Paprika Mediterranean Chicken

It might shock you, but I have a quasi-schedule here at Macheesmo that I try to keep. To try to keep this schedule, I like to have a few back-up posts ready in case I need to remove myself from the Internet for a few days.

This post has been sitting in that backup queue for awhile now and I decided to move it straight to the top. I’ve noticed thanks to some keen Twitter followers (@thegastronome) that my last few posts have been a bit on the unhealthy side: A cheese and honey sandwich, an alcoholic beverage, and delicious breakfast rolls. This was not on purpose.

I promise it is not my goal to make you larger. It is my goal though to get you excited about cooking. I think this dinner will do that and it just so happens to be pretty healthy!

As a rule, I don’t like boneless, skinless chicken breasts. I find them to be completely flavorless. They need a lot of help, in my opinion, to end up as a tasty dinner. I know a lot of people use them as their default, but I’ve never really been a fan.

I use them in this dish though (healthy!) because there is so much flavor given to the chicken from the awesome paprika oil rub that goes along with it. Let’s make it!

Paprika Mediterranean Chicken

Just a moment please...

Serves 4.
Prep Time
Total Time

A simple and healthy baked chicken recipe with fresh tomatoes and a slightly spicy paprika yogurt sauce.


Paprika Oil:

1/2 Cup olive oil
2 Tablespoons paprika
1 Tablespoon chili powder
2 cloves garlic chopped fine
Pinch of salt and pepper

Rest of the dish:

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 Pint cherry tomatoes (or more if you just love tomatoes)
2 cans garbanzo beans
1/2 Cup chopped cilantro (optional or as garnish)
1 Cup Greek yogurt
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1) Whisk together all the paprika oil ingredients. Can be made in advance.

2) Add 1 tablespoon of the oil to the Greek yogurt and stir together. Store in the fridge until needed.

3) Take 2/3 of the oil and pour it generously over your chicken breasts. Every inch of them should covered with the rub.

4) Bake chicken at 350 degrees F. for about 30 minutes.

5) Open up your garbanzo beans, drain them, and dump them in this bowl along with the tomatoes and add the last of the paprika oil mixture. If you aren’t afraid of cilantro you can throw 1/4 Cup of that in now as well.

6) After your chicken has been cooking for 30 minutes, pull it out and pour your tomato and chickpea mixture evenly around the chicken.

7) Bake again for for 30 more minutes or until chicken is cooked.

Serve with yogurt and rice or couscous.

This dish is shockingly easy to make. First, mix together all of your spiced oil ingredients. I actually don’t even measure the paprika any more. I just add it until it looks like this:

A dark spicy brew.

A dark spicy brew.

It should be very flavorful. This is the base flavor for the whole meal. You could make this a few hours in advance.

Once it is mixed, take your Greek yogurt and add in about a Tablespoon of the oil mixture. This sauce really makes the dish in my opinion. If you make it a few hours before dinner and let it mellow in the fridge it will be even better.

Yogurt. Meet Flavor.

Yogurt. Meet Flavor.

Next, take about half of your paprika oil, maybe 2/3 of it, and pour it generously over your chicken breasts. Every inch of them should covered with the rub.



Put these guys in the oven at 350 for about 30 minutes. At some point your kitchen will begin to smell like you painted the walls with paprika. That’s a good thing.

We aren’t done with paprika yet. You should still have about 1/2 or 1/3 of your spiced oil in a bowl somewhere. Open up your garbanzo beans, drain them, and dump them in this bowl along with the tomatoes. If you aren’t afraid of cilantro you can throw 1/4 Cup of that in now as well.

Some people have a huge aversion to cilantro though, so I like to just add it as a garnish later for those interested.

Super easy.

Super easy.

After your chicken has been cooking for 30 minutes, pull it out and pour your tomato and chickpea mixture evenly around the chicken.

Then back in the oven for 30 more minutes.

All together now.

All together now.

After that hour your chicken should be done but still moist. Depending on your oven that last 30 minutes may only need to be 20. My oven is horrible and I believe it cooks at about 50 degrees cooler than what it is set for.

Basically, you wan to cook it until the chicken is done.

I serve it with a large dollop of the Greek yogurt and Couscous.

Warming and reasonably healthy!

Warming and reasonably healthy!

