Sure, chicken is a weeknight MVP, but it can also be a weekend dinner winner. Need proof? Here are six tasty birds that are totally super-zoom ready.

By Alexa Weibel
April 05, 2018
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Sheet-Pan Chicken with Peas, Lemon & Herbs

sheet-pan chicken with peas, lemon & herbs
Credit: Photography by Christopher Testani
chicken quarter illustration
Credit: Illustration by Joel Holland

Get a Leg Up!

Chicken leg quarters—a bone-in, skin-on cut that includes the drumstick, the thigh, and sometimes a bit of the back—are a supercheap option at the store.

Avgolemono Soup with Rotisserie Chicken & Orzo

avgolemono soup with rotisserie chicken & orzo
Credit: Photography by Christopher Testani
tupperware illustration
Credit: Illustration by Joel Holland

Preserve Your Bird

To keep a rotisserie chicken from drying out, pull the meat from the bones, transfer it to a container with a tight-fitting lid, and pour any juices on top. The meat will keep in the fridge for up to 4 days or for a couple of months in the freezer.

Pan-Seared Chicken Thighs with Roasted-Tomato Panzanella

pan-seared chicken thighs with roasted-tomato panzanella
Credit: Photography by Christopher Testani
scale illustration
Credit: Illustration by Joel Holland

Thigh IQ

Chicken (and other meat) loses weight as it cooks. To make sure you have enough meat, buy about 25 percent more than you think you need. For example, if you want 1 pound of cooked meat, buy 1 1/4 pounds of boneless thighs.

Grilled-Chicken Salad Tartine with Radishes

grilled-chicken salad tartine with radishes
Credit: Photography by Christopher Testani
juice illustration
Credit: Illustration by Joel Holland

Give It a Rest

You know to let steak sit for a bit before slicing, but the same holds true for chicken breasts. After cooking, let the meat rest for 5 to 10 minutes so the juices stay in the meat—instead of running all over your cutting board.

Spatchcocked Chicken with Beets, Tarragon & Orange

spatchcocked chicken with beets, tarragon & orange
Credit: Photography by Christopher Testani
shaker illustration
Credit: Illustration by Joel Holland

Secret Ingredient

Just a little bit of savory, herby poultry seasoning—find it in the spice aisle!—makes roast chicken taste even more chickeny.

Chicken Milanese with Asparagus Salad & Crispy Capers

chicken milanese with asparagus salad & crispy capers
Credit: Photography by Christopher Testani
tenderizer illustration
Credit: Illustration by Joel Holland

Thin It to Win It!

For evenly cooked chicken breasts, pound the meat into a thin, even layer. Keep the mess contained by sandwiching the meat between 2 large sheets of plastic wrap or slipping the chicken into a large resealable plastic bag with the air pressed out. Pound the chicken with a mallet, a rolling pin, or even that empty wine bottle from last night (just rinse it out first).