Ina Garten’s chicken Marbella recipe is a classic dish that is perfect for entertaining. It features chicken thighs marinated in a blend of olive oil, white wine, capers, olives, garlic, oregano, and black pepper. The chicken is then roasted until golden brown and tender. But what should you serve alongside this flavorful chicken? Ina offers several tasty suggestions for side dishes and sauces that perfectly complement the complex flavors of chicken Marbella. Keep reading for Ina’s recommendations on the best sides, salads, breads and sauces to serve with this signature roast chicken recipe.
Rice Pilaf or Orzo
Ina often recommends serving chicken Marbella with either rice pilaf or orzo. The rice soaks up the delicious juices from the chicken and olives, while the orzo adds a wonderful chewiness. To make rice pilaf, simply sauté minced onion in olive oil, then add long grain rice to coat. Pour in chicken broth and let the rice simmer until tender. Fluff with a fork before serving. For orzo, boil until al dente according to package instructions. Drain and toss with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Rice pilaf or orzo will provide the perfect neutral base to let the complex flavors of the chicken shine.
Roasted vegetables are another classic side dish that Ina loves to serve alongside chicken Marbella. She recommends chopping carrots, parsnips, Brussels sprouts, or asparagus into bite-size pieces and tossing them with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Roast in a single layer at 400°F until browned and tender, about 15-20 minutes. The sweet caramelized flavors of the roasted veggies balance perfectly with the briny olives and capers in the chicken.
For a fresh, bright contrast to the savory chicken, Ina suggests making her parsley salad. Simply chop a generous amount of curly leaf parsley and toss with halved grape tomatoes, thinly sliced red onion, olive oil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Let the flavors marinate for at least 10 minutes before serving. The bright herbaceous flavor cuts through the richness of the chicken beautifully.
Israeli Couscous Salad
Another light and refreshing salad that’s one of Ina’s favorites to serve with chicken Marbella is her Israeli couscous salad. Cook Israeli couscous according to package directions. Then toss with peeled and diced cucumber, halved grape tomatoes, minced red onion, olive oil, lemon juice, and feta cheese. The tangy feta, juicy tomatoes, and crunchy cucumbers are a perfect foil for chicken Marbella.
Crispy Roasted Potatoes
For a heartier, more filling side dish, Ina recommends her recipe for crispy roasted potatoes. Cut small potatoes into wedges, toss with olive oil, salt and pepper, and roast at 425°F, flipping halfway through, until browned and crispy. The crunchy exterior combined with a creamy interior makes these roasted potatoes an ideal accompaniment to soak up the juices from the chicken.
Good bread is a must for serving with chicken Marbella, according to Ina. She likes to slice up a loaf of crusty baguette or ciabatta and place it in a basket on the table for soaking up the delicious sauce. Warm pita bread also pairs nicely with the Mediterranean flavors of the dish. Garlic bread is another excellent option. Simply take a loaf of crusty bread, slice it, brush the slices with olive oil and minced garlic, and toast until crispy.
Easy Green Salad
For those who want their chicken Marbella with a simple green side salad, Ina has a great easy recipe. She recommends combining mixed baby greens with sliced avocado, halved cherry tomatoes, thinly sliced red onion, and your desired dressing. The avocado adds creaminess while the tomatoes and onion provide bursts of flavor. Leaving the vegetables in larger slices prevents them from wilting.
If you want a more substantial salad, Ina loves serving her Greek salad alongside chicken Marbella. Combine chopped romaine lettuce, halved cherry tomatoes, sliced cucumber, thinly sliced red onion, kalamata olives, and feta cheese. Toss with a dressing of olive oil, red wine vinegar, lemon juice, oregano, and salt. The crisp vegetables, briny olives, and creamy feta make an excellent counterpart to the chicken.
For an easy but delicious salad pairing, you can’t go wrong with a classic Caesar salad. Simply drizzle chopped romaine lettuce with a dressing of olive oil, lemon juice, Dijon mustard, grated Parmesan, anchovy paste, and garlic. Croutons and shaved Parmesan add tasty crunch. The cool, crisp lettuce and creamy dressing balances the warm chicken perfectly.
