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Chicken recipes for the whole family! If you're looking for easy and delicious chicken recipes, you've come to the right place. We've got chicken casserole recipes, recipes for chicken curry, chicken breast recipes... You name it!
Chicken has got to be one of our favourite meats to cook with. It's cheap, versatile and a real crowd-pleaser with the whole family. There are so many easy and quick chicken recipes that you can whip up in no time if you're rushing to get dinner on the table. Most of these chicken recipes are also healthy and good for you and your family, as chicken is a lean meat that gives you essential protein.
If you love cooking chicken and making delicious chicken dishes, take a look at our guide for what type of chicken to buy, how to store, prepare and cook chicken and what tasty flavours you can use to create delicious chicken recipes.
Chicken is not only tasty, it's also full of nutrients that your family needs. As well as being a great source of protein, it is also rich in vitamin B6 and B3, which help your body's metabolism by turning protein into energy. As well as providing a dose of potassium and amino acids, which aid your body's growth and maintenance, chicken is also full of selenium, which produces antioxidants and has been linked to cancer protection.
Beware of the skin! It may be very tasty but it can almost double the amount of fat in your chicken. Cook the chicken with the skin on but remove before eating to get all the flavours in your meat without all the fat - best of both worlds!
Types of chicken
Fresh or frozen?
Fresh chicken lasts 2-3 days in the fridge so if you're planning on using it immediately you should go for fresh chicken as it's easier to prepare. Make sure the chicken feels supple and doesn't smell funny to ensure it's fresh. You can freeze fresh chicken buy washing it, patting dry, wrapping in tight parcels and putting in the freezer. Always freeze chicken on the day you bought it.
Frozen chicken is often cheaper so if you're doing a big shop for the month a bag of frozen portions will save you some cash. Make sure the chicken is completely frozen and has no liquid in the package - as this means it has defrosted slightly. To defrost a chicken, you need to allow it to defrost in the fridge and not at room temperature - make sure you place it on a plate to collect any of the juices.
Chicken juices can contaminate other foods so make sure, however you store your chicken, that no juices can escape the packaging and get onto other foods.
It is very important to check the sell-by date when buying chicken. Do not buy or eat chicken even slightly past the sell-by date.
Cuts of chicken
Whole chicken. The best way to cook a whole chicken is, of course, to roast it. You can buy it with or without the giblets (organs) inside. The giblets can be used in a stock or gravy for extra flavour but they aren't for the squeamish! A little oil and lemon is all you need to bring out the flavours in your roast - or you could try something a little different with one of our roast chicken recipes.
Whole chickens are cheaper than buying the parts separately so if you're feeling brave you can buy a whole one and cut it down into joints. We have a step-by-step guide for how to joint chicken if you fancy giving it a go. If you don't fancy this, ask your butcher to do it for you.
Chicken breasts. Breasts have the lowest fat content of all cuts of chicken and you can buy them with or without the skin. Breasts are really versatile and can be stuffed, grilled, baked or fried and, when chopped, used in pasta dishes, salads, pies and many, many more recipes.
Chicken thighs. Thighs are a cheaper alternative to breasts and some people say they're a lot tastier as the meat is a little darker and has a richer flavour. They can be bought boned or boneless and can be used in a variety of different meals - casseroles, traybakes and stuffed are just some of our ways with chicken thighs.
Chicken drumsticks. Similar to thighs in taste and texture, drumsticks are good on the BBQ and are delicious baked with a tasty marinade. They're wonderfully messy as well so the kids will love eating them!
Chicken wings. The cheapest cut, wings are quite fatty and have very little meat on them compared to other cuts but they're delicious on the BBQ and make great party food snacks as you can eat them with your hands.
How to cook chicken
When preparing chicken you have to be a lot more careful than with other foods and meats. The bacteria on raw chicken can cause salmonella poisoning so it's important not to let it touch any other raw food or cooking utensils before it is cooked. When preparing you need to use separate chopping boards and utensils to other foods - or make sure you wash them thoroughly before using them again. Surfaces and utensils should be washed with warm soapy water to rid them of raw juices. Your hands are equally as important and must be washed regularly when handling chicken to ensure you don't contaminate other surfaces.
