Superfast International Chicken Recipes

These dishes come from all over the world, but none take more than 20 minutes to prepare.

Soft Chicken Tacos

Dennis Gottleib

Soft Chicken Tacos

Juicy, flavorful thigh meat, plus plenty of ground cumin and a topping of shredded cabbage, gives these tacos authentic Mexican flavor. While the chicken is grilling, heat the tortillas in a dry pan over medium heat for 10 to 20 seconds on each side, or place them in the oven for a few minutes―you'll end up with firm-but-flexible tortillas with a little crispy char around the edges. It takes a little more time, but the results are much better than microwaving them.

View Recipe: Soft Chicken Tacos

Chicken Puttanesca with Angel Hair Pasta

Lee Harrelson

Chicken Puttanesca with Angel Hair Pasta

The piquant sauce in this recipe originated in Naples, and was designed to be made quickly, out of pantry odds and ends. Our version uses bottled pasta sauce to make things even simpler, while adding the requisite capers, olives, and red pepper that make a puttanesca. If your capers are packed in vinegar, rinse them before adding to the sauce―this makes for a more balanced flavor.

View Recipe: Chicken Puttanesca with Angel Hair Pasta

Asian Chicken Salad

Becky Luigart-Stayner

Asian Chicken Salad

This isn't your typical mayo-heavy chicken salad. Fresh greens and veggies, crunchy almonds, and chopped chicken with a light sesame-oil-and-ginger dressing make a simple dinner paired with breadsticks or a baked potato, or an ideal workday lunch―pack the dressing and salad separately.

View Recipe: Asian Chicken Salad

Lemon Chicken Pita Burgers with Spiced Yogurt Sauce

Beau Gustafson

Lemon Chicken Pita Burgers with Spiced Yogurt Sauce

The flavor of lemon brightens the spiced chicken patties in this recipe, and also flavors the tangy sauce, giving a double whammy of citrus flavor. For a healthful, hearty meal, serve in whole-wheat pitas with brown rice or bulgur pilaf.

View Recipe: Lemon Chicken Pita Burgers with Spiced Yogurt Sauce

Ginger-Soy Chicken Thighs with Scallion Rice Recipes

Photo: John Autry

Ginger-Soy Chicken Thighs with Scallion Rice

If you can't find ginger preserves, you can substitute ½ cup apricot preserves plus 2 teaspoons grated peeled fresh ginger.

View Recipe: Ginger-Soy Chicken Thighs with Scallion Rice

Chicken Paprikash

Randy Mayor

Chicken Paprikash

The second-most-popular Hungarian dish (after goulash), this recipe gets its unique flavor from the caraway seeds mixed into a basic tomato-cream sauce. The flavor complements chicken quite well, but you can also substitute beef or eggplant for excellent results. Serve with spaetzel or egg noodles, or, nontraditionally but just as good, rice.

View Recipe: Chicken Paprikash

Jamaican-Spiced Chicken Thighs

Randy Mayor

Jamaican-Spiced Chicken Thighs

The most flavorful part of the bird―the thigh―gets a quick dunk in an intensely spiced Caribbean jerk-style marinade for this simple dish. It works equally well on a stovetop grill pan or outdoor grill, and makes a good pairing for a wide variety of sides―sweet potatoes, rice and beans, or corn on the cob, to name a few.

View Recipe: Jamaican-Spiced Chicken Thighs

Speedy Chicken and Cheese Enchiladas

Beau Gustafson

Speedy Chicken and Cheese Enchiladas

Canned, bottled, and precooked ingredients are a boon to superfast recipes. Rotisserie chicken, canned enchilada sauce, and even preshredded cheese shave time off this recipe; all you have to do is briefly cook the onions and peppers, assemble, and melt the cheese. Making enchiladas from scratch might take hours. This recipe takes about 15 minutes.

View Recipe: Speedy Chicken and Cheese Enchiladas

Chicken and Mushrooms in Garlic White Wine Sauce

Randy Mayor

Chicken and Mushrooms in Garlic White Wine Sauce

Chicken breasts and mushrooms are weeknight-meal staples that everyone should keep on hand. If that's the case for you, you can put this dish together in less than 15 minutes, probably without a trip to the store. It's adaptable to your pantry―if you don't have egg noodles, use another kind of pasta, and if you're out of tarragon, try basil, oregano, or thyme.

View Recipe: Chicken and Mushrooms in Garlic White Wine Sauce

Sweet and Sour Chicken

Randy Mayor

Sweet and Sour Chicken

This dish has everything that makes the Chinese takeout version so tasty―tender chicken, fresh veggies, a thick sweet-tart sauce, and big chunks of pineapple―but it's a lot better for you, and you can make it faster than they can deliver. Crunchy cashews added at the end complete the dish.

View Recipe: Sweet and Sour Chicken

Peanut-Crusted Chicken with Pineapple Salsa

Howard L. Puckett

Peanut-Crusted Chicken with Pineapple Salsa

A three-ingredient salsa brings tropical charm to this dish. The peanut coating adds crunch, flavor, and heart-healthy monounsaturated fats to quick-cooking chicken cutlets for a dish that the whole family will love.

