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Baked Chicken Parm, Pasta with Olives and Broccoli Rabe

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Baked Chicken Parm, Pasta with Olives and Broccoli Rabe

Quick Tips

I love a classic pasta house chicken parm, but this version is healthier, faster and weeknight ready! I suspect you’ll be pinning this recipe for later.

Course entree, Main Course
Cuisine American, California, Italian
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 4 people

Ingredients

Ingredient

  • 1.25 lb boneless, skinless chicken breast
  • 1/2 can crushed or diced tomatoes
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 tsp dried oregano or italian seasoning
  • 8 oz fresh mozzarella
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan, or much more to taste
  • 1 box pasta
  • 1 bunch broccoli rabe
  • 1/2 onion
  • 8 oz pitted olives
  • 1 lemon
  • 3 Tbsp olive oil
  • salt and pepper

Instructions

PASTA WATER

  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add enough salt to make it “salty like the sea” - at least a tablespoon or so. Boil pasta to al dente, according to package instructions. When the pasta is done - carefully scoop out 1.5 cups of the boiling liquid and set aside before draining the pasta. The hot pasta can wait in the colander (don’t rinse it!) until you’re ready for it. Return the pot to the stove for later, no need to wash it first.

CHICKEN

  1. Heat oven to high broil.

    Are your chicken breasts huge? You can tell because ideally for 1 ¼ lb, you should have 4 pieces. If you have fewer than that and 4 diners, cut one in half, mimicking the natural shape of the breast - cut it on a bit of an angle into 2 pieces.

    **(Also, remove the tenders from each piece - this is what we’ll use for the Waste Not Meal. Cook the tender with the rest of the recipe tonight, just don’t add sauce. When they’re done, store in the fridge until ready for the next recipe. If you aren’t making that meal, just leave them attached. If you are making that meal but don’t have tenders, save one of the chicken breasts for the dish or slice a little strip off each breast to make it smaller and use those strips like tenders. Most chicken breasts sold are SO BIG, most people don’t need that much each night).

    Place chicken on a lined baking sheet, sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper and divide 1 tsp of dried italian seasoning among the pieces on both top and bottom. Evenly spread chicken out on the pan.

    Place chicken on the lowest rack in the oven and cook for 8 minutes. Meanwhile, open the can of tomatoes and measure out about half of the can into a small bowl. Stir in ¼ tsp salt, pinch of black pepper and 1 clove of minced garlic (I’d mince both together right now, just add half and save the rest for finishing up the pasta in a minute). Slice the mozzarella into ¼” thick slabs.

    After 8 minutes, pull the chicken out of the oven and spoon the sauce over top - I like to keep it a little thicker in the center so you can see the edges of the meat, but you could also use the completely smothered with sauce method. Top each piece with as much mozzarella feels good to you. Return to the oven on the top rack this time, and broil until the chicken is cooked through and cheese is browned and bubbly - about 4-6 more minutes. Keep your eye on it though! 

PASTA

  1. While the chicken is cooking, let’s finish the pasta. In the pan you cooked the pasta in, add 3 Tbsp olive oil and turn on to medium heat. Slice your onion half into thin rings, thin as you can go. Add them to the pot with the reserved clove of minced garlic and add a pinch of salt, stir.

    Wash the broccoli rabe. Unless its from a farmer’s market or really dirty, you can most likely leave the band around the bunch while you wash it under cold water. Shake a bit to dry, but some clinging water is good actually. Trim off the bottoms of the stems, and pluck off any of the largest leaves around the outside, reserving about ⅛ of the total bunch for the Waste Not Meal Later this week. Place reserved leaves in a barely damp paper towel, loosely wrapped and in your produce drawer. Open and drain the olives.

    When the onions look soft and just lightly golden, add the broccoli rabe and stir with tongs or a spatula. Within about 3 minutes, the leaves will look wilted and bright. At this time, add the pasta back to the pot and toss to coat. Add in 1 cup of the reserved pasta water, ¼ tsp of salt, the olives and zest your lemon over the pot then add the lemon juice as well. Bring to a boil, and stir while the water cooks off a bit. You should be able to see it thicken up. After about 1-2 minutes of boiling, taste it - does it need more salt? Pepper? - turn off the heat and add the parmesan cheese in (reserving just a little spoonful to garnish the plate). Toss to coat.

PLATING

  1. Serve a big delicious pile of pasta in the center of each plate and top with a chicken breast. Sprinkle a little parmesan over everything to serve.

