This easy chicken fennel lemon tray bake is perfect for a midweek family dinner. Chicken thighs with skin on and bone in, potatoes that drink up the wonderful flavours of chicken stock, lemon, garlic, fennel and sweet roasted shallots (scallions).
Adding stock ensures everything is beautifully tender and moist, with a little jus left in the bottom to serve. Tray bakes are the perfect solution for a quick and easy dinner, plus one pan equals less washing up!
Traybakes have become the star of weeknight dinners. They tick all the boxes for quick, low maintenance midweek meals that can be prepared with the absolute minimum amount of effort, taste great, and ideally be eaten as leftovers the following day.
Four easy steps
It takes just 5 minutes of hands on prep! After that place the seasoned and lightly oiled potatoes in the oven for a 15 minutes head start. Pour yourself a glass of wine and have a sip, or two.
Then throw in the garlic bulb and fennel pieces for another 10 minutes and have another sip of wine. Now add the chicken pieces, stock and fennel seeds and cook away for 30 minutes. Take another sip, or two of wine.
Turn on the grill (broiler) toss the shallots (scallions) through and brown the chicken skin for 5 -8 minutes till golden. Serve on the tray and let everyone help themselves. Too easy!
It really couldn’t be any easier and low maintenance to make! This is the perfect recipe to try if you are new to cooking, it’s basically impossible to mess up! An added bonus is the ease of washing up – one tray! Tick!
Fennel can be a bit divisive but we love it fresh, or baked for it’s sweet, faintly aniseed flavour. When baked it turns into a lovely caramelised, and mildly aniseed flavoured perfect accompaniment for the chicken, and potatoes.
Fennel bulbs should be whitish-green, firm and heavy for their size, with no brown or mushy spots. If the feathery green fronds are still attached, they should be sprightly with no signs of wilting, or dryness.
Chicken thighs with skin on and bone in are perfect for tray bakes. The meat is always moist and tender and the skin turns golden brown and crisp. They’re generally a very economical and family friendly protein and super easy to manage.
Roasting garlic brings a real sweetness to the cloves in the same way that an onion goes from acrid to sweet when roasted. It’s delicious smeared onto the chicken meat. If you’ve never tried roasted garlic before then you’re in for a real treat.
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- 8 chicken thighs, skin on and bone in
- 1 fennel bulb, fronds trimmed and cut into thick 15ml (1/2 in) slices
- 3 small lemons, sliced into thick slices
- 1 tablespoon fennel seeds
- 1 cup chicken stock
- 1 bunch shallots (scallions), trimmed
- 1 whole knob of garlic, top sliced off to expose the cloves
- 4 large potatoes, halved lengthways and cut into thick wedges
- salt and fresh milled black pepper
- 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- preheat oven to 220c (425f)
- toss potatoes, fennel, chicken, shallots and garlic in a drizzle of oil and season with salt and pepper. (we don’t want a pool of oil in the baking dish)
- place oiled potatoes in a large baking dish and bake for 15 minutes
- add garlic and fennel slices and cook for a further 10 minutes
- add chicken, fennel seeds and stock and cook for 25-30 minutes
- turn grill (broiler) on and add shallots, tossing them through
- grill for 5-8 minutes, or until chicken skin is golden
- serve and enjoy!
- cooking times are a guide only – as the size of the chicken and the vegetables cuts will vary the cook.
- cook chicken until juices run clear when flesh is cut near the bone.
- Category: meat and chicken
- Method: baking
- Cuisine: Australian
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