White plate with chicken marsala, mushrooms, linguine, and freshly grated parmesan
Mains, Pasta

No Cream Chicken Marsala

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Chicken marsala is one of the first things I learned to cook growing up. When I recently told a close friend that I had started a food blog, she told me her parents still rave about the chicken marsala I made them back in middle school. This friend happens to be an amazing cook, so I’m sure it was a tag team effort. It made me laugh to think about cooking dinner for someone’s parents at such a young age, and it also brought back some pretty hilarious memories of our own choreographed dance to Shania Twain’s “Any Man of Mine”. Good Lord would I love to get some of that sass back. I’m sure there is a video somewhere. If I ever come across it, I’ll be sure not to post ; ).

That throwback chicken marsala came from All Recipes, and I kept some of the original elements like oregano and cooking sherry. My version, like the original, also doesn’t call for cream. It is all wine and butter over here! Any dish cooked in wine, butter, and mushrooms is a winner in my book, and this one is an Italian classic (or at least an Italian-American classic). I suppose I’ll have to travel to Italy to find out if that was an accurate statement. Anyway, I’ll share a few tips then let’s get to it!

Cooking the Chicken Marsala

The most important part of making the chicken marsala is keeping the pan heated to the right temperature. You want to get it hot enough that it will form a golden crust on the chicken, but not so hot that you burn the brown bits that will be left behind in the pan. These tiny golden bits add so much flavor and sweetness to the sauce when you deglaze your pan. I keep my burner on medium heat, but you may need to reduce it slightly as the chicken cooks to make sure everything stays nice and golden brown. See picture below. I definitely could have gotten a better crust on the outside, but per usual, I was in a rush and overcrowded my pan. One day, I promise I will start following the rules. It was still delicious!

sauté pan white golden pan-fried chicken breasts cooking in olive oil and butter. Red circle around the brown sucs in the bottom of the pan
Don’t want these guys to burn!

What to Serve With Chicken Marsala

My favorite way to eat chicken marsala is on top of linguine that has been tossed in the marsala wine sauce. Throw some freshly grated parmesan cheese on top, and serve with french bread and a glass of white wine. You can substitute any kind of pasta, but I think a long, thin noodle works best. You could also serve this over mashed potatoes using the sauce as a gravy or with white rice in the same way. Another option is to serve the chicken marsala on its own with fresh sides like green beans or broccoli. I hope you enjoy! Let me know how you serve it.

This one’s for you Carrie...

P.S. Dylan if you’re reading this…this was basically what my life was like before I met you. Dancing cowgirl. I don’t know what happened.

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White plate with chicken marsala, mushrooms, linguine, and freshly grated parmesan

Chicken Marsala


  • Author: Katelyn
  • Prep Time: 15
  • Cook Time: 25
  • Total Time: 40
  • Yield: 4 1x

Description

Golden, pan-fried chicken breasts smothered in a rich marsala wine and butter sauce, and served over linguine with sautéed mushrooms. Pure deliciousness. 


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 1/2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breast
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 6 tablespoons butter, divided  
  • 3 tablespoons shallots, minced
  • 8 oz cremini mushrooms, sliced 1/2 inch thick
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3/4 cup marsala wine
  • 1/4 cup cooking sherry 
  • 1 cup chicken stock 
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme, plus more for garnish
  • freshly grated parmesan cheese 
  • lemon juice (one squeeze)

Instructions

Linguine

  • Cook according to package directions, drain, and toss with a little olive oil to prevent sticking while you cook the chicken marsala. Don’t forget to salt your pasta water!

Preparing the Chicken

  1. Cut each chicken breast in half lengthwise and pound out to an even thickness of about 1/4 inch. 
  2. Mix the flour, kosher salt, black pepper, and oregano in a gallon sized ziplock bag.
  3. Add the chicken breasts to the bag, seal, and shake until each piece of chicken is evenly coated in the flour mixture. 

Cooking the Chicken Marsala

  1. Melt 2 tablespoons of butter and 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat in a stainless steel skillet.
  2. Add the flour coated chicken and gently cook until one side is golden brown, flip once and continue to cook until the chicken is cooked through. Remove chicken from pan to let rest. 3 to 4 minutes per side. I always use a meat thermometer to make sure the final temp comes to 165 degrees. 
  3. Remove the chicken from the pan and set aside to let rest. 
  4. Add the cremini mushrooms, shallots, and a pinch of salt back to the pan. Cook for 4 to 5 minutes until softened through. I covered my pan with a lid to speed up the process. 
  5. Add the minced garlic and cook for 30 seconds to one minute stirring constantly.
  6. Deglaze the pan with the marsala wine and cooking sherry, being sure to scrape up any brown bits from the pan. Reduce the liquid by 1/2.
  7. Add chicken stock and thyme and again reduce the liquid by 1/2 and until you reach a sauce like consistency. You should be able to drag your cooking utensil (spoon, spatula, etc.) through the sauce without it coming back together right away.
    sauté pan with rich marsala wine sauce and mushrooms. Red arrow pointing to line drawn in sauce with wooden spatula 
  8. Swirl in 3 tablespoons of cold butter. 
  9. Add the chicken and juices  back to the pan and turn to coat in the sauce. Allow the chicken to warm through. 
  10. Add one squeeze of fresh lemon juice at the very end to waken up all those flavors! 

Finish the Dish

  1. Place the chicken breasts on individual plates. Spoon a bit of sauce over each piece of chicken.
  2. Toss the linguine in the remaining sauce and plate alongside the chicken.
  3. Top with freshly grated parmesan and garnish with fresh thyme if desired. 

Notes

  • It is fine to use all marsala wine and leave out the cooking sherry. Just increase the amount of marsala wine to 1 cup. 
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Pan-Fry
  • Cuisine: Italian-American

Keywords: chicken marsala, linguine, mushrooms

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2 Comments

  1. This recipe was easy to make and really tasty. I rediced the sauce too much, so next time I’ll make sure to cook it less.

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