Friday, July 11, 2014

Pan-Grilled Chicken with Green Olive, Caper, and Lemon Relish (Low-Carb, Gluten-Free, Can Be Paleo)

Pan-Grilled Chicken with Green Olive, Caper, and Lemon Relish found on
Easy pan-grilled chicken with a flavorful green olive relish and Mediterranean Salad with Hummus Dressing on the side.

(For Phase One Fridays I feature Phase One Recipes from the past that have been my personal favorites, and this easy Pan-Grilled Chicken with Green Olive, Caper, and Lemon Relish is delicious and quick to make on a stove-top grill pan, or grill it on an outdoor grill if you prefer.  It's really the green olive, caper, and lemon relish that makes this special for me and I think the relish would be great on pork chops or fish as well.)

Green olive relish.  That's the most important thing you need to know about this easy Pan-Grilled Chicken with Green Olive, Caper, and Lemon Relish, because if you're a green olive lover like me (or my brother Mark) then you're going to love this recipe.  On the other hand, if you're someone who doesn't get the whole green olive thing, you'll probably want to skip this recipe (and the green-olive laden Picadillo Lentil Stew I posted earlier this week.)  I promise this temporary green olive infatuation will pass, but green olive lovers, this one is for you!

Combine chopped green olives, toasted and chopped almonds, chopped capers, lemon zest, chopped thyme, minced garlic, and olive oil to make the relish and let it sit while you cook the chicken.

We only cooked two chicken breasts to try the recipe, but the relish easily makes enough for 3 or 4 pieces of chicken.  Try to use chicken breasts that are close to the same size and trim off any visible fat.

Put each chicken breast into a heavy plastic bag and pound until it's an even half-inch thick.

Season the chicken on both sides with Roast Chicken Seasoning Rub.  (I also love Szeged Chicken Rub, but it can be hard to find.)

Brush a stove-top grill pan with olive oil and heat it over medium high heat.  Then put the chicken on and cook about 2-3 minutes per side, or until the chicken feels firm (but not hard) to the touch.

Let chicken rest about 2 minutes, then cut each chicken breast into diagonal slices and arrange on plate.

Serve chicken hot, with a few generous spoonfuls of olive relish on top plus more to pass at the table.

Pan-Grilled Chicken with Green Olive, Caper, and Lemon Relish
(Recipe makes enough relish for relish for 3 or 4 chicken breasts; adapted slightly from Grilled Chicken Breasts with Green-Olive Relish at Fine Cooking.)

Relish Ingredients:
3/4 cup finely chopped green olives with pimientos
2 T blanched almonds, toasted in dry pan and then chopped
1 T capers, chopped
1-2 tsp. lemon zest
1 tsp. chopped fresh thyme (or use 1/2 tsp. crushed dried thyme but fresh thyme would be much better)
1/2 tsp. minced garlic (or more)
3 T extra-virgin olive oil

Chicken Ingredients:
3 or 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, trimmed and pounded to 1/2 inch thickness
1-2 tsp. Roast Chicken Seasoning Rub (or use your favorite seasoning for chicken)
olive oil, for brushing stove-top grill pan

Combine the chopped green olives, toasted and chopped almonds, chopped capers, lemon zest, chopped thyme, minced garlic, and olive oil to make the relish.  Let it sit while you prep and cook the chicken so flavors can blend.

Trim chicken breasts so there is no visible fat; then put each chicken breast inside a heavy plastic bag and pound until the chicken is an even 1/2 inches thick.  Rub chicken breasts on both sides with Roast Chicken Seasoning Rub or your favorite seasoning for chicken. 

Brush a stove-top grill pan with olive oil and heat for a minute or so over medium-high heat, until pan is hot.  Lay chicken breasts on the grill-pan, laying them at a diagonal and then rotating if you want grill marks.  Cook the chicken about 2-3 minutes per side, or until the chicken feels firm (but not hard) to the touch if you press down on it with your finger.  

When chicken feels done, remove it to a cutting board and let it sit for a couple of minutes; then slice each chicken breast into diagonal slices and arrange on a plate.  Serve with green olive relish spooned over, plus more to pass at the table.

South Beach Suggestions:  
Everything in this relish is a low-carb and low-glycemic ingredient, and this recipe would be good for any phase of the South Beach Diet.

