Quinoa and Pecan-Crusted Chicken with Maple Dijon Sauce

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Ta-da! My first ShopRite recipe has just been posted on ShopRite’s Potluck blog. Crunchy quinoa-crusted chicken and perhaps the world’s easiest (2-ingredient) sauce. Take a look here:  Quinoa and Pecan-Crusted Chicken with Maple Dijon Sauce (And be sure to “share” if you like the sound of it.)

I served these with the last of our garden’s green beans (yes – picked in November!), butter-steamed in a covered skillet.

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This dish was a big hit with the kids and there wasn’t much left over, but the one piece I was able to save for my lunch the next day was surprisingly good cold. Unlike traditional breaded chicken, the quinoa-pecan coating still had a nice texture straight out of the fridge. No reheating (or fork!) needed.

Quinoa and Pecan-Crusted Chicken with Maple Dijon Sauce

Serves 4

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 3 eggs
  • ½ cup flour
  • 6 cups cooked and cooled ShopRite tri-color or regular quinoa (from 12-oz package; directions below)
  • 1 cup finely chopped pecans (no toasting necessary)
  • 4-6 tablespoons ShopRite vegetable oil for pan-frying

Heat oven to 350F. Line a baking sheet with 2 thicknesses of paper towels and set aside.

Trim chicken breasts of any excess fat, pull off the tenderloin piece (it’s probably already loose), and slice the breasts in half lengthwise (creating 2 thinner breasts from each one). Season all the chicken pieces with the 2 teaspoons kosher salt.

Set out 3 large plates, pie plates or small casserole dishes for the coating assembly line. Add the flour to one plate. Crack the eggs into another and beat with a small whisk or fork. In the third (and largest) dish mix together the quinoa and pecans.

Take a chicken breast piece and coat each side in flour. Shake off the excess and then dip each side in the egg. Then transfer it to the quinoa/pecan plate and use your hands to press the coating onto the chicken. Set aside to another plate or piece of parchment paper and repeat with remaining chicken pieces. (Add another egg if necessary to complete the coating process.)

Quinoa pecan chicken

In a cast iron or other heavy-duty frying pan over medium-high, heat 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil. (Get a splatter guard ready if you have one; some of the wet quinoa seeds might go flying.) Gently slide a few of the chicken pieces into the hot pan and cook 3-4 minutes or until coating is brown but not burned. Carefully turn the chicken pieces and cook another 3-4 minutes to brown the other side. Transfer the chicken to paper towel-lined baking sheet.

pecan quinoa chicken

Wipe out pan with paper towel (to prevent loose crust pieces from burning) and add 2 more tablespoons vegetable oil. Repeat until all chicken pieces have been browned. Slide out paper towels blotters from under chicken and discard. Place baking sheet in oven and bake for 15 minutes. Serve with Maple Dijon sauce, if desired.

quinoa pecan chicken

Maple Dijon Sauce

  • ¼ cup Dijon mustard
  • ¼ cup pure maple syrup, preferably dark or B grade

Stir together and microwave for 30 seconds. (Easiest sauce ever?)

maple dijon sauce

pecan quinoa chicken

Cooked Quinoa

Pour 12 oz. package of quinoa into a large strainer (or bowl) and rinse, swishing around with your hand. Add rinsed/drained quinoa, 3 cups water and 1 teaspoon kosher salt to a large pot. Bring to a boil, then cover and reduce heat to low. Cook for 15 minutes. Remove from heat and let sit (covered) for another 5 -10 minutes. Remove lid and fluff w/a fork.  (Allow quinoa to cool for this recipe.) Remaining quinoa can be frozen in a plastic bag.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: As a ShopRite POTLUCK blogger, I received ShopRite’s Tri Color Quinoa for free.

3 thoughts on “Quinoa and Pecan-Crusted Chicken with Maple Dijon Sauce

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