Tray bake recipes with salmon, chicken, and sausage – The Boston Globe

With school back in session, timesaving tray bakes are a great solution for busy families who can’t (or don’t want to) spend all night at the stove top. Simply assemble the ingredients on a baking sheet and roast; you can even build an easy sauce from the drippings. Quick-cooking salmon fillets get coated in a harissa and roasted pepper sauce that comes together quickly in the blender. For chicken thighs, miso and a couple of additional high-impact Japanese ingredients boldly flavor a tray bake. And potatoes and sweet peppers round out a meal of sausages bathed in a tangy-sweet glaze.
Makes 4 servings
Moroccan-style red chermoula — a bold, warmly spiced sauce that’s often served with fish — is the inspiration for this colorful tray bake. Our weeknight-friendly version calls on smoky harissa, a North
African chili and spice paste, plus sweet roasted peppers, earthy cumin, bright lemon juice, and fresh garlic and parsley, all whirred together in the blender. Harissa spiciness varies by brand, so we suggest a measurement range.
Large zucchini won’t work in this recipe. They tend to contain many seeds and will turn soft and mushy with cooking. Instead, look for medium to small zucchini.
Serve with couscous, rice, or warmed flatbread.
½ cup drained roasted red peppers, chopped
½ cup lightly packed fresh flat-leaf parsley, plus chopped parsley to serve
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice, plus lemon wedges to serve
1 to 2 tablespoons harissa paste
1 medium garlic clove, smashed and peeled
½ teaspoon ground cumin
Kosher salt
4 6-ounce center-cut salmon fillets, patted dry
3 medium zucchini (about 1½ pounds total), cut into ¼-inch cubes (see headnote)
1 ripe medium tomato, cored, seeded, and chopped
½ cup pitted green olives, chopped
Heat the oven to 425 degrees with a rack in the middle position. In a blender, combine the roasted peppers, parsley, oil, lemon juice, harissa, garlic, cumin, and ½ teaspoon salt. Puree until smooth, about 30 seconds. Measure out 2 tablespoons, then spread it onto the flesh side of the salmon fillets.
On a rimmed baking sheet, toss the zucchini with ¼ cup of the remaining puree; transfer the rest of the puree to a bowl for serving. Roast until the zucchini is tender, 20 to 25 minutes, stirring halfway through. Remove the baking sheet from the oven and sprinkle the tomato and olives over the zucchini. Scrape up and stir the zucchini and push it to the edges.
Place the salmon skin side down in the center of the baking sheet. Roast until the flesh flakes easily and the zucchini is lightly charred, 8 to 10 minutes. Transfer to a platter and sprinkle with parsley. Serve with lemon wedges and the remaining sauce.
Makes 4 servings
This umami-packed sheet-pan meal combines a few Japanese staples to delicious effect. Mirin is a sweetened rice wine used for cooking; look for it in the international aisle of the supermarket or in Asian grocery stores.
Remember to pat the chicken dry. The drier the surface of the thighs, the better the miso seasoning clings to the pieces. And make sure to rub the miso into the slashes so the chicken is seasoned throughout.
The mushrooms release moisture as they roast, which not only prevents the drippings from scorching but also creates juices that, after defatting, are served with the chicken as a sauce.
½ cup mirin
6 tablespoons white miso
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon finely grated fresh ginger
Ground black pepper
3 pounds bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs, trimmed and patted dry
1 pound cremini mushrooms, trimmed and quartered
1 bunch scallions, whites cut into 2-inch lengths, greens cut into 1-inch lengths, reserved separately
1 tablespoon unseasoned rice vinegar
Heat the oven to 450 degrees with a rack in the middle position. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil and mist with cooking spray. In a large bowl, whisk together the mirin, miso, soy sauce, ginger, and ½ teaspoon pepper.
Using a sharp knife, cut 2 parallel slashes on each chicken thigh, slicing through the skin down to the bone. Add the chicken to the miso mixture and turn to coat, rubbing it into the slashes. Place the chicken skin side up on the prepared baking sheet, spacing the pieces evenly apart. Add the mushrooms and scallion whites to the now-empty bowl; toss to coat with the miso mixture remaining in the bowl. Add the vegetables to the baking sheet, scattering them around the chicken.
Roast until the chicken and mushrooms are well browned and the thickest part of the thighs reaches about 175 degrees, 30 to 40 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a serving platter, then use a slotted spoon to top it with the mushroom mixture. Sprinkle with the scallion greens. Pour the pan juices into a medium bowl, then use a wide spoon to skim off and discard the fat; stir in the vinegar, then taste and season with pepper. Serve the chicken with the sauce.
Makes 4 to 6 servings
In this recipe, we cook savory Italian sausages on top of potatoes, onions, and bell pepper so that the rendered meaty juices flavor the vegetables. To finish the dish, a mixture of vinegar and honey is poured over the hot vegetables, forming a delicious tangy-sweet glaze.
1 pound Yukon Gold or russet or red potatoes, cut into ½-inch wedges
1 medium red or yellow onion, halved and sliced about ½-inch thick
1 medium red or orange or yellow bell pepper, stemmed, seeded, and sliced about ½-inch thick
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon dried oregano or dried rosemary
Kosher salt and ground black pepper
1½ pounds sweet or hot Italian sausages or other fresh sausages, poked in several places with a paring knife
¼ cup white wine vinegar or red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon honey
3 tablespoons rinsed and drained capers or ¼ cup pitted green or black olives, roughly chopped
Chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley, optional, for garnish
Heat the oven to 450 degrees with a rack in the middle position. On a rimmed baking sheet, toss together the potatoes, onion, bell pepper, oil, oregano, and 1 teaspoon each salt and pepper, then distribute in an even layer. Roast until the vegetables begin to soften and brown, 18 to 20 minutes, stirring once halfway through.
Remove from the oven and stir the vegetables again, then arrange the sausages on top. Continue to roast until the centers of the sausages reach 160 degrees and the vegetables are tender and lightly browned, another 20 to 25 minutes. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, stir together the vinegar and honey.
When the sausages are done, transfer them to a cutting board, leaving the vegetables in the pan. Pour the vinegar mixture over the vegetables and stir, scraping up any browned bits. Add the capers (or olives) and toss, then taste and season with salt and pepper. Transfer to a serving dish.
Cut the sausages on the diagonal into 1-inch pieces, then toss with the vegetables. Served topped with the parsley, if using. Or, serve the sausages whole with the vegetables alongside.

Christopher Kimball is the founder of Milk Street, home to a magazine, school, and radio and television shows. Globe readers get 12 weeks of complete digital access, plus two issues of Milk Street print magazine, for just $1. Go to Send comments to


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