Nutritious, filling and quick to make, this one pot wonder is a delicious anytime meal. Tender chicken simmers in a flavorful tomato-based sauce alongside orzo, a tiny rice-shaped pasta. Heart-healthy frozen greens are added right to the pot – no need to defrost first. Lemon, olives and feta cheese brighten the dish and add a pleasing briny accent.
|2 teaspoons olive oil
|6 boneless, skinless chicken thighs, about 1 ½ lbs
|1 small onion, diced
|3 cloves of garlic, minced
|1 ½ teaspoons dried oregano
|Optional: pinch of crushed red pepper
|¼ cup Kalamata olives, chopped
|½ lemon, zested. Reserve rest of lemon for finishing the dish
|1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes, no salt added
|1 ½ cups frozen chopped spinach, kale or mix
|1 cup dried orzo
|¼ cup crumbled feta cheese
|Optional: 2 tablespoons fresh parsley or oregano, minced
- Heat olive oil in a large Dutch oven or pot with a lid over medium-high heat. Pat chicken dry and sear until golden brown, about 2-3 minutes per side. Remove chicken and set aside. Turn heat down to medium.
- Add diced onion and cook until onion is beginning to soften, six to eight minutes, adding minced garlic for the last minute of cooking time. Stir in oregano, Kalamata olives, lemon zest and crushed red pepper if using and cook for one minute. Stir in crushed tomatoes.
- Fill tomato can with 1 ¾ cups of water and swirl to pick up any leftover crushed tomato. Add the tomato liquid to the pot along with the frozen greens. Stir to combine and bring to a simmer.
- Simmer for five minutes and add the orzo, chicken thighs and any accumulated juices. Bring back to a simmer, cover and turn heat down to medium low. Gently simmer until orzo is soft and chicken thighs are cooked through, about 15-20 minutes.
- Remove from heat, remove lid and gently stir the orzo around the chicken thighs. Let sit for a few minutes while the sauce thickens. Stir orzo again and sprinkle with crumbled feta and optional fresh parsley or oregano. Squeeze reserved fresh lemon over top to taste. Serve immediately.