When cooking chicken you need to make sure it is cooked all the way through before serving. If you see any pink areas, it needs to be cooked longer. Thigh and drumstick meat will look a little grey when cooked. To check a whole chicken is cooked, insert a skewer into one of the joints and if the juices run clear, it's ready.
Ways to cook chicken
Baking is the healthiest way to cook chicken. It allows the juice and flavours to develop so the meat will need less seasoning once done.
Frying is less healthy but is great if you're in a hurry. Use one calorie oil spray rather than oil or butter if you want to keep the calorie down.
Barbecuing can be delicious but you have to be very careful about making sure it is cooked properly - check our guide for barbecuing chicken.
Poaching or steaming are other, slightly old-fashioned, ways to cook chicken but are also great as a healthier alternative to frying.
Slow cooking, if you overcook chicken in the oven it can become really dry but that doesn't mean you can't slow cook it. If you have a slow cooker you can add it to a rich sauce a cook for up to 8 hours for a deliciously rich flavour. See our slow cooker recipes for some ideas.
Flavours that complement chicken
- Cajun spices
- Curry powder
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Chicken and bacon risotto is a quick and easy meal for the whole family. Our recipe takes just 40 minutes and is great for the midweek rush! This recipe serves 4 people and is the perfect option for everyone to enjoy together. A portion of this dish works out at 575 calories. It's much healthier than readymade risotto and you have control over exactly what goes into it too like salt content and fat. We've used pudding rice and chicken thighs in our risotto to make our savoury meal for 4 even cheaper at just 97p per person! This dish is a great way of sneaking veg into your kids diets. Add handfuls of chopped spinach, grated mushrooms and any other veg you fancy to get your little ones eating some of their 5-a-day. This dish is best made and eaten on the same day but leftovers can be stored in the airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 days. Make sure you reheat thoroughly before serving, the rice needs to be piping hot.(80 ratings)
This homemade version of a favourite Indian restaurant classic, chicken jalfrezi, is easy to make and very easy to eat! Using a ready-made curry paste saves time and is ideal if you havenít got a cupboard full of spices to hand. Family and friends will love to share this as a weekend treat and youíll save pounds compared to eating out. If you have a balti pan to cook the Jalfrezi in then why not serve it at the table for extra effect. Add poppadoms, warm naan bread and pickles and chutneys to make the meal even more authentic.(24 ratings)
Slimming World's chicken curry recipe is one of our favourite delicious and simple-to-make Slimming World dinners! Itís guilt-free too, making it the perfect Saturday night alternative to a takeaway. This Slimming World curry is easy to make, and it's ready to be eaten in less than hour. Curry is one the nation's favourite meals and it's not off the menu if you're counting the calories. Diet club Slimming World have taken the classic dish and made it nice and healthy, and the best part is that it has not lost out on any of the flavour. The main way this Slimming World curry recipe is better for you in terms of calories is that itĎs not made with coconut milk or any other liquids that can add more calories to a curry Ė itís simply cooked with water but it still taste absolutely delicious. This Slimming World curry recipe is so tasty, even those not following the diet can enjoy it, so you donít have to cook two meals if youíre following the Slimming World plan. The potato in the mix means you don't need to serve it with rice and sides. This recipe serves 4 people and should take approximately 40 minutes to make. If youíre craving curry, make this light and tasty Slimming World recipe instead of getting a takeaway Ė itís a lot healthier and cheaper. Any leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up 2 days. Reheat thoroughly before serving.(495 ratings)
