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This delicious Creamy Tuscan Chicken is a combination of beautiful colors and Italian flavors. Cooked in one pot and ready in 30 minutes, this restaurant quality dish is sure to become a staple in your recipe book!
Best Creamy Tuscan Chicken Recipe
Prepare to be captivated by my Creamy Tuscan Chicken – tender morsels of chicken swathed in a sumptuously creamy and vibrant sauce. It’s a one-skillet wonder that’s pure comfort food, effortlessly blending gourmet flavors with straightforward preparation.
The sauce, oh the sauce! It’s an indulgent blend of tangy sun-dried tomatoes, aromatic onions, fresh garlic, wilted spinach, lush half-and-half, and Parmesan cheese. The result is a richly layered, intensely satisfying dish that will transport you straight to the heart of Tuscany, right from the comfort of your kitchen.
Why You’ll Love This Creamy Tuscan Chicken
- Easy Gourmet: It’s an effortless way to bring gourmet, restaurant-quality flavors into your kitchen.
- One-Pan Wonder: It’s all cooked in one pan for an easy cleanup and streamlined cooking process.
- Versatile Dish: It’s perfect for a simple weeknight dinner yet impressive enough for entertaining guests. It pairs beautifully with pasta, rice, or a crusty loaf of bread.
- Olive Oil: Provides a great base for sautéing and enhances the flavor of the chicken. If you don’t have olive oil, you can use any other neutral cooking oil.
- Chicken Breasts: The protein for our dish. It’s lean, healthy, and soaks up the Tuscan sauce wonderfully. You can also use chicken thighs if you prefer darker meat.
- Salt and Pepper: To taste, and add a simple, classic seasoning to the chicken.
- Sun-Dried Tomatoes: They offer a concentrated burst of tangy tomato flavor and a unique texture. If not available, you can use fresh cherry tomatoes or roasted bell peppers.
- Onion and Garlic: These build the aromatic base for our sauce. No good substitutions here, as they are fundamental to the flavor!
- Spinach: Adds a boost of nutrition and a pop of vibrant color. If spinach isn’t your thing, you can substitute with kale or Swiss chard.
- Half and Half: Gives that creamy consistency to our sauce. If you want a lighter version, you can use milk. For a richer sauce, use heavy cream.
- Italian Seasoning: Provides a blend of classic Italian flavors. You can make your own mix using my recipe here.
- Parmesan Cheese: For that indispensable cheesy goodness. Pecorino Romano or Grana Padano can also be used.
- Fresh Basil: For garnish, delivering a fresh finishing touch. Fresh parsley would also work.
Let’s dive into this scrumptious Creamy Tuscan Chicken recipe, which is surprisingly simple and entirely foolproof.
Get your skillet nice and hot with a splash of olive oil. You’re going to cook your chicken until it’s beautifully browned and cooked through – about 3 minutes on each side should do it. Once it’s done, move it over to a plate and set it aside.
In the same skillet, drizzle in some oil from your sun-dried tomatoes – trust me, it’s like liquid gold. Toss in your chopped onion and let it sweat until it’s all softened and fragrant. Now’s the time for the garlic, followed by the sun-dried tomatoes. Give it all a good stir and then add your spinach until it just starts to wilt.
Now pour in the half and half cream, add the Italian seasoning, and season it with salt and pepper. Let everything bubble up to a gentle boil. Once it’s there, turn down the heat and let it simmer a bit. Go ahead and stir in that gorgeous Parmesan.
Keep stirring until your sauce thickens into creamy perfection. Now, let’s add that chicken back to the skillet and let it heat through, just a minute or so. Make sure to spoon some of that glorious sauce over the chicken and, for the grand finale, sprinkle some fresh basil on top.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I use chicken thighs instead of chicken breasts for this recipe?
Absolutely! Chicken thighs can bring even more flavor due to their higher fat content. Just ensure they’re cooked thoroughly – you’re aiming for an internal temperature of 165°F (74°C).
I can’t find half-and-half cream. What can I use instead?
