A high protein, low calorie chicken, chickpea, and raisin dinner
A High Protein Meal for your Mediterranean Diet
Mediterranean Chicken and Raisins is an awesome weeknight meal. Served with a half cup of cooked white rice, you can enjoy a full 60 grams of protein for only 479 calories! If you’re trying to lose weight or gain muscle mass, this is basically a perfect meal.
This meal isn’t skimpy either, you’ll get:
- A normal portion of rice,
- A full 6 ounces of chicken breast,
- Plus a heap of saucy vegetables and raisins.
This chicken dish is also delicious and flavor packed. The olives and raisins create a savory-sweet contrast that is impressive and keeps me coming back every few weeks.
Similarities and differences from Chicken Tagine
You might find this recipe has some similarities to Chicken Tagine. I’ve been making this dish for years, and only found the similarities to Tagine later on. I even debated calling this dish a Chicken Tagine.
For all its similarities there are a few key differences:
- Chicken Tagine is made in a tagine, a kind of conical clay pot.
- Tagine involves preserved lemons, which are not used here.
- Tagine is often made with bone-in chicken, while we will use boneless chicken breast
Besides those differences you’ll find the composition and flavor profile similar between the two meals.
Should I use dried or canned Chickpeas?
This recipe is written assuming you will start with dried chickpeas, aka garbanzo beans. Garbanzo beans are the same thing as chickpeas, but you may know them by one name and not the other depending on where you’re buying them.
Canned chickpeas can be also used with no ill effects on the recipe. Simply skip the first step of the instructions where we pressure cook them.
Should I use fresh Ginger or Ginger powder?
For this meal, I recommend using fresh ginger. It adds a fun bite to the meal, and it’s hard to beat the flavor of fresh ginger. I do recommend making sure you thinly slice or grate the ginger however, as the raw root is pretty strong. Too big of chunks might be off putting.
If you don’t have access to fresh ginger, you can use ginger powder in a pinch to add the flavor.
What kind of olives to use?
The recipe calls for green olives, and I recommend sticking with that. Green olives are less ripe than black, and have a correspondingly saltier and slightly more bitter taste. I find that it offers the perfect contrast to the sweetness of the raisins.
If you want to save a few minutes, you can buy pre-sliced green olives. I prefer to slice mine so that I can have larger chunks in the final dish. Obviously you should avoid putting olive pits into the dish.
Tips for preparing Mediterranean Chicken and Raisins
In this recipe I fry some of the ingredients in a pan, then bake the meal in a casserole dish. There are two other easy ways to prepare the meal that you might prefer:
- Fry and bake everything in a dutch oven. After finishing frying the ingredients in a dutch oven, you can combine and stack the ingredients in the same dutch oven, and then bake the whole thing. This requires minimal alteration to the recipe, and allows you to contain everything to just one dish!
- Cook everything on the stove top. If you have a big enough pan to hold everything, you can finish the meal on the stove top. Simply fry all the ingredients per the recipe, and assemble it in the pan instead of a casserole dish. Simmer uncovered for 20 minutes, until the chicken is fully cooked.
Other Mediterranean diet friendly meals
If you liked this Mediterranean diet recipe, you should check out the others we have too! I love putting together high protein, low calorie meals, and I’m sure more will follow.
Let’s make Mediterranean Chicken and Raisins
Mediterranean Chicken and Raisins
- 1 9x13" casserole dish
- 1 Frying Pan
- 1½ lb Chicken Breast boneless skinless
- ⅓ cup Raisins
- ½ cup Green olives no pits
- ½ cup Dried Chickpeas
- 1½ Inches Ginger root fresh
- 1 Onion Yellow or Sweet
- 3 Carrots
- 2 tbsp Minced Garlic
- 1 cup Dry White Wine
- 1 cup Chicken Broth
- 1 tbsp Canola Oil
- ½ tbsp Olive Oil
- Pressure cook 1/2 cup chickpeas with 2 cups water for 40 mins high pressure, natural pressure release for 10-20 mins.
- Slice the chicken breasts into filets.
- Heat a skillet with canola oil until hot. Sear each chicken breast filet for 2-4 minutes per side, or until each side is golden. Remove the chicken to a plate, cover with foil, and set aside. You can also just put the chicken in the microwave.
- To the same skillet, add approximately ½ tbsp of olive oil and fry onion, ginger, and carrots for 3-5 minutes, then add garlic. Fry 1 more minute.
- Add 1 cup wine, 1 cup broth, and 1 cup water. Bring to a boil then simmer while assembling casserole
- Layer chickpeas, olives, and raisins in the bottom of a 9x13 casserole dish. Top vegetables with seared chicken, pouring any remaining chicken juices into the dishNow pour over the vegetable/liquid mixture and spread vegetables evenly in the pan. Lay oregano over top, then bake uncovered in a 425 oven for 20-30 minutes