What is something simple (other than salt) that I add to plain chicken, pasta, and olive oil to make it tastier?

I want to keep it healthy, I have almost no cooking skills, and I'm a simple/basic eater (when it comes to tastes). I've thought about pepper or lemon pepper or Parmesan cheese, but I don't know if any of those go well with chicken/pasta/olive oil. Thank you for any assistance!

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7 Comments

PHIL August 20, 2019
I make chicken with salt and pepper all the time. It's all you need. But other options include
- lemon, olive oil and oregano combination.
-balsamic vinegar
-smoked paprika
-harissa
-soy sauce , ginger and garlic
 
Stephanie B. August 19, 2019
All of these suggestions are great, and I'll add another simple one: aglio e olio, which sounds fancy because it's Italian for "garlic and oil", but that's really all it is. It's about as simple and dressed down as a meal can be, yet always satisfying. Serious eats has a good tutorial on how to make it: https://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/2016/02/spaghetti-aglio-olio-recipe.html
Cook your chicken however you like (which again can be as simple as a pan fry), make the pasta, top it with chicken. The past sauce will still be tasty if you decide to top off your servings with a squeeze of lemon juice and a grating of parmesan, and if you have parsley it's a good garnish in this too.
 
Miss K. August 19, 2019
Lemon peel and juice.
 
MMH August 19, 2019
This time of year a favorite of mine is a simple chiffonade of fresh basil leaves with garlic quickly sautéed in olive oil. Sometimes I add balsamic vinegar, cherry tomatoes & mozzarella pearls.
 
nance August 19, 2019
You can add almost any fresh or dried herb here: thyme, rosemary, tarragon, even fresh chopped parsley will elevate and add a lot of freshness to this dish.

Additionally, you can try tossing in something like broccoli florets, or even some halved green or black or Kalamata olives or a few capers. If you like pesto, stir in a spoonful or two of that and it will add a great deal of flavor as well as the anti-oxidant properties of its ingredients.
 
Ethyl August 21, 2019
You could even cook the broccoli with the pasta! Toss with some cheddar cheese and pasta cooking water, top with sauteed or pan fried chicken and you've got a fairly balanced meal!
 
Kristen W. August 19, 2019
Any of those would be great, especially Parmesan, which will add a lot of flavor. Garlic is the other thing that will help round out the dish - use as much or as little as you like (I like a lot). Lemon pepper is fine but a little squirt of fresh lemon juice could be even better! You can do endless variations on your ingredients but your ideas plus the ones I mentioned would give it plenty of flavor.
 
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