View Recipe: Peanut-Crusted Chicken with Pineapple Salsa

Chicken Corn Chowder

Lee Harrelson

Chicken Corn Chowder

Thickening with a roux and pureeing some of the corn gives this soup the classic rich, creamy, hearty texture you expect of chowder. It's perfect to warm up your family on a cold winter night, but it's also great in the summertime, when you can use fresh sweet corn cut straight off the cob (you'll need about six medium ears for the recipe). Take leftovers to work for a healthful, homemade heat-and-eat lunch.

View Recipe: Chicken Corn Chowder

Chicken-Orzo Salad with Goat Cheese

Photo: Randy Mayor

Chicken-Orzo Salad with Goat Cheese

"Fabulous! I made for a 4th of July picnic and everyone raved over it. About six months later a relative of a close friend called and wanted the recipe, she had been thinking about the salad since the picnic!" —PURDUEKEL

Tangy and creamy goat cheese makes a nice partner to starchy orzo in this salad, which comes together in 10 minutes or so. If even that is more time than you have, it can be made ahead, whenever you can find the time. Mix together the dressing and all ingredients except the arugula and tomatoes, then add those just before serving.

View Recipe: Chicken-Orzo Salad with Goat Cheese

Curried Chicken Salad Sandwiches

Becky Luigart-Stayner

Curried Chicken Salad Sandwiches

The simple addition of curry powder turns plain chicken salad into something altogether different. This recipe also adds caramelized onion for a sweetness that perfectly balances the curry's spice. The salad comes together in less than 10 minutes, but you can make it up to a day ahead―this allows the flavors to meld. Any kind of hearty bread is good for the sandwiches―try rye, three-seed, or whole-wheat pitas instead of pumpernickel.

View Recipe: Curried Chicken Salad Sandwiches

Kamut Spirals with Chicken-Artichoke Wine Sauce

Becky Luigart-Stayner

Kamut Spirals with Chicken-Artichoke Wine Sauce

Work new, healthful whole grains into your diet with this recipe. Kamut pasta should be near the regular pastas at the supermarket―use whole-wheat or another whole-grain pasta like spelt or quinoa if you can't find it. The flavorful sauce, with acidic notes from the wine and grassy ones from the artichokes, combines with the hearty noodles to make a hearty dish. A topping of fresh basil and lots of Parmesan seals the deal.

View Recipe: Kamut Spirals with Chicken-Artichoke Wine Sauce

Sesame Noodles with Chicken

Beau Gustafson

Sesame Noodles with Chicken

This tangy, creamy, and spicy Asian-flavored sauce is so delicious and easy, it might just replace tomato sauce as your go-to way to dress pasta. The depth of flavor is surprising for such a simple recipe. A salad dressed with rice vinegar and sesame oil or any kind of stir-fried or steamed vegetable, especially broccoli, would make a great side.

View Recipe: Sesame Noodles with Chicken

Mediterranean Chicken Salad Pitas

Randy Mayor

Mediterranean Chicken Salad Pitas

There's a lot to these simple-sounding sandwiches, but that doesn't mean they take more than 10 minutes to make. Chickpeas, bell pepper, olives, onion, and cilantro join chicken in a tangy lemon-cumin-yogurt dressing. This is a great recipe to make meatless, as well: Just replace the chicken with cubes of firm tofu.

View Recipe: Mediterranean Chicken Salad Pitas

Fattoush

Lee Harrelson

Fattoush

The classic version of this Middle Eastern bread salad is tasty and quick, with lots of vegetables and torn pita bread in a bright lemon vinaigrette, but it's not a full meal. We added chicken and kidney beans to make this a filling main dish without sacrificing any of the original flavor or increasing the prep time.

View Recipe: Fattoush

Quick Chicken and Dumplings

Beau Gustafson

Quick Chicken and Dumplings

An ingenious solution makes this Southern comfort-food classic take less than 15 minutes start to finish. Simply use strips of flour tortilla in place of biscuit dough; they absorb the cooking liquid and take on the proper soft-and-chewy texture while thickening the final dish.

View Recipe: Quick Chicken and Dumplings

Spicy Chicken and Snow Peas

Lee Harrelson

Spicy Chicken and Snow Peas

Here's a recipe that's as pretty to look at as it is delicious to eat. Crisp, fresh, and colorful carrots, peppers, and snow peas are stir-fried, then doused in a simple-but-fiery sauce. The whole process takes less time than cooking the boil-in-bag rice over which the dish is served.

View Recipe: Spicy Chicken and Snow Peas

Mozzarella Chicken Sandwich

Randy Mayor

Mozzarella Chicken Sandwich

Crusty and chewy ciabatta, creamy and herbal pesto mayo, and melty mozzarella come together to add a comfort-food note to these sandwiches. There aren't many ingredients, but they come together in a sophisticated way. Baked chips and orange wedges are a good side for a casual dinner, but try grilled or sautéed asparagus for a slightly fancier option.

View Recipes: Mozzarella Chicken Sandwich

Spicy Thai Basil Chicken

Photo: Johnny Autry

Spicy Thai Basil Chicken

Lettuce wraps make for a fresh burst of crunch and flavor, or spoon the stir-fry over rice. Look for fish sauce in your grocery store's Asian foods section.

View Recipe: Spicy Thai Basil Chicken

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