I was recently invited to take part in a food blogger cooking challenge. Much like the television show Chopped, this challenge had participants cooking with a certain list of ingredients to see what kind of deliciousness we could come up with. And oh how I love a challenge. Luckily for me, the ingredients list wasn’t anything too crazy and I was allowed to choose three from the grouping. Here’s what we could choose from:
- Cream cheese
- Chicken thighs
- Bacon fat
A pretty workable list, really. It didn’t take me long to choose my ingredients. Bacon fat, duh. A natural choice. Chicken thighs because they are affordable and honey because it pairs so nicely with bacon. Now to see it all come together…
My primary goal for this recipe was an easy solution for what to serve the family on a busy weeknight. I’m always hunting for recipes that work well when life is hectic. Soccer practice, ballet class, band lessons, you name it, we’ve experienced it. Life can be very busy when you have four kids. Heck, life can be busy when you have one kid. So an easy weeknight dinner solution is always a welcome thing.
And it doesn’t get much easier than this. It takes just moments to wrap thick slices of bacon around boneless skinless chicken thighs. And to keep the whole thing together, I pinned them using toothpicks. Then I placed the bundles on a baking sheet with a an oven safe cooling rack positioned on top. That way the heat can circulate around the bacon and crisp the whole thing up, top and bottom. No one likes soggy bacon.
Spoonfuls of the honey dijon glaze studded with chopped shallots is ladled over top. This glaze is savory and sweet with just enough zing from the mustard to make it interesting. But the best part? The crust that forms while baking. The honey and mustard work together to create a crackly coating that is irresistible…
Pretty luscious looking, right? And like I said, it’s a snap to make. I actually doubled this recipe and froze a batch because it makes for awesome leftovers. So if freezer cooking is your thing, add this to your roster.
Serve it over rice or with mashed potatoes. Use a little leftover sauce to serve it with. The sauce goes especially well with rice.
A rather successful challenge if I do say so myself. The other bloggers came up with some very creative recipes as well. Be sure to check out their creations for recipe inspiration!
Bacon Wrapped Ginger Soy Chicken from Yellow Bliss Road
Quinoa & Kale Salad with Honey Ginger Dressing from Katie’s Cucina
Skinny One Pot Lemon Shrimp Alfredo from Julie’s Eats & Treats
Thai Coconut Soup from Yummy Healthy Easy
Slow Cooker Honey Garlic Ginger Chicken from Your Homebased Mom
Thai Shrimp Salad with Peanut Dressing from Will Cook for Smiles
Honey Baked Chicken Over Lemon Rice from The Weary Chef
Honey Baked Chicken and Potatoes from Cravings of a Lunatic
Honey Ginger Shrimp Skewers from Five Heart Home
- 2 lbs boneless skinless chicken thighs
- 1 lb thick cut bacon
- Fresh ground black pepper
- ½ cup Dijon mustard
- ½ cup honey
- ½ cup shallots, finely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- a couple of dashes of hot sauce (or more if you like spicy)
- Preheat oven to 425º. Place an oven safe baking rack on top of a rimmed cookie sheet.
- Wrap bacon around chicken thighs and secure with a toothpick. Place on baking rack and sprinkle fresh ground black pepper over top.
- In a mixing bowl, combine mustard, honey, shallots, garlic and hot sauce. Stir well. Divide into two separate bowls. One will be used for basting while the other will be used as a sauce for serving.
- Spoon a couple of tablespoons of the sauce over each bacon wrapped thigh. Place baking sheet into oven.
- Ten minutes into baking, rotate thighs and add a bit more sauce to each one. Place back in oven and continue cooking until bacon is crisp, about ten to 12 more minutes. Insert cooking thermometer to verify that the internal temperature is 160º.
- Serve with remaining sauce that has been heated.