Food & Drink

What are the simplest chicken recipes?

If you believe that dinner is incomplete without meat on the plate, you may want to start using chicken more often. Not only is chicken versatile, but it’s also high in protein and packed with vitamins like B6 and B12 and minerals like iron and zinc. For simple chicken recipes, look no further than these suggestions.

 - 12 Min Read
Last updated and fact checked:
What are the simplest chicken recipes?
  • Chicken recipes are ideal for both lunch and dinner.
  • Chicken is healthy meat and contains essential minerals and nutrients.
  • There are loads of simple chicken recipes out there to enjoy.

Simple chicken recipes: FAQs

  • What are the best spices to use with chicken?

    With most chicken dishes, you can't go wrong with paprika and ground coriander. As for herbs, thyme and rosemary are roast chicken's best friends! Then again, chicken is an ideal ingredient because it carries so much of the flavour you throw at it. There are very few mistakes you can make when spicing up your chicken.

  • What are some different ways to cook chicken?

    You can cook chicken in several different ways. Roasting, grilling and frying are the main cooking methods that spring to mind when cooking chicken. However, you can also use it to make chicken stew or soup. Chicken is your go-to ingredient as it will be delicious every time.

  • What is the most tender way to cook chicken?

    If you want to guarantee tender chicken, then lemon is your partner in this. Any chicken dish with a squirt of lemon juice will make the chicken soft and juicy. When cooking chicken in the oven, it’s always best to cover it with tin foil so that none of the moisture evaporates.

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Chicken is a great go-to protein if you're after healthier meat to eat or don't know what else to cook for lunch and dinner. These simple recipes will give you all the inspiration you need for our easy chicken recipes!

We spoke to popular Midlands blogger Emma Shilton, who told Age Times: "Chicken is such a versatile meat. It can be eaten hot in a delicious evening meal or cold as an addition to a salad for lunch. It's one of the best meats for families as there is so much you can do with it. Add spices, add a sauce, eat it plain or dress it up. It's a great family favourite in our house."

Now...onto the recipes!

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Roast chicken

Roast chicken may take some time to cook, but this classic chicken recipe is easy to nail. Plus, whole chickens can be cheap and are great for Sunday roasts or dinner parties. They're also great to cook during your weekly meal prep at the beginning of the week.


  • 1 x whole chicken (you can choose the size depending on how many you’re planning to feed)
  • 1 x onion
  • 2 x tbsp of olive oil
  • 1 x tbsp dried mixed or Italian herbs
  • Salt and pepper for seasoning
  • 50g salted butter (this is optional if you want to reduce your fat intake)


  1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C.
  2. Place your whole chicken in a baking dish. If the legs are tied together, cut the string to separate them.
  3. Pour the olive oil over the top of the chicken and ensure it is well covered.
  4. Cut the onion in half and insert both halves inside the chicken.
  5. If you're using butter, soften it slightly in the microwave, then rub it all over the chicken until it's fully coated.
  6. Sprinkle your dried herbs over the chicken as evenly as possible.
  7. Season the chicken with salt and pepper.
  8. Cover the dish with tin foil and wrap it tightly.
  9. Cook the chicken in the oven for 2 hours or until cooked through. If you like crispy skin, put the chicken back in for 15 minutes after you've uncovered it.
  10. Carve the chicken just before serving, and ensure you know who prefers drumsticks, breasts or thighs!

Side dish Ideas

No roast is complete without greens and, of course, roast potatoes! Serve your chicken with creamy leeks and gravy to give your juicy chicken the ultimate comfort food flavours we all love. Steam some green veggies like broccoli, asparagus or beans to complement your chicken dinner.

Using your leftovers

You can also use any leftover roast chicken to make other dishes. Think about those weeknight meals like

  • Chicken fajitas
  • Chicken salads
  • Tacos
  • Kebabs
  • Stir fry
  • Chicken pie
  • Chicken enchiladas
  • Creamy chicken pasta

You can use your roast chicken scraps for all of these!

