Have you ever had a toddler break a bone? If you have, than you know how that can turn your life upside down. I have a toddler in a cast right now with a fractured elbow, so cooking and kitchen clean up are not high on the priority list, but eating well is. This is the time in life when one-pot meals are life savers; and chicken quinoa pilaf is definitely one of my favorites.
Favorite Chicken Quinoa Pilaf
Pilafs are typically very flavorful rice dishes but I am a huge fan of using whole grains such as quinoa or millet to make them. Luckily, toddlers seem to love whole grains (carbs!) which help make this dish totally kid-approved. Sadly, my toddler seems to be in a stage where everything green, including flakes of parsley, on his plate is unacceptable. That’s why the only seasoning I use here is salt and black pepper.
I never really appreciated the convenience of creating a meal using just a single pot. Maybe I just never thought of it. Or maybe I just really never truly needed it before I become a mom. These days, I’ll try and make every meal a one-pot meal, and there is one kitchen tool that makes it a whole lot easier: my beloved and overly-used 6-quart Dutch oven. If you have one you know what I mean. If you don’t, take my advice and get dark-colored one but think twice about getting the color I got.
One-Pot Chicken Quinoa Pilaf
Fluffy one-pot chicken quinoa pilaf contains four ingredients (chicken, quinoa, onion, and tomato), and takes only 40 minutes to prepare making it a perfect weeknight dinner.
- 2 tablespoons butter, lard, or duck fat
- 1 small yellow onion diced
- 1 pound chicken breast or thighs diced
- 2 teaspoons sea salt coarse
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 cup white quinoa
- 2 cloves of garlic minced
- 4 cups chicken stock
- 1 small tomato chopped
- fresh parsley for garnish
Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté until golden and translucent, about 5 minutes.
Toss in diced chicken breast and season with salt and black pepper. Let it sear on medium-high heat for 7-10 minutes. Then lower the heat.
Push the onion and meat to the side of a pot, creating a well in the middle. Stir in quinoa and toast it for a few minutes. Stir frequently.
Toss in the diced garlic and stir a few times until garlic starts releasing its flavor, about 30 seconds, then pour in the chicken stock.
Add tomatoes and bring to boil. Once the pilaf boils, lower the heat and cover with a lid. Cook for 20 minutes on low heat.
Remove from heat and let sit for 10 minutes then fluff with a fork. Serve warm garnished with fresh parsley.