There are days when there’s just not time to mess around with dinner! However, everyone has to eat – even if it’s not at the table. A foil-packed dinner is perfect for these times. Tender, juicy chicken baked with an Italian-inspired stuffing in individual foil packets is on tonight’s menu. The only prep is mincing some garlic. You gotta love it!
Boneless skinless chicken thighs are my go-to dinner. When they’re on sale (which is regularly), I stock up as they freeze beautifully. I move a package from the freezer into the refrigerator the night before or, more realistically, the morning of the day I need them. (Thawing overnight is recommended, but I’ve found 5-8 hours is usually sufficient.) If you prefer white meat, use boneless breasts instead of thighs.
Prepped in less than 2 minutes!
All the other ingredients are things I have in my pantry, including a can of diced tomatoes. I like using the ones that have garlic and basil seasoning, but that’s a personal preference. The other ingredient is a box of Stove Top Stuffing Mix – and no, Stove Top is not paying me. However, I totally endorse the product! Stove Top Stuffing Mix is always in my pantry; I use it a lot. It’s super easy, and I love the taste. You know, they should pay me! 😎 I also use Italian seasoning for this recipe. It is a staple at my house. I love it because all the herbs I need are in one jar. It saves me both space and time.
Zero Clean up!
I use Heavy-duty aluminum foil for this recipe. It costs a little more, but it’s well worth paying more when used for cooking (rather than lining a pan.) If you don’t have heavy-duty foil, not to worry – just double up on regular foil. Tear or cut six large sheets and give them a coat of non-stick spray. Cooking in foil packets has several benefits, but the biggest is eating straight from the package, with nearly zero clean-up!
Start by combining the stuffing mix with the can of tomatoes (juice and all) and the minced garlic, stirring until moistened. Flatten out the chicken thighs, one on each sheet of the coated foil.
Assembling the packets
Sprinkle each thigh with salt and Italian seasoning. I don’t measure out the salt or seasoning; I just generously sprinkle them. The salt is optional. There is enough salt between the stuffing mix and the canned tomatoes, so additional seasoning may not be necessary. Season per your taste. Personal disclosure: I add salt more out of habit than for taste.
Dollop a large spoonful of the stuffing mix on the chicken and top with shredded cheese mozzarella cheese.
The prepped thighs get wrapped up like little gift packages taking care to seal all the edges securely.
Place the packets on a baking sheet and pop into a preheated 400°F oven for 45 minutes. (While the chicken bakes, I make good use of this free time!) I love when I take them out of the oven; the pan looks the same as when it when in – six securely wrapped foil packets. There is nothing to clean!
Perfect dinner on-the-go
The packets do contain steam, so cut a little slit in the foil to dissipate it before you unwrap it. Moist and juicy chicken surrounded by flavorful stuffing and tomatoes will earn high ratings at the table, in the car, on the bleachers, or from a lawn chair! Enjoy dinner while living life!
Foil-Packet Italian Chicken & StuffingCourse: MainCuisine: Italian-InspiredDifficulty: Easy
Dinner on-the-run! Simple, yet delicious. This easy recipe bakes tender juicy chicken in an Italian-inspired tomato stuffing with a gooey cheese topping in a foil packet. Zero clean-up and no dishes make for a low stress/high impress dinner.
1 pkg. (6 oz.) Stuffing Mix (Stove Top)
1 can (28 oz.) diced tomatoes
2 cloves garlic, minced
6 boneless skinless chicken thighs (1-1/2 lb.)
1 tablespoon Italian seasoning, divided
OPTIONAL: 3/4 teaspoons Salt
2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- Prep: Heat oven to 400ºF. Coat six large sheets of heavy-duty foil with cooking spray.
- Combine stuffing mix, tomatoes (with juices) and garlic just until stuffing mix is moistened.
- Flatten out each chicken thigh and place in the center of a prepped sheet of foil; sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon of Italian Season and 1/8 teaspoon salt. Top each with a large scoop of the stuffing mix and 1/3 cup cheese. Fold foil to make 6 packets. Place in single layer on rimmed baking sheet. Bake 45 minutes or until chicken is done (165ºF). Cut slits in foil to release steam before carefully opening packets.
- Chicken: skinless boneless breasts can also be used
- Diced Tomatoes: Diced tomatoes with garlic, herbs or chili peppers are recommended
- Heavy-duty foil: A double layer of regular foil can also be used