When you have just bones left, boil the carcass with onions, carrots, and celery until the mixture smells delicious. Season and remove the bones and as many chunky bits as possible. Pour the liquid into a freezable container or an ice tray, and you have ready-to-go homemade chicken stock!

Butter chicken curry

Butter chicken is one of the best chicken curries around and is a super easy dinner to make. The best part is you’ll only need one dish because all the ingredients cook together in a beautiful emulsion of Indian flavour. Depending on your preference, you can cook butter chicken using chicken thighs or chicken breasts.


  • 500g chicken breast or thigh (depending on how many you’re serving)
  • 400g tin of chopped tomatoes
  • 1 x onion, diced
  • 5 x cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 x lemon
  • 100g softened butter
  • 200g full-fat natural yoghurt
  • 1 x tbsp minced fresh ginger
  • 2 x tbsp garam masala
  • 1 x tsp turmeric
  • 1 x tsp dried coriander leaf
  • Salt and pepper for seasoning
  • 1/4 cup of fresh coriander to garnish


  1. Place your chicken pieces and onion in a baking or casserole dish.
  2. Make your marinade by mixing all the ingredients except the fresh coriander.
  3. Pour the marinade over the chicken pieces and ensure all the pieces are sufficiently submerged. Let it stand for 30 mins.
  4. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees C.
  5. Cover the chicken dish tightly with tin foil.
  6. Cook the chicken for 1.5 hours until the chicken is cooked and slightly crispy on the top.
  7. Serve with the coriander garnish on a bed of rice or couscous with poppadoms, and enjoy!

Thai green chicken curry

If you're after a healthy, quick chicken dinner recipe with loads of lemony zestiness, try this Thai green chicken curry. You can make this on the stove in a single pan or wok. If you're going out for the day, you can also use this recipe for a slow cooker chicken dish. Just throw everything in!


  • 500g chicken breasts, chopped into cubes
  • 1 x onion
  • 4 x cloves of garlic crushed or minced
  • 1 x tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 x tin of coconut milk
  • 100ml chicken stock
  • 1 x tbsp green Thai curry paste
  • 2 x spring onions chopped
  • 1 x lemon (zest and juice)
  • 1 x green chilli
  • 1 x tsp ground lemongrass
  • 1 x tsp ground coriander
  • 1 x ginger paste
  • 1 x large courgette, chopped into cubes
  • 1 x green pepper finely chopped
  • 1 x cup of frozen garden peas
  • Salt and pepper for seasoning


  1. Heat the coconut oil in a pan large enough to fit all the ingredients.
  2. Add the diced chicken, onion, garlic, green chilli, and the juice of one lemon to the pan. Cook until the onions are soft.
  3. Add the green Thai curry paste, ginger paste, zest of one lemon, ground lemongrass, ground coriander, and chopped green pepper and cook until you get intense curry aromas.
  4. Add the coconut milk and the chicken stock and cook until it begins to simmer.
  5. Add the rest of the veggies and season, then cover with a lid until the courgettes have softened to your taste.
  6. Serve with basmati rice, and enjoy!

Chicken noodle soup

Chicken noodle soup is the perfect health kick, especially if you feel slightly under the weather. It's the ultimate comfort food and one of the simplest chicken recipes to make. A chicken noodle soup is excellent for quick and easy weeknight dinners.


  • 2 x tbsp olive oil
  • 1 x onion, finely chopped
  • 2 x carrots, finely chopped or sliced
  • 2 x celery sticks, chopped
  • 4 x cloves of garlic
  • 2 x large bay leaves
  • 1 x bunch of fresh thyme 
  • 4 x chicken breasts (or more if you want a heartier portion)
  • 8 x cups homemade chicken stock stock
  • 340g of dry egg noodles
  • Salt and pepper for seasoning
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, finely chopped to garnish
  • Water or more stock to top up if you need to


  1. Heat the olive oil in a large pot over the stove.
  1. Add the onion, carrots, celery, garlic, bay leaves, fresh thyme and chicken to the pot. Cook until the vegetables start softening, which should take about 20 minutes.
  2. Add the chicken stock and water (if needed) to completely submerge the chicken and veggies. Season with salt and pepper and some mixed herbs if you want to.
  3. Cover the pot with a lid and leave to emulsify for 30 minutes to one hour.
  4. Add the noodles just before serving and cook them until soft.
  5. Serve in bowls with some crusty bread, and enjoy!
  6. If you want to add a bit of crunch to this dish, add some cashew nuts - you might be surprised how well chicken and cashew nuts go together!

