Italian Chicken with Chickpeas
Elysabeth and I have some ingredients that we always use, and recently realized that we now have space in the basement to store things, and a multitude of bulk-shopping stores in the area where we can stock up. Last month, we ventured into the world of big-box stores with a free 60-day trial membership at BJs, and we went yesterday to pick up some of our most common staples: chickpeas, diced tomatoes, and chicken broth. To celebrate the purchase, I felt it appropriate to make a personal favorite recipe, Italian Chicken with Chickpeas. This recipe is originally from our Cooking Light Weeknight cookbook, but I’ve made a few changes, as I usually do. This is a great dish for a Sunday evening because clean-up is easy, and the leftovers are plentiful. And unlike some dishes, Italian Chicken with Chickpeas only gets better when it’s reheated.
This recipe is nice because it can be cooked in a single pan, and the only real prep work is cutting just a few vegetables and chicken. Seeing as I love chopping more than the act of cooking itself, this recipe works quite well for me. Using the diced tomatoes with Italian seasoning makes the dish more flavorful, and also shaves off some time in the cooking process. If you use plain diced tomatoes, add 1 tbsp Italian seasonings at the last stage of cooking, when the pan is covered.
Italian Chicken with Chickpeas (Serves 4)
- 1 lb boneless chicken tenders, cut in half lengthwise
- 2 red (or green, or any bell) peppers, sliced into 1/4″ strips
- 1 onion (any kind will do), cut in half and then into thick slices, separated
- 1 clove garlic, roughly chopped
- 1.5 tsp olive oil, or cooking spray (preferred)
- 1 14.5 oz can chick peas, drained
- 1 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes, not drained
- 2 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped, plus 1 tbsp whole leaves (optional)
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Heat the oil in a large sauté pan (with straight sides) on medium-high heat. If using cooking spray, add the spray after the pan has already come to temperature. While the pan heats up, coat the chicken with a generous amount of the salt and black pepper on both sides.
- Add the chicken pieces, being sure to leave them in place (don’t move them!) for 1 minute to ensure good browning.
- Flip the chicken pieces and cook another 30 to 45 seconds to brown the other side.
- Add the onion and bell pepper and continue to cook and stir for another 3-4 minutes, or until the vegetables begin to soften.
- Add the garlic, chickpeas, and tomatoes and combine thoroughly. Taste the sauce and add more salt if necessary. Turn the heat down to medium.
- Cover the pan and cook for 4-5 minutes or until chicken is cooked just through, being careful not to overcook the chicken.
- (Optional) Add the chopped parsley to the pan and stir to combine. Re-cover, turn off the heat, and let the pan sit for another 2-3 minutes.
- Spoon mixture into bowls, making sure to include some of the pan juices, and add some of the remaining fresh parsley.
Some other ideas to spruce up this dish: Add a cap full of balsamic vinegar before covering the pan, or add some crushed red pepper or Parmesan cheese before serving. (If you’re counting points, make sure to count the cheese!)
Fat: 9.1 g
Fiber: 6.4 g
Weight Watchers Points: 7.5