Keto citrus chicken with carrot salad is my idea of the perfect warm-weather recipe. When it comes to sprucing up the humble roasted chicken, dousing it with some citrus always seems to do the trick.
Tender, moist and full of flavor, this keto chicken recipe will be one to keep on regular rotation. Don’t you just love when a recipe is both wonderfully delicious and naturally low in carbs and healthy?
I’m all about easy keto dinner recipes that can be enjoyed both during busy weekdays or jam-packed weekends. And just because it comes together quickly doesn’t mean it can’t be a showstopper.
This citrus chicken recipe features Moroccan flavors and so it naturally paired well with my keto Moroccan carrot salad.
Personally, I like to create my dinner recipes by taking into consideration what side dish would work well with it. I don’t know about you but when all the flavors on a plate meld together perfectly it makes the meal that more enjoyable.
Keto Citrus Chicken With Carrot Salad
My Mami always taught me that food was first tasted through the eyes. So I learned early on that when making a dish I had to also consider how appetizing it looked.
Well, all I can say is that this low carb citrus chicken with carrot salad hit that qualifier right out of the park. Not only is it a palate’s delight, but it also looks beautiful enough to serve to guests.
Easy enough for busy weeknights but rich enough for Sunday supper or even a dinner party. Serve your family or guests a keto-friendly dinner that they will not quickly forget.
I’m sharing all my helpful tips in making this dish so that it turns out perfectly for you too. Please scroll to the bottom of the page to find the printable recipe card.
I chose to make this dish with chicken thighs because it’s the fattier meat, a good thing when doing keto. But you can certainly make it with chicken breasts if that’s what you prefer. If you opt to use chicken breast, I suggest you cut them so that they cook faster and still stay juicy.
How To Make Keto Citrus Chicken With Carrot Salad
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The first step in making this dish is creating the Keto Moroccan Salad that accompanies it. You’ll have to go to this page to access the carrot salad recipe.
Making the salad first allows the vinaigrette to infuse into the carrots. By the time your chicken is done, your carrot salad will be ready to serve.
After you make the salad it’s time to make the citrus chicken. The chicken is browned first in a cast-iron skillet and then transferred to a baking dish to finish cooking in a preheated 375-degree oven.
The citrus sauce is then made with the chicken drippings right in the cast-iron skillet while the chicken continues to cook in the oven.
In a large bowl, pat down your chicken to remove any excess moisture and then season your chicken thighs with salt, dried thyme, black pepper, ground allspice, nutmeg, smoked paprika.
Then in a cast-iron skillet heat 2 tablespoons of olive in over medium-high heat. Add the chicken thighs skin-side down, and sear both sides until golden brown. This will take about 3 minutes.
The key to achieving the perfect crispy chicken is to cook them in a hot pan and quickly. And to make sure to do so without overcrowding the pan, otherwise, the chicken will not brown properly and just cook in its juice. I suggest you cook them in batches to ensure that the skins crisp.
Tips On Making A Keto Moroccan Dinner
Another mistake that people make is to over-flip the chicken. My suggestion is to flip only once and not to do so until the chicken is crisp.
Once your chicken has browned perfectly on both sides, reserve about 4 tablespoons of the fat in the skillet to make the citrus sauce later.
Transfer your chicken thighs into a 9×13 ovenproof pan and place in the oven allow the chicken to cook for about 30 minutes, or until the chicken is fully cooked. It should register 165 degrees Fahrenheit (75 degrees Celsius)in an instant-read thermometer.
If you do not own a thermometer, an easy way to check is that all the juices that come from the chicken should run clear and not be pink.
While the chicken is cooking in the oven make the sauce using the reserved fat in the cast-iron skillet. To make the citrus sauce heat your cast-iron to medium-high and then add the lemon juice and minced garlic to the pan.
Allow the sauce to simmer making sure you are scraping the bottom of the pan to get all the flavorful burnt parts. Then you’ll add the chicken broth and allow the sauce to reduce by half. Once the sauce has reduced remove the skillet off the heat and season with salt and pepper to taste if needed.
Deglazing using all the browned pieces from the bottom of the pan adds lots of flavor to the dish and it’s a necessary step in making the sauce so don’t skip this essential step.
After your chicken is fully cooked, spoon the sauce over the top of the chicken and garnish it with freshly chopped parsley and lemons slices.
If what you are looking for is a keto meal that isn’t boring, then this keto Moroccan dish is the one to choose. Because it’s packed with flavor and makes a lovely presentation.
There is absolutely nothing boring about this dinner. I make chicken quite often at home but when I presented this to my family, it became an instant favorite.
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Keto Citrus Chicken
- 6 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs about 3 pounds
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon smoked paprika
- 2 tablespoon olive oil
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 cup chicken broth
- 1 large lemon, 2 limes (about 1/3 cup of juice)
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Two lemons sliced
- 1/2 cup of freshly chopped parsley
Keto Citrus Chicken
- Pre-heat oven to 375 degreees fahrenheit.
- Prepare the Keto Morrocan Carrot Salad.
- In a large bowl, seasonthe chicken thighs with dried thyme, ground allspice, nutmeg, smoked paprika, salt, and pepper.
- Heat the two tablespoons of olive in a large cast-iron skillet or similar pan.
- Add the chicken, skin-side down and sear both sides of the chicken thighs until golden brown, about 3 minutes per side. While browning your chicken be sure to not over-crowd the pan to ensure proper browning.
- Reserve about 3 tablespoons of fat in the skillet to make the citrus sauce later.
- Transfer the browned chicken thighs to a 9x13 ovenproof baking dish.
- Place the chicken in the oven and allow to cook for 30 minutes or until chicken is cooked.
- While the chicken is cooking proceed to make the sauce.
- Once the chicken and sauce are complete spoon the sauce over the chicken and garnish with the 1/2 cup of chopped parsley and 2 thinly sliced lemons.
- Serve your citrus chicken with the keto carrot salad.
- Store any leftover chicken in the refrigerator for up to 3 days or freeze without the lemon garnish for up to 3 weeks.
- Heat the cast iron skillet with the reserved fat.
- Add the citrus juice and minced garlic to the skillet and allow to simmer, be sure to scrape the bottom of the pan as the sauce simmers to get all the burnt parts.
- Add the chicken broth and allow to reduce by half.
- Remove from heat and taste the sauce. Season with additional salt in pepper to taste if necessary.
The nutrional facts for this dish is only for the keto citrus chicken. For the nutrional facts for the carrot salad refer to the full recipe for my keto Moroccan carrot salad.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 510Total Fat: 28.9gSaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0gCholesterol: 315mgSodium: 739mgCarbohydrates: 1.9gFiber: 0gSugar: 0gProtein: 85g