About the Recipe
Chicken Marsala is a classic Italian-American dish that's crowd-pleasing, quick, and irresistible. The slightly sweet and savory sauce made of mushrooms, aromatics, and Marsala wine is straight-up drinkable, thanks to the not-so-traditional addition of heavy cream. It's the perfect weeknight dinner, and we don't even feel guilty making it three nights in a row. It's a real plus that this dish comes together in just 35 minutes.
1 1/2 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts (2 to 3)
1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 tsp. Italian seasoning
2 tsp. kosher salt, divided
1/2 c. all-purpose flour
4 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, divided
3 tbsp. unsalted butter, divided
8 oz. cremini mushrooms, thinly sliced
1 shallot, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, sliced
1 tbsp. chopped fresh thyme
3/4 c. Marsala wine
1 1/4 c. low-sodium chicken broth
3/4 c. heavy cream
1 tbsp. chopped fresh parsley
What kind of chicken works best for chicken Marsala?
There’s a reason boneless, skinless chicken breast is the traditional choice for this dish. Chicken breast is the perfect canvas for adding a ton of flavor, and the lean cut helps to balance the heavy sauce. Halving the chicken before frying also ensures that it’ll cook quickly while still yielding a golden brown crust on the outside.
What kind of mushrooms are best for chicken Marsala?
The most common choices are cremini or white button mushrooms, which will yield a delicious result every time.
What kind of wine is Marsala?
Marsala is a Sicilian fortified wine, which is a wine that has had a distilled spirit like brandy or cognac added. The fortification process lends a deep brown color and a distinct blend of richness and caramelized sweetness to the wine, making it an ideal match for the umami-rich mushrooms here. That sweet and savory flavor combo is what makes chicken Marsala so delicious and irresistible.
If you can find it, opt for real Marsala wine instead of the cooking wine you might find next to the vinegar and oil in the grocery store. Look for a dry Marsala wine rather than sweet, so that the final sauce is balanced. If you can’t find Marsala wine, try another dry fortified wine like vermouth, Madeira, dark sherry, or port.
Chicken Marsala serving ideas:
Angel hair pasta is our go-to for this dish: The thin noodles soak up all of that yummy Marsala sauce. If you’re not feeling pasta, you can also go for any side that serves that same purpose. Try fluffy mashed potatoes, herby wild rice, or even toasted crusty bread.
Pat chicken dry and remove tenderloin from breasts. Butterfly each breast, then separate butterflied halves to create 4-6 thin pieces; season both sides of chicken with pepper, Italian seasoning, and 1 1/2 teaspoons salt.
Pour flour into a shallow dish. Dredge each piece of chicken in flour, coating both sides, and tap off any excess.
In a large skillet over medium-high heat, heat 1 tablespoon oil, then melt 1 tablespoon butter. Add half of chicken and cook, turning occasionally, until golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate. Repeat with 1 tablespoon of oil and remaining chicken.
In the same skillet over medium heat, heat 1 tablespoon of oil. Add mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add shallot and remaining 1 tablespoon oil and 1/2 teaspoon salt and cook, stirring frequently, until translucent, about 2 minutes. Add garlic and thyme and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add wine and cook, stirring occasionally and scraping browned bits from bottom of pan, until reduced by half, 4 to 5 minutes. Add broth and cream and bring to a simmer. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the sauce starts to thicken, about 15 minutes.
Stir in remaining 2 tablespoon butter until melted. Return chicken to skillet spoon sauce over chicken until heated through, 2 to 3 minutes. Top with parsley.