Baked Chicken with Butternut Squash and Cranberries

Occasionally I put a recipe on the menu and it just keeps getting…well…not made.  Usually it’s something a little more involved or time consuming and I don’t make it because ’round about 5:30 when the husband stumbles home to find me tired and trying to coax a toddler into letting me cook dinner, I decided that PB&J sounds better than baked chicken with squash and cranberries.  So I think this recipe sat on the menu for two weeks before it got made.  Finally, I took the chicken out of the freezer and thawed it, intent to make this dish.  A few days passed and one evening I said “I have to bake this chicken before it goes bad!”  So I baked it and stuck it back in the fridge.  The next night, I looked at the recipe and realized that once the chicken was baked, this only took 20 minutes.  Suddenly, from the original recipe taking over an hour, I had created a 20 minute quick, one-pot dish.  Win-win!  So that’s my recommendation.  Bake this chicken ahead of time, maybe the previous night while another meal is cooking, and you’ve got a quick dish fit for weeknight madness!

1 whole chicken, quartered.  OR 4 chicken leg quarters.  Baked at 350 for 45 minutes or until fully cooked.  Cook in advance for a fast meal.

Olive oil

1 medium butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1″ cubes

1 red onion, sliced into thin strips

1 t dried sage

4 t flour

2 t coriander

1 t ground nutmeg

2 c chicken broth (low sodium)

1/2 c craisins (dried cranberries)

In a dutch oven, heat about 1 T olive oil over medium high heat.  Add squash and onion and cook until the onion is softened (5-8 minutes).  Add sage, flour, coriander, nutmeg, and salt and pepper to taste.  Cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes.  Add broth and cook, scraping the bottom of the pan for about a minute.  Cover and simmer about 10 minutes.  After 10 minutes, place chicken in the dutch oven along with the cranberries.  Cover and simmer for another 10 minutes, or until the chicken is heated through and the squash is fork tender.

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