I love to cook, but I hate, hate, HATE doing dishes. Yes, I do put my five kids to work on dishes after dinner, because honestly, one dishwasher does not cut it in this household. They’re often just as busy as I am between school and sports, but they also have to chip in.
Needless to say, I LOVE a good one-skillet meal, and it doesn’t get much better than this mixture of spicy quinoa, corn and beans with succulent chicken thighs nestled on top. Oh, wait – it actually does! When you top it all off with crumbles of Cacique Queso Fresco and drizzle of Cacique Crema Mexicana!
This is one of those meals that’s super simple to throw together on weeknights when you don’t feel like cooking. The prep work is very minimal, and the cook time is relatively hands off, allowing you to have a dinner and side on the table in just about 45 minutes. All while dirtying only one skillet – that makes it a winner in my book!
I know a lot of people aren’t big fans of cilantro. Dried cilantro is a lot milder, so give it a try sometime and see what you think. I happen to adore cilantro, so I prefer to sprinkle lots and lots of fresh chopped cilantro over the top. I also often plate it all with additional lime slices to squeeze over the top. Either way, don’t skip the Queso fresco and Crema Mexicana. They add a lovely bit of creaminess that balances everything out.
WHAT YOU NEED
- 8-12 boneless skinless chicken thighs
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 cup diced red onion
- 1 (10 ounces) package frozen sweet corn
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 cups chicken stock
- 1 cup quinoa
- 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
- 2 small limes, zested and juiced
- 1 tablespoon dried cilantro
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 2 teaspoons chili powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup Cacique Queso Fresco, crumbled
- ½ cup Cacique Crema Mexicana to garnish
- Chopped fresh cilantro, optional
HOW TO MAKE IT
- Heat the olive oil over medium-high heat in a heavy bottomed skillet. Sauté the onion in the olive oil until translucent. Add the minced garlic and the frozen corn, and continue to sauté until the corn starts to brown and caramelize a bit.
- Pour in the chicken stock, and add the quinoa, black beans, zest and juice of both limes, cumin, chili powder, dried cilantro and salt. Stir well and bring to a boil. Press the desired number of chicken thighs down into the mixture. Season the tops of them well with a little additional salt, pepper, and chili powder. Place the cover on the skillet and turn the heat down to a simmer. Cook for about 25 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through and the juices run clear.
- Season the chicken with a little more salt and pepper, and serve warm topped with crumbled Cacique Queso Fresco and a drizzle of Cacique Crema Mexicana. Add a sprinkling of chopped fresh cilantro over the top and or fresh limes wedges to squeeze over it, if desired.
- Cook’s Note: Use about two chicken thighs per person, three if you have growing boys that seem to eat their weight daily, like mine. You can substitute chicken breasts, if you prefer. In either case, cook the chicken until it reads at least 165 degrees on a meat thermometer inserted in the thickest part.