Oven Roasted Crispy Chicken & Rainbow Veggies with Gremolata & Bacon
Isn’t this a gorgeous meal?? You can’t help but feel good about your cooking skills when putting this into the oven. But before I tell you all about how wonderful this is and how I know YOU CAN DO THIS, don’t zone out into your thoughts of “I could never do this!” or “what is a gremolata…sounds too fancy” or “I do good not to burn mac N’ cheese, so I am not even attempting this!”. If you can chop ((without loosing a thumb)) then you can do this.
The most important parts of this recipe happen at the grocery store. ((Try Natural Grocers, Sprouts or Whole Food if you are local)). You need to shop somewhere that sells “pretty” veggies. Rainbow carrots, purple fingerlings, lush organic Italian parsley & if your family can stomach them — golden beets.
I recently learned my family cannot stomach beets, if you are following me on Instagram or FB you already know all about that story. I will save the details for my upcoming Osso Buco recipe, I bet you can’t wait!
In addition to the gorgeous carrots & potatoes, I also added bright green broccoli & green bell peppers. Onions do such amazing things in the oven that I added big chunks of red onion and finely chopped white onion as well.
I love chopping veggies. I really enjoy focusing on one thing and doing it well. Most of my days are spent trying to do 13 things at the same time & I never feel like I get to focus on one thing, giving it my best. But with chopping, I focus out of necessity — I need all 10 fingers!
The next thing you need to grab while at the grocery: fresh bone-in, skin on split breast chicken. Get the biggest ones you can find. Each of these are a touch over ½ pound. Now, pause on the “I don’t eat the skin” & “why bones??” thoughts, and let me tell you why you need bones and skin:
- easier to cook
Are those good enough reasons?? I will talk more about them in a minute.
Let’s skip to making the gremolata. A gremolata is so simple to make& is traditionally made of chopped garlic, parsley and lemon zest and held together with olive oil. It typically is adding after cooking – but for this recipe I am using the gremolata as a rub/marinade.
Instead of garlic, I added 3 tablespoons of stone ground mustard, because I love mustard so. This Sir Kensington’s mustard is so yummy, I licked the spoon. It is perfectly tangy & surprisingly sweet. I highly recommend this brand!
I added my favorite McCormick’s Montreal Steakhouse seasoning blend.
Then added 2-3 tablespoons of cooking oil (I like non GMO canola) & stirred.
I patted some of the gremolata mixture onto the chicken.
And added the remaining gremolata and lemon slices to the veggies.
I added some chopped white onion and a bit more seasoning to the chicken.
Placed the chicken in a bowl & then refrigerated the chicken & veggies for 3 hours in order to allow the flavors to get married and live happily ever after.
When dinnertime approached, I preheated the oven to 400° and laid everything out on two parchment lined baking sheets.
Then I had an idea: “Bacon!”.
I added 4 strips chopped bacon. The crispy bits of bacon along with the thin slices of roasted lemon were amazing with this chicken!
The skin & bone do a marvelous job of sealing in the juices, ensuring NO dry chicken will be served at your dinner table. In addition to moisture, the skin & bone bring flavor. If you have been eating boneless skinless white meat since 1993, step out of your comfort zone and see what you have been missing!
This type of breast also gives you a little wiggle room in the overcooking department – making them way easier to cook ((in my unprofessional opinion)).
And price? I got these on sale at Whole Foods for $3.99 per pound. The boneless skinless are $6.99 per pound ((not on sale at the time)). Two pounds fed our family great because of the added veggies.
The chicken roasted for 40-45 minutes. I could tell it was done because the juices ran clear when I titled the baking sheet and the tenderloin had slightly separated from the breast. If you are extra paranoid about raw chicken, just use a knife to slice through the thickest part of the breast to check for doneness.
- 3 T canola
- 1 lemon, zested & thinly sliced*
- 2 c Italian parsley, finely chopped
- 2 T stoneground mustard
- 1-2 t McCormick's Montreal Steak seasoning blend
- 3-4 rainbow carrots, cut on the diagonal
- 1 medium red onion, chopped into wedges
- 1 medium green bell pepper, chopped into wedges
- 12-15 fingerling potatoes ((I used purple fingerlings))
- 1 1/2 c fresh broccoli florets, sliced
- 2 lbs bone-in, skin on split breast chicken ((4 split breasts))
- 1 medium white onion ((diced))
- 4 slices of applewood smoked bacon, chopped
- Line two half-sheet sized baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
- In a medium mixing bowl, combine gremolata ingredients. *Add lemon slices to the veggie mix and set aside.
- Add veggies to a large mixing bowl & toss with half of the gremolata mixture. Toss for even coating. Cover & allow veggies to "marinate" in the fridge for 3-4 hours.
- Add chicken and chopped white onion to the remaining gremolata mixture & toss to coat. Cover & refrigerate for 3-4 hours.
- **Preheat the oven to 400°. Place half of the veggies & two chicken breasts on each lined baking sheet. Add chopped bacon and a few extra shakes of seasoning or S & P and place in the oven for 40-45 minutes, or until chicken is done & juices run clear. Turn on the broiler for 2-4 minutes to ensure skin crisps.
- Remove from oven and serve.
- Serves 6.
- Optional: try using turnips, beets, cauliflower, sweet potato, butternut squash etc. You never know what your family will LOVE until you try!
- **If you are in a rush, you can skip the refrigerator step - just begin by preheating your oven to 400°.