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8 Ways To Make Chicken More Interesting

You can apply these tips to any lean protein.

When we set out to get into shape or gain muscle mass, our diet often leans toward lean protein like chicken, seafood, beans and tofu. But these sources of protein can get boring really quickly.

Contrary to what many people think, healthy protein doesn't have to be plain and bland -- there's so much room to add flavour by using spices, marinades, veggie combos and different cooking techniques.

Here are eight recipes to make chicken and other lean protein way more interesting and delicious.

1. Roasted chicken, butternut pumpkin and guacamole rice bowls

To make this flavour-packed chicken, all you have to do is toss with cumin and chilli powder and bake with pumpkin and red onion, and serve with black beans, guacamole and brown rice (or no rice for low-carb).

Ways to make chicken more interesting:

  • Coat in spice rub (try garam masala for Indian flavour, smoked paprika and cumin for barbecue, or taco spices for Mexican);
  • Marinate in spice, garlic and olive oil mix;
  • Cook in a pan and add olive oil and mustard to make a sauce;
  • Cover in pesto and bake until tender;
  • Add to vegetable curries, soups and stews;
  • Top with fresh tomato salsa, black beans and guacamole;
  • Cook in a pan with sesame oil and soy sauce, and add to salads and buddha bowls;
  • Shred cooked chicken and add to wraps, sandwiches and loaded sweet potatoes.

2. Sesame crusted-prawn and mango quinoa bowls

Prawns are a lean source of protein and go great in salads. To make this recipe, coat fresh prawns with crispy sesame seeds and serve with a flavourful mango and quinoa salsa. Delish.

3. Tomato basil garlic chicken

This low-carb tomato and basil garlic chicken is anything but bland. It's rich, satisfying and full of tomato-y goodness, as well as a quick, easy dish you can make in under half an hour.

4. Coriander lime grilled chicken

This super easy chicken is juicy, zesty and ideal for low-carb days. To make this dish, marinate your chicken in a lime and herb dressing and barbecue until perfectly charred.

5. Almond butter tofu stir fry

Tofu is a great source of lean protein, but it can be bland if not cooked well. This delicious nine-ingredient recipe involves baking tofu (so it's nice and crispy) and marinating in an almond butter and tamari sauce. Sauté and serve with veggies and rice for a flavourful and protein-packed meal.

6. 30-minute Caprese chicken

Love Italian food? Try this tender one-pan chicken breast dinner with pesto, mozzarella, tomatoes, basil and a balsamic glaze, which is ready in under 30 minutes. Serve with wilted garlic greens or a side salad.

7. 30-minute Asian-style chicken soup

For the ultimate winter warmer, try this quick Asian-style chicken soup packed with veggies like carrots, mushrooms and buk choy. Serve with fresh coriander, toasted sesame oil and tamari for seasoning.

8. One-pot chickpea shakshuka

Legumes, like chickpeas, are another great source of plant-based protein and this shakshuka is one of the best ways to enjoy them. The smoky, intense flavours in the tomato sauce pair perfectly with the hearty chickpeas -- and you only need 30 minutes to make it.

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