When thinking about weekday meals, I often plan for leftovers. By letting flavors mature overnight, your leftovers may be even better than the original dish. I came up with this dish when I first started living on my own. Anytime I moved, I became exhausted just adjusting and trying to get my new place to feel like home. By the time I felt hungry, I just wanted food. Standing in the kitchen didn’t sound fun after being on my feet all day; it was time to relax and make my belly warm. Anything that I can throw in the oven and forget about for a few minutes is a life saver. This meal is perfect for those who have an active lifestyle.
There’s no quicker way to relax or make a place feel like home than the smell of a flavorful meal. Chicken thighs are juicy and hearty. The succulent drippings from the thighs will mix with the rice and vegetables in this dish, creating a healthful but rich meal. I like to use a large skillet or Dutch oven when making this dish. I like it because it can be easily scaled to accommodate anyone, whether it be a single person who doesn’t want to cook every day, a person who meal preps or a family of six. If you want to scale up this dish, I recommend preparing everything like normal but bake in a casserole dish.
Chicken thigh, brown rice and vegetables bake
Makes: 4 servings
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 50 minutes
- 4 bone-in skin-on chicken thighs
- ½ teaspoon neutral oil
- 1 tablespoon paprika
- 1 tablespoon garlic powder
- 1 cup mushrooms, chopped
- 2 cups frozen peas
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 6 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 ½ cups uncooked brown rice
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 2 cups chicken broth or water
- 1 tablespoon thyme
- 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
- Salt and pepper
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Heat Dutch oven on medium to medium high, with ½ teaspoon of neutral oil.
- Pat chicken dry, and season generously with salt, pepper, paprika and garlic powder. Place skin-side down into the pan. Cook until golden brown, about 5 minutes on each side. Work in batches if necessary. Set aside when done.
- Turn heat down to medium. Add mushrooms, peas and onions and sauté until fragrant — about 3 minutes.
- Add garlic, rice and butter; cook for 2 more minutes.
- Add broth, thyme, Italian seasoning and salt and pepper to rice. Stir.
- Place chicken on top; if using Dutch oven with lid, cover. Otherwise cover with foil. Place in oven and cook for 30 minutes.
- Uncover, turn the oven up to 400 degrees and cook for an additional 20 minutes. When ready to serve, scoop up chicken and rice in one hearty mound.
The opinions expressed in reader comments are those of the author only and do not reflect the opinions of The Seattle Times.