You can make your own by mixing equal parts of heavy cream and whole milk. Alternatively, you could use all heavy cream for a richer sauce, or all milk for a lighter one, though the latter will not be as thick or creamy.
What can I serve with this Creamy Tuscan Chicken?
I’m vegetarian. Can I make this dish without the chicken?
Absolutely. You can replace the chicken with firm tofu or a plant-based chicken substitute. You could also load up on more vegetables like bell peppers and zucchini, or even add some white beans for protein.
- Don’t Overcook the Garlic: Be careful not to burn the garlic when sautéing. Burnt garlic can give your dish a bitter taste. You only need to cook it until it’s fragrant, which takes about 30 seconds.
- Use Freshly Grated Parmesan: For the best flavor, grate your own Parmesan cheese. Pre-grated cheese often has additives to prevent clumping, which can affect the flavor and melting properties.
- Adjust the Creaminess: If you want your sauce even creamier, you can add more half and half or even substitute some with heavy cream. If the sauce is too thick, simply thin it with a little chicken broth.
Any leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for about 3 to 4 days, or if you prefer to freeze it, ensure it’s cooled completely and place it in a freezer-safe container. It will keep well for up to 2 to 3 months. When you’re ready to serve it again, simply defrost in the refrigerator overnight and warm it up on the stovetop. A brief simmer should restore any thinning in the sauce due to freezing.
Other Delicious Recipes You’ll Love
- Chicken Parmesan
- Tomato Tortellini Soup
- Italian Stuffed Peppers
- Chicken Cacciatore
- Spaghetti Bolognese
- One Pot Chicken Florentine Gnocchi
- Italian Wedding Soup
- 1 tablespoon oil (from sun-dried tomatoes)
- 1 large onion (finely chopped)
- 3 cloves garlic (minced)
- ½ cup sun-dried tomatoes (drained, chopped, keep the oil)
- 6 ounce spinach (chopped)
- 1½ cups half and half
- 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
- ¼ teaspoon salt (or to taste)
- ¼ teaspoon pepper (or to taste)
- ½ cup Parmesan cheese (freshly grated)
- 1 tablespoon fresh basil (for garnish)
- In a large skillet heat the olive oil over medium high heat. Once heated, add the chicken and cook for 3 minutes on each side or until browned and cooked though. Once cooked transfer to a plate; set aside.
- In the same skillet, add the saved sun-dried tomato oil and heat over medium heat. Next, add the onion and let cook for about 5 minutes until softened or translucent. Add the garlic and let it cook for about 30 seconds until aromatic. Then, add the sun-dried tomatoes and let cook for an additional 1 minute. Finally, add the spinach and cook until it begins to wilt – about 1 – 2 minutes.
- Stir in the half and half cream, Italian seasoning, and salt and pepper and bring everything to a boil.
- Once at a boil, bring the heat down and allow the dish to simmer, while stirring in the parmesan cheese until the sauce thickens.
- Add the chicken back to the skillet and cook for an additional minute until it has heated through. Spoon the sauce over the chicken, garnish with basil, and serve any way you wish!
- Chicken: Using boneless and skinless chicken breasts will give you the best results. You can also use chicken thighs if preferred.
- Spinach: Fresh spinach is recommended for its texture and flavor. Frozen spinach can be a quick substitute, but ensure it’s well-drained to avoid excess water in the sauce.
- Half and Half: This refers to a mixture of equal parts cream and milk, creating a lighter, creamy consistency. If you don’t have it on hand, substitute with equal parts heavy cream and whole milk.
- Sun-Dried Tomatoes: We’re using oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes for added flavor. If you only have dry ones, rehydrate them in warm water before using.
- Parmesan Cheese: Freshly grated Parmesan cheese melts better and offers a superior taste than pre-shredded. It’s worth the extra step!
- Adjust to Taste: Remember, the salt and seasoning levels are to your preference. Adjust as needed, especially if your sun-dried tomatoes are particularly salty.
Notice: Nutrition is auto-calculated for your convenience. Where relevant, we recommend using your own nutrition calculations.