Baked Chicken - with Italian Seasoning
Oven Baked Chicken
I came up with a new recipe for baked chicken yesterday, and we had it for dinner tonight. Why was there such a time gap between creating the recipe and the eating of the dish? That’s because I decided that a big part of the flavor would come from a chicken marinade. In fact, I marinated the chicken all night. I don’t usually do that, but I felt rather daring, for some reason. I knew if we couldn’t eat the dish, the dogs would be glad to help us out. I called it Italian chicken. Was it good, you ask? Well, I’m posting it here, aren’t I? I don’t share my failures with readers. This baked chicken recipe was so delicious that I had to share it with my daughter and son-in-law to get their feedback, and they concurred: this is some tasty chicken! It’s easy to make, and if you follow my simple steps, I really don’t think there’s any way for you to fail. I’m not sure how this would be with using boneless, skinless breasts because part of the appeal is the crispy skin. Next time you want to make oven baked chicken with skin-on breasts, thighs, legs, or assorted parts, try this baked chicken Italiano.
I think my husband is addicted to Italian seasoning. He loves just about every type of Italian food known to man…and to woman. Pasta with practically anything that resembles marinara sauce is fine by him, so I make my share of Italian recipes. The old man isn’t too fond of chicken recipes, however. I thought maybe if I made baked chicken with some Italian seasoning he might find it palatable. I’m happy to report that I was right – he ate the chicken without complaining. He even managed to say it was good. Believe me – that’s pretty high praise from him for any type of chicken dish. Maybe it was the Italian herbs and spices that did the trick.
Italian seasoning can include a pretty wide variety of culinary herbs and spices. Italian herbs usually include oregano, basil, rosemary, marjoram, parsley, bay leaf, sage, mint, and thyme. Some common Italian spices are black pepper, coriander, nutmeg, anise, lemon pepper, and crushed red pepper flakes. Of course, a lot of Italian food is also flavored with onion, garlic, wine, tomatoes, and olive oil. Lots of Italian recipes include cheeses, too, and I think this chicken recipe would be great with some parmesan cheese sprinkled on top.
Baked Chicken Ideas
I love chicken – baked chicken, grilled chicken, BBQ chicken, fried chicken, chicken casseroles, chicken and dressing, chicken and rice…Okay, you get the picture. Of all these dishes, oven baked chicken is probably the easiest to make. I mean, really – you can just season it, stick it in the oven, and do something else while it’s cooking. Of course, you might want to take more trouble with a baked chicken recipe, but you don’t have to if you don’t want to.
I’ve always felt that the great thing about poultry is that it takes on other flavors well, so you can alter the taste to suit your own taste buds. It’s easy to make chicken savory, spicy, hot, fruity, slightly sweet, earthy, or any other way you might like it, so coming up with baked chicken ideas is a snap. Sometimes I make oven baked chicken with barbecue sauce, which is one of my favorite chicken recipes. Skin-on pieces are also good doused with melted butter, Worcestershire sauce, lemon juice, and spices. Yum – the skin turns out super flavorful and crispy!
For an Asian flair, try using teriyaki sauce, pineapple, and/or ginger to give your poultry some pizzazz. If you love Mexican food, use peppers, onions, cumin, lime juice, and cayenne or chili powder. For some great smoky flavor, use chipotle powder. Melt a slice of cheese over each piece of chicken and top with salsa and sour cream.
For more baked chicken ideas, try using a glaze made with a little vinegar, some red pepper flakes, and some jam, jelly, preserves, or marmalade. In my opinion, the flavors that work well in this situation are peach, apricot, apple, cherry, raspberry, and orange. It’s okay to think outside the box sometimes, too. For example, I’d never really thought about pairing blackberry syrup or jam with baked chicken recipes – until I had the dish at a restaurant on Anna Maria Island, in South Florida. It was awesome! When we got home from vacation, I just had to experiment on my own for the recipe.
Another way I like baked chicken is with roasted vegetables. In this case, I usually use a whole chicken instead of a cut-up bird. I rub it with olive oil, sprinkle it with herbs and spices, and place it in the center of my metal roaster. Then I pile fresh veggies and potatoes around it – Brussels sprouts, carrots, broccoli, onions, whole green beans – whatever I happen to have lying around at the time. I add just a little liquid to the roaster and spray the veggies with cooking spray or drizzle them with olive oil or melted butter. Then I sprinkle on some seasonings, place the lid on the roaster, and bake it for an hour or so. Before the chicken is completely done, I remove the lid from the roaster so the meat and vegetables will brown on top.
