Roasted Chicken Recipes #glutenfree #caseinfree

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Roasted chicken and veggies is such an easy, tasty dinner dish and it takes very minimal prep. Doesn’t that look delish (the secret ingredient is sumac)!? There are so many different ways to season chicken and I’m going to share a couple of my absolute favorite spice blends with you after I say some stuff.

The health benefits of spices are well-known and ancient (make sure they are gluten-free) and using them to flavor food is so much better than just covering the chicken with processed cheese or canned soup that has very little flavor or nutritional value.

When I first started “cooking” years ago, I made casseroles with Campbell’s cream of mushroom or celery soup. In fact, one of my grad school profs brought a dish (her grandma’s recipe) for a killer zucchini squash casserole to a school potluck party. We all raved about it and after she shared the recipe, I made it for years on Thanksgiving and Christmas. As well as the traditional green bean casserole that my mom taught me to make from the back of the French’s Fried Onions canister.

Those were some of the first dishes I made for my husband. And why not make queso with Velveeta cheese and Rotel to pour over chicken tostadas or nachos for dinner. No wonder we got so fat! I saw this saying on Instagram and love it — you just can’t out-exercise a bad diet. Especially after 35!

After realizing how much better clean eating is and ditching the processed stuff (instead of replacing it with gluten-free processed stuff) we often turn to spices and vinegars for flavor (most are safe except malt vinegar, some Balsamic vinegars with caramel coloring added depending on where it is from and grain vinegar). And we actually shop the grocery store perimeter for almost everything. It’s so much better, cheaper and healthier to eat real food (produce and lean protein not crackers and soda)!

Basically, we eat a Mediterranean diet with a Texas kick. You don’t have to eat crappy food filled with sugar, salt and preservatives because you are busy especially now with so many better options available. I often ate poorly in college, grad school, law school, working… I know how busy things get, but it really is attainable to cook fresh food at home with some menu planning. One of my girlfriends shared with me that her daughter loves the smells when she is cooking these recipes and comes out of the room to see what she is making. — Food is love and bonding through cooking is timeless.

I’m so lucky because making dinner is such a bonding moment with my husband. When he gets home from work and I finish up whatever I’m working on, we migrate to the kitchen and talk about the day while I start prepping dinner. We love cooking together and it’s fun to be rewarded with an amazing meal! It’s like date night every night.

And it works for us to eat at home because I’m very sensitive to gluten cross-contamination and don’t want to get sick anymore. I have a few places that I know are safe and I try a new restaurant every now and then. I wish I could enjoy the amazing Austin food scene with reckless abandon but getting gluten-ed is awful. I don’t just get the initial diarrhea – severe muscle cramping follows and then my brain doesn’t work well and I lose words and thoughts and ache from every inch of my body. It takes me weeks to recover. It’s a terrifying feeling when my brain doesn’t work. I’m a smart girl and not being able to complete a sentence is, well, it destroys me. There is just no reason to do that to myself.

I see so many Celiacs and gluten-free people on social media eating out all the time without getting sick. It’s truly astonishing that almost every place they eat at is safe (but I think it is a matter of sensitivity and not a lack of cross-contamination) and I hope that the lack of physical manifestation isn’t still causing silent damage. Be careful out there.

Anyway, back to the spice blends and fabulous homemade roasted chicken!

Make sure your spices are gluten-free. Here is a good summary of McCormick spices from G-freefoodie.

We prefer bone-in split chicken breasts but you can use any type – whole chickens, thighs, legs, boneless breasts, chicken tenders – they just cook at different rates.  I like to season under the skin and then bake it for about 1 hour.

Cajun Seasoning

Chicken with Cajun Seasoning
2 tsp kosher salt
2 tsp garlic powder
2 1/2 tsp paprika
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp cayenne pepper
1 1/4 tsp dried oregano
1 1/4 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper

Mix all the spices together and store in an airtight spice container.

For bone-in split chicken breasts, brine the chicken by rubbing the seasoning under the skin (sometimes I’ll do this earlier or in the day or overnight for deeper flavors but it can be done just before putting it in the oven). I usually use 1-2 teaspoons of spice mixture per breast. If it is a large breast, make a lengthwise slice through the middle to get the seasoning inside the breast. Place in a baking dish, drizzle with olive oil then season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Bake for an hour at 350 degrees. And voila!

Roasted Cajun Chicken

Chicken with Seasoned Salt
4 tbsp kosher salt
4 tsp raw cane sugar
1 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp GF cornstarch

Now to add a tangy treat to the chicken, use some sumac in the spice blend.

Growing up we would eat sumac with Persian kebabs usually by sprinkling it on the cooked meat and rice. It adds a nice tangy flavor. I’ve got a ton of it, but never really thought about using it as a brine. I was inspired by Teri @nocrumbsleft on Instagram (she makes some amazing roasted chickens) to use it on our chicken breasts! And wow! Such delicious chicken. You don’t need a lot – maybe 1/4 teaspoon per 2 teaspoons seasoned salt.

Deana Larkin Evans

Hi! I'm Deana. Thanks for stopping by. This food blog is all about cooking wholesome real food, developing gluten free recipes and creating weekly menus to save time and money while reducing stress and food waste. I had to start eating gluten-free in November of 2010 and dairy/casein-free January 2014 (except for the occasional Parmesan cheese). I'm kind of a nerd, too. In the '90s, I earned an undergrad degree in Biochemistry from The University of Texas at Austin. Hook 'em! \m/ Then followed up with a PhD in Biochemistry and a law degree from the University of Houston. I'm currently learning about bioinformatics and genomics from Johns Hopkins University online program.

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2 Responses

  1. dilip says:
    Looks so yummy and it is healthy too. Cheers Deana. :)