The ultimate weeknight dinner, ready in 30 minutes or less! With the ability to switch up the protein or play with different flavor add-ins, this versatile meal will be a family favorite!
Chicken breasts have a bad reputation for being dry and bland. In this recipe, the chicken is moist and tender, and positively dripping with a velvety garlic sauce. Definitely not bland at all!
COOKING CHICKEN BREASTS
For this recipe, I like to either buy thinly sliced chicken, or slice regular chicken breasts in half from right to left, opening them like a book. This is a good photo tutorial, although I don’t usually pound the chicken.
The reason I do this, is two-fold.
- You can turn 2 chicken breasts into 4 cutlets, so it’s very economical.
- Thinner chicken cooks quicker, making this truly a 30 minute meal.
Dredging the chicken in a bit of flour helps give it a golden “crust”, and when you add the chicken back to the pan with the sauce, the flour helps thicken up the sauce.
Last but not least, DON’T clean out the pan between browning the chicken and making the sauce! All those browned bits of chicken are pure flavor GOLD!
MAKING THIS CHICKEN BREASTS RECIPE WITH OTHER PROTEINS
The beauty of this recipe is that it’s easy to make with other proteins as well!
We all get tired of chicken from time to time, so these are our favorite options:
- Pork chops
ADDITIONAL FLAVOR ADD-INS
I love versatile recipes, and this creamy garlic sauce is a great base to add other flavors to!
Some of my favorites are:
- Asiago cheese
- Fresh or dried herbs
- Sun-dried tomatoes
- Sautéed mushrooms
- Fresh spinach
- Basil pesto
While I think this meal is fabulous as is, you could serve it alongside some pasta for a truly stick-to-your-ribs dinner!
HOW TO MAKE A PAN SAUCE
Making a pan sauce is my favorite way to make a sauce because you don’t have to dirty another pan! Plus you get the added bonus of all the flavors of what was cooked in the pan before the sauce.
After the chicken has been browned on both sides and removed to a plate, add in a drizzle more oil and saute the shallot and garlic.
Add in the chicken stock and use a wooden spoon to really scrape the bottom of the pan. This loosens up any browned bits and incorporates that flavor into the sauce.
Add in the cream and seasonings, stirring well. Add in the cheese and butter and your sauce is complete!
This pan sauce method can be used to make just about any pan sauce you want!
SHOP THE RECIPE
- Cast Iron Skillet – I use this pan for just about everything in my kitchen and it’s perfect for getting that amazing sear on the chicken.
- Sharp Knife – I have a fancy Wusthof knife that I love (but is super pricey), but this knife is super close second for me, and you can’t beat the price!
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- 4 chicken breast halves
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 1/4 tsp paprika
- 1/4 cup all purpose flour (for dredging)
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 Tbsp butter
- 2 shallots, finely minced (or 1 small yellow onion)
- 2 Tbsp finely minced garlic
- 1 1/3 cups chicken broth or stock
- 1 - 1 1/3 cups heavy cream
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1/4 tsp dried Italian seasoning
- 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese (fresh is best)
- Add flour to a shallow dish. Season chicken on both sides with a total of 1/2 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp pepper, and 1/4 tsp paprika. Add chicken to flour dish, one at a time, turning to coat lightly in flour.
- Heat olive oil in heavy skillet over MED HIGH heat until hot. Add butter, then add flour-dredged chicken to skillet, being careful not to overcrowd the pan. If your pan is less than 12 inches across, you may need to brown the chicken in batches.
- Cook chicken for approximately 4-5 minutes per side, until cooked and golden brown. Remove to a plate and set aside.
- Reduce heat to MED LOW, and add a small drizzle of oil to pan (remember, DON'T clean it out!), then add shallots and cook for 2-3 minutes, until soft and fragrant. Add garlic and cook another 30 seconds or so.
- Carefully pour in chicken broth or stock, scraping the bottom of the pan to loosen any browned bits. Pour in heavy cream and stir well to combine.
- Cook 2-4 minutes, or until thickened slightly. Stir in 1/4 tsp each of pepper and Italian seasoning, and Parmesan cheese. Add chicken back to the pan, nestling them in and moving them around so the flour will help thicken the sauce.
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