Barefoot Contessa Lemon Chicken

Like many of you, I am always looking for nourishing, simple, flavorful recipes that taste delicious but don't take up too much of my time. Don't get me wrong, I love to linger over a slow braise or all day sauce as much as the next Slow Food member, but some nights just don't allow that luxury of time. Recipes that can do double duty for weeknights as well as entertaining are even more cherished. This chicken recipe from Ina Garten, aka Barefoot Contessa, fits the bill. Barefoot Contessa Lemon Chicken I've made it twice now, and each time it's been stunning. The first time I made it exactly as is. The second I futzed slightly, but only by omitting ground oregano and fresh thyme and using just fresh oregano instead. I also allowed the chicken to marinade for a while in the fridge, instead of putting it directly in the oven. Both versions were most excellent. It reminds me of a slightly more elegant version of the Chicken Oreganato I grew up eating. Another thing I like about this dish is that it goes well with any number of sides, so you can dress it up or down depending on your mood. Roasted, steamed, or sautéed vegetables, potatoes in any form, a simple salad, lentils, couscous, pasta, or just about any grain would all feel equally at home on the plate. Barefoot Contessa Lemon Chicken I'm not going to post the recipe here since I did so little to alter it. But Barefoot Contessa has generously shared it on her own site, so you can find the recipe there. (It seems to be off her site but on Food Network, so I've linked there below.) I hope you enjoy it as much as I did! Click here for the recipe. Also, for some fun stuff - Easy Foodsmith and Healthy Foodie Travels both passed on the Fabulous Blog Award to me this month and I couldn't be more honored! I am a huge fan of both of their blogs - if you haven't visited them before, please do! Finally, a fellow Anglo-Israeli food blogger Hannah Katsman of Cooking Manager interviewed me on her blog! Check it to here and say hi.


  1. Good recipe. Essentially a classic chicken sauté, but done in the oven instead of on the stove top. Actually I think if I were to do this, I’d sauté the chicken breasts in the olive oil for a few minutes to brown, add the rest of the ingredients, and cover and braise until done – maybe 30 minutes? But your version is so pretty, I’d probably try that first!

    • You’re so right. I love the idea of sautéing them first. Ina suggests broiling them at the end if they need additional browning.

  2. It looks delicious. I love messing around in the kitchen too, but when there’s time, which there generally is not much of on weeknights. This is perfect and looks very, very good.

  3. Great recipe and great pictures. Love it!

  4. This is such a great recipe! I’ve made this a couple times too and its always delicious 🙂 Your pictures are gorgeous!

  5. Looks delicious! 🙂 Love the lemon zest bits! My wife always asks for lemon pepper chicken, so I might try this variety for a change-up.

  6. Hello Katherine, time is precious, it’s a great think that you can have a delicious meal like this in no time! Hugs!

  7. I was just wondering what to make with the chicken breasts in the fridge! We love lemon pepper chicken and this variation sounds terrific. Lovely photo, too.

    • I hope you like it if you give it a go! I haven’t had lemon pepper chicken in ages – thanks for reminding me of that lovely dish!

      • I made this dish for dinner tonight and it was divine. Perfect weeknight (or weekend) meal. I added some sliced kumquats and limequats (a new find) instead of the lemon wedges and that added even more delicious citrus. Thanks for sharing the recipe!

        • Oh yay!! I am so happy to hear that. I love the addition of kumquats and limequats. Brilliant! We get tons of limequats here but I only just learned that’s what they were called! Thanks for letting me know how it turned out. Have a great weekend!

  8. This recipe sounds great… simple and flavoursome, just my thing!

  9. I an a big fan of Barefoot Contessa! simple tasty food, great recipe!

  10. Congrats on the awards as well as the interview. I just ate lemon chicken the other day, but Ina’s does look like a healthier version. I will need to try that variation, your plating looks delicious.

  11. This looks right up my alley. I love lemon, it’s such a fresh, clean flavor!

  12. Good photos!! I love the placement of the lemons.

    Lemon is my absolute favorite flavor. Looks very yummy.

    • Thanks Jen! I’m right there with you – lemon is one of my all time favorite flavors in everything from savory to sweet.

  13. Looks great! Lemon chicken is one of my favorites.

  14. Citrus is such a great way to add excitement to every-day chicken. This recipe would definitely become a staple in my home. 😉

  15. Ina is the master of easy, delicious chicken dishes…I haven’t tried this one, but I will now 🙂

    • She really is! It’s quite remarkable. I hope you enjoy this one, I know I will be making many more of her dishes from here on out.

