Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Chicken Thighs with Lemon Basil Sauce

Chicken Thighs with Lemon Basil Sauce - get the recipe at

What's not to love about lemon and basil together? Add a bit of bacon, tender chicken, and plenty of juicy tomatoes and I am going to be all over that dish. When I first saw this sauce in my friend Shawn's cookbook, I couldn't get it out of my head. As she wrote the original recipe, the chicken in this recipe is replaced with scallops, which I imagine tastes fantastic too. However, I already had chicken on hand, so I went with the option I already had in the house.

This Chicken with Lemon Basil Sauce is amazingly flavorful, with a sprinkling of bacon, plenty of lemon and a surprising richness in the simple sauce. I served the chicken with the sauce over crisp spiralized zucchini and the lemony sauce was absolutely perfect with the vegetables. If rice or pasta is more your style, the chicken is great served that way as well.

Speaking of Shawn's cookbook, I am giving away a copy of Express Lane Cooking today! Filled with gorgeous photos and 80 dinner recipes, this cookbook is designed to get you in and out of the grocery store in record time and help you get a stress-free meal on the table each night. Scroll to the bottom of this post for your chance to win a copy!

While I am not a big fan of vegetable noodles as a substitute for pasta noodles, I most definitely am a fan of vegetables. There are some dishes where the vegetables truly shine in their own awesome way and this is definitely one of those dishes! Don't expect your vegetables to suddenly taste like a plate of pasta. You're still eating vegetables after all. Spiralizing isn't about magically transforming your vegetables into pasta, but it does make the most of the vegetables that you already love.

I made this recipe for lunch a couple days ago, and despite my plans to save a few portions for lunch the following day, Sean and I managed to polish off almost the entire recipe in one meal! Just to clarify though, if you choose to make this with 8 ounces of pasta, instead of the spiralized zucchini, it will be far more filling and I imagine that you could easily feed a family of 4-5 with that amount of food. However, I was in the mood for extra vegetables and I do so love my spiralized zucchini.

COOK'S NOTE: A splatter screen is very helpful when cooking the bacon for this recipe. Also, I'm a big fan of this spiralizer or this julienee tool for slicing the zucchini into perfectly "twirlable" noodles.

Chicken Thighs with Lemon Basil Sauce
recipe adapted from Express Lane Cooking
Yield: 3-5 servings, depending on size
(printable recipe)

4 strips of bacon, cut into 1-inch pieces

1 1/2 pounds boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch pieces
1/2 teaspoon cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3/4 cup chicken broth
zest from 1 lemon, about 1 tablespoon minced
juice from 1 lemon, about 1/4 cup
1 tablespoon butter
8 large basil leaves, about 2 tablespoons finely sliced
1 cup grape tomatoes, halved

For serving, choose one:

3 raw medium-size Italian zucchini, spiralized or julienned
8 ounces angel hair pasta, cooked
2 cups Jasmine rice, cooked

Heat a large stainless skillet over medium heat and cook the bacon. While the bacon is cooking, sprinkle the cornstarch, salt, and pepper over the cut up chicken. Remove the cooked bacon from the pan with a slotted spatula and drain on a paper towel lined plate. Drain the grease from the pan, leaving 2 tablespoons in the pan.

Place the hot pan back over medium heat and spread the chicken across the pan. Let it cook without stirring for 2 minutes. Turn the chicken pieces over and cook an additional 2-3 minutes, just until cooked through. Remove the chicken to a plate or bowl.

Add the chicken broth, lemon juice, and lemon zest to the skillet and bring to a simmer. Cook for 3 minutes. Stirring occasionally and scraping the browned bits off the bottom of the skillet as it cooks. When the sauce has thickened slightly, add the butter and basil. Taste and add more salt and pepper, only if needed. Add the chicken and tomatoes to the sauce.

Serve the zucchini noodles, pasta, or rice topped with the chicken and sauce. Sprinkle each serving with the cooked and crumbled bacon. Enjoy!

Chicken with Lemon Basil Sauce is a fast, simple, and delicious dinner! - get the recipe at

ONE YEAR AGO: Ginger Chicken and Broccoli Stir-Fry
TWO YEARS AGO: Crock-Pot Balsamic and Brown Sugar Pork Roast
THREE YEARS AGO: Fuji Apple Chicken Salad

FOUR YEARS AGO: Crock-Pot Split Pea Ham and Leek Soup

All you need to do to be entered to win a copy of Express Lane Cooking is leave a comment on this post telling me what you had for dinner last night!

Make sure there is an email address included so that I can contact the winner. Entry is limited to US residents only. I wish I could include everyone, but the legalities involved with international giveaways prevent me from doing that. Giveaway ends Sunday, August 16th, 2015 at 11:59pm EST. Good Luck!


  1. Turkey burgers on porter sourdough with some really nice smoked Gouda, tortilla chips, and tomatillo salsa.

  2. What I had for dinner last night: trout croquettes (using up leftover fish), green beans, and corn on the cob. I have some boneless chicken thighs in the freezer which I will promptly thaw today! Recipe looks great. Hello, my name is Ginny, and I have a cookbook addiction.

    1. to satisfy your addiction, have you ever shopped an "Ollies" store? We have them in Ohio and they have a huge selection of cookbooks. GOOD cookbooks. Not only that, they are cheap! I have purchased several for less than $10. Actually less than $8! My favorites are anything by Southern Living, except the yearbooks. I don't care for those. I wish you could come to my garage sale!

  3. Salmon with green beans and wilted kale...

  4. Yesterday was a no cook night. I picked up Popeye's fried chicken.

  5. Stir fried pork and Bok Choy with onions and fresh tomatoes!!

  6. Steak & Veggie Kabobs with Wild Rice & Grilled Pineapple-

  7. Lean Cuisine. 😞

  8. Just found your blog a couple of days ago, and subscribed via Facebook... I love this type of meal, and think you nailed it with your description of zucchini noodles - it is not "like" pasta, just a fun and creative method to enjoy a tasty veggie... I use it a lot, love my spiralizer!

  9. Dinner last night was Chipotle Sausage Stuffed Mushrooms-

  10. We had Chicago style hot dog stacks and Thomas Keller's summer vegetable gratin. Such a good and summery meal!

  11. Medium Rare Filet Mignon; cooked Sous Vide style, then seared on HOT grill. Baked potato's with sour cream & fresh chives & frozen green beans in butter sauce. Orange Swirl ice cream for dessert. WE wanted a special Tuesday night for no reason at all! IT WAS SUPER FUN!

  12. About last night - a treat of Chipotle burrito bowl!

  13. Yippee...I have chicken in the fridge and was planning on using it tonight. I'll be making Lemon Basil Chicken using boneless chicken breasts. Thank you for all the delicious recipes that you have on Barefeet In The Kitchen. Regards, Michele

  14. Oh I love what you did with this recipe!! Thank you so much for sharing!! :)

  15. We just had hot dogs, since hubby had to work very late.

  16. Your honey Siiracha chicken! Love it!

  17. This looks delicious, I would love some right now. Last night we had sauteed mushrooms and some leftover rice, which I fried with spring onions, corn and peppers.

  18. Had a garden vegetable salad with beets, green beans, carrots, tomatoes, basil and green onions all from my garden! The only thing I purchased was lettuce. It was yummy with balsamic vinaigrette.

    1. my e-mail address is

  19. I'll be honest and tell you Cheerios and milk. But the night before was Chicken Kofta with a cucumber/mint/yogurt sauce on Naan. Congratulations to Shawn and thanks for hosting a generous giveaway!