10 Low-Carb Chicken Recipes for the Stovetop

When I know I don't have a lot of time to cook, or I'm just tired at the end of the day, I reach for the skillet and a package of boneless, skinless chicken. I can cut it up and cook it in a flash, and dress it up with almost any flavors and other ingredients I have in the pantry or fridge. It can be Mexican one night, and Thai the next with not much thought or work. Let your imagination go wild! Here are a few ideas to get you started.

Easy Thai Coconut Curry Chicken

Thai Chicken Curry
Thai Chicken Curry. Photo © Paul Brighton

This is a very simple skillet meal. It's one I do when I have little energy at the end of the day. You can use any Thai seasoning mixture or curry paste you like.  I serve it over cauliflower rice.

Tip: When thawing boneless skinless chicken that you intend to cut up, don't let it thaw all the way. It will be easier to cut if it's still a little firm.

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Chicken (or Beef) Fajitas

Use low-carb tortillas, or just eat with a fork -- and don't forget the guacamole!. Jodi Pudge/Radius Images/Getty Images

These fajitas can be made in a skillet or on a grill.  My husband eats them with low-carb tortillas; I eat them with a fork.

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Creamy Apple Bacon Chicken

Apple Bacon Chicken
Apple Bacon Chicken. Enrique Gomez/Dreamstime.com

Why do apple and bacon seem to go so well together? I think it's the sweet and salty combination that works nicely with chicken.

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Skillet Chicken Divan

Chicken Divan
Chicken Divan - Chicken with Broccoli and Mushrooms in a Cream Sauce. PoppyB/E+/Getty Images

You can make this low-carb version of chicken divan on the stovetop and run it under the broiler if you want. Or forget the broiler and just serve and eat. It is classic comfort food, and a great way to use up leftover chicken or turkey (or buy a roasted chicken at the deli).

Tip: "Chicken Tenders" are a flap of breast meat underneath the main piece of meat. Sometimes these are sold separately and are even faster to cut up since it is already partly done for you.

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Creamy Southwest Chicken

southwest chicken
You can also bake this chicken in the oven. Lilechka75

This skillet chicken dish is one you can have on the table in 20 minutes, start to finish, using canned green chiles and shredded cheese.

Chicken Cooking Tip: Using the best available chicken you can afford really makes a difference. Taste tests usually favor kosher chickens, chickens that have access to pasture, and natural chickens, but there is a lot of variation between farms. Sample and decide.

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Chicken Marsala

Chicken Marsala
Chicken Marsala. Steve Manson/E+/Getty Images

This is a traditional Italian dish, originally from Sicily and popular in the area around Rome.  It is very easy to make, and can also be made with veal.

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Low-Carb Pasta with Chicken and Roasted Red Pepper Sauce

Low-Carb Red Pepper Chicken Pasta
Shirataki Fettuccini with Chicken and Red Pepper Cream Sauce. Photo © Laura Dolson

This recipe can use any kind of low-carb pasta, but it works especially well with the tofu shirataki fettuccine noodles.

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Moo Shu Chicken

Moo Shu Chicken
Moo Shu Chicken. cobraphoto/Dreamstime

Often, Moo Shu pork or chicken in a restaurant has quite a bit of sugar in it, but this homemade recipe is not difficult, and it's low-carb and sugar-free.

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Chicken with Cranberries and Red Wine

Cranberry Chicken
Chicken with Cranberries and Red Wine. Ruslan Olinchuk

With a freezer, it's always cranberry season!  Cranberries seem to be made to go with poultry, don't they?

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Basil/Pesto Chicken With Vegetables

Chicken, vegetables, and pesto
Chicken, vegetables, and pesto - mix, match, and combine!. Photo © Beaucroft

The suggested vegetables are only a starting place, both in quantity and variety. You can really use almost any vegetable: broocolli, cauliflower, and onions are good additions. You can also substitute pesto sauce for the basil and garlic to make it even easier.

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