Chicken curry has to be one of our favourite recipes and this Hairy Bikers' easy chicken curry recipe is one that you'll want to make again and again. Bursting full of flavour, this chicken curry is made with a homemade tarka masala sauce made with garlic, root ginger and green chillies. As youíre making this chicken curry recipe from scratch, you can adjust the heat to your taste and make it as hot or as mild as you want it to be. The chicken in this recipe is cooked until tender and succulent so this curry recipe tastes even better. Si and Dave's simple recipe for chicken curry takes only 15 minutes to prepare and 40 minutes to cook, so you can have it on the table in under an hour. This simple chicken curry serves 6 people, so you the whole family can enjoy it and you can still keep leftovers for lunch the next day. Just keep it in an airtight container in the fridge and it will keep for a few days. This easy chicken curry recipe is the perfect takeaway alternative on a Saturday night Ė making it yourself means you know exactly what youíre eating so you can eat a healthier meal. Serve with naan bread or rice. This curry recipe is taken from Mums Know Best: The Hairy Bikers' Family Cookbook.(422 ratings)
This classic one-pot chicken and prawn paella recipe is a Spanish dish that's not only delicious, but it also saves on the washing-up! Not all traditional paellas use chicken, but we like it better this way. Cooked in just 1hr, this delicious chicken paella recipe serves 4 people. This classic chicken paella dish is infused with chorizo sausage, onion, garlic, saffron and paprika. Serve with a cut of crusty bread and drizzle in lemon juice before serving. Make this chicken paella extra healthy by swapping the traditional paella rice for brown rice instead. This easy chorizo paella recipe is perfect if you want to bring a taste of your favourite summer holiday, home. This meal is great for sharing with the whole family. Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 days. Reheat thoroughly before serving again. This recipe is just perfect served with freshly baked bread or crusty baguette for dipping into the meat and spice juices.(231 ratings)
Gordon Ramsay's butter chicken recipe is so easy to make at home and tastes delicious too. This classic Indian dish will take around 50 mins to prepare and cook but is best made in advance so the chicken has plenty of time to marinade in the homemade butter-based curry sauce. This butter chicken recipe is great for sharing with friends and family, especially on a Friday after a busy week so you can catch up over a delicious meal. This butter chicken recipe is also the perfect takeaway alternative, and much healthier too. By making your own butter chicken curry at home, you have more control over what you're eating, especially if you're trying to loose weight. It's much healthier than your average takeaway and you can control how spicy or non-spicy you want it. The chicken is so tender in this recipe and works wonders with the tomato infused sauce. Add some veggies to this dish like spinach to add towards your 5-a-day count. This easy butter chicken recipe was taken from his Channel 4 series Gordon's Great Escape.(200 ratings)
Courgette spaghetti with pesto and chicken is a quick and easy dish that is both healthy and packed with flavour. If you love pasta, but want to eat something a bit lighter and lower in carbs, then courgette spaghetti is for you. The spiralised courgette acts just like spaghetti and is the perfect base for a pasta sauce. Even better - these clever noodles can count towards one of your five a day. Even fussy eaters won't notice they're eating vegetables when it's disguised as pasta. We've served our courgette spaghetti with home made pesto and seasoned, pan fried chicken fillets. Making your own pesto is so easy and gives far better results than anything you can buy in the shops. All you need to do is blend a few ingredients and you've got a fresh and punchy sauce, without any artificial flavourings or additives. Our recipe uses quark, a lower fat cheese product, popular in Germany, which reduces the fat content and gives the pesto a creamy texture. Courgette spaghetti with pesto and chicken is the perfect healthy summer supper.(4 ratings)
This easy and delicious chicken soup recipe is a real classic. You'll want to make it over again. This recipe is great for using up leftover chicken. This recipe serves 6-8 people and takes around 3hrs to prepare and slow cook for the best flavour. A deliciously warm pick-me-up for when you're feeling under the weather, this comforting chicken soup recipe almost makes feeling ill worthwhile! The chicken in this recipe will keep you fuller for longer thanks to the protein in the chicken, add heaps of veggies counting towards your 5-a-day and you've got one healthy option for lunch time. This soup can be frozen in portions on the day it's made and can be stored in an airtight container for up to 2 days in the fridge. Reheat thoroughly before serving.(31 ratings)
