So flavorful, this spiced one-pan chicken legs with chickpeas and quinoa meal prep is something else! It’s naturally sweet, spiced and full of deliciousness. The meal prep is high protein, high fat, and gluten-free. It's budget-friendly and high-calorie too!
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Are you trying to lose weight or gain muscle so that you can look and feel better? If so, eating meals high in protein is the way to go.
That’s because of all the macronutrients (protein, carbs, fats), protein helps you feel full the most. So, you end up eating less and losing weight.
Combine that with the fact that eating protein also increases your metabolism. That’s a win-win situation.
Protein is also key to repairing and building muscle after a workout.
One-Pan Chicken Legs with Chickpeas and Quinoa
This dish is not only packed with protein but taste as well. The sweetness of the dried cranberries balances out the acidity of the tomatoes.
Meanwhile, the cinnamon, turmeric, and coriander add some warmth. And the fresh parsley adds freshness.
While the fluffiness of the quinoa complements the heartiness of the chickpeas and chicken. It’s a sweet yet delicious way to enjoy your chicken. The kiddos will enjoy it.
Now, there’s a bit of heat from the crushed red pepper flakes and black pepper. But definitely nothing your kids can’t handle.
But if you or your kids are really sensitive to the heat, you can just leave simply them out. It will still taste delicious.
What you’ll also love about this meal is that it’s a one-pan dish. So, you don’t have tons of pots and pans to wash at the end.
It’s also pretty budget-friendly too. That’s because you use grains and legumes that are nutritious and high in protein, yet easy on your wallet.
To save even more money on legumes, buy dried legumes instead of canned ones. Then make a big batch in your Instant Pot to save you time. If you don’t have one, there’s a good quality Instant Pot here.
Once you’ve made them store them in your freezer. That way, you always have some on hand for recipes like this.
Just make sure you store them in freezer-safe containers to prevent freezer burn. I like these containers here because they are glass.
One-Pan Chicken Legs – High in Protein
So, how much protein do you want to eat at each meal in order to lose weight? Research shows that you want to aim for at least 25 to 30 grams of protein at each meal.
This dish contains 54 grams of protein. So, that’s even double that.
It’s rich in protein because you’re using protein-packed ingredients like chicken legs, quinoa, and chickpeas.
Besides being rich in protein, chicken legs are a good source of vitamin B3, phosphorus, and zinc.
Quinoa is a great source of plant-based protein. It’s also rich in fiber, which keeps you full longer.
And since it’s gluten-free, it’s a great grain if you have gluten allergies or sensitivities. If you need to stock up on some, you can get some here.
Besides being a good source of plant-based protein, chickpeas are packed with fiber. So, they’re great for your digestion.
You’re also getting tons of iron from this meal. This keeps your energy levels up… So you can chase your kids.
Finally, you’re also getting lots of fat from this meal. Fat not only makes food taste good, but it also keeps you full too.
In fact, this meal is so filling that you won’t want to eat anything else for the rest of the day. Now, that’s a good thing.
How to Make Chicken Legs with Chickpeas and Quinoa
Making this dish is pretty easy. To begin with, add salt and pepper to your chicken legs.
Next, add olive oil to a skillet over medium-high heat. Once the oil is hot, place your chicken legs in the skillet with the skin side down and cook for 5 minutes until the skin is nicely browned.
Then turn the chicken legs over and fry for 5 more minutes until nicely browned. Remove your chicken from the skillet and place on a plate.
Make sure you don’t get rid of the oil and juices in the skillet; they add tons of flavor.
Next, add your chopped onions, cinnamon, turmeric, and coriander to the skillet, stirring for a minute.
You want to add your quinoa next, mixing it with the spices. Make sure you rinse it before adding it to the skillet, or else it will be bitter and impart a bitter taste to your dish.
Add hot water, chickpeas, and dried cranberries, stirring well. If you like it sweeter, feel free to add a bit more dried cranberries.
Then add the rest of your spices, mixing well.
Finally, add back your chicken legs, and bring to a boil. Once the water starts boiling, lower the heat and cover your skillet.
You want to make sure you cover your skillet, or else the water will evaporate before your chicken is cooked.
If you don’t have a skillet with a cover, here is a skillet with a cover that I recommend. It’s made of non-stick copper and doesn’t contain toxic chemicals.
Otherwise, you can just cover the top of your skillet with aluminum foil, so your chicken cooks.
How to Meal Prep Chicken
To meal prep your chicken, you first have to cook it, and you can keep it in the fridge for up to 3-4 days. Seal them in glass containers for the chicken to stay fresh for longer.
How Long Can You Keep This Chicken Meal Prep in the Fridge?
This chicken meal prep lasts 3 to 4 days in the fridge. To keep it fresh, you’ll want to store it in airtight food storage containers.
These glass containers here are not only airtight, but they are also chemical-free. If you prefer containers that are lighter, and that are also BPA-free, these plastic ones are a great option.
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- 4 chicken legs (1.8 lb)
- 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 1/2 cup quinoa (washed)
- 1 cans chickpeas (1.5 cups chickpeas)
- 1.5 cups of hot water
- 1/4 cup dried cranberries
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp ground turmeric
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
- 2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 1 cup parsley (chopped)
- 9 oz cherry tomatoes (250g)
- Season chicken legs with 1.5 tsp salt and 1tsp black pepper.
- Now, heat the olive oil in the skillet, add the chicken legs skin side down and cook for 5 minutes. Then flip and fry for another 5 minutes until the chicken is nicely browned. Afterward, transfer the chicken to the plate.
- Now, finely chop the onion and add it to the skillet. Right after that, add in cinnamon, turmeric, and coriander. Stir for 1 minute.
- Add in washed quinoa and stir it so that spices coat it. Add 1.5 cups of hot water, give it a stir. Then, stir in the chickpeas and dried cranberries.
- Add crushed red pepper flakes and remaining 1/2 tsp of salt. Give it a stir.
- Bring the chicken legs back into the skillet, bring the liquid to the boil. Then, reduce the heat and cover it with a lid.
- Cook for 20-25 minutes until quinoa is tender and chicken is fully cooked. Let it sit for 5 minutes afterward.
- Finally, divide the dish into 4 food containers. Chop some parsley and sprinkle it over each portion. Add in cherry tomatoes.
- Refrigerate for up to 3-4 days.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1 meal prep container
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 932Total Fat: 46gSaturated Fat: 11gTrans Fat: 0.1gUnsaturated Fat: 30gCholesterol: 190mgSodium: 1371mgCarbohydrates: 79gNet Carbohydrates: 65gFiber: 14gSugar: 19gProtein: 54g
Nutritional values were obtained with automatic software using the amounts of products used. To get the most accurate representation of the nutritional values, you should calculate them with the actual ingredients used in your recipe. You are solely responsible for the nutritional information obtained to be accurate.