No Work Baked Chicken Recipe
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"No Work Chicken"



Back when I first met my husband, I had the opportunity to become pals with one of his mother's best friends, Pat O'Keefe. Beautiful, lovely, charming and far younger then her chronological age, Pat is bubbly and full of life every time I see her. Not even two years ago, Pat decided that she was starting her own cooking blog. She told me about all of the recipes she loved to create and share with her family -- especially her beloved grandson, Toby -- and now wanted others to discover.

Since then I have received an email from Pat almost every week featuring a new recipe -- original ideas that are always a little out of the ordinary and with ingredient combinations I wouldn't normally think of putting together but which make perfect sense when you taste the final product. I've enjoyed many of Pat's recipes over time, but when I saw "No Work Chicken" as the subject line of last week's email, I was beyond intrigued. After all, if there's a recipe for something with little-to-no work involved and it's very likely going to be delicious, I'm in! I tweaked Pat's recipe slightly to suit our family, but this is my interpretation and it's unbelievably good. Not just another chicken recipe, this one immediately earned a distinguished place in our dinner rotation.

All you do is quickly whisk the marinade ingredients together in the morning (or the night before), add the chicken breasts and then bake them when you get home that night. In less than an hour, you'll have moist, juicy chicken with a sweet and tangy sauce that is heavenly served over brown rice. Whether you try this recipe or simply decide to explore the culinary gems on Pat's site, you will undoubtedly enjoy what this oh-so special lady's got cookin'!

Recipe courtesy of Pat O’Keefe

No Work Chicken  (4)

  • Prep Time: 30 mins,
  • Cook Time: 30 mins,
  • Rating:
    Rate this recipe
Back when I first met my husband, I had the opportunity to become pals with one of his mother's best friends, Pat O'Keefe. Beautiful, lovely, charming and far younger then her chronological age, Pat is bubbly and full of life every time I see her. Not...


  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 3 tablespoons dijon mustard (mild)
  • 1/2 teaspoon curry powder
  • 1/4 cup chopped scallions
  • 4 chicken breasts, boneless and skinless


  1. 1. Preheat oven to 350° F.
  2. 2.. In a 9 x 13 baking dish, whisk the honey, soy sauce, dijon mustard, curry powder and scallions.
  3. 3. Place chicken on top of sauce and turn to coat.
  4. 4. Cover and marinate 30 minutes to overnight, flipping halfway through to coat with sauce.
  5. 5. Cover with foil and bake chicken 30-40 minutes, depending on size of chicken breasts. Baste chicken with the sauce half way through cooking.
  6. 6. Serve over rice or pasta.
  7. Recipe courtesy of Pat O’Keefe
No Work Chicken

Nutrition Information

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  1. Sheryl

    June 23, 2015 at 12:37 pm

    This is a great recipe, but it is NOT gluten free, UNLESS gluten-free soy sauce is used…the recipe does not detail this. Regular soy sauce is not gluten free and could cause a terrible reaction in Celiacs or otherwise gluten sensitive people. That said, can’t wait to try it with the proper soy sauce!

  2. Justine

    February 18, 2015 at 2:01 am

    Yay!This reminded me that I forogt my own important day and I feel gutted that I missed it. I’ve been stalking through your journal and I friggen love it. Your photos are always freaking beautiful and you don’t ramble on like some mofos.

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  5. Sandy

    November 21, 2013 at 9:35 pm

    Can I substitute Soy sauce with Braggs Amino Acid?

  6. Donna murphy

    October 31, 2013 at 12:51 pm

    Love it

  7. melissa

    August 29, 2013 at 8:21 pm

    Just made this tonight for the family. They loved it! Thanks for the easy recipe

  8. Erin

    June 20, 2013 at 9:17 pm

    This recipie is marked gluten free but soy sauce in not gluten free.

    • Amber

      October 22, 2013 at 3:49 pm

      You can buy gluten-free soy sauce. voila.

  9. hopesicle

    March 21, 2013 at 1:49 pm

    I made this with cayenne pepper instead of curry powder and left out the scallions and while it was not very visually appealing (didn’t look anything like the photo!) my husband did enjoy it. One thing is I made and sliced the chicken and then let it sit in the sauce overnight once cooked, so maybe that is why it didn’t look appetizing. I served it over white rice. May try this again without letting it sit in the sauce once cooked

  10. Kim

    February 11, 2013 at 3:58 pm

    Is Maille Dijon Originale (Traditional) considered too spicy. it might me.