Chicken Marinades for Baking
Many cooks use chicken marinades for grilled chicken, but it works just as well with baked chicken ideas. Marinating the poultry keeps it nice and juicy, and it’s also a great way to impart other flavors into the flesh. Chicken marinades for baking are pretty much the same as chicken marinades you’d use for grilled chicken. They need to include some acid and some oil, along with any other flavors you’d like to add. The acidic liquids you use could include vinegar, apple juice, pineapple juice, lemon juice, lime juice, orange juice, beer, or wine. I usually use white wine in my chicken marinade, but I didn’t have any on hand when I decided to make this baked chicken recipe. I did, however, have some red wine. I decided to use that, even though I wasn’t sure how it would work. By the way, I used a sweetish Italian wine in this particular baked chicken marinade. I can honestly tell you that the concoction worked great! In fact, next time I’m making grilled chicken, I think I’ll use this baked chicken marinade. I figure it’ll work just as well with the grill as it does with the oven.
This is the baked chicken marinade I used for my Italian chicken. I usually keep my chicken marinades simple, with just a few ingredients, but I was in an adventurous mood, culinarily speaking. Okay, I’m not sure that’s a real word, but it fits, doesn’t it? Anyway, I wanted to see if so many flavors would prove to be overwhelming to the mild flesh of the poultry, especially since I was going to leave the chicken in the marinade for such a long time. Thank goodness, all the flavors worked well together to add wonderful flavor to the baked chicken. I’m thinking that next time, I’ll do more planning and use fresh herbs. Give this chicken marinade a try!
Chicken Marinade Recipe
1 cup bottled Italian salad dressing
1 cup wine
1 ½ - 2 teaspoons dried basil
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon dried parsley
1 teaspoon black pepper
½ teaspoon dried rosemary
½ teaspoon dried oregano
½ teaspoon onion powder
½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 bay leaf
Directions: Combine all ingredients in a bowl. Whisk until the seasonings are evenly distributed. Pour over chicken and marinate in the fridge for at least a couple of hours. As I’ve already said, my fryer spent the night in the chicken marinade.
This is a very tasty recipe for baked chicken. It’s a lot easier than it sounds, too. Just because something includes a lot of ingredients doesn’t mean it’s hard to make or that it requires a lot of work. I'm sure this would be great on the grill, too.
1 cut-up chicken, about 3 pounds
Chicken marinade recipe (above)
Lawry’s garlic salt with parsley
Rinse chicken parts and pat dry. Place chicken in a large zippered plastic food bag.
Mix chicken marinade in a large plastic or glass bowl. Pour over chicken.
Wash bowl and place bag of chicken and marinade in bowl. Refrigerate for at least two hours.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Remove poultry pieces from chicken marinade and allow excess to drip off.
Place chicken parts, skin-side up, on a foil-lined baking sheet that has been sprayed with non-stick cooking spray.
Sprinkle chicken with garlic salt.
Bake for 30 minutes. Reduce oven to 350 degrees and bake for 20-25 minutes longer.
Serve your baked chicken with rice, potatoes, or pasta and Italian green beans or a tossed salad.
Rate my oven baked chicken. Molte grazie!
- 1 cut-up chicken, 3 or 3 1/2 pounds
- chicken marinade recipe, above
- Lawry's garlic salt with parsley
- Rinse chicken parts and pat dry. Place chicken in a large zippered plastic food bag.
- Mix chicken marinade in a large plastic or glass bowl. Pour over chicken.
- Wash bowl and place bag of chicken and marinade in bowl. Refrigerate for at least two hours.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Remove poultry pieces from chicken marinade and allow excess to drip off.
- Place chicken parts, skin-side up, on a foil-lined baking sheet that has been sprayed with non-stick cooking spray.
- Sprinkle chicken with garlic salt.
- Bake for 30 minutes. Reduce oven to 350 degrees and bake for 20-25 minutes longer.
- Serve your baked chicken with rice, potatoes, or pasta and Italian green beans or a tossed salad.