Zaatar + Lemon Chicken

Yesterday I spent the entire afternoon in the ER with my youngest making sure he didn’t have a broken face after an accident at school. He’s totally fine, with the exception of a HUGE shiner on his right eye. But spending the day at the hospital was exhausting. I came home and wanted nothing to do with the food in my kitchen and immediately ordered chicken wings and sweet potato fries from UberEats. And a giant chocolate chip cookie. No regrets.

But then this morning I remembered I had my Zaatar+Lemon Chicken leftover in the fridge. I still don’t regret my delivery decision, but if someone were to have made me a plate of this chicken last night I would have been just as happy because it is seriously the best chicken I’ve ever made. The skin is crispy, it’s nice and juicy, and it’s so simple to make. Sure, it takes a while to make, between the marinading and the roasting, but it is WORTH. IT. Trust me.

I found the Za’atar spice at Your Dekalb Farmers Market here in Atlanta (the best place to buy spices), but you can find it on Amazon too. I’ve used it on so much, and it has never disappointed.


Ingredients:

  • 2 bone-in, skin-on chicken breasts
  • 2 tbsp salt
  • 1 cup nonfat Greek yogurt
  • An additional 1 tsp salt
  • 2 lemons
  • 2 tbsp Za’atar (at least)

Steps:

  1. Salt the chicken. Generously sprinkle at least 2 tbsp salt over the chicken breasts. Let sit for about 30 minutes.
  2. In a food storage bag, combine yogurt, 1 tsp salt, zest of 2 lemons, and the juice of 1 1/2 lemons (save the other half for later).
  3. Add chicken to the yogurt mixture, close the bag, and smoosh it all around making sure the chicken is completely coated in the marinade.
  4. Marinate the chicken for at least 30 minutes on the counter while it comes to room temperature or longer (I’ve done it for up to 24 hours and it was delightful) in the refrigerator. Take out of the fridge 30 minutes prior to roasting to come up to room temperature.
  5. Preheat oven to 425
  6. Remove chicken from the marinade, wiping off as much of the yogurt as possible. Season LIBERALLY with Za’atar spice. Place the chicken breasts skin side up in a large cast-iron skillet.
  7. Roast at 425 for 25 minutes. Then drop the temperature to 400. Cook an additional 20-30 minutes until it reaches an internal temperature of 165. Rotate the pan a few times for even browning.
  8. Remove from the oven and squeeze the rest of the lemon juice on the chicken. Let it rest for 10 minutes. Enjoy!

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