Recipe Notes

HAVE LEFTOVERS The pasta is great hot or cold and holds well in the fridge for 4 days. The chicken can be reheated in the oven or microwave. I like to put it between 2 pieces of bread and make a sandwich! NOTES/SUBSTITUTIONS Fresh mozzarella → shredded mozzarella or just lots of parmesan Chicken Breast → portabello mushroom, boneless chicken thigh Broccoli Rabe → broccoli, brussels sprouts, spinach, kale, chard Pasta → GF Pasta, Farro, Noodles Olives → capers, artichokes

Ingredients

Ingredients

1 1/4 lb chicken boneless skinless breast
½ can crushed or diced tomatoes
2 cloves garlic
1 tsp dried oregano or italian seasoning
8oz fresh mozzarella
½ cup parmesan cheese, or much more
1 box pasta – i like a shape with nooks and crannies
1 bunch broccoli rabe
1 half of an onion (reserve the other half for tomorrow)
8oz pitted olives, canned or jarred
Salt, pepper
1 lemon
3 Tbsp olive oil

Equipment Needed

Pasta pot
Baking sheet
Strainer
Spatula
Measuring cup or small bowl

Cook

PASTA WATER

Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add enough salt to make it “salty like the sea” – at least a tablespoon or so. Boil pasta to al dente, according to package instructions. When the pasta is done – carefully scoop out 1.5 cups of the boiling liquid and set aside before draining the pasta. The hot pasta can wait in the colander (don’t rinse it!) until you’re ready for it. Return the pot to the stove for later, no need to wash it first.

CHICKEN

Heat oven to high broil.
Are your chicken breasts huge? You can tell because ideally for 1 ¼ lb, you should have 4 pieces. If you have fewer than that and 4 diners, cut one in half, mimicking the natural shape of the breast – cut it on a bit of an angle into 2 pieces.
**(Also, remove the tenders from each piece – this is what we’ll use for the Waste Not Meal. Cook the tender with the rest of the recipe tonight, just don’t add sauce. When they’re done, store in the fridge until ready for the next recipe. If you aren’t making that meal, just leave them attached. If you are making that meal but don’t have tenders, save one of the chicken breasts for the dish or slice a little strip off each breast to make it smaller and use those strips like tenders. Most chicken breasts sold are SO BIG, most people don’t need that much each night).
Place chicken on a lined baking sheet, sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper and divide 1 tsp of dried italian seasoning among the pieces on both top and bottom. Evenly spread chicken out on the pan.

Place chicken on the lowest rack in the oven and cook for 8 minutes. Meanwhile, open the can of tomatoes and measure out about half of the can into a small bowl. Stir in ¼ tsp salt, pinch of black pepper and 1 clove of minced garlic (I’d mince both together right now, just add half and save the rest for finishing up the pasta in a minute). Slice the mozzarella into ¼” thick slabs.

After 8 minutes, pull the chicken out of the oven and spoon the sauce over top – I like to keep it a little thicker in the center so you can see the edges of the meat, but you could also use the completely smothered with sauce method. Top each piece with as much mozzarella feels good to you. Return to the oven on the top rack this time, and broil until the chicken is cooked through and cheese is browned and bubbly – about 4-6 more minutes. Keep your eye on it though!

PASTA

While the chicken is cooking, let’s finish the pasta. In the pan you cooked the pasta in, add 3 Tbsp olive oil and turn on to medium heat. Slice your onion half into thin rings, thin as you can go. Add them to the pot with the reserved clove of minced garlic and add a pinch of salt, stir.

Wash the broccoli rabe. Unless its from a farmer’s market or really dirty, you can most likely leave the band around the bunch while you wash it under cold water. Shake a bit to dry, but some clinging water is good actually. Trim off the bottoms of the stems, and pluck off any of the largest leaves around the outside, reserving about ⅛ of the total bunch for the Waste Not Meal Later this week. Place reserved leaves in a barely damp paper towel, loosely wrapped and in your produce drawer. Open and drain the olives.

When the onions look soft and just lightly golden, add the broccoli rabe and stir with tongs or a spatula. Within about 3 minutes, the leaves will look wilted and bright. At this time, add the pasta back to the pot and toss to coat. Add in 1 cup of the reserved pasta water, ¼ tsp of salt, the olives and zest your lemon over the pot then add the lemon juice as well. Bring to a boil, and stir while the water cooks off a bit. You should be able to see it thicken up. After about 1-2 minutes of boiling, taste it – does it need more salt? Pepper? – turn off the heat and add the parmesan cheese in (reserving just a little spoonful to garnish the plate). Toss to coat.

PLATING

Serve a big delicious pile of pasta in the center of each plate and top with a chicken breast. Sprinkle a little parmesan over everything to serve.

Actions Shots

Let’s Eat

Have Leftovers?

The pasta is great hot or cold and holds well in the fridge for 4 days.
The chicken can be reheated in the oven or microwave. I like to put it between 2 pieces of bread and make a sandwich!

Notes + Substitutions

Fresh mozzarella → shredded mozzarella or just lots of parmesan
Chicken Breast → portobello mushroom, boneless chicken thigh
Broccoli Rabe → broccoli, brussels sprouts, spinach, kale, chard
Pasta → GF Pasta, Farro, Noodles
Olives → capers, artichokes

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