Pomegranate Lemon Chicken Breasts
Juicy grilled chicken with a pomegranate fruit reduction – Only 6 ingredients + seasonings
Pomegranates are in season!
I love pomegranates! Those juicy ruby red seeds burst in your mouth with an explosion of flavor. The least favorite thing is it can be quite messy getting the seeds out, but I learned a great trick to minimize that. Cut your pomegranate in quarters. Fill a deep bowl with cold water and remove the seeds from each section underwater. The white pith floats to the top, and the seeds sink to the bottom of the bowl, making it easy to separate the two.
I enjoy eating the seeds just as they are, but I thought it might be interesting to try them out in a recipe. The first thing that came to mind was a fruit reduction paired with a protein. I had boneless chicken breasts already in the refrigerator. Perfect!
Fruit Reduction – a skinny version
Fruit reductions are prepared by combining fresh or frozen fruit, fruit juice, and sugar. The mixture is heated until most of the liquid has evaporated, leaving a thick syrupy sweet sauce. As with anything high in sugar, the calories can be too high. So, I made a few substitutions keeping the calories in check producing a “Skinny” guilt-free version. Details below!
Here’s how it went …
After separating the seeds (using that cool underwater method), I placed about one and a half cups in a mini chopper/blender. I love using this little mini food processor… less clean-up! I was careful not to liquefy the pomegranate seeds because I still wanted some small pieces.
Next, I added my puree into a small saucepan along with the juice of 1 lemon, 1 teaspoon of lemon zest, 1/4 cup of low sodium chicken stock (you can use white wine instead), 2 teaspoons of Truvia baking blend sweetener and 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon. I brought the mixture to a boil and reduced to a low simmer to let the liquid slowly evaporate.
On to the chicken prep …
There was nothing too difficult about the chicken prep. I wanted to keep things simple, quick and easy. I used a meat mallet to flatten each piece of chicken breast so that all the pieces were a consistent thickness. Half the olive oil was rubbed on the chicken breasts and then seasoned with some kosher salt. The rest of the olive oil was used to coat the cast iron skillet to prevent sticking. Once the skillet was heated, I added the chicken breasts.
I seared the chicken on both sides until they were nicely golden brown and seasoned with the chopped rosemary. The pomegranate sauce was cooking down slowly but still had some liquid in the saucepan. I spooned some of the pomegranate liquid onto the chicken while it continued to cook keeping it moist to infuse flavor.
Once cooked, I transferred the chicken breasts onto a plate and spooned the thickened pomegranate reduction over it. Ready to serve … Yup, it’s that easy! You can place the extra sauce in a bowl in case anyone wants a little bit more :).
This dish is so elegant in appearance that no one would know how little effort it took to prepare! Take advantage of the pomegranate season! Try another protein instead and let me know how it comes out in the comments below.
I may try this recipe with a lean cut of flank steak next!
- 4 chicken breasts
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp rosemary chopped
- salt to taste
- 1 ½ cups pomegranate seeds for puree
- juice of 1 lemon
- 1 tsp lemon zest
- ¼ cup chicken stock
- 2 tsp Truvia
- ½ tsp cinnamon
- Puree 1 ½ cups of pomegranate seeds leaving some small pieces.
- In a small saucepan, combine the puree, lemon juice, lemon zest, chicken broth, Truvia, and cinnamon.
- Bring the mixture to boil. Reduce to a low simmer. The liquid will evaporate slowly, and the sauce will thicken.
- Using a meat mallet, pound the chicken breasts until they are all the same thickness. Using 1/2 tablespoon of olive oil, rub the four chicken breasts and season with salt.
- Add the remaining olive oil to your skillet and preheat. Then add the chicken breasts. Sear the chicken breasts on both sides until they have a nice golden brown color. Reduce to medium heat and continue cooking.
- Slowly spoon some of the liquid from your pomegranate sauce on the chicken. Add a little bit at a time to keep the chicken moist while cooking and to add flavor. Also season with the chopped rosemary.
- Remove the chicken from the skillet once cooked. Transfer to a plate and spoon some of the thickened pomegranate reduction on top. Serve immediately.