Tonight I made this quick and Easy Chicken Pomodoro with Spinach in an attempt to ease back into a healthy diet. Lean chicken breasts are cooked in an easy fresh tomato sauce and topped with baby spinach. This is so tasty that you don’t even realize that you are eating something low in calories and really good for you!
The first time I made this recipe was shortly after my son’s wedding. We had such a beautiful family weekend filled with all kinds of delicious food and tons of Italian cookies, cannoli, and cream puffs! There was no room for healthy eating! But this was the perfect dish to help us get back on track.
What is Chicken Pomodoro?
This recipe is one that I love to pull out when I want to make an easy weeknight dinner but I want to feel like I am eating something special. Pomodoro means tomato in Italian and just the name of this recipe sounds elegant. I have made this for dinner guests several times and recieved rave reviews. The truth is that it is really quite a simple recipe.
Thin slices of tender chicken breast are coated in a delicious homemade sauce bursting with fresh tomato flavor. The pomodoro sauce could not be any easier and it takes only a handful of ingredients to create a really extraordinary flavor. Fresh cherry tomatoes cooked in a little butter and chicken broth make the creamy tomato sauce that flavors the chicken perfectly. The addition of spinach at the end brightens up the dish and adds a healthy flair.
Ingredients you need and substitutions
- Boneless skinless chicken breast, that have been sliced horizontally and lightly pounded. It is important to use thin chicken breasts so that the chicken cooks quickly.
- Finely ground brown rice flour for pan searing the chicken. You can substitute all purpose flour. Just make sure to shake off the excess flour.
- Fresh cherry tomatoes cut in half. Fresh Roma tomatoes or grape tomatoes are a great substitute. The important thing is to use fresh tomatoes.
- Chicken Broth or stock, preferably a low salt version.
- Fresh squeezed lemon juice.
- Fresh baby spinach is tender so it can be easily added to the chicken without any extra work. If you use regular spinach make sure to remove any of the tough stems and ribs from the leaves before adding it.
- Kosher Salt and black pepper
Step by Step instructions for making homemade chicken pomodoro
- Liberally salt and pepper the chicken on both sides. Sprinkle chicken with pan searing flour and shake off the excess.
- Heat the olive oil in a large skillet set over medium high heat and add the butter. Once the butter has completely melted, add the chicken to the hot skillet. Work with a few pieces at a time so that the chicken is not over crowded in the pan. Cook the chicken breasts for 2-3 minutes per side or just until the chicken is golden brown. Remove the chicken to a plate and set aside.
- You may need to add another drizzle of olive oil to the pan. Add the minced garlic and cook until it is just tender, about 1 minute.
- Add in the tomatoes and stir, cooking for 1 minute. Stir in the chicken broth, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Cook for two minutes on medium heat stirring and scraping up the brown bits from the bottom of the pan. The sauce will thicken slightly.
- Add the chicken and meat juices back into the skillet turning it coat it with the homemade tomato sauce and top with the spinach. Cover the skillet and cook for 1-2 minutes, until the spinach has wilted and the chicken is warmed through.
Serve the chicken topped with the tomatoes and spinach.
- Skinless boneless chicken thighs make a great alternative. You can also substitute pork cutlets or fish fillets. If you use pork chops or fish, you will need to adjust the cooking times to achieve an internal temperature of 145F degrees, when a meat thermometer is inserted in the thickest part.
- You may want to drizzle a little balsamic vinegar over the chicken when you serve it.
- Spice up the sauce by adding a some red pepper flakes to the tomato mixture before adding the chicken back in.
What can you serve with this chicken pomodoro dish?
On a busy weeknight, I will often serve this with angel hair pasta or rice and spoon the pomodoro sauce over it. You can even top it with a sprinkle of parmesan cheese if you like. Another great option is a salad or this recipe for Simple Italian Scalloped Potatoes, which your whole family will love.
Place the chicken breast skin side up, on a cutting board, with the thickest end of the breast farthest from you. Lay your hand flat on the chicken breast. Starting at the thickest end of the chicken breast, hold a sharp knife midway up the chicken and carefully cut the breast in half horizontally. Let the knife do the work for you, gently guiding it through to the end of the breast.
This recipe can easily be reheated in the microwave. Simply place the portion that you want to reheat in a microwave safe dish and cover it with a piece of wax paper or plastic wrap. Microwave on high for about 1 minute per serving. The time may vary depending on how quickly your microwave heats food.
You can also reheat the chicken in a 350 degree oven. Place the chicken in an oven safe dish and cover with a lid or foil. Reheat in the oven for 15-20 minutes. Check the chicken breast after 15 minutes.
Yes! Once the chicken is cooled, it can be place in an airtight container and frozen. It will stay fresh in your freezer for 2-3 months.
I am not a nutritionist and my nutritional values are not exact calculations.
Chicken pomodoro is so flavorful that it makes you feel like you are indulging in something rich but it is relatively healthy. The dish starts with skinless boneless chicken breast, which is a healthy lean protein. The sauce features fresh vegetables and using low sodium chicken broth and lemon juice, rather then white wine or heavy cream, adds a lot of flavor while keeping the calories, fat and carbs to a minimum.
Other healthy recipes you will like
If you are looking for additional healthy recipes for you may want to try out one of these delicious dishes:
Easy Chicken Pomodoro with Spinach
- 4 Chicken breast halves skinless, boneless
- ½ cup Pan searing flour Brown rice flour or AP flour
- 2 tbsp. Olive oil
- 1 tbsp. Butter
- 2 cloves Garlic large, minced
- 1 ½ cups Cherry tomatoes halved
- ¾ cup Chicken Broth low sodium
- 6 oz. Baby spinach fresh, cleaned
- ½ Lemon juiced
- ½ tsp Salt
- ¼ tsp Black Pepper
- Place the chicken breast on a cutting board. Holding the chicken down gently with your flat hand, cut the breast in half horizontally. Repeat with the remaining chicken breasts.
- Liberally salt and pepper the chicken on both sides. Sprinkle the chicken with pan searing flour and shake off the excess.
- Heat the olive oil in a large skillet. Add the butter and when it is completely melted add the chicken to the hot skillet. Work with a few pieces at a time so that the chicken is not over crowded in the pan.
- Cook the chicken for 3-4 minutes per side or just until the chicken is golden brown. Remove the chicken to a plate and set aside.
- You may need to add a little more olive oil to the skillet. Add the garlic an cook until it is just tender, about 1 minute.
- Add in the tomatoes and stir, cooking for 1 minute. Add in the chicken broth, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Cook for 3-4 minutes on medium heat. The sauce will thicken slightly.
- Add the chicken back into the skillet and top with the spinach. Cover the skillet and allow to cook for 1-2 minutes, until the spinach has wilted.
- Serve the chicken topped with the tomatoes and spinach.