Delicious, easy, and sure to please everybody, this chicken taquito recipe is packed with punchy flavours. Start by adding onion into a pan and cook until softened. Then add in your chicken fillets seasoned with the salt, pepper, cumin, paprika and ground coriander. Toss in the peppers and courgettes until tender and pour in 150ml of water. While thatís on simmer, donít forget to warm up your tortillas according to pack instructions. To make the salsa, mix onion, vinegar, honey, sweet corn and mango together. Then spoon in your taquitos mix and scatter jalapeno chilli peppers for an extra kick. Donít forget to roll them up and dip in salsa before tucking in.(2 ratings)
This easy chicken casserole recipe is a hearty, family meal made with all the joints of chicken and plenty of vegetables. Itís comfort food packed with veg like mushrooms, carrot, onion and celery, so it can really help you and your family up your 5-a-day intake. Itís also a great way to get your kids eating more veg as theyíre mixed in with the chicken Ė and make a tasty dinner! This easy chicken casserole only takes 1hr and 15 mins to cook and will serve up to 6 people. This casserole recipe would be perfect served with boiled or jacket potatoes, or rice. You can use all different cuts of chicken in this recipe Ė try chicken breast meat, thighs or drumsticks. If you have any leftovers, make sure you store them in an airtight container in the fridge. Use within 2 days and thoroughly reheat in the microwave or oven before serving again. It will taste just as delicious so this a great dish to make on a Sunday evening and keep for your lunches during the week Ė it will save you so much time and money! This chicken casserole is also a filling and nutritious meal that can fit in your diet. A portion of this delicious casserole works out at only 390 calories per serving and 13g of fat Ė perfect if youíre trying to she pounds in a healthy way!(409 ratings)
Chicken pasta bake is a classic family meal and this chicken and tomato pasta bake recipe is so easy to make! Nothing beats a chicken and tomato pasta bake for a delicious and filling midweek supper. This chicken pasta bake has a lovely rich garlic and tomato sauce and is topped with masses of melting mozzarella cheese for a really creamy topping. You can choose any shape of dried pasta - for this chicken pasta bake we've used spirals, but shells, twists or short-cut macaroni will work just as well. This easy chicken pasta is a great midweek family meal, especially if youíre short on time to make dinner as you can prepare it ahead. To prepare the bake in advance, leave the pasta and chicken and tomato sauce to cool in the dish, without the cheese topping. Cover and chill for up to 24 hrs. if youíre making this dish ahead and want to bake it from chilled, all you have to do is sprinkle with the cheese and cook at 200įC/400įF/Fan 180įC/Gas Mark 6 for 25-30 mins until piping hot. This is one of our favourite chicken and pasta recipes and we bet youíll love it too!(268 ratings)
Spanish chicken is a lovely dish to whip up when you want a filling yet delicious meal, and this Hairy Bikers' Spanish chicken bake recipe is the perfect one-pot wonder. The Hairy Bikers have captured the classic flavours of Spain in one dish - and it's one of their diet dishes too! At just 370 calories per serving, you'd think this Hairy Bikers Spanish chicken would be lacking in flavour - far from it! The powerful flavours of paprika and chorizo give the chicken a lovely Spanish twist. This delicious Spanish chicken bake serves 4 people and will take about 1hr and 15 mins to make in total. Itís well worth the wait! The Hairy Bikers use chicken thighs in this recipe to cut down the cost but feel free to use your favourite cut of chicken instead e.g. chicken breast or drumsticks. And the best thing about this Spanish chicken recipe - it's all made in one pot! Less washing up and a delicious family meal - what more could you want? This Spanish chicken recipe is part of the Hairy Dieters series.(850 ratings)
