When people think of dieting or trying to eat healthy they often think "dry, bland chicken and broccoli". Now I won't lie - I'm eating a TON of chicken and broccoli while on my prep, but I enjoy it! I LOVE broccoli; it's my cruciferous veggie of choice. I was also ecstatic to start loving chicken again, because I'll be honest - I got to a point where I wasn't preparing it well and I had to choke it down. I was starting to despise it.
I want to share with you guys the way I learned to prepare my chicken, which made my prep experience so much more delicious and enjoyable - and easy! Although this chicken spends a good amount of time in the oven, the actual preparation of it could not be any quicker. It's a great recipe to throw in the oven on a Sunday afternoon when you'll be home for a couple of hours.
There are 2 different ways I like to prepare this chicken - one using a marinade and one using a spice rub. In everyday life I wouldn't even worry about adding calories from marinades into my macros because most of it cooks off in the oven, but while I was on competition prep I stuck with the spice rub just to be safe. I'll share both ways - but really, any marinade or rub would do the trick, it's the way you actually cook it that makes it so delicious and tender.
The first thing you want to do of course is trim all your chicken breasts of any fat and preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
If using the marinade
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup sesame oil
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup vinegar
*Mix all ingredients together. Place chicken in large tupperware container or gallon ziplock bag and pour marinade over it. For best results marinade overnight or for at least 3 hours. Follow the remaining steps under the spice rub instructions.
If using the spice rub
Grab the following spices:
Mix the following together in small bowl:
1 tbsp celery salt
1 tbsp garlic powder
1 tbsp onion powder
1 tbsp thyme
2 tsp sage
1 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
1 1/2 tsp rosemary
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
Lightly spray a large glass baking dish with zero calorie nonstick spray. Arrange chicken breasts in baking dish and sprinkle half the mixture over the chicken breasts. Flip them over and repeat with the remaining mixture.
Now, whether you are using the marinade or spice rub you should have all of your chicken arranged in the glass baking dish. Cover TIGHTLY with aluminum foil. Place in the oven and bake for 50 minutes. Once the timer goes off, turn the oven off and leave the chicken in for another hour. I don't know why but this makes the chicken so juicy and it shreds apart easily!
From this point, I portion my chicken into 4 oz servings and put them in ziplock bags and throw them in the freezer so I can grab and go when I need them. This is one of the only ways I have found to make chicken that still tastes amazing and tender after it thaws from the freezer. I eat it plain, or sometimes with Frank's hot sauce or sugar reduced ketchup. This chicken would also be great to have ready to throw in salads, wraps, tacos, eggs.. really anything you could possibly think of.
If you decide to give it a try - let me know what you think!!