If you want to get more veggies, protein and whole grains into your diet without compromising flavor, this recipe is for you. This BBQ chicken and quinoa skillet is a delicious and hearty lunch or dinner. Packed with smoky BBQ flavor, this skillet has tons of veggies, lean ground chicken, and nutritious quinoa. Topped with melty cheddar cheese, this is an all-in-one dish you can enjoy eating.
All-in-one skillet meals
Skillet meals are such an easy solution to meal time! Whether it’s a quick and easy dinner or lunch, or meal prep for the week, skillet meals are easy to prepare, and all made in one pot. Clean up is a breeze, and the cooking method is essentially fool-proof.
My basic formula for a skillet meal is: flavorful sauteed vegetables, a ground meat (like lean chicken or turkey), a grain (like brown rice or farro) and other topping components, like cheese.
If you like the idea of a skillet meal, you might enjoy these other recipes:
Southwestern Chicken and Rice Skillet
Lighter Buffalo Chicken and Rice Skillet
Italian Chicken, Farro and Vegetable Skillet
Greek Chicken and Rice Skillet
Teriyaki Turkey and Vegetable Skillet
All about this BBQ chicken and quinoa skillet
This skillet meal has tons smoky BBQ flavor; it starts with the bold spice blend that is used to flavor both the vegetables and ground chicken. The spice blend contains paprika, garlic and onion powder, kosher salt, brown sugar, ground mustard, and cayenne. Ground chicken can be pretty boring and dry on its own, so this recipe gets lots of help: from the cooked vegetables, BBQ sauce and chicken broth which help keep this dish moist and flavorful.
The vegetables used in this dish (red bell pepper, red onion, and zucchini) may not be traditional as far as BBQ goes, but they add lots of great flavor and hold up well against the other ingredients. The addition of corn adds a great textural element and subtle sweetness to this otherwise savory dish. Finally, topped with melted cheddar cheese, this skillet meal is an all-in-one meal that is perfect for meal prep and reheats beautifully throughout the week.
What you’ll need to make this BBQ chicken and quinoa skillet
- red bell pepper
- red onion
- yellow squash
- olive oil spray
- ground chicken
- I use 99% fat free ground chicken breast.
- If you can’t find this in the stores, you can actually make your own by grinding up chicken breast in a food processor.
- onion powder
- garlic powder
- kosher salt
- brown sugar
- cayenne pepper
- ground mustard powder
- You can either use frozen or fresh corn.
- low sugar BBQ sauce
- I love this one, since it is naturally low in sugar without the use of sugar replacements.
- reduced fat cheddar cheese
- I use this brand and grate it myself.
How to make BBQ Chicken and Quinoa Skillet
Start by preparing the spice blend, chopping the vegetables, and cooking the quinoa. You can cook the quinoa according to package directions in water. Typically the ratio used for quinoa is 1:2 (meaning for this recipe, 1/2 cup of quinoa to 1 cup of water).
Add the chopped vegetables to the skillet with olive oil spray, and 1 tbsp of the prepared spice blend. Cook the vegetables for 10 minutes, tossing frequently to get them evenly browned. Remove the vegetables from the pan and set aside. In the same pan, add more olive oil spray and the ground chicken, with the remaining spice blend. Break the chicken apart, and cook until the chicken is no longer pink.
Add the cooked vegetables and cooked quinoa to the skillet with the cooked chicken. Add in the chopped scallions, BBQ sauce and chicken broth, and simmer for about 5 minutes or until the liquid is absorbed. Top with the shredded cheddar cheese, and cover to melt.
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BBQ Chicken and Quinoa Skillet
- shallow Dutch oven or large frying pan
- 1 cup red bell pepper, diced, 1 pepper
- 1 cup red onion, diced, 1 onion
- 2 cups yellow squash, diced, 2 small squash
- olive oil spray
- 1 lb lean ground chicken, 99% fat free, ground chicken breast
- 1 cup corn, frozen or fresh
- 1/2 cup uncooked quinoa
- 2 scallions, chopped
- 1/2 cup low sugar BBQ sauce, I used Stubbs Original
- 1/2 cup chicken broth
- 2 oz reduced fat cheddar cheese, I use Cabot 75%
- 2 tsp brown sugar
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1/4 tsp ground mustard powder
- 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
- Cook the quinoa in water according to package directions. (Total yield will be approximately 2 cups cooked quinoa, if you want to use pre-cooked quinoa).
- Combine the spice rub ingredients in a small bowl.
- Dice the bell pepper and red onion; slice the zucchini vertically and then chop it into pieces (half-moon shaped).
- Preheat the pan over medium high heat and add olive oil spray.
- Add the chopped pepper, onion and zucchini to the pan with 1 tbsp of the spice blend.
- Toss to coat, and cook the vegetables for 10 minutes, stirring frequently.
- After 10 minutes, remove the vegetables from the pan and set aside.
- To the same skillet, add more olive oil spray and the ground chicken.
- Add the remaining spice blend, and break the chicken up into pieces.
- Cook the chicken until no longer pink.
- Add the cooked vegetables and quinoa back into the skillet, along with the corn and chopped scallions.
- Add the BBQ sauce and chicken broth to the pan and stir to combine.
- Simmer the ingredients with the BBQ sauce and broth for about 5 minutes or until the liquid is absorbed.
- Top with cheddar cheese. Cover to melt.
- 5 WW points
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