A refreshing yogurt-based tzatziki sauce is ideal for drizzling on top of chicken Marbella, according to Ina. Whisk together Greek yogurt, grated cucumber, olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, dill, salt, and pepper. Chill for at least 30 minutes before serving to allow the flavors to meld. The cooling yogurt sauce perfectly complements the spices and olive brininess of the chicken.
Yogurt Mint Sauce
For another yogurt-based sauce, Ina recommends mixing Greek yogurt with chopped fresh mint, olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, and salt. The herbaceous mint brightens all the flavors of the dish. Let the sauce chill for at least 20 minutes before serving over the warm chicken and rice pilaf for a cooling contrast.
Chimichurri is a vibrant green Argentinian sauce that Ina loves with chicken Marbella. Combine chopped parsley, cilantro, olive oil, red wine vinegar, garlic, red pepper flakes, oregano, cumin, and salt in a food processor. Pulse until mixed but still chunky. Drizzle the sauce over sliced chicken for an extra dose of bright flavor.
Harissa Yogurt Sauce
For spicy and cooling contrast all in one sauce, Ina suggests blending Greek yogurt with harissa paste, olive oil, lemon juice, minced garlic, and salt. Harissa is a North African chili pepper paste that adds delightful heat. The creamy, spicy sauce enhances all the flavors of chicken Marbella beautifully.
Italian salsa verde is another excellent sauce pairing that Ina recommends. Blend parsley, basil, olive oil, capers, garlic, anchovies, lemon juice, and salt in a food processor until smooth. The herby green sauce cuts through the richness of chicken Marbella with bright, acidic flavor.
For a creamy, lemony sauce, Ina suggests making an easy lemon aioli. Simply whisk together mayonnaise, lemon zest, lemon juice, minced garlic, and salt. The bright citrus flavors contrast the briny olives and capers in the chicken perfectly. Dollop the aioli over the chicken or use it as a dip for bread.
Olive tapenade is right at home when served with chicken Marbella. Ina likes to spread the olive-based sauce over slices of toasted bread. Combine pitted kalamata olives, olive oil, capers, anchovies, lemon juice, garlic, and herbs in a food processor until combined but still chunky. Let guests spread the tapenade over bread for the perfect olive-rich appetizer or side.
While chicken Marbella is rich enough to be a meal on its own, Ina also has some dessert recommendations if you want to serve something sweet afterwards. Here are some of her top suggestions:
Citrus Olive Oil Cake
Ina’s moist citrus olive oil cake is dotted with bright citrus zest and juice. It makes for a nice light dessert after the heavy chicken dish.
Creamy chilled panna cotta is an elegant but easy dessert paired with berry compote on top.
Decadent chocolate torte is a perfect indulgence after dinner. Top it with whipped cream and raspberries for added luxury.
For a sophisticated dessert, Ina recommends crème brûlée topped with a crackly burnt sugar shell.
Affogato is a delicious treat where ice cream gets drizzled with shots of hot espresso – perfect for after dinner!
Ina’s easy no-bake lemony cheesecake is rich and tangy – an ideal palate cleanser.
Full Meal Menu Suggestions
Here are some of Ina’s favorite full meal menus featuring chicken Marbella as the main dish:
– Chicken Marbella
– Israeli Couscous Salad
– Crusty bread
– Citrus Olive Oil Cake
– Chicken Marbella
– Orzo Pilaf
– Greek Salad
– Chocolate Torte
– Chicken Marbella
– Roasted Potatoes
– Easy Green Salad
– Chicken Marbella
– Parsley Salad
– Focaccia Bread
– Lemon Cheesecake
– Chicken Marbella
– Roasted Vegetables
– Panna Cotta with Berry Compote
Chicken Marbella is an incredibly versatile dish that pairs well with a wide variety of sides, salads, breads, and desserts. By following Ina Garten’s expert recommendations, you can be sure to serve this flavorful chicken dish with complementary pairings that will please any crowd. From herby rice pilafs and vegetable sides to refreshing salads and decadent desserts, Ina has all the serving suggestions you need to round out a delicious meal featuring chicken Marbella as the star.