Mediterranean Rosemary Baked Chicken Recipe

The Perfect Snow-Day Dinner

By: Erika Simons


Guys—there’s a snowstorm in Ohio today!

Since the kids got a “snow day” and my husband is working from home, I decided to cook something warm and comforting for dinner.

Even though there’s 10 inches of snow on the ground, I was able to harvest fresh rosemary and basil today thanks to my indoor garden. As I was trimming my plants, I began brainstorming recipes.

I mean, when there’s this much snow, a light salad just won’t do. I wanted something heavy and warm… And that’s when I remembered I picked up chicken breasts earlier in the week. My fresh harvest plus the chicken immediately got me thinking Rosemary Baked Chicken!!

Since this is the first big snow day we’ve had all year, the recipe is a perfect opposition to the wicked weather.

The Secret to Tender Chicken

Here’s the thing—whenever a recipe calls for a meat mallet, most people skip the step. And while it isn’t the most detrimental mistake, it definitely impacts the finished dish.

A meat mallet works by softening the fibers. The reason we use meal mallets is to tenderize the meat. This just means the meat becomes more tender and easier to chew. It makes the meat more palatable than tougher options.

I tend to cover my meat by placing it in a zip-top bag or covering it with plastic wrap. This just keeps the mallet clean and controls any splatter. It also prevents the meat from tearing, so you end up with one thin piece of meat as opposed to rags of meat!

While this may sound like more work to you than you’d like, it only takes a few minutes and is totally worth it! I once experimented by pounding out one chicken breast, but leaving the other as is. When they finished baking, the difference was so obvious. My entire family preferred the tenderized breast over the original. It was easier to be pulled, breaking into smaller pieces, while the original version was tougher to gnaw on.

Side Note: Don’t worry about your strength—just ensure you have a high-quality meat mallet.

Another reason we use a meat mallet is to speed up cooking time. Since it thins out the meat, your dish will take less time in the oven. Which is perfect for snow days when the kids are running rampant around the house!

Fun Fact: Tender meat is easier to digest!

Now, onward to the recipe!

Rosemary Baked Chicken

Makes 6 servings

Sometimes nothing is more comforting (especially on snow days!) than roasted chicken seasoned with a simple blend of Mediterranean-inspired spices. Tossed with olive oil and garlic, and finished with parsley and basil, this Italian classic boasts loads of protein and healthy fats.  

Found on page 110 in The Mediterranean Refresh


2 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts

1 tsp. salt

1 tsp. black pepper

2 tsp. dried oregano

2 sprigs of thyme

1 tsp. sweet paprika

4 cloves garlic, minced

3 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil

½ lemon, juiced

1 medium red onion, halved and thinly sliced

1 (4 oz.) can of mushrooms, sliced

5–6 Campari tomatoes, halved

handful fresh parsley, chopped for garnish

fresh basil leaves, for garnish

fresh rosemary leaves, chopped for garnish


1. Preheat the oven to 375°F.

2. Pat the chicken dry. Place a chicken breast in a large zip-top bag, remove any air, seal the top, and set the bag on a cutting board. Pound the chicken with a meat mallet to flatten the chicken breast to about ¼-inch thick. Remove the chicken from the bag and set aside. Reuse the bag and mallet to repeat the process with the remaining chicken breasts.

3. Season the chicken with salt and pepper on both sides and place in a large bowl or dish. Add the spices, garlic, olive oil, and lemon juice. Combine to make sure the chicken is evenly coated.

4. Grease a baking dish or pan with olive oil, then spread the onion slices on the bottom. Arrange the seasoned chicken over the onions, and top with the mushrooms and tomatoes.

5. Cover the baking dish tightly with foil and bake for 10 minutes, then uncover and bake another 8–10 minutes. Watch carefully because the cooking time will vary depending on the thickness of your chicken breasts. To be sure the chicken is cooked through, use a digital instant-read or meat thermometer to check the proper internal temperature of 165°F.

6. Remove the chicken from the oven, cover with foil or another pan and let rest for 5–10 minutes. Uncover and garnish with the fresh parsley, basil, and rosemary. Serve and enjoy!

Nutrition Information

Per One Serving


Calories: 290 kcal

Carbohydrates: 11g

Protein: 35.9g

Total Fat: 11.5g

Saturated Fat: 2g

Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g

Monounsaturated Fat: 6g

Trans Fat: 2.5g

Cholesterol: 51mg


Sodium: 272.5mg

Potassium: 124.6mg

Dietary Fiber: 2g

Sugars: 5g

Vitamin A: 7% of Daily Value

Vitamin C: 15% Daily Value

Calcium: 18% Daily Value

Iron: 21% Daily Value

Loved the Recipe?

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Starting any new diet is hard, that's why my cookbook is packed with information on the Mediterranean Diet and lifestyle.

Start by switching out your typical meals for Mediterranean ones slowly but surely! Whether you skip take-out lunches for tasty Tuna Stuffed Eggplants (page 90) or replace sugary drinks with Sugar-Free Blueberry Lemonade (page 188), you’ll be on your way.

But this is more than just a book. The Mediterranean Refresh is a lifestyle change. It’s a change in the way we interact with food and our bodies. This diet is about showing yourself love with healthy choices.

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