This Smothered Chicken recipe is an easy, creamy, cheesy skillet dinner complete with Green Chili Sour Cream Sauce on your table in less than 30 minutes!
This Smothered Chicken recipe is inspired by my ridiculously popular Smothered Chicken Burritos, but in easy, 30-minute, pantry friendly skillet form! Lightly breaded chicken cutlets are seared until golden, juicy perfection then smothered in a green chili sour cream sauce spiked with cilantro and lime. Pile the Smothered Chicken recipe with your favorite toppings such as tomatoes, avocados, salsa, tortilla chips, etc. and serve with a side of cilantro lime rice and Mexican salad to complete the feast.
One skillet chicken dinners are a weeknight lifesaver – you can never have enough! Some of our back-pocket favorites include Creamy Tuscan Chicken, Creamy Mushroom Chicken, Creamy Cajun Chicken, Lemon Pepper Chicken and Asparagus, Chicken Piccata, Coconut Chicken and Italian Chicken and Orzo.
HOW TO MAKE Smothered Chicken Recipe VIDEo
SMothered Chicken Recipe Ingredients
This creamy Smothered Chicken is made with every day, pantry friendly ingredients that combine into flavor fireworks! You will need:
HOW TO MAKE SMOTHERED CHICKEN
This Smothered Chicken recipe is easy to make by following a few simple steps. The meal comes together so quickly that I recommend starting your sides (rice, toppings, etc.) first so they can be ready by the time your dish is complete. Here is a more detailed look at how to make the recipe (full printable recipe with measurements in the recipe card at the bottom of the post):
- Step 1: Season the chicken. The chicken is dredged in a flavorful mixture of chili powder, smoked paprika, flour, garlic powder, onion powder, salt and pepper. The flour helps create a crust of flavor that soaks up the sauce while also insulating the chicken.
- Step 2: Cook the chicken. Cook the chicken in a large skillet in a mixture of melted butter and oil for a few minutes per side, until golden and cooked through. Browning the spice coated chicken blooms the spices and unlocks the flavor. Transfer the chicken to a plate but don’t wipe out the skillet – those golden bits left behind are flavor gold!
- Step 3: Combine the sauce ingredients. Melt some Danish Creamery Butter in the chicken drippings, then whisk in some flour and cook for about 2 minutes. This eliminates the raw flour taste and smell while creating a flavorful roux. Next, gradually whisk in the chicken broth followed by the green chilies, jalapenos and all seasonings.
- Step 4: Simmer the sauce. Bring the sauce to a simmer until it thickens almost to your desired consistency. You don’t want it too thick at this point because it will continue to thicken once you add the sour cream and cheeses.
- Step 5: Add cheese. Stir in cheese until melted, followed by the sour cream, cilantro and lime juice.
- Step 6: Add chicken. Add the chicken back to the pan and spoon some sauce over top.
- Step 7: Toppings! Serve with desired toppings such as tomatoes, jalapenos, cilantro, avocados, crushed tortilla chips etc.
WHAT TOPPINGS FOR Smothered CHICKEN?
Topping your Smothered Chicken adds bright, fresh pops of flavor and texture. You can create a toppings bar so everyone can customize their own servings. Some of my favorites include avocados and pico de gallo.
Tips for MAking the Best Smothered Chicken
This Smothered Chicken recipe is pretty straightforward, but here is a summary of helpful tips:
- Use freshly grated cheese. Only use freshly grated cheese because packaged cheeses contain chemicals which prevent it from easily melting.
- Remove chicken from the fridge before cooking. Never cook chicken or any protein cold straight from the refrigerator otherwise it will cook unevenly. Instead, remove the chicken from the refrigerator about 15 to 20 minutes before you’re ready to start cooking.
- Dry chicken before seasoning. Pat the chicken dry with paper towels before seasoning to help the flour and seasonings stick – and since we are not rinsing the chicken, we are just drying any moisture from the packaging.
- Reduce heat if needed when cooking the chicken to prevent burnt drippings. The actual cooking temperature for your chicken will depend on your pan, stove and chicken breast thickness, so be prepared to be flexible and lower the heat as needed. We want deeply golden drippings left in the pan and not black remnants. If your drippings are burnt, your whole dish will taste burnt.
- Scrape up golden bits while simmering the sauce. After you cook the chicken there will be golden bits on the bottom of the pan – these are flavor gold! Make sure to scrape up the bits to maximize the flavor of your sauce.
- Only flip chicken once when it easily releases from the pan. Resist the urge to move the chicken as it cooks or to flip it more than once. The chicken needs to stay in the same place for a continuous amount of time to brown. When the chicken is browned, it will naturally release from the pan. If it is sticking, then it’s not ready to be moved, so be patient and cook on to prevent tearing.
- Don’t overcook the chicken. Chicken, especially chicken breasts, are juiciest when not overcooked. The best and most efficient way to check for doneness is to insert a meat thermometer into the chicken; chicken breasts are done when they register 165 degrees F.
- Season to taste. At the end of cooking taste and additional salt if needed. Lime juice, cayenne pepper or hot sauce also really awaken the flavors.
- Don’t simmer the sauce until thickened. The sauce should be almost thickened to desired consistency because it will continue to thicken once you add the cheese and sour cream.
- Thin sauce, if needed: If the sauce becomes thicker than you like, stir in additional chicken broth a little at a time.
- Reduce the salt: If you know you’re going to be topping your Smothered chicken with tortilla chips, you may wish to reduce the salt in the sauce.
possible recipe variations
This Smothered Chicken recipe can be mixed up many ways such as adding vegetables, corn, tomatoes, etc. Here are a few ideas:
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Smothered Chicken with Green Chili Sour Cream Sauce
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GREEN CHILI SOUR CREAM SAUCE
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 3 tablespoons chopped cilantro
- 1 tablespoon lime juice
- 1/2 cup freshly shredded sharp cheddar cheese
FOR SERVING (Pick your favs!)
- cilantro lime rice
- chopped tomatoes
- chopped avocados
- crushed tortilla chips
- minced cilantro
- Slice the chicken breasts in the half through the equator to create 4 fillets. Cover with plastic wrap and pound to an even thickness (use a meat mallet or side of a can). Pat dry.
- Whisk 2 tablespoons flour and all of the chicken seasoning together in a shallow dish. Dredge each cutlet in the mixture, shake off any excess, then transfer to a dry surface.
- Melt 2 tablespoons butter in 2 tablespoons oil in a large saucepan (I love my braiser) over medium-high heat. Once hot, add chicken and cook each side for 3-4 minutes (depending on thickness) until golden and cooked to 160 degrees F on an instant read thermometer. Transfer chicken to a plate, don't wipe out the skillet.
- Melt 1 tablespoon butter in the chicken drippings over medium heat. Whisk in flour and cook for 2 minutes. Reduce heat to low and gradually whisk in the chicken broth followed by the green chilies, jalapenos and all seasonings.
- Bring the sauce to a simmer while scraping up any brown bits on the bottom of the pan; simmer until sauce thickens almost to desired consistency (it will continue to thicken once you add the sour cream and cheese), stirring often.
- Reduce heat to low and stir in the cheddar cheese until melted, followed by the sour cream. Stir in lime juice and cilantro.
- Add chicken back to the pan and spoon some sauce over top. Serve with desired toppings such as Cotija, tomatoes, jalapenos, cilantro, avocados, crushed tortilla chips etc.
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