Nutritional Information?
I chose the South Beach Diet to manage my weight using The Glycemic Index partly so I wouldn't have to count calories, carbs, points, or fat grams, but if you want nutritional information for a recipe, I recommend entering the recipe into Calorie Count, which will calculate it for you.
More Recipes for Green Olive Lovers:
(Recipes from other blogs not always South Beach Diet friendly; check ingredients.)
Shredded Chicken Salad with Green Olives, Celery, and Green Onion ~ Kalyn's Kitchen
Chicken with Preserved Lemon and Green Olives ~ Alexandra Cooks
Roasted Cauliflower with Red Bell Pepper, Green Olives, and Pine Nuts ~ Kalyn's Kitchen
Portuguese Green Olive Dip ~ Leite's Culinaria
Deviled Eggs with Green Olives, Capers, and Dijon ~ Kalyn's Kitchen
(Want even more recipes? I find these recipes from other blogs using Food Blog Search.)

Blogger Disclosure:
Posts may include links to my affiliate account at, and Kalyn's Kitchen earns a few cents on the dollar if readers purchase the items I recommend, so thanks for supporting my blog when you shop at Amazon!
counter customizable free hit


  1. So this relish has green olives AND capers in it?!?!? What more could a girl ask for!

  2. Capers and green olives!! How extravagant. Count me in. This sounds wonderful, Kalyn.

    Now I can't wait til it's warm enough to replant the herb garden. (I lost my lemon thyme AGAIN this past winter. :-( Not enough snow cover.)

  3. Joanne and Elizabeth, I think that's exactly why the recipe appealed to me. I love those bitter flavors!

    My condolences on the thyme. I have lost it here quite a few winters too.

  4. Green olive relish? You definitely have my attention. While it's probably wonderful with this grilled chicken, I can also see myself dolloping it on fish, tucking it inside of wraps and maybe sneaking the occasional spoonful of it straight-up.

  5. Love this Kalyn! Salty olives and capers are right up my alley. Sounds so good!

  6. Another lover of olives and capers here! My hubby would love this too.

  7. Dara, all those ideas sound good to me!

    Thanks Cassie and Cara. I love all the salty, briny ingredients!

  8. Looks gooood and I love your pounding method, splash free! :)

  9. Margot I love using Ziploc bags for that, and usually the bag can even be washed and re-used afterwards.

  10. This is a lifesaver. I'm pregnant and craving that salty/sour/pungent taste of things like green olives, capers, and salt&vinegar chips. Chips are more readily available, but I love finding ways to make HEALTHY meals that contain those flavors that my baby girl seems to love :)

  11. Oh and by the way - I've started adding green olives and capers to my egg salad. DELISH!

  12. Oh yes, I understand the allure of Salt and Vinegar Chips! Hope this will make a good substitute, and congrats!

    And I would have to say that green olives sound like a perfect addition to egg salad, brilliant!

  13. I love that relish on top. Mmmmm!
    I made something similar last week and dressed roasted parmesan cauliflower "steaks" with it.
    Mine had artichokes in place of almonds. But I love the almond crunch. I'm definitely adding almonds to my shopping list this week.
    Thanks Kayln.

  14. CJ, I love artichokes just as much as I do green olives and capers! Your idea of relish on cauliflower steaks sounds great!

  15. I love using chicken breast part the most, more meat, more flavor. Thanks for the recipe.

  16. That would be a tasty topping for some chicken and I like the sound of the hummus dressing!

  17. I seriously LOVE you. I think that I can be successful on South Beach with your help. Thank you!!

  18. Kris, that's great! Wishing you all the best.

  19. That relish is right up my alley,I love those Mediterranean tangy flavors! I would love to use it on grilled fish, too.

  20. Thanks Sue, me too. I love sour tangy flavors like green olives!

  21. That looks delish! Love all of the flavors in the relish. :)

  22. Thanks June Baby, glad you like it!

  23. Green olive relish -- I could eat this with a spoon, even without the chicken! Yum yum.

  24. Lydia, me too, I love every type of olives!


Thanks for joining the conversation! I love hearing from readers and even though I can't always reply to every comment, I will always answer specific questions on a recipe as soon as possible. Sometimes I'm answering by iPhone, so my replies may be short!

Comments don't appear on the blog until they're approved by me, so no need to try again if you don't see it! Feel free make your signature a link to your site if you're a blogger, but links posted within the body of the comment will never be published.

Blogging tips