Friday, 17 January 2014

Chipolte Chilli and Honey Chicken.

I am going to be honest with you for a second, OK?

I am not a very good cook, I can bake with the best of them, whip up a cake in a flash; sans recipe, fiddle with ingredients and understand the results, even create my own recipes with success! But when it comes to savoury things, sauces, meat, casseroles, stews etc... I am hopeless.

I never seem to get the flavours right, and the end results is always a little disappointing. I have a few recipes down, a basic tomato sauce, bolognese, lasagne (basically adaptations of that basic tomato sauce). But go beyond that and I struggle. On weekends when I have lots of time I tend to cook from scratch but on week nights I just don't have the time or energy to handle disappointing food.

So, I have no shame in admitting I turn to packets and spice mixes for help. My chilli and enchiladas rely heavily on Old El Paso, yes I add some extra chipolte paste for heat and some garlic, because I love garlic and add it to everything. No shame in my game.

One of my resolutions for this year is to conquer mexican food from scratch, but until then, my trusty Old El Paso friend will remain in my cupboard for those midweek burrito cravings.

I have blogged recipes with their spice mixes before (Turkey Enchiladas), and Old El Paso kindly offered to send me over some of their new casserole mixes to try out. The Smokey Chipolte Chilli and Honey one leaped out at me instantly, the smokey quality of chipolte chillies speaks to my soul.

I changed the recipe slightly to accommodate fussy eaters and what I had in my cupboards and it worked like a dream!

print recipe
Smokey Chipolte Chilli and Honey Casserole
  • 6 large Chicken Thighs
  • 2 small Sweet Potato
  • 1 large Carrot
  • 1 small Red Onion
  • 1 packet Smokey Chipolte Chilli and Honey Casserole mix
  • 150g Passata
  • 150ml Water
  • 2 Tablespoons Honey
  • 2 cloves, diced Garlic
  • 1 tablespoon Chipolte Paste
  • A good squeeze Lime Juice
I started by browning the chicken in a hot griddle pan, this crisps up the skin a little.I placed the chicken in a casserole dish (with a lid), and scattered over the roughly chopped veggies.In a jug I mixed the spice mix, water, passata, honey, chipolte paste and garlic to form a sauce.I poured the sauce over the chicken and vegetables, and placed the casserole dish (with the lid on) in a hot oven (180C) for 1 hour and 30 minutes.I took the lid off the dish and popped it back in the oven for 10-15 minutes.Once cooked I topped with a good squeeze of lime juice for freshness. I served with brown rice and sour cream.

My chipolte paste was homemade by steeping dried, de-seeded chipolte chillies in boiling water then blitzing into a paste. I have seen it in sainsburys though. Its not necessary in the recipe though if you can't find any.

I got this beaut of a casserole dish from TK Maxx before Christmas, its amazing! I am scouring pinterest for more casserole recipes to try, link em up below if you have any good ones.

So, packet mixes? Yay or nay? Opinions welcome.



  1. I love the look of this - absolutely perfect for all of the cold weather at the moment!

  2. try 1tbsp good smokey paprika and 1tb fresh grnd cumin + salt. pretty much what's in the packet (obv this one has some chipotle etc)

  3. Nay for me I'm afraid. They are just a selection of spices you probably already had with some extra scary processed things in there. I think you would have been ok with a big squirt of runny honey, some chilli and maybe some oregano or coriander. If you've got a good basic cupboard of spices you can make most things from most cuisines, just taste as you go and you'll be good!

  4. In theory I totally agree with this, in practice not so much. Maybe I just need more practice. ;)

  5. Thanks for the tips! I do think I just need to experiment and taste till I get it right. Practice makes perfect. ;)

  6. I think packets and jars are good if you are not sure about the taste, appearance etc, then check out the ingredients and then you can try to repeat for yourself. Well done for trying and it looks good. Good old oxo cubes are always great to add flavour too.

  7. I REALLY want to make this! Looks so good! Xx

  8. I don't think I've ever baked with grapefruit but this cake sounds delicious! Also given me another reason to get the Smitten Kitchen book.

  9. Hope you're still going well, I joined Weight Watchers in 2011 and weighed 19 stone 7 lbs, I reached goal a year later losing just under 9 stone and I'm very happy to report that I'm still at goal now .. Weight Watchers completely changed my life and I'm so so thankful to them :)


All comments are greatly loved;

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