  16. Beautiful, refreshing and delicious chicken…I think you had one similar before that I tried..but this one look fantastic too!

    Have a lovely day sweetie!!!

  17. Love chicken and lemon together … I make a similar dish often … sometimes I dust the chicken with flour … sometimes I make a roux, but always add lemon juice at the end … I make it on the stove though … will try this one … as always love your posts!

  18. This does look like a great recipe! Love the combination of chicken and lemon. Looks delicious!

  19. A terrific recipe! …and your pictures are stunning! Congratulations on your awards – well deserved! I like your small change of removing thyme and using straight oregano. I like both of them, but a little thyme goes a LONG way!

    • Thank you Ann!! 🙂 You are so right about thyme. I absolutely adore it, but it does go far. And I just love fresh oregano.

  20. Katherine this looks so lovely. I just love lemon chicken. Haven’t made it in eons. I might have to pull out my old recipe now.

  21. I’m a fiend for a good chicken dish and one thing I love about Ina’s dishes is that they are always so very reliable. thanks for bringing this one to my attention.

    • Me too! And yes, Ina’s recipes do tend to be reliable. As mentioned I’ve made this multiple times and it’s always great. So happy to have brought it to your attention!

  22. As a mother of three, I need quick easy meals sometimes. This really looks great, thanks for sharing, Katherine!

    • We all need quick, easy meals – and when kids come into the equation I’m sure that need just skyrockets! So glad to have shared this, thanks for stopping by Carolyn 🙂

  23. I have to agree with everyone, Chicken and lemons are a winner, In fact I roast whole chickens stuffed with lemons, and braised with lemon juice. lovely, and good. thank you for bringing this recipe to us.. c

    • They sure are! Mmm I love the idea of stuffing whole chickens with lemon – I will have to give that a try, thanks Cecilia!

  24. I really like the zing lemon adds to chicken along with those herbs. What a pretty presentation you made!

  25. This looks fantastic Katherine! I will have to make it for my fiance. I love Ina’s recipes as they are always so reliable and work out perfectly.

  26. This lemon chicken breast dish is perfect for a weeknight meal. I do like Ina Garten’s recipes and this one sounds like a keeper!

  27. This is much nicer and healthier version of lemon chicken I know (you know the deep fried version? haha). I didn’t know Ina Garten, so thank you so much for introducing her!

    • Yes, this is definitely healthier than the deep fried version! 😉 I’m so happy to have introduced you to Ina Garten, I’m sure you will love her. She’s one of the few Food Network chefs that I really like.

  28. I am a huge fan of such simple and flavourful dishes which are quick to fix. Your clicks of the chicken are awesome. You won’t believe this but I have never tried an Ina Garten dish though I have seen a few fellow bloggers adapting her recipes. Guess I need to join the tribe soon 🙂

    • Thank you so much! Welcome to the Ina Garten tribe! I’m sure you will find that her recipes tend to fit the bill of simple and flavorful 🙂

  29. Congrats on Top 9!

  30. The few times I watched Barefoot Contessa, I wasn’t too thrilled by her recipes. But this one looks really great. Maybe rosemary instead of oregano would be great as well.

    • I’m not usually a fan of Food Network chefs and haven’t watched her show often, but this recipe is so easy it’s difficult to mess up 🙂 I bet rosemary would be amazing! I love rosemary in anything.

  31. This is a terrific recipe. I love recipes that are quick, easy, and delicious. Thanks for sharing this great dish.

    • Thank you Geraldine, and you are so welcome! 🙂 I also love quick, flavorful recipes. I know I can never have enough!

  32. Lemon is such a surprising thing. Only a bit of peel and you get a great taste! Your chicken looks moist and delicious!

  33. This looks amazing! Ina’s recipes are always the best!

  34. Congrats on the Top 9! This looks like a super flavor chicken dish, gotta love chicken dinners!

  35. Hi Katherine,
    I was planning on making this last night for dinner but ended up cooking something I ate at my local grocery store. I cannot wait to make this dish after seeing this post. Will be trying it out soon.
    The chicken looks so moist and flavorful. I love Ina Garten, nothing to beat her recipes.

  36. Surreal! I love Ina Garten’s creation — would seriously hug her if I ever meet her in person 😀

  37. What a gorgeous dish! And you’ve made it especially beautiful, as per usual…I can’t wait to try it — it screams flavour. Theresa

  38. She does make some beautiful dishes. Yours looks so perfet 🙂 she’d be very proud 😉

  39. Tiffany

    I am clicking on the link for the recipe but it doesn’t work, do you have a link with the recipe?

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