The Canny Cook: Tray-baked chicken, chorizo, white beans and spring greens recipe

A one-pan meal with extra goodness from beans and leafy greens.

Eleanor maidment

Many of us have made an effort to eat less meat over the past few years. The reasons are myriad but, for me, it has been a combination of financial, health and environmental factors. Sometimes, though, it’s simply because there are so many wonderful plant-based options available now.

When I buy meat and poultry, I try to choose higher-welfare options. This does add to the cost but I’ve found by consuming a little less I can balance things out. For instance, if I’m making burgers or meatballs I’ll often halve the quantity of minced meat and add an equal amount of cooked quinoa. Or to a ragù, I may add lentils. The result is a little lighter yet equally delicious.

If I’m serving chicken thighs I used to allow two per person. Now I serve one with white beans or wholegrains to bulk out the plate.

The same goes for steaks, I’ll choose one good-quality 250g steak to share between two people and make sure I serve plenty of roasted veg alongside. And with cured, strongly flavoured meats such as chorizo or pancetta I use just a little to season dishes. Many supermarkets sell smaller packs of finely diced chorizo, which I find handy to have in the fridge.

Tray-baked chicken, chorizo, white beans and spring greens recipe

traybaked chicken and chorizo
Illustrations: Holly Exley


  1. Preheat the oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6.
  2. Cut 1 red onion into thin wedges and arrange in the base of a roasting tin with the chorizo. Add the chicken thighs to the pan and brush the skins with a little olive oil then season them. Roast for 25 minutes
  3. Drain the cans of cannellini beans and rinse. Remove the tray from the oven, add 150ml chicken stock and the beans. Roast for another 10 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, take 250g spring greens and shred the leaves, discarding any tough cores. Stir the leaves into the tray and roast for a final 10 minutes.

SERVE Allow everything to stand for 5 minutes before serving with lemon wedges and some aïoli (or garlicky mayonnaise) on the side.

NOTE This cost assumes you already have some basic store-cupboard ingredients.

*Prices taken from Waitrose and correct at time of going to press

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