Oven roasted chicken piccata and rice is a riff on the classic Italian favorite turned into an easy 2-pan dinner. Pair it with a simple side salad and you have dinner.
Roasted chicken piccata… What is there to say?
It requires minimal effort.
It saves time.
It helps me eat less meat. (I’ll tell you why!)
It helps me waste less.
AND it’s de-licious.
Wasting less food and eating less meat are the top 2 ways we can reduce our impact on the environment with food (WRI). So for those of us who aren’t ready to totally stop eating meat altogether but want to be more conscious about our protein choices, this is a GREAT recipe.
I love buying whole chickens because I can practice whole animal cooking at home very easily. When I buy cuts of meat at a traditional grocery store, much of the animal gets thrown out in processing 🙁
TIP: When I roast a chicken, I clean the meat off the bones the same day and always save my leftover bones in the freezer to make chicken stock later! It’s MUCH more flavorful and nutritious than using bouillon or concentrate.
Wasting the chicken itself is just a tiny part of the issue. When you throw it out, it sits in a landfill it gives off methane (a powerful greenhouse gas).
The BIGGER part of the problem is that–when you throw any food out–you’re wasting EVERYTHING that went into making it.
When you waste food, all the resources that went into making it get wasted as well.
What goes into making a chicken?
– Feed (for 99.9% of chickens raised in the US this is a mix of corn and other grains, byproducts from chicken and fish production, supplements and medication, antibiotics and a few other things) (NCC)
– Supplements and medication
In addition… Also consider what goes into making the ingredients/resources that went into making the chicken…
When you throw any meat out, you’re wasting ALL THE THINGS that went into making it. So eat the whole chicken! Use up those leftovers!
EAT LESS MEAT
If you’re cooking for 1-2 people, making a chicken is an easy way to cook protein for the whole week. Roast a chicken on Sunday and have meat ready for soups, salads, pastas, tacos, whatever!
I eat less meat knowing that this chicken is all I have for the week. If I’m still hungry, I’ll supplement my meal with extra veggies or legumes.
If you’re busy like I am, roasting a whole chicken on a Sunday is the perfect way to prep your protein for the week. I’ll roast a chicken on a Sunday and have it ready to add to salads, soups, stir fry, tacos, the list goes on… for the rest of the week.
This recipe is amazing because you get two dishes for the effort of one, and it’s super versatile. You could put other root vegetables, squash, zucchini, even large tomatoes in the bottom of the pan, as long as they’re big enough and have enough moisture to withstand the high heat and long time in the oven.
Not feeling like chicken piccata? Put onions and eggplants in the bottom of the pan, add them to the rice with basil and lemon juice for a different Italian spin. Try adding large halves of tomatoes to make tomato rice. (I haven’t tried this myself but it sounds like it would work!)
Whatever you have on hand, don’t be afraid to get creative.
EASY TO MAKE
Cook your grain/legume.
Chop a few vegetables.
Put them in a pan.
Top with chicken.
Add pan goodness to rice.
HOW TO SERVE
Mix up a quick side salad with some greens, pickled onions and salty cheese. Some of my go-to dressing recipes that I always have on hand are:
- Lemon Vinaigrette
- Balsamic Vinaigrette
Store in the fridge for up to a week.
Use the leftover roasted chicken to make soup, pasta, tacos, or salad. You could even make fried rice with any rice you have leftover. Let me know what you made with your leftovers in the comments below!
If you liked this recipe, rate it and leave a review below! Also, pin it to Pinterest by clicking the Pin button in any of the images or at the top of the post.
Roasted Chicken Piccata and Rice
Roasted chicken ingredients
- 1 whole organic chicken 3-6 lbs
- 1 onion
- 1 lemon, halved
- 2-3 carrots or other hearty vegetable
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 Tbsp capers
- 3 Tbsp butter, melted
- salt and pepper
- 1.5 cups white rice You could also use quinoa, lentils, or couscous
- chicken broth (enough to prepare rice, legumes or pasta per package instructions)
- 2 Tbsp white wine
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 lemon, juice
- extra capers
- parsley, finely chopped optional
- Cook the rice (or lentils or couscous) according to package instructions, using chicken stock and white wine as the cooking liquid. Add salt with the cooking liquids. While the rice is cooking, make the roasted chicken.
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
- Prepare your vegetables. Chop your onion into quarters. Slice carrots or other hearty vegetables into planks of roughly the same size, cutting first in half and then slicing the larger half down the center length-wise.
- Slice the lemon in half, removing all seeds by running a paring knife down the center of the lemon.
- Place the onions, vegetables and lemon in the bottom of an oven-safe pan large enough to fit the chicken. A 9 x 13 in pan should work. Add the olive oil to the pan and toss the vegetables until well coated. There will be extra olive oil in the bottom of the pan, which you want to prevent burning. Arrange the vegetable and lemon in a single layer in the bottom of the pan, with the lemon halves cut side down. Sprinkle salt over top.
- Remove the chicken from its packaging and dry it off with a paper towel, removing any remaining pin feathers. Rest the chicken in the center of the pan on top of the vegetables. Brush the chicken with butter and generously sprinkle with salt. (When you think you've added enough salt, you should probably add a little more.)
- Tie the legs together with string and tuck the wings under the chicken. Roast the chicken for 1 – 1.5 hours, or until the juices run clear when you cut between the leg and thigh.
- Put the chicken on a serving platter and let it rest for 20 minutes. Also remove the lemon from the pan and put it on a plate to cool.
- Spoon the onions and capers from the roasting pan into the cooked rice, avoiding any burnt pieces. When the roasted lemon is cool, squeeze the juice and pulp into the rice as well. Fluff the rice and mix it all together! Add parsley, extra capers and juice of the second lemon to taste.
- Add carrots or other vegetables to the serving plate with the chicken. You can add these to the rice as well if you really want, but they're delicious on their own.
- Serve roasted chicken piccata and rice with a side salad. Enjoy!