One pot, no fuss: The weeknight chicken recipe you'll want to cook again and again.

There’s two sides to every story right? I mean, that’s what I'm still teaching my kids. So when it comes to cooking, there are two versions of why I do it also.

Yes, I cook because I love nourishing my family and getting good things into their system and all that jazz, but I also do it because I love it. Like a hobby. And it's fun to know that you are doing a chore to some that is a pleasure to you. So it’s a bit selfish, but masked with love. 

It's the same deal when I manage to wrangle an entire recipe into one pot. We could call it laziness and possibly not respectful of the cuisine's origin OR we could veer down the path of genius and praise the fact that all the flavours are infused in the single dish from which you will serve. To be honest, I celebrate both sides really. 

Laziness, short-cutting and time saving is a huge virtue these days.

None of us seem to have managed to stick to the slower pace of the post-COVID climate that we promised we would, so going the easy route is the same as taking your time. One less pan is a weight off. One less process is one more moment you have to exhale. 


I mean I say all this like there is intention in my processes. And there is intention… however it's usually fuelled by a two-hour window of absolute chaos.

And it goes like this:

Between 5-6pm the door is barged open. Shoes are muddy and the kids have chosen some point between trying to exit the car and get inside the house to start a story that is important enough to recite and demand a response for but never enough to remember names or consider the punch line, not to mention stay on track.

Everyone immediately begins to de-robe. Socks, jumpers, bras, pants, everything peeled. 

Bags spill open and remnants of uneaten lunch fall everywhere. There is something to be said for the internal atmosphere and physical orbit of a schoolbag. After eight hours, ANYTHING packed in it is either completely macerated or has taken on the warm tactile texture of softened wax.

The oven goes on because on days like this something will need to go in it. Stuff gets pulled from the fridge. Baths are run and readers are plonked through. Someone's paper crown is crumpled and it's your fault. Not even a lifetime of unconditional love can counter the brutal wound caused by you not making sure something you had no idea about didn't get damaged when you weren’t there. It’s the equivalent to cutting a sandwich incorrectly. 


Chopping veg is rustic and messy. Garlic is simply halved. Things are browned and sauteed to oomph flavour, but you know the intention is to braise it altogether. These are my favourite meals. 

You get to the point where it all goes in the oven - sometimes with a lid, other times without - and now you have a break because that baby is going to come alive without your fuss! Is it appropriate to have a G&T? Yes.

These things take between 25-45 mins in the oven, so by 7pm you are usually sitting down to eat. Chilli can be added, herbs, extra salad, hell - cover it in tomato sauce or whatever you like really if it means more pleasure, but the fact that the bulk of the dinner is in one pan with loads of good stuff (hidden or not) is great for many reasons. 

Tummies get full. The cyclone in which we entered the house has been tamed and things seem mildly back on track. 7.30-8pm and that's a wrap on the “family dinner scene” for another night. 

So, if your evening is anything like mine, then you don’t need convincing. One pan with ALL the dinner in it? Including veg? And carbs? And it's mainly in the oven so I don’t have to stir that shit? F*** yes!


Here's what you'll need.

Chicken and rice.

Image: Supplied/Lucy Tweed.


  • 1tbs olive oil
  • 1 organic or best as you can get chicken
  • 1 bulb garlic
  • 1 leek, white part rinsed & sliced into 1cm rings
  • 1 bunch silverbeet, stalks and leaves chopped & rinsed
  • ¼ c oregano leaves
  • 1 tbs butter
  • 1.5 cups white rice, rinsed 
  • ½ cup white wine
  • 1 cup stock
  • 1 cup water 


1. Preheat oven to 180C.

2. Snip the fatty bits from just inside the carcass.

3. Put the oil and the chicken (breast side down) into a cold large oven-proof pot with a tight-fitting lid. 

4. Place the fatty bits around the edge.

5. Place over medium heat and allow the chicken breast to brown for about 10-15 minutes. The cold start allows the skin to slowly brown and prevents tearing. It also allows the fat to render and not just burn. 


6. Once it is seriously golden brown, carefully remove the chicken and set aside. You can brown the underside if you like, but I like the stickiness of the wet skin that is cooked in the rice.

7. Cut the garlic in half at the fattest party of its belly and place the cut sides down into the chicken fat and oil still in the pan. 

8. Add in the leeks, stir to mix (making sure to put the garlic back face side down if it is turned) then reduce heat to low and put the lid on for 15mins. Check occasionally to prevent catching. The garlic and leeks will sweat and begin to caramelise. 

9. Return the heat to medium and throw in the silverbeet, oregano and butter. 

10. Stir until butter is melted and the greens have wilted. 

11. Add in the rice and wine and combine. 

12. Nestle the chicken back in, skin side up. Pour in the stock and water all around the chicken then cover with a lid and place into the oven for 40-50mins. 

13. Serve pieces of the tender chook with lots of lovely sticky rice, freshly cracked pepper and make sure not to miss out on the soft cloves of garlic which you simply squeeze out onto plates. 

Image: Supplied/Lucy Tweed.


*I have also made this recipe in a large deep roasting pan with two chickens (great for a crowd!). 

Other quantities for that:

  • 2 bulbs garlic
  • 1.5 bunch of silverbeet (or use a smaller bunch of another leafy green like kale or english spinach)
  • 2 leeks
  • ½ cup oregano
  • 50 g butter
  • 2 cups white rice, rinsed 
  • 1 cup white wine
  • 1 cup stock
  • 1 cup water

The temps and times should remain the same. 

Read more from Lucy Tweed here:

Lucy Tweed is a Sydney based food stylist and the creator of Every Night of the Week, an Instagram account full of recipes for people who don't like recipes. For more of that, follow her here.

Feature image: Supplied/Lucy Tweed.

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