Real Simple Magazine’s Chicken with White Beans and Tomatoes

by Hilary Gauntt on April 25, 2015

For the special 15th anniversary issue, Real Simple Magazine asked their readers which of it’s solutions over the years has improved their life the most? Answers ranged from how to organize bills, to using an antique candlestick as a bracelet holder! When I read that Miriam Gutwien of New York said the best thing she learned from the magazine was this recipe, I knew I had to run it down.  She had been trying to get more beans into her family’s diet, but couldn’t find a dish they all enjoyed until this “smash hit”.

We also found it delicious, and the fact that it’s so incredibly easy to prepare makes it even more appealing.  You basically toss beans, tomatoes and herbs together in a pan, top with chicken thighs and bake until crisp.  Like many casserole dishes, it’s even better the next day as the beans absorb the different flavors.  If I was sharing this with a friend, I would bake it first and then have them reheat it later.  Lately I’ve been cooking with mostly boneless, skinless thighs, but in this recipe I recommend using the bone-in skin-on pieces as they add so much flavor to the dish.  I use my kitchen shears to trim the skin and snip out the pockets of fat.

2 15.5 ounce cans cannellini beans, rinsed

1 pint grape tomatoes

4 sprigs fresh thyme

4 springs fresh oregano, plus leaves for garnish

2 garlic cloves, smashed

1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper

2 Tbs. olive oil

kosher salt and black pepper

8 bone-in skin-on chicken thighs, about 3 pounds total

Heat the oven to 425 degrees.  In a 9- by -13 inch (or some other large) baking dish, toss the beans and tomatoes with the thyme and oregano sprigs, garlic, red pepper, 1 tbs. of oil, 1/2 tsp. salt, and 1/4 tsp. black pepper. (Lately I’ve been adding a splash of balsamic vinegar as well.)

Pat the chicken dry and place on top of the bean mixture, skin-side up.  Rub with the remaining Tbs. of oil; season with 1/2 tsp. salt and 1/4 tsp. black pepper.

Roast until the chicken is golden and cooked through, 35 to 45 minutes. Sprinkle with the oregano leaves.             Serves 4.

Note : Any white beans work fine; I prefer Great Northern. The second time I made this, I wanted to have a glass of wine on the deck with Casey, so turned the oven off after 30 minutes and let the chicken continue to cook for another half an hour. It was maybe better than the first time! A very forgiving recipe. I love roasted onions, so cut a sweet yellow large one in chunks and tossed it in the mix.  If this is your kind of dinner, be sure and see the earlier post for Cassoulet-Style Italian Sausages and White Beans, which is truly wonderful!

new chicken




Print Friendly

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Yvonne December 11, 2015 at 8:52 pm

This was SO easy and delicious! Anxious to taste the leftovers. Thank you for the hint about using some onions – I love your suggestions!


Hilary Gauntt December 12, 2015 at 8:53 am

Don’t you love when a dish so easy to make contains all the food groups!


Cancel reply

Leave a Comment


Previous post:

Next post: