...because one dish to wash is about all I can manage, frankly.
Look at all the vegetables we're eating on this Monday with our butter and cheese! Balance, you know.
Now that it's December, I'm all about snacky foods, parties, and salads in between to keep things under control. I love all things Buffalo and, while maybe not the fanciest type of food, everyone else usually does too. There are plenty of fancier foods that we make this time of year too, but why not also keep some comforting, cozy, DELICIOUS foods in our arsenal?
Plus also football all the time that never ends, you know.
The method here is so simple. In an ovenproof skillet (I have this little Le Creuset number that I got on clearance), you'll sear some chicken, then shred it, throw it back in the skillet with a ton of stuff to make it buffalo-ish. The whole mess bakes with blue cheese and grated mozzarella, and then we use our "veggies" (pita and bread and crackers, please) for dunking and happiness. Now, I intentionally didn't make this super duper creamy with cream cheese or other things like that. This is mainly hot sauce, chicken and cheese with ranch dressing flavors added for HELL YES WE DID THAT. There are buffalo chicken dips that use ranch as the base, and I wanted a grown up essence of that. If my dad is reading this (he is v good at being healthy), the idea of grown up ranch dressing is probably making him so sad and disappointed in me. Sorry, Daddy.
So, we start!
First, gather up the Buffalo sauce ingredients - hot sauce, butter, onion powder, garlic powder, dried parsley, and dried dill. Have this ready to throw in the hot skillet after the chicken cooks.
Then, HEAVILY seasoned chicken breasts grilled in a skillet over medium heat. This is actually a seasoning blend I use on chicken all the time, and while it's super simple it's also something we get complemented on a lot. So use it in other dinners!
Cook the chicken for about 7 minutes on each side, less if they're thin pieces, until the chicken is cooked through.
Leave the skillet on when you take the chicken out of the skillet, place it on a plate to cool.
Right away, add all of the buffalo sauce ingredients to the hot skillet. Turn the heat OFF the skillet and stir to melt the butter and incorporate the spices, scraping up any chicken bits as you go.
When the chicken is cooled enough to handle, shred it into little bits, grate some cheese, and gather everything together.
Stir the chicken and mozzarella into the sauce, and scatter the blue cheese on top of the mixture. This is kind of the make-ahead threshold; you can make the dip up to this point and bake it anytime you'd like, even keeping it in the fridge for a few days.
When you'd like to eat the dip, preheat the oven to 350F and bake the dip uncovered for 20-30 minutes until hot all the way through and bubbly. Serve immediately with anything you'd like.
Add wine for that grown up ranch feel, right? RIGHT? Or water which is even more grown up.
I love this for holidays because it can be made ahead and heated up right at serving time. Since there isn't a processed creamy component the dip may separate just slightly, but the spicy flavor is just perfect and as long as you eat it right away, and you will, there will be no issues.
Happy party season! I'm going to wear maternity clothes until January 10th AT LEAST. #grownupranchPrint
Perfect grilled chicken with tons of flavor from ranch-inspired spices without the actual ranch baked with hot sauce and butter for the perfect buffalo dip.
- 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon dried dill
- 1 teaspoon dried parsley
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
- 1/2 cup hot sauce such as Texas Pete
- 8 ounces grated mozzarella cheese (or any melting cheese you like)
- 1/4 cup blue cheese crumbles
- veggies, pita wedges, crackers, or bread for dunking and serving
- Preheat the oven to 350F and a 10-inch ovenproof skillet to medium heat with a drizzle of olive oil. Sprinkle the chicken with 1/4 teaspoon each of salt, pepper, onion powder, and garlic powder. Sear the chicken on each side for about 7 minutes until cooked through. Remove the chicken from the skillet to cool and leave the heat on.
- Add the hot sauce, butter, remaining onion powder, garlic powder, parsley, and sill to the skillet. Turn the heat OFF, and stir to combine and scrape up any bits from the skillet. Set the buffalo sauce aside.
- When the chicken is cool, shred into small bits with forks or your fingers. Add the chicken back to the buffalo sauce in the skillet with the mozzarella. Top with the blue cheese crumbles.
- Bake the dip for 20-30 minutes until hot and bubbly. Serve with anything you'd like, and eat immediately.
This can be made in advance, just stop right before the last baking step and store the dip in the fridge for up to three days. Bake right before serving until hot and bubbly.