Easy-to-Make Chicken Dinner

by Erik Devaney

    Chicken is a go-to meal option for many families. It's inexpensive, and most children like it -- even picky eaters. If you're worn out from a busy day and the kids are gathered in the kitchen wondering what's for dinner, use chicken as the main ingredient for a quick and easy meal that will satisfy any hungry family.

    Grilled Chicken

    Cook chicken on the grill for an easy meal that saves clean up time. Brush chicken pieces with hot barbecue sauce during grilling, and serve with cool ranch salad dressing for dipping. Bake potatoes in the microwave, and steam a fresh vegetable medley while the chicken cooks. Open a bag of mixed salad greens and toss with creamy dressing, and layer yogurt and fresh fruit for a dessert parfait.

    Simple Roasting

    While some chicken dinner recipes call for complicated cooking techniques, choose a simple cooking strategy such as roasting chicken pieces in the oven. Pieces roast much faster than a whole bird, so dinner will be on the table quickly. Simply place washed chicken in a pan. Take a few seconds to season it with dry salad dressing and seasoning mix for a special flavor boost. If your family likes crispy skin, turn up the heat to about 450 F for the last few minutes of cooking time. Bake scalloped potatoes in the oven with the chicken, and serve steamed peas and carrots and coleslaw with creamy dressing to round out the meal.

    Skillet Chicken

    Saute chicken pieces in a skillet in a small amount of healthy olive oil. Give it a flavor kick the easy way by dipping it into a shallow dish of buttermilk and then rolling it in whole-wheat flour seasoned with dry salad dressing mix. Fry the chicken until it's crispy, about four minutes per side, and finish cooking it in a 350 F oven while you steam a bag of vegetables in the microwave. Don't hesitate to use instant potatoes -- they are simply dehydrated potatoes. Open a salad kit, complete with croutons, to complete a quick and easy chicken dinner.

    Accompaniments

    Serve a variety of side dishes to complement chicken. Potatoes, pasta, rice or couscous are all good choices which you can flavor easily by adding dry salad dressing and seasoning mix during cooking. Try tossing pasta in creamy salad dressing after cooking. For colorful vegetable sides, serve steamed green beans, Brussel sprouts, carrots or squash, and sprinkle on a dash of powdered dressing mix for a burst of flavor. Fruit is also a good accompaniment to chicken, whether you use citrus and pineapple in sweet and sour chicken or grapes and apples in creamy chicken salad.

    About the Author

    Erik Devaney is a writing professional specializing in health and science topics. His work has been featured on various websites. Devaney attended McGill University, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts in humanistic studies.

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