Gluten Free Sweet & Hot Baked Sesame Chicken

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Amp up boring chicken thighs with honey, crushed chillies and 5 spice with this quick and delicious baked sesame chicken recipe! It's served with easy-to-prepare couscous and an effortless raw kale salad.

Sweet & Hot Baked Sesame Chicken from

Feeds 2 adults; 1 toddler 
This recipe is the result of a kitchen disaster. And a second failed attempt to make the nomworthy Sweet Balsamic Baked Chicken Thighs from Nomsie's Kitchen. The first time I set out to make the dish, we didn't even have any chicken! How daft, right? I'd used up all the chicken two days before, completely forgetting that I was planning to make this. The second time (and the time that led to this recipe) I opened my cupboards to mis en place and realized we didn't have any balsamic. Those darn enticing balsamic strawberries strike again! So woefully, and after a mini panic and a bit of quick thinking, I substituted and pulled this together! 

My recipe isn't an adaptation or even a shout in the dark at that one. I will be making those delicious thighs from Nomsie's Kitchen at some point! Perhaps when the stars align and the cooking goddesses look favorably from their lofty perch on that great, big gas range in the sky? Until then, this sweet & hot baked sesame chicken dish will suffice. 

Actually, I'm being a bit melodramatic (as I am wont to do). This dish was really tasty! And hearkening back to my experience at that raw food dinner party, I served it with an easy raw kale salad. It's the one thing Callum wouldn't touch on his plate. Well, that's not entirely true, he sucked all the dressing off the leaves he was given and dropped the kale on the floor. But I'm not going to complain. How many 20 month olds love their dark leafy greens anyway? Besides, he wolfed down a whole chicken thigh fillet and double servings of couscous. Pick your battles, right? 

Sweet & Hot Baked Sesame Chicken Thigh Fillets from


For the Sweet & Hot Baked Sesame Chicken
1/2 tbsp crushed chillies
1 tsp dill
1 tsp honey
1 tsp lemon pepper
1 tbsp sesame oil
1 tbsp Chinese 5 spice
2 tbsp sesame seeds
3 tbsp brown sugar
3 tbsp gluten free soy sauce
6 chicken thigh fillets

For the couscous
2 cups gluten free  cous cous
2 cups water

For the Raw Kale Salad
raw curly kale
lemon juice
extra virgin olive oil

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Sweet & Hot Baked Sesame Chicken with Couscous & Raw Kale Salad
  1. Whisk together brown sugar, sesame oil, soy sauce, honey, 5 spice, lemon pepper, chillies and dill to form a quick marinade cum sauce.
  2. Coat the chicken thigh fillets in the sauce and leave them to get acquainted while you preheat the oven to 200C/400F and make the kale salad.
  3. Combine salt, extra virgin olive oil, lemon juice and lemon pepper in a bowl large enough to fit the kale and your hands in. (You don't much of this dressing, so use a few tablespoons of each and taste along the way.)  
  4. Rinse the kale well and remove any large stalks. 
  5. Tumble the kale into the bowl and use your hands to incorporate the dressing and the kale. Leave it to sit and work its magic.
  6. Arrange the chicken thigh fillets with in a baking dish and pour over the sauce. Bake for 10 minutes on one side. Flip over and bake for a further 10 minutes.
  7. Make the couscous by pouring 2 cups of boiling water over 2 cups of couscous. Allow the couscous to absorb the water for about 5 minutes and then fluff with a fork and drizzle over a bit of extra virgin olive oil.
  8. Sprinkle sesame seeds over the cooked chicken. Check on your salad. You'll notice it has drastically reduced in height. Each leaf should be coated in the dressing. 
  9. Serve up and enjoy. 
A plate of sweet & hot baked sesame chicken with couscous and raw kale salad from
Looking for other ways to use up some kale? Check out these fab recipes:
Southern Smothered Pork Chops from
Kale Berry Smoothie from

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