Za'atar Chicken, Aubergine, and Squash Traybake

An easy and wholesome chicken, aubergine, and squash traybake, bursting with Middle Eastern flavours and ready to eat in under an hour.

From the book

Simply Good For You by
Simply Good For You
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Traybakes are among the simplest dishes to make. Bung everything into one tray – vegetables, meat or fish and flavours – and roast it all together in the oven. No fuss, great flavours and minimal washing-up. This particular combination is a personal favourite of mine. Za’atar is a Middle Eastern spice blend. You can find it in most big supermarkets now, but if it’s difficult to get hold of, just substitute dried oregano and ground cumin instead.

Serves 6


12 chicken thigh fillets (skin removed)
1 butternut squash, peeled and diced into rough cubes
2 medium aubergines, diced into rough cubes
4 tablespoons olive oil
4 tablespoons za’atar (or 1 teaspoon dried oregano + 2 teaspoons ground cumin)
2 onions, peeled and cut into quarters
3 cloves of garlic, peeled and crushed
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper


Preheat the oven to 200°C/180°C fan.

In a large mixing bowl, drizzle the chicken thigh fillets, butternut squash and aubergines with the olive oil, then scatter over the za’atar. Mix well to coat each piece with the flavour and oil. Tip on to a large roasting tray (you may need to use two) and add the onion quarters and the garlic. Season with salt and pepper.

Roast for around 30 to 40 minutes, or until the vegetables are soft and the chicken is cooked all the way through – with no hint of pink in the middle.

Serve simply with a rocket salad or some steamed seasonal greens on the side. Or if you would like to make it a little bit more special, serve topped with a pile of chopped coriander and some pomegranate seeds, perhaps with some steamed new potatoes and a feta-dotted herby salad too.

Tip: This makes a great leftover dish to take to work for lunch the next day. Just stir through lots of salad leaves and (if you are feeling fancy) a sprinkling of pomegranate seeds.

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