A sheet pan supper makes weeknight cooking a breeze. This hands-free cooking method is so simple, yet it lets you create delicious meals in just a matter of minutes. To see how I made this Sheet Pan Honey Mustard Chicken & Veggies, keep reading!
Life has been kind of insane recently. I booked three back-to-back trips in September and at the time I thought, “Hey, no big deal, this will be awesome.” And I was correct about it being awesome, but I definitely underestimated how tiring that would be!
Case in point: this recipe was supposed to be part of the September Recipe ReDux (healthy recipe roundup that I participate in each month). As you can probably guess, that grand illusion slipped away pretty quickly, especially as I realized that hotel wi-fi is not always what you’d like it to be.
But I figure better late than never, especially when the recipe is this good! If you’ve followed along with me for a while, you probably know how much I love honey mustard already. If you’re new, I’m here to tell you: I freaking love the stuff. I put it on more foods than any normal person probably does (or should) but I just can’t get enough.
Recently I found this little jar of old style mustard, meaning the mustard seeds are still intact. I like this version because the vinegar taste is much less obvious than other mustards (even coarse ground or stone ground mustards). In this sauce, I ended up adding balsamic vinegar to complement the sweetness of the honey and in my humble opinion, that choice was a good one.
Mr. Street Smart was in full agreement, too. While I was out of town I got a text with a picture of this jar saying, “What is this?”
Next text: “It’s so good. I could eat it with a spoon.”
Next text: “I did eat it with a spoon.”
The concept of a sheet pan supper is a brilliant one but underutilized in a lot of kitchens. It can be tricky to get the timing right, so that everything is done at the same time. Nothing worse than biting into overly mushy veggies while cutting into an undercooked protein. Here’s a few key tips that might make that less of a problem:
- Try to chop all veggies into a similar size. This will help ensure they cook more evenly, otherwise the smaller pieces will be overcooked by the time the largest ones are just getting started.
- Pre-cook your protein (if you need to). Some proteins naturally take longer to cook than others. For things like pork tenderloins, flank steaks, or really large or thick chicken breasts, you may want to try searing them in a skillet before adding to your sheet pan. A quick sear will get the cooking process started, plus seal in moisture so you don’t end up with something dry and unappealing.
- Don’t overcrowd your pan. All veggies, even starchy ones, will release some moisture as they cook. If you overload your pan, there’s no where for that steam to escape too and you could end up with soggy veggies or a sheet pan that collects excess liquid. If you need to, I recommend distributing your ingredients between two or more pans to leave more space in between for air to circulate.
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As I continue to explore new options as an omnivore, I wanted to experiment with different cuts. Would you believe me if I told you I had never cooked with chicken thighs before now? But it made sense to me to try it, because I’ve always enjoyed dark meat more than white meat. My local grocery store had some options that fit my budget so I picked up a package along with pre-chopped butternut squash.
Full disclosure: I’m fully capable of peeling and cutting my own butternut squash but if we’re being honest, I just didn’t really like it this time. Cutting corners to make cooking more convenient isn’t anything to be ashamed of!
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Half an hour in the oven gave me enough time to unpack my suitcase, start some laundry, and start planning what to pack for my next trip. Hands-free cooking for the win! And this meal was the perfect size to leave a few leftovers in the fridge for Mr. Street Smart to enjoy while I’m away.
If you’re looking to make substitutions for this meal, you can swap the chicken thighs for drumsticks, breasts, or other cuts that you prefer. Adjust cooking times as needed, otherwise you might run into some of the issues noted above. You can also use a variety of other vegetables. Sweet potatoes, broccoli, brussels sprouts, radishes, carrots, and more could all be used in addition to or in place of this trio.
Want some next level sheet pan suppers? Toss a few cloves of garlic on the pan. I didn’t do that this time but as soon as I pulled the pan from the oven I was kicking myself for not thinking about it soon enough. Next time, I said…next time.
Have you had success with sheet pan suppers? What would you do with all that extra time you don’t have to spend hovering over the stove?
Honey Mustard Chicken and Sheet Pan Veggies
- 2 1/2 cups butternut squash, cubed
- 1 1/2 cups baby potatoes, cubed
- 1 red onion
- 1 1/4 pound skinless chicken thighs, 4 to 5 thighs
- 1 tbsp honey
- 1 tbsp whole grain mustard
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1/2 tbsp dijon mustard
- 1/2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 1/4 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp coarse sea salt or Maldon flaked salt
- 1/8 tsp black pepper
- Fresh thyme for garnish
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- Peel the red onion and cut in half. Chop into large pieces and add to a large mixing bowl with the cubed butternut squash and potatoes. Mix to combine. Line a sheet pan with foil or parchment paper, or spray with nonstick cooking spray. Distribute the vegetable mix evenly in one layer on the sheet pan.
- Lay the chicken thighs on top of the vegetables.
- Mix the honey, whole grain mustard, olive oil, dijon mustard, balsamic vinegar, garlic powder, salt, and pepper in a small measuring cup or bowl. Brush the chicken with the honey mustard, then place sheet pan on the middle rack of the preheated oven.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes or until chicken is done. Switch oven to broil and move sheet pan to the top rack. Cook 5 minutes more or until the sauce begins to glaze and the veggies start to brown slightly. Remove from oven and garnish with fresh thyme. Serve immediately.