SMOKY CHICKEN AND CINNAMON ROASTED SWEET POTATO MEAL PREP
I’ve made the Smoky Chicken and Cinnamon Roasted Sweet Potato Meal Prep three times within the last month and a half (and I’m still not satisfied), So it’s time to share this deliciously simple recipe. Every meal prep component isn’t an actual “recipe” on its own, and I’m putting the instructions for everything in a single formula. Simple food. Simply spiced, cooked, and simply delicious. If I’ve said it one time and I’ve repeated it over and over again, good food does not have to be complicated.
Since this combination is easy to make, it’s also very adaptable. Green beans are an excellent alternative if you’re not a fan of broccoli. Skinless, boneless chicken thighs are an excellent alternative when the breasts of chicken cost too much. Using this rub of spices on salmon is also possible if that’s on your budget! For those who don’t own an equipped spice cabinet, you can purchase a BBQ dry rub that could be substituted for the spices listed to spice the chicken. Do you want to take it further? Try sprinkling BBQ sauce on the chicken or a simple piece of cornbread to make it more complete. You can also cook the chicken over a grill or on a countertop grill similar to George Foreman’s one.
Cooking times differ a lot based on your equipment, the size of your food, and the alignment between the earth and the moon (just kidding about the last one). I’ve added visual clues to let you recognize when your food has been cooked. Be sure to watch the food you cook and poke it around for a few seconds to check the texture, listen for the sounds it makes, and observe the changing scents, and with lots of practice; the process will become easier. For more helpful tips, read my 10 Tips to a Successful Recipe.
Cinnamon Roasted Sweet Potatoes
Two sweet potatoes (about 3 lbs. each) ($1.49)
One tablespoon cooking oil ($0.04)
1/2 tsp cinnamon ($0.05)
pinch cayenne pepper ($0.02)
pinch salt ($0.02)
1 tsp smoked paprika ($0.10)
One teaspoon brown sugar ($0.02)
14 tsp of garlic powder ($0.02)
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper ($0.02)
1/4 tsp salt ($0.02)
Freshly ground pepper ($0.02)
Two skinless, boneless chicken breasts (about 2/3 1 lb. each) ($6.42)
One tablespoon cooking oil ($0.04)
One lb. green beans ($0.99)
One tablespoon of butter ($0.12)
A pinch of salt and pepper ($0.04)
Preheat the oven until it is at 400oF. Clean and dry them, then poke the skin a few times using a fork. Cut the sweet potatoes in half lengthwise, then put the cut sides on a baking tray. Sprinkle cooking oil on the potatoes. Use your hands to spread the oil across their entire area (skin and cut edges), leaving a generous portion on the baking sheet underneath the potatoes to prevent them from sticking.
Place the sweet potatoes on the cut side facing up, and sprinkle them with cinnamon, cayenne pepper, and a pinch of salt. The sweet potatoes should be turned upside down so they’re cut side down and roast for 45 to 50 minutes, or until they’re soft throughout and the juices have bubbled and caramelized through the skin’s holes.
When the sweet potatoes are baking, cook the green beans and chicken; mix the needed chicken spices into a tiny bowl (smoked paprika garlic powder, brown sugar cayenne, salt, freshly ground pepper, about 20 cranks from the pepper mill).
Clean the chicken, pat it dry, and then apply the rub on its entire surface. In a large pan, heat it to medium-high, then add the cooking oil and stir to coat the pan. Add the chicken and cook until deeply browned on both sides and the internal temperature is at 160oF. Transfer the chicken to the cutting board and allow it to cool.
While the chicken cooks while the chicken is cooking, cook the green beans. Add one inch of liquid to the saucepan and set the steaming container inside the pot. Place the green beans in the basket, put the lid on top, and set them at a moderate-high temperature. Let the water rise to a boiling point, and then steam the beans for 7-10 minutes or until they’re light green and slightly soft.
The green beans should be removed from the pan, drained from the water, and put back into the pot with no steaming basket. Add 1 Tbsp of butter, and allow the heat of these beans to cause the butter to melt. Mix until coated, then sprinkle with the addition of a pinch of the salt as well as pepper.
Cut the breasts of the chicken into pieces. Divide the sweet potatoes, green beans, sweet potato halves, and chicken among four plates or containers. Serve immediately, or refrigerate them and heat them later.