My kids love chicken, and I’m always looking for ways to make easy weeknight dinners that aren’t the same old thing. Something that will wake up the family’s taste buds and get them excited to come to the table. Moroccan Chicken seemed perfect—a simple one-dish chicken sauté that uses the new cinnamon sugar butter spread, adding a unique flavor I hoped the kids would like and find fun. I began generating excitement by calling it "Cinnamon Sugar Chicken." This got them curious, because they love cinnamon sugar toast, but couldn’t quite imagine how it fit into dinner. Finally, I had the family’s attention on a weeknight!
This dish comes together easily once you have the ingredients chopped and measured. Get everything you need out and ready, with the exception of the cinnamon sugar spread, which can stay in the fridge until you’re ready to sauté.
First, cut the red pepper into strips about a ¼-inch wide.
Next, cut the onions in half circles. Begin by peeling the outer papery layer off the onion, and cutting it in half lengthwise.
Then, slice the onion thinly into half-circles, about 1/8-inch thick.
I piled my red pepper slices into a 2-cup measure, and added the onion slices, too. Since the onions are sautéed first and the red pepper second, this gets everything lined up for easy cooking.
Next, cut the pound of chicken breasts into 1-inch strips. I cut mine into cross-wise strips and then cut them in half.
Chop the garlic finely; I found two cloves were enough for one teaspoon.
Since the chicken and garlic are added to the pan together according to the recipe, I put them together in a 4-cup measure. The salt and red pepper are also added with the chicken and garlic, so go ahead and measure those on top if you like.
Since the cilantro is added at the very end and not cooked, chop it on a clean cutting board that didn’t have raw chicken on it.
Everything’s ready! Pull out the cinnamon sugar butter and start cooking.
Melt the butter in your 12-inch skillet and watch it sizzle. The cinnamon fragrance is great aromatherapy for the chef!
When the butter is melted, add the sliced onion and cook for 2-3 minutes over medium-high heat.
Next, add the red peppers and cook another 2-3 minutes.
Now add the chicken, garlic and spices, which are conveniently all together in the measuring cup.
Cook the chicken until browned in the cinnamon sugar butter and no longer pink, about 5-7 minutes.
To test for doneness, cut one of the larger pieces of chicken in half with a spoon or butter knife to make sure it is cooked through. Then, add the raisins and orange juice. I wasn’t sure whether the kids would eat raisins in this dish, but I thought it was worth a try and they are easy enough to pick out. I knew I would enjoy them; I love cooking with raisins.
After everything is heated through, about 1-2 minutes more, turn off the heat and stir in the fresh cilantro. Ahhh, more aromatherapy for the chef!
Dinner is ready! I served the chicken over couscous, which my kids find very fun, but you could also use rice or just eat it without a grain. I found it nice to have something to soak up the wonderful cinnamon-orange sauce.
Easy, colorful, full of veggies and delicious. Everything I need on a busy weeknight. The slight sweetness from the cinnamon sugar, raisins and orange juice created interesting flavors, but nothing that was too unusual or challenging for the kids. My youngest daughter picked out the raisins, but enjoyed the dish and liked the light cinnamon flavor. Let me know if you try this Moroccan Chicken, and if you find this use of cinnamon sugar butter interesting for dinner.
Check back in a few days when Alex will be sharing a perfect cold sandwich to help beat the heat.
Liz is paid to write for the Land O'Lakes Recipe Buzz® Blog.