    • catherine

      February 11, 2013 at 5:29 pm

      It is for my kids, but that is my husband’s FAVE!

      • Kim

        February 25, 2013 at 2:23 pm

        I’m making this again, should I make this with one less tablespoon of Maille to combat the spice. it’s the only dijon i have on hand. thanks!

        • catherine

          February 26, 2013 at 1:16 pm

          Yes, I would just reduce the amount of mustard you’re using!

  11. Nancy

    December 18, 2012 at 1:00 am

    Can i make this with chicken tenders? if so how long in the oven for?

    • catherine

      December 18, 2012 at 12:39 pm

      I think this would work with tenders! Those will cook much faster. I’d check for doneness at 15-20 minutes!

      • Nancy

        December 18, 2012 at 12:47 pm

        Thank you for the quick respond:) I will make them today!

  12. Chris B

    October 23, 2012 at 1:39 pm

    I’d like to make this recipe, but I don’t have scallions. Can I substitute chopped onion?

    • catherine

      October 23, 2012 at 2:36 pm

      Yes, I would do about 2 tablespoons of chopped onions so it isn’t overpowering!

  13. Kristen

    October 16, 2012 at 5:38 pm

    My kids and I made this today and we loved it! Of course we didn’t have any curry in the house so based on the list of ingredients that make up curry, we mixed up our own version with what we had in the house (cinn, cumin, ground mustard, cayene, cloves and nutmeg)!

  14. Teresa

    September 27, 2012 at 8:06 pm

    I.m trying this recipe right now. It’s in the oven… I hope it turns out!!!

  15. Lisa

    September 12, 2012 at 10:11 am

    Just found the site yesterday and am loving it. After reading the comments, I wonder if the “curdling” that JF noted was the white stuff that comes out of chicken when it’s cooked. Also, I’m so disturbed lately at the amount of chicken that has been injected with, from 12-15%, water or broth. It really makes baked chicken dishes soggy as there is too much liquid to evaporate during a normal cooking cycle. Maybe this is what screwed up the glazing?

  16. Amy @ A Little Nosh

    August 16, 2012 at 12:01 pm

    I made this last night and it was wonderful. But today I’m having leftovers and it’s EVEN BETTER!

  17. Amy

    August 13, 2012 at 5:03 pm

    Do you bake the chicken with the marinade?

    • catherine

      August 13, 2012 at 5:15 pm

      Yes! Leave the chicken and the marinade in the baking dish. It turns into a great sauce!

  18. Nechama22

    July 3, 2012 at 8:34 pm

    Soooo good!

  19. Nicole

    June 28, 2012 at 9:16 pm

    Huge hit! I put it over whole wheat pasta and added some chopped up steamed broccoli and my kids gobbled it up:)

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  21. Theresa

    May 5, 2012 at 5:12 pm

    Delish! So easy, so tasty! Thanks for sharing.

    I’m not sure you really need to preheat the oven prior to marinating the chicken though 😉

  22. Louise

    March 27, 2012 at 2:27 am

    This is my 3rd Weelicious recipe in the last week, after finding it only a few weeks ago. This has already gotten the seal of approval from my fiance and 2yo daughter, will be a firm family favourite from here on out.
    From Louise, all the way in New Zealand.

  23. Deanna

    March 23, 2012 at 9:26 am

    Have this marinating right now and the marinade tastes and smells delish! (I tasted it before I put the chicken in!) I bet my kids will love it!

  24. Misty

    March 22, 2012 at 1:57 pm

    Made this last night for dinner and it was a huge hit! My husband and my one year old (who doesn’t eat alot of meat) gobbled it up! Love your website SO much!

  25. Noble Pig - Cathy

    March 22, 2012 at 12:48 am

    It sounds so good and so easy!

  26. Elaine

    March 20, 2012 at 3:10 pm

    I don’t have dijon mustard. What can I use instead of that? Thanks.