This is a really easy meal. You only have to chop two things: garlic and cilantro! It is very warming and great during the Winter. It has become one of our staple dinners over the last few months.

For those of you looking for other healthy dishes on Macheesmo, don’t forget about the categories over on the sidebar. There is healthy cagetegory that has some good stuff in it.

You know that schedule I mentioned at the start of this post? If you don’t want to miss anything on it, be sure to sign up for free Macheesmo updates by email or RSS.

22 comments on “Paprika Mediterranean Chicken

  1. This sounds really good, great idea to roast the chickpeas and tomatoes with the chicken. I will have to try this out. And I HAAATE cilantro, so I will sub some parsley.

  2. This sounds awesome. I am always looking for new, healthy chicken recipes. I agree with you that chicken breast needs A LOT of help but the other 1/2 is not a fan of dark meat (I know, I don't understand it either).

    How do you think subbing out the regular paprika for smokes would fare? I think I might try both! Thanks.

  3. I think you could definitely sub smoked paprika. Might go a bit lighter on it to start as it has a much stronger flavor, but it would equally delicious I think.

    Thanks for the comments everyone!

  4. This looks amazing. I love love love paprika (especially smoked paprika), and cilantro gets an A+ in my book. I totally agree with your on the boneless skinless breasts, but a good marinade definitely helps them. I'll have to try this out very soon!

  5. I finally made this for dinner last night and it's absolutely delicious! I'm actually eating the leftovers for lunch as I write this. I will definately be adding this to my rotation!

  6. Nick, you say that your oven cooks about 50 degrees cooler than what it's set for. Does that mean we should reduce our temp by 50 degrees to have it cook the same as yours or that you increase yours by 50? I've noticed that sometimes your recipes burn in my oven or tend to cook faster than you say they should.

    1. Hmm… I actually think that my oven is closer than what I thought when I wrote this post. I think it might be a bit cool, but probably not 50 degrees. In any event, I always try to write the recipes assuming a normal oven.

      It could also be that your oven is actually hotter than normal… especially if it's gas… it's sometimes really hard to tell oven to oven. I always recommend checking a recipe 10-15 minutes before the recipe says it should be done and know that you may have to cook it for a bit longer also. Especially with meat, it's almost impossible to say for certain that something will be cooked at exactly the same time in every oven.

      Sorry about that… i'll work on a post for oven inconsistencies… ;)

  7. I did this recipe except I cut up a whole chicken into 8 skinless pieces. It was really good. It could also work with the skin on and I think in the future I'll leave the skin on.

    Also instead of two cans of chickpeas I used about 1/2 a pack of dried chickpeas that I was making anyway for hummus.

    I also cut my cherry tomatoes in half because mine were the long kind.

    The yogurt sauce really is what makes this recipe, I put a nice dollop of that on my chickpeas and it tasted really good. I used plain yogurt instead of greek yogurt because that's what I had on hand. You can strain plain yogurt with cheesecloth to make Greek style yogurt but I did not have the time to do. It turned out fine with just plain yogurt.

    When I make this again I'll make it spicier.
    My recent post mazman909 on One whole chicken, a bag of chickpeas, and a pint of cherry tomatoes yields tonights dinner with leftovers and this week's hummus.

  8. To save time, I cut each breast into three cutlets, and put the beans and tomatoes in at the beginning.

    I don’t recommend this method. The tomatoes need more time to roast and burst.

    And although I made the yogurt, I forgot to serve it! :( Will have to try again!

  9. Is there a calorie amount and all that good stuff? I’m trying to keep track of everything I eat and it would help in my daily intake counter. The recipe was delicious by the way!! My family loved it

  10. Made this past weekend and ate it for lunch the last couple of days. Loved it and the taste continues to grow on me. I didn’t put enough salt in the liquid mix (couldn’t really taste much except oil) but it’s easy to add after cooking. The yogurt part is simple but a very nice touch!

  11. I have tried many different versions of this recipe because I LOVE chickpeas. This is by far, the best one I have made.

  12. This is one of our favorite recipes now!! We make it at least once or twice a month! Thank you!!

  13. Delicious. This recipe has become a regular dinner in my house. Also, the yogurt sauce sounds odd, but you are right, it really does pull the dish together. I like to serve it with cous cous!

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