Crispy fried chicken wings traybake

These wings are better than any wings you'll ever taste at your local pub. Be warned, this is not a suitable recipe if you're trying to lower your sodium intake or need to eat gluten-free dishes, but my goodness, are they to die for and super easy to make. Chicken wings are packed with flavour because they are close to the bone - and they're the perfect size to eat with your fingers, so be prepared to get messy! You'll only need one sheet pan and a bowl for this gem.


  • 1kg chicken wings, split, and tips removed
  • 2 x tbsp butter, melted
  • 2 x tsp coarse sea salt
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • 1 x tsp garlic powder
  • 1 x tsp paprika (or smoked paprika if you like smokey flavours)
  • 1 x fresh chilli finely sliced
  • 1 x spring onion finely sliced

For the sauce

  • 2 x clear tbsp honey
  • 1/2 tsp garlic granules
  • 2 x tbsp dark soy sauce
  • 1 x tbsp tomato sauce or ketchup
  • 2 x tbsp bbq sauce
  • 1 x tsp dried mixed herbs
  • Salt and pepper to season


  1. Preheat your oven to 180 degrees C. Wrap some tin foils around two baking trays and then put baking racks on top of them.
  2. Toss the chicken wings in a bowl with melted butter.
  3. Arrange the coated chicken wings in a single layer on the wire racks. Spread them out so that they do not touch.
  4. Sprinkle them with salt, pepper, garlic powder, and paprika.
  5. Bake the wings until the skin is crispy, which should take about 40 minutes.
  6. Transfer the wings to an ovenproof dish.

For the sauce

  1. Put all ingredients for the sauce in a mixing bowl and combine well using a whisk or a stick blender.
  2. Pour the sauce all over the crispy chicken so that they are well-coated.
  3. If you want to create a glaze for the wings, put them back in the oven for about 15 minutes. This will allow your sauce to caramelise on top of them.
  4. Once they are done, garnish the chicken wings with the spring onion and chilli.
  5. Serve with plenty of serviettes and sides of your choice.

Green chicken parmesan pasta

This healthy chicken recipe is ideal for a work-from-home lunch or as something to throw together for a midweek dinner. You can also serve this dish cold to make it a chicken pasta salad recipe so you're good to go for the rest of the week.


  • 400g chicken breasts or mini chicken fillets, diced
  • 300g penne pasta
  • Juice of one lemon
  • 4 x tbsp olive oil
  • 3 x tbsp basil pesto
  • 2 x tbsp grated parmesan
  • 1 x jar of grilled artichokes
  • 1 x avocado (optional)
  • Salt and pepper for seasoning


  1. Start by frying your diced chicken in a pan with one tbsp olive oil, lemon juice and a little salt and pepper until cooked, which should take about fifteen minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, boil a pot of water for the pasta and add another tablespoon of olive oil and salt.
  3. Once the water is boiling, add the penne.
  4. Take the chicken off the heat and place it into a separate mixing bowl.
  5. Spoon the basil pesto, remaining olive oil, and parmesan over the chicken and mix well until the chicken is completely coated.
  6. Drain the cooked pasta when done.
  7. Combine the pasta with the chicken in the same mixing bowl.
  8. Add the grilled artichokes and avocado (if used) just before serving.
  9. Serve in bowls with some extra parmesan and a splash of balsamic vinegar for some extra Italian flair.

Which one will you try first?

Cooking with chicken could not be simpler. If these simple chicken recipes haven’t inspired you, don’t worry, there are loads of other delicious recipes out there that are just as simple and tasty. There’s nothing better than biting into a perfectly cooked piece of tender chicken with all the yummy flavours it so easily soaks up. So which chicken recipe will you be cooking tonight?

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