One of the fastest dinners I make involves doing two things at once. (If we include keeping the dog out from under my feet and answering phone calls, we can up this to four things. Multitasking doesn’t stop when we leave the office!) One of the most common dinners I make involves tossing whatever leftover veggies we have on-hand into the oven and sautéeing off some chicken in the skillet while the veggies roast. If you time it right, everything’s hot and ready at the same time. It’s a win-win all around: No wasted food and we eat at home instead of going out. Plus, this meal is loaded with veggies and far healthier than what we would’ve eaten at a restaurant.
Because my husband and I stick to the Mediterranean diet for the most part, we had a lot of what we needed for this Chicken-Veggie Couscous Toss already in our pantry. If you’re new to the Mediterranean diet, you can download the eMeals Mediterranean Diet Staples List here. Once your pantry is stocked, it’s an easy diet to follow and eat healthy. Here’s what we keep on hand:
In Our Pantry:
A big bottle of olive oil
Dried seasonings such as oregano, basil, parsley and dill, as well as cumin, coriander, cinnamon, and ginger
An assortment of regular and whole-grain pastas, including my favorite (cassarecce) and my husband’s (orzo)
Plain couscous, brown and basmati rices, and quinoa
Canned tomatoes and beans
Red wine and balsamic vinegars
In Our Fridge and Freezer:
Feta and Parmesan cheeses
Tilapia and salmon (we buy them when they’re on sale and freeze the fillets in two-serving packages so that when a recipe calls for it, we don’t have to worry about whether fish is on sale that week or not. We have it on hand. It’s also cheaper to buy it this way than a little at a time)
Skinless, boneless chicken breasts (we do the same thing for chicken that we do with fish)
Eggs and low-fat milk
Because we keep these items on-hand, the bulk of our grocery shopping is for fresh fruits and veggies each week. Keeping these items in your pantry helps to keep costs down.
Related Article: What is the Mediterranean Diet?
Chicken-Vegetable Couscous Toss
The nice thing about this recipe is its versatility. Don’t like yellow squash? Add more zucchini. Only have Parmesan cheese on-hand and no feta? Grate that instead. Want more seasonings? Add some dried oregano to the veggies before you put them in the oven. I kept things light and easy with just salt and pepper when I made this, but feel free to make it your own. While the veggies bake, let the water for the couscous come to a boil and brown the chicken. Once the veggies are done, toss them with the couscous and remaining ingredients, top with chicken, and you’re done! My husband said he’d also like this with his go-to favorite, orzo.
Interested in trying out the eMeals Mediterranean Meal Plan? Click here to learn more about it. We love the diversity of meals and variety of new foods we’re introduced to!
- 1 yellow squash, sliced
- 2 zucchini, sliced
- 1 (8-oz) package whole mushrooms, halved
- 1 cup grape tomatoes, halved
- 11/2 cups uncooked plain couscous
- 3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- ¼ cup olive oil
- Juice and grated rind from 2 lemons
- 1 (4-oz) package crumbled feta cheese
- 3 Tbsp thinly sliced fresh basil
- Preheat oven to 425°F. Place first 4 ingredients on a large rimmed baking sheet; drizzle with desired amount of olive oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Toss to coat.
- Bake 10 to 15 minutes or until tender.
- Meanwhile, cook couscous according to package directions.
- Cut chicken in half lengthwise; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cook, in batches, in 2 tablespoons hot oil per batch in a nonstick skillet until browned and done; thinly slice.
- Stir lemon juice and rind, feta cheese, basil and vegetables into couscous. Top each serving with chicken.
-Text by Ashley Leath