This Harissa Chicken Traybake is a super easy recipe with moist roast chicken with spicy, earthy, fruity, sweet and sour flavours. It hits all the right spots, and is perfect with rice, couscous, potatoes or bread. Any kind of bread.
This is so perfect for midweek meals, but it is just as at home served during the weekends. In fact, it makes a splendid meal for entertaining friends too.
I’ve been running a series of classes focusing on easy midweek meals, and traybakes seem to have formed about half of those recipes! The challenge, after about a dozen of them, was to ensure that they didn’t all start to resemble each other!
And because many of my students end up being my blog readers, the inevitable question popped up halfway through the course:
Why are these recipes not on your blog?
So here goes, the first of many traybake recipes! Or sheet pan recipes, in American speak!
What are Traybake Recipes?
Traybakes started life as sweet recipes. Let’s break it down:
Tray + bake = Traybake
Something that is meant to be baked in a tray, cut up and served. Like traybake cakes shallow, rectangular cakes and brownies. Rather confusingly, not all traybake recipes are baked, like fudge!
Savoury Traybake Recipes
Using the same theme, savoury traybakes are recipes where all the ingredients are placed in the tray and baked, like our Harissa Chicken Traybake recipe today. Naturally, you can use all manner of meat and vegetables for your traybakes.
And it goes without saying that vegan and vegetarian traybakes are pretty common and easy to make too. Just look out for them in the coming months.
Harissa Chicken Traybake Recipe
As mentioned, it’s super easy to do. Besides the oil and seasoning, we have:
- capsicum (bell peppers)
- harissa (click for homemade recipe)
All we do is place them all in a tray, season and bake (roast) for 45 minutes. I have more recipes coming where we’ll add starch in the form of potatoes and sweet potatoes to turn the traybake into a complete meal. But not today!
If you do want to add potatoes to this recipe, just cut your potatoes into wedges, parboil for 5-7 minutes until a knife goes through easily, but before the potatoes show signs of breaking up around the edges. Drain and toss into the tray with everything else.
What is Harissa?
Click here for homemade recipe. Harissa is a North African chilli paste, earthy and smoky in flavour. At its very basic, it has chillies, garlic, salt, olive oil and lemon juice and very frequently, also cumin, coriander and caraway seeds.
It has become quite a common paste here in the UK, and you can find it easily in our supermarkets like Waitrose and Tesco. But, I urge you to make your own if you have the time. Make it and keep it the fridge to use during the week.
Having tasted the real thing in Morocco, Tunisia and Algeria, I can tell you that those shop bought harissa pastes are insipid imitations, at best.
However, if you really, really, really don’t want to make your own harissa, a good shop bought one will still give you a delicious recipe.
What Chicken portion to use?
To me, chicken thighs or chicken legs will give you the best flavour, and skin on is always the business. We are using chicken thighs here.
However, if you are watching your weight or just don’t do chicken thighs and skin for health reasons, use skinless chicken breasts, by all means. Just cut down on the cooking time to 30 minutes.
Right then, shall we get cooking?
More Chicken Recipes on LinsFood
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Harissa Chicken Traybake (Sheet Pan Harissa Chicken)
- 4 boneless chicken thighs
- 1 large brown onion
- 4 cloves garlic
- 2 capsicums bell pepper of 2 colours
- 1 large carrot or 2 handfuls baby carrots
- 1 handful flat leaf parsley curly will do too
- 2 Tbsp EV olive oil
- 2 Tbsp lemon juice
- 3 Tbsp harissa
- 1 tsp salt
- lots of freshly ground black pepper
- Heat the oven up to 190˚C (375˚F).
Prep the veg
- Quarter the onion and separate the layers.
- Cut the capsicum into thick slices.
- If using a large carrot, cut it into thick fingers.
- Chop the parsley up finely.
- Tip all the vegetables into the tray, followed by the chicken.
- Drizzle the olive oil and lemon juice all over.
- Spoon the harissa over.
- Season with the salt and pepper.
- Scatter the parsley all over.
- Mix everything up well, rubbing the marinade under the chicken skin too.
- Roast in the oven for 45 minutes.
- When done, leave to rest for 5 minutes, then serve immediately.