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Simple and Quick Meal: Mediterranean Chicken Quinoa

Like many of you, I find myself pressed for time, but still crave a somewhat sophisticated meal. This week I came up with a recipe for Mediterranean chicken that didn't cramp my schedule or my style. It's also wholesome, with the Peruvian grain quinoa, which has a high protein content. Next time I make it (which will definitely be soon), I'll stir in the basil at the last minute to prevent wilting. If you're not a fan of raw garlic, sauté it for a minute to mellow out its flavors. To look at the recipe,


Mediterranean Chicken Quinoa

Mediterranean Chicken Quinoa

Mediterranean Chicken Quinoa


Cooking spray
1 pound chicken breasts, butterflied
1 cup uncooked quinoa
1/4 cup chopped pitted Spanish Manzanilla olives
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
1 tablespoon chopped capers
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 garlic clove, finely crushed


  1. Spray grill or grill pan with cooking spray. Grill chicken until cooked through.
  2. In a large pot, cook quinoa with 2 cups water until water is completely absorbed and grain appears soft and translucent, about 10 to 15 minutes. (It is normal to see the filament-like germ ring along the edge of the grain.)
  3. In a large bowl, combine olives, capers, olive oil, lemon juice, salt, pepper, and garlic.
  4. Cut chicken into bite-sized pieces and add to olive mixture. Add quinoa to olive mixture.
  5. Just before serving, stir in basil.

Serves 4.

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Join The Conversation
Baby-Girl Baby-Girl 7 years
I'm making this for dinner tomorrow night.
Food Food 7 years
Suziryder: The dish tastes just as delicious with Kalamata olives. You could also sub black olives, like you were saying. Hope you enjoy the dish!
suziryder suziryder 7 years
This looks really good - except for the green olives, which I have a strong aversion to. Can I leave them out or sub in black olives?
ilanac13 ilanac13 7 years
i love finding new ways to incorporate quinoa into my dishes, and if i ate chicken this would rock. i think that swapping it out for tofu would be good - though i might have TOO much protein in my dish :)
Mesayme Mesayme 7 years
I want to try this but I think I'll have to eat the quinoa on the side... I'm one of those 'can't stand my food to mixed together' people. The olive saute' looks delicious!
mswender mswender 7 years
I got some at a normal grocery store that's great, I do love trader joe's though. Don't go there as often since I moved back to MD.
LaurenG22 LaurenG22 7 years
I miss my trader joe quinoa. :( Sad!
mswender mswender 7 years
I totally made a different version of this last night! I sauteed pounded chicken breasts in olive oil and garlic added lemon juice, wine, capers, and a little bit of butter and served it with quinoa, my new favorite starch! It was absolutely delicious and will make it many more times!
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