    • catherine

      March 21, 2012 at 12:36 pm

      The dijon mustard really adds a lot to this dish! There isn’t anything that I’ve tried that is a good substitute. You can use a different type of mustard, but that will alter the flavor of the dish.

  27. Yolanda

    March 16, 2012 at 4:03 am

    Will try. Looks yummy. I just have a brown rice question. I’ve never been able to cook brown rice well enough to make my fam eat it. Whats the best way to cook the rice and does the brand matter? When i make it always tastes uncooked and flavorless.

    • Elaine

      March 20, 2012 at 3:11 pm

      I cook brown rice in a rice cooker. Just follow the cups and water measurement, and put it on the brown rice setting, and that’s it. Sometimes you need to add a little more water for brown rice, so it won’t be so chewy.

    • Rachel

      March 18, 2012 at 3:01 pm

      I struggle with brown rice as well, instant brown rice turns out better for me than regular, but my best success is with using a rice cooker and following the instructions to a T. I received my rice cooker as a gift and thought it was a ridiculous appliance but have come to appreciate it for the wonderful job it does on brown rice. (Also use it on the porch with the crockpot in the summer to avoid heating the kitchen)

    • catherine

      March 16, 2012 at 11:15 am

      You might need to cook it longer. Brown rice can sometimes take an hour to cook! Follow your package directions, but check on it every now and then to make sure it still has enough water. If it looks like the water is almost gone and you still have half an hour of cooking time left, add a little more water! For more flavor try cooking it in Chicken Stock instead of water, or adding a pinch of salt to the cooking water.

      • Yolanda

        March 18, 2012 at 11:40 pm

        Thanks for your suggestions. I tried cooking it again in chicken broth and it made a big diff in flavor. I will diff try it in the rice cooker. Im sure it cooks in less time too, which i need more of with 3 kiddos

        • Deanna

          March 23, 2012 at 9:24 am

          Just another tip: sometimes I do half water and half pineapple juice or apple juice if I’m doing something that will go with tropical rice. Yummy! But yes, broth instead of water goes a long way for brown rice. I use low sodium ones.

  28. hkcayanan

    March 14, 2012 at 2:00 pm

    Marinating right now I hope it taste as good as it sounds!

  29. Dena

    March 14, 2012 at 12:55 pm

    Thank you, Catherine! A huge hit with the entire family (4 yr old and 14 mo old included!). Full of flavor, perfect kick of curry. And truly lived up to the “no work” name. So pleased to add this to our rotation.

  30. JF

    March 13, 2012 at 8:42 pm

    Hi Catherine,
    My family loves all of your recipes – thank you so much! I tried this tonight and it was so tasty – served it over quinoa. But – it looked nothing like your gorgeous photo … the sauce broke I think – it looked curdled and did not thicken or leave a pretty glaze on the chicken like in the photo. Any idea what I did wrong? Thanks!

    • catherine

      March 14, 2012 at 11:26 am

      That is so strange! There isn’t anything in the sauce that would curdle. I mix all the sauce ingredients in the baking pan and baste the chicken about half way through the cooking time. Maybe basting it more than once would help the sauce smooth out more? I wish I could jump through my computer screen and help you!

      • JF

        March 14, 2012 at 3:42 pm

        ha! thanks – i wish you could too : )
        i will def try it again because it was so delish and my almost 2 year old went crazy for it. i feel like the mustard was the issue but i don’t know why … it just never incorporated properly. also, at any point do you cook the chicken uncovered?

        • Dillian

          February 5, 2014 at 6:06 pm

          The paragon of unranstedding these issues is right here!

        • catherine

          March 14, 2012 at 5:15 pm

          Nope! I keep it covered the whole time. How long did you marinate it? What brand and type of mustard are you using? I use Grey Poupon. Maybe you need to whisk the mustard into the other ingredients to help break it up a little more.

        • JF

          March 16, 2012 at 8:23 pm

          Okay – I’m going to try again. I marinated for about 2 hours and used Grey Poupon also but maybe I didn’t whisk it enough. Thanks for your help!