Chicken bhuna curry is a classic that you simply can't beat. Plenty of flavour, a kick of spice and tender chicken pieces are the secrets behind the success of this chicken bhuna recipe! Cheaper than a takeaway, this simple and cheap chicken bhuna recipe is easy to make, which means it is perfect for a weekend supper. The thick medium-hot sauce made from a tasty blend of flavourings and vegetables perfectly coats and compliments the rich meat of chicken thighs. The best part of making this simple chicken bhuna from scratch is that you adjust the heat to your liking. So if you want to increase the heat of this delicious curry, simply add more chillies. If you or someone youíre cooking for is vegetarian, you could also make a veggie version by replacing the chicken with a selection of vegetables such as peppers, potatoes and cauliflower. For added effect serve in balti dishes with pickles, chutney and poppadoms or naan bread. This recipe serves 4 people and should take 55 mins to rustle up, so you can have it ready on the dinner table in less than an hour.(205 ratings)
Make your own tasty chicken dippers with Annabel Karmel's simple recipe and serve with her quick-and-easy dips.(31 ratings)
Taleggio stuffed chicken is an easy but impressive main dish that is perfect for dinner parties. Simple chicken breast fillets are made extra special by stuffing them with tangy Taleggio cheese before wrapping in salty Parma ham. This dish is quick and easy, and can be prepared, stuffed and wrapped in advance, leaving only a little cooking required before serving. Taleggio is a northern Italian cow's milk cheese. It has a soft texture and strong and punchy aroma, but a mild and creamy favour. It melts beautifully and works well in toasted sandwiches, pasta bakes, and as a pizza topping. To be called Taleggio, the cheese must be made in the Italian regions of Lombardy and Piedmont, but can be easily found in most supermarkets. Keeping with the Italian theme, Parma ham, or prosciutto di Parma, is an Italian, dry cured ham, cured for a minimum of 12 months. It is popularly served as it is, as part of an antipasti platter, but also makes a great alternative to bacon. If you want an impressive dinner party recipe that is easy to make but delivers great results, then this Taleggio stuffed chicken is for you.(3 ratings)
Spice up your barbecue with this recipe for Middle Eastern spiced BBQ chicken, which is served with a fresh tomato salsa that complements and cools the heat of the spices. Marinating chicken before cooking allows the flavours to develop and makes the meat more tender, so the little bit of work in advance is well worth it for the tasty end results. This spiced chicken is flavoured with Baharat, a Middle Eastern spice blend. Baharat is readily available in supermarkets, but if you can't find it try mixing 2 tsp each of paprika, coriander and cumin with 1/2 tsp each of nutmeg and black pepper. For big gatherings we like to make all our BBQ marinades ahead of time, and this one is no exception. If you want to get prepped early too then simply mix all the marinade ingredients together and freeze until needed. This BBQ chicken marinade will defrost quickly, just remember to get it out on the morning of your barbecue and leave it at room temperature until liquid enough to coat your chicken pieces in.
Slimming World's diet cola chicken recipe is simply delicious, made with tender pieces of chicken and served with plenty of fresh vegetables for lighter option. This mouth-watering diet cola chicken recipe is ready in under an hour and serves 4 people. The diet coke adds a sweet flavour and sticky texture along with the soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce and passata. If youíve never tasted this Slimming World diet coke chicken, loved by Slimming World members, youíre in for a treat. Once youíve tried this diet cola chicken, youíll be hooked! This delicious Slimming World chicken recipe only takes 40 mins to make and is well worth the wait. Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 days. Reheat thoroughly before serving again and make sure the chicken is piping hot.(372 ratings)
Chicken and chorizo pasta is full of flavour and perfect for a speedy week-night supper. Juicy chicken pieces and spicy chorizo blend beautifully with the basil-infused tomato sauce. Choose chunky pasta shapes like penne or farfalle to trap the sauce, and serve with lashings of grated Parmesan cheese. This chorizo pasta dish only takes 5 mins to prepare and 15 mins to cook, which makes it the ideal mid-week meal thatís quick and easy and the kids will love it too. If you're catering for more than 4 people, we'd recommend doubling the ingredients, that way you're sure to have leftovers for the lunch the next day too. Chicken and chorizo isnít just for paella, itís great with pasta too!(228 ratings)