This one-pan chicken and apples is an easy and rustic dinner option made with healthy vegetables and apples. This dish is the quintessential fall recipe!
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Perfect One Pot Meal for Fall
This time of year apples are in season at the local orchards and I love coming up with recipes using them. This is a savory dish with apples, so it’s completely different than your typical sweet apple desserts. It tastes like all of the flavors of fall and is a complete comfort meal in one pan. Definitely one of my favorite fall dinner ideas!
We eat a lot of chicken in my house, mainly because it’s a healthy protein that all my kids will eat. So this dish starts out with chicken and also includes bacon, too. Because anything with bacon is delicious. :) Then I added lots of fresh fall vegetables.
The great thing about this apple chicken recipe is that the meat, vegetables, and fruit are all cooked in the same pan, making cleanup simple. It’s a savory fall dinner recipe like homemade chicken pot pie recipe or chicken stuffed crescent rolls but slightly sweet from apples and cinnamon. It really is hearty, healthy, and so yummy!
Why This Recipe Works
This recipe is going to work! It works for busy nights, feeding a crowd, with a delicious flavor! It is healthy and comforting all in one meal. This dinner-time meal is going to be a family favorite that you have on a weekly rotation!
- One pan. It doesn’t get any better than an easy one-pot meal. No oven is required and the cleanup is super easy!
- Sweet and savory. This dish has the best of both worlds! Savory bacon and veggies paired with sweet apples and cinnamon is a match made in heaven.
- Healthy. Made with simple, good-for-you ingredients. A great meal for the family to load up on lean protein, fruit, and veggies.
- Comforting. The perfect dish to cozy up with on a chilly fall night. It’s hearty and comforting without being too heavy.
One-pan chicken and apples is a delicious and easy-to-make dish that combines the savory flavors of chicken with the sweet and slightly tangy taste of apples. You will love this sweet and savory dinner with simple ingredients every time!
Find the full printable recipe with specific measurements below.
- Chicken: I’m using chicken breast because that’s what my family prefers, but you could easily swap it for chicken thighs.
- Bacon: The bacon adds great flavor, but if you’re looking to cut costs or don’t have any on hand, you can leave it out.
- Sweet potato: I love using sweet potatoes for the punch of flavor, but you could easily swap them for baby gold or red potatoes.
- Broccoli: We are big fans of broccoli, but if you’re not you can easily swap this out for green beans.
- Apples: The apples add the perfect touch to this fall chicken recipe. I love using Granny Smith to add the tartness this dish deserves.
This recipe for chicken and apples is easy to customize to meet your needs. Feel free to use other seasonal produce like butternut squash, Brussels sprouts and bacon, or pears. You can also add more fall herbs like fresh rosemary or swap dried thyme for fresh thyme sprigs.
The chicken would also taste amazing cooked in brown butter instead of olive oil for a more nutty and caramelized flavor.
How to Make Chicken and Apples
This sheet pan chicken and apples dish is wonderful when served with a side of mashed potatoes, rice, or a simple green salad. The combination of sweet apples and savory chicken is sure to be a hit!
- Cook the meat. In a large pan, cook the chicken until no longer pink and lightly browned on the exterior. Then remove from the skillet onto a paper-towel lined plate.
- Add bacon. Cook the bacon in the same pan and once cooked through, place on a plate lined with paper towels to drain. Leave some bacon fat in the pan to flavor the veggies.
- Mix in vegetables. Sauté the broccoli, sweet potatoes, and chopped onion in the reserved bacon fat until tender and caramelized. Give it a stir every few minutes so all sides roast evenly.
- Apples. Once the vegetables are tender, add in the apples, garlic, thyme, cinnamon, and half of the chicken stock. Bring to a boil and cook until the stock evaporates. Then add the cooked chicken back in, as well as the remaining chicken stock, and simmer until heated through. Top with bacon right before serving.
Here are some helpful tips to make this one pan chicken and apples even easier! Make it rich with flavor using bacon grease, add some cinnamon, and use crisp apples that don’t get too soft. The juices on the baking sheet infuse the chicken and apples giving it added flavor!
- Bacon grease. Cook the veggies in the bacon grease! It adds so much extra flavor to the dish.
- Cinnamon. The cinnamon adds a nice fall flavor. You could always add in more or less to taste. Apple pie spice is another flavorful option that’s made with a blend of cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice.
- Crisp apples. I used Granny Smith apples because they are crisp and don’t get mushy when cooked. If using a different variety, make sure it’s nice and crisp. Honeycrisp or Golden Delicious are other good options.
Sure! The dish will still be plenty flavorful without it, so feel free to omit the bacon completely if preferred. I happen to love the saltiness it adds, as well as the flavor the bacon grease gives to the vegetables, so I always leave it in.
Absolutely. It may seem like an odd pairing at first, but trust me, the two taste amazing together. The sweet and caramelized apples are the perfect complement to the savory chicken. After trying this recipe, you’ll be on the hunt for even more dinner ideas using apples!
5 star review
“This was so yummy, my husband said it was fantastic. We had plenty of leftovers and stuffed it into a pie crust to bake at a later time. Will make this again.”-Christine
How to Store Leftover Apple Chicken
Any leftover apple chicken will stay fresh in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. You can use the microwave to warm it back up or heat it on the stove for a crispier result. Either way, these chicken and apples taste just as great the next day!
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Chicken and Apples
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast , cut into 1-inch cubes
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon Kosher salt , divided
- 4-8 slices thick-cut bacon , chopped
- 3 cups broccoli florets
- 1 medium sweet potato , peeled and diced into 1/2-inch pieces
- 1 medium white onion , peeled and chopped
- 2 granny smith apples , cored and diced
- 2 cloves garlic , minced
- ½ teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/4-1 teaspoon ground cinnamon , to taste
- 1 cup chicken stock , or chicken broth (divided)
- In a large, nonstick pan, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat, until shimmering. Add the chicken, pepper, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Cook until lightly browned and cooked through. Transfer the chicken to a paper towel-lined plate.
- Reduce the heat to medium-low. Add the bacon and cook until crisp. Transfer bacon to a paper towel-lined plate. Leave 1 1/2 Tablespoons of bacon fat in the pan.
- Increase the heat to medium-high. Add broccoli, sweet potatoes, onion, and remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are crisp-tender and the onion is translucent.
- Stir in the apples, garlic, thyme, and cinnamon. Cook for 1 minute, then pour in 1/2 cup chicken stock. Bring to a boil and cook until the stock has evaporated. Add the chicken and remaining 1/2 cup chicken stock. Cook until heated through. Stir in the bacon. Serve warm.
- Swap out sweet potatoes for baby gold or red potatoes.
- If you don’t love broccoli you can omit or swap for green beans.
- While the bacon does give great flavor, you can omit if preferred.
Nutrition provided is an estimate. It will vary based on specific ingredients used.
Did you make this recipe? Don’t forget to give it a star rating below!
Recipe originally contributed by Katie from Purely Katie for I Heart Naptime.