! This version of our favorite drive-thru nuggets is also grain-free and extra crispy.
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!Print