Carrie, we all have different tastes and seasoning gets a lot more complicated when you consider the range or flavourings available around our planet. Having children to please adds more complications. Chicken breasts bring so little flavour to the party that you have another challenge using them.
We know you don’t want complicated mixtures, so no Col. Harland Sanders’ recipes for you. i’ll try to keep a complicated subject simple. Other than the basil, all of the seasonings Alyssa suggests should be in your pantry if you live in the left or south-left USA. (To me, dried basil has an unfavourably “muddy” flavour, particularly when compared to fresh.)
If you live elsewhere you might be able to cook without the adobo although it should be a basic in your chilli mix. I’d add nutmeg to Alyssa’s list because a pinch adds something mysteriously special to many items, particularly stews, vegetables, and sauces. Consider it an option. It all depends how delicious you want your meals to be.
I would also add fresh cilantro and Italian parsley as finishing herbs. If you have a sunny windowsill you can easily grow your own basil, parsley, and cilantro. A pot of chives would be a flavouring bonus. Growing herbs is a great home project for children. Put each pot in a slightly larger one to keep roots cool. A thorough watering once a week is usually enough. If they can be trusted with a scissors let them harvest too.
Salt and pepper, particularly ground white pepper, plus any single item on Allyssa’s list would be an easy and favourable start for you. If you don’t particularly like any items on the list, don’t use them. I advise cooks to use more seasoning than they think is enough. Most home cooking i get is by far under seasoned for my taste.
Here’s a chef’s secret for you, rub dried herbs between your palms a few times before adding to your menu item. It wakes them up flavour wise.
If my advice is still too complicated, when you encounter a chicken dish you actually enjoy ask how it was seasoned. There are also bottled seasoning blends available in all grocery stores. I find the ingredients in products from McCormicks are of uniformly high quality.
Now for your bonus question:
- take Alyssa’s advice, frozen chicken should be seasoned after thawing just like fresh. If you are cooking from frozen, season well on all sides before searing.