Easy Chicken Marsala (30 Minute Meal)
Chicken marsala is a one pot, 30 minute meal made with golden brown chicken cutlets, savory mushrooms and a rich marsala wine sauce that is every bit as tasty as an restaurant version!
EASY CHICKEN MARSALA (30 MINUTE MEAL)
How many of you have ordered chicken Marsala from a restaurant before? The chicken is thin, crispy around the edges, and coated in a luxuriously flavorful sauce. And of course, the mushrooms!! Mmmm, the mushrooms. While the basics of the recipe are very similar across all versions, the sauce can vary from creamy to dark. For this version, I chose to keep the sauce dark and rich, but feel free to add a splash of cream to lighten it up if you’d like!
I love that chicken Marsala is a one-pot dish… easy cleanup!!
USE THE RIGHT MARSALA WINE
Marsala wine is a fortified wine that can be found in grocery stores. There are two main kinds; sweet and dry. Since chicken marsala is a savory dish, dry is definitely recommended. If you’ve never had marsala wine before, it’s very deep in flavor, and won’t disappoint in this dish!
SUBSTITUTION OPTIONS FOR MARSALA WINE
If you don’t have or can’t find marsala wine, my favorite substitution is Madeira wine, or even a nice dry white wine. However, if you don’t want to use any alcohol at all, you can use an equal amount of beef broth or stock, but bear in mind, this won’t have the same classic flavor.
Asparagus isn’t a traditional part of the dish, but since it’s in season right now, I couldn’t resist grabbing some when I was at the store. It looked so vibrant! I like to blanch mine in boiling water for a few minutes, then shock it in an ice bath. Then I just chopped it and tossed it right into the pan with the chicken Marsala for some great flavor, not to mention great color 🙂
HOW TO MAKE RESTAURANT-QUALITY CHICKEN MARSALA
- Use quality ingredients! This recipe doesn’t have a long ingredient list, so each ingredient needs to be amazing. Remember, quality doesn’t have to equal expensive.
- Either slice chicken breasts in half (horizontally) into thinner pieces, or pound them until they are about 1/2 inch thick. Not only does this help make this a 30 minute meal by allowing the chicken to cook through quickly, but it also ensures that each bite isn’t all chicken and nothing else.
- Don’t be afraid of those browned bits on the bottom of your pan after cooking the chicken. Those bits = TONS of flavor. Just use a wooden spoon to gently scrape the bottom of the pan as the mushrooms and onion are cooking.
While it may look fancy, this is a meal that’s perfect for a busy weeknight! Just 30 minutes is all it takes, and you could be sitting down to this amazing meal.
GREAT SIDE DISH OPTIONS FOR CHICKEN MARSALA
- Crockpot (no boil) Mashed Potatoes
- Cheesy Roasted Broccoli
- Semi-Homemade Garlic Bread
- Bourbon Glazed Carrots
- Caesar Salad (with homemade dressing – it’s so easy, I promise!)
PRO TIPS FOR MAKING CHICKEN MARSALA:
- The flour used is for not only making the chicken nice and crispy, but for thickening the sauce as it cooks.
- Use a combination of olive oil and butter when cooking the chicken. The olive oil ensures the butter doesn’t burn, and the butter lends amazing richness and flavor to the dish.
- To save yourself some time, some grocery stores offer “thin cut” chicken, or chicken cutlets. These are a great option since they don’t need any slicing or pounding to be nice and thin.
- Use any combination of mushrooms you like. I’ve used all cremini (or baby portobello), all white button, and a combination of both.
- 4 chicken breasts sliced horizontally or pounded until 1/2" thick
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1/3 cup + 1 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
- 5 Tbsp olive oil , divided
- 3 tbsp unsalted butter , divided
- 8 oz white button mushrooms sliced
- 8 oz cremini mushrooms sliced
- 2 Tbsp shallots (or your favorite onion) minced
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 2/3 cup dry Marsala wine
- 2/3 cup beef stock
- sprig of fresh thyme (optional)
- Fresh parsley minced, for garnish
To a large pan or skillet, add 2 Tbsp olive oil and 1 Tbsp butter and heat over MED-HIGH heat.
Sprinkle pounded chicken cutlets with salt and pepper on both sides, then lightly dredge in the 1/3 cup flour. Shake off excess flour and add chicken to hot pan. Work in batches if needed, as over-crowding the pan will prevent the chicken from crisping up.
Cook chicken about 3-4 minutes per side, until golden.
Transfer chicken to a plate and set aside.
Add 2 Tbsp olive oil and 1 Tbsp butter to the pan and add mushrooms.
Saute about 5-8 minutes, seasoning with salt and pepper about half-way through cooking.
Remove mushrooms to plate with the chicken and set aside.
Add remaining 1 Tbsp olive oil, then add shallots and garlic. Saute about 1 minute, until soft and fragrant.
Sprinkle in the 1 Tbsp flour and stir to coat. Cook for a minute to get the flour taste out.
Pour in Marsala wine and beef stock, scraping the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon.
Cook, stirring often, for 2 minutes, or until sauce is slightly thickened.
Slide chicken and mushrooms back into the pan, making sure to get all the juices from the plate into the pan - that's pure flavor there!
Add 1 Tbsp butter to the center of the pan, toss a sprig of thyme in there if desired, then cover the pan and let cook about 2 minutes.
Stir and spoon sauce over chicken.
Garnish with parsley if desired and serve.
1. Recipe adapted slightly from Saveur
2. Can be served over pasta, mashed potatoes, rice, quinoa, veggies, whatever you'd like.
3. If you want asparagus in your recipe, like in my photos, here are those instructions:
- Blanch asparagus in boiling water for about 2 minutes, then shock them in a bowl of ice water.
- Dry asparagus on paper towels, then add them to the pan when you cover it and cook it the last two minutes.