  31. Stefany

    March 13, 2012 at 12:11 pm

    Great recipe! Always looking for something different for chicken!
    (yesterday I put a cut up fryer in the crockpot with some bbq sauce, some salt & pepper, and water, put on low for 8.5 hours… delish!)
    By the way, my daughter cannot get enough of your graham crackers! I have the recipe taped to the side of the fridge because we make them so much (and of course she helps… she’s 2). Love that they are egg-free so we can sample the dough!

  32. Tonia

    March 13, 2012 at 9:42 am

    Just had your chicken tortilla soup for lunch(kids #1 fav meal I make). Def going to make this for supper, have everything on hand…going to go good with brown rice and grilled asparagus :)
    Cheddar crackers just out of the oven as well. It’s a weelicious day here :)

    • catherine

      March 13, 2012 at 11:29 am

      Love it! Thank you for your comments!

  33. claudia rosa

    March 13, 2012 at 5:46 am

    i used little pieces of pork, that’s all i have in the fridge, i will let you now how they turn out…i am very excited!

  34. abby

    March 12, 2012 at 11:51 pm

    any substitute for soy sauce? my daughter’s allergic to soy. :(

    • catherine

      March 13, 2012 at 11:50 am

      Braggs Liquid Amino Acids is a great product and tastes like Soy Sauce!

  35. Molly

    March 12, 2012 at 2:42 pm

    i don’t have dijon mustard on hand. can i use another mustard? or is there a substitute? i have stadium mustard (not sure but i think it’s like a spicy mustard) and normal mustard on hand. thanks

    • catherine

      March 12, 2012 at 3:26 pm

      Dijon mustard and yellow mustard are so different in flavor that I wouldn’t substitute one for the other. You can substitute the dijon if you must, but just know that the flavor will be different!

      • Molly

        March 12, 2012 at 3:40 pm

        thanks, catherine!

  36. Lauren @KidEats

    March 12, 2012 at 12:53 pm

    This looks delicious! I will make it this week!

  37. Emily

    March 12, 2012 at 12:35 pm

    Do you think it would still be flavorful without the curry? My husband is not a fan of curry.

    • catherine

      March 12, 2012 at 12:56 pm

      I tried this recipe with no curry powder and it just wasn’t as full-flavored. I scaled way back on the curry powder because I know it isn’t a super popular ingredient but it really does add that “extra something” to this dish, and you can’t even really pick it out when tasting this recipe! Curry powder is a mixture of: Turmeric, Corriander, Mustard powder, Cumin, Paprika, Cayenne, Cardamom, Nutmeg, Cinnamon, and Cloves. It’s just such a great combination of flavors I wouldn’t want to leave it out!

    • Stephanie in AK

      March 12, 2012 at 12:51 pm

      That’s what I’m wondering also. Should I just leave it out, or what would be a good substitue seasoning?

  38. Sophie

    March 12, 2012 at 11:55 am

    Hi Catherine,
    Looks great! Would this work with a skinless boneless turkey breast?

  39. Valerie

    March 12, 2012 at 11:30 am

    I make something similar with just dijon, honey, and curry in the sauce and don’t marinate it before baking. It is so easy and one of our favorite dinners served with rice, quinoa, or couscous. I’m definitely going to try it with the soy sauce and marinading it beforehand next time!

  40. BeansMama

    March 12, 2012 at 11:21 am

    I am terrible when it comes to cooking chicken. I always destroy it! I will have to try this recipe. That marinade sounds awesome.

  41. Surabhi

    March 12, 2012 at 9:47 am

    This is fantastic! Have some chicken already defrosting and will serve with leftover vegetable fried brown rice. Thanks!

  42. april

    March 12, 2012 at 9:03 am

    Think I will use this marinade and have my husband grill the chicken. Thanks!

    • Lynda

      March 13, 2012 at 12:42 pm

      Hi. Just a hint – any marinade with that ratio of honey might burn on a grill. He should watch it very carefully.

  43. Kirsten D

    March 12, 2012 at 8:34 am

    we don’t eat meat but that marinade sounds awesome! i think i’m going to try it with tofu. yummmm!

  44. Rebecca Selway

    March 12, 2012 at 7:37 am

    Thanks for good recipe. Gonna try this week!!!!

  45. Ashia mann

    March 12, 2012 at 7:36 am

    Yep. We are eating this tonight with asparagus, cabbage and brown rice!