I’m often asked about easy dinners that use chicken breasts. Honestly, it doesn’t get any easier and faster than pan-seared chicken. It’s my favorite original one-pot dinner, and it comes together in less than 30 minutes. Once the chicken is finished cooking, you already have a hot skillet full of chicken flavor that can be used to create a pan sauce or simply sauté some vegetables. Boom, done.
There is one small trick, though, and it always freaks people out a little bit at first. I promise it’s not difficult; you just need to dive in there if you’ve never tried it! It’s called butterflying. You see, the problem with chicken breasts is that they’re uneven; one side is much thicker, meaning that it’s almost impossible to cook them evenly. You’ll always be in danger of drying out the thinner side or under-cooking the thick side. When you butterfly chicken, you’re slicing the breasts in half lengthwise to essentially create two from one. Not only do they cook evenly, but they’re done cooking in half the time. It’s a win/win technique that takes seconds once you master it. If you don’t want to deal with butterflying, most stores now carry “thin-sliced” chicken breasts, which are pre-butterflied.
Give it a try! You’ll have a world of easy, fast weeknight dinner options suddenly available to you, like this pan-seared chicken with apples and onions. I’ve used Stemilt Granny Smith Apples here because I love the way the tartness of the apples balances the sweetness of the onions. You can omit the cream; it adds a decadent finishing touch, but it’s not worth purchasing if you don’t already have it on hand, or if you’d prefer to simply leave out those calories.
Categorized in: Recipes