One way to jazz up a boring chicken breast is with a great sauce, which is exactly what I do with this Chicken Alfredo. Alfredo sauce is very simple to make, with just a few ingredients and it’s a perfect match for chicken. The cream in the sauce provides a bit of fat, that the lean chicken doesn’t have, and of course the flavor of alfredo sauce is almost magical. Just a little bit on the plate and you’ve made what is otherwise a pretty ordinary meal into something that will look and taste great. It's easy enough for a quick after work more, but nice enough for a dinner party. Give it a try, and i hope you enjoy it!
Recipe overview and keys to success:
- With any chicken dish, it’s important not to overcook the meat. It’s lean and can dry out quickly. Use a very hot pan to sear it off, and have the sauce ready to go once the chicken is ready
- For the alfredo sauce, you need to use good quality ingredients. I like using heavy cream, as milk, or half and half have never worked right for me. And I also use authentic parmesan cheese, as others have tended to melt and clump up...which is not good for a sauce.
- When making the sauce, don’t boil it. Cream can easily boil right over the side of the pan, and actually catch fire. So reduce it slow on just a light simmer.
- Finally, if you end up over reducing the sauce, it’s easy to thin it out by simply adding a bit of water stirring it in slowly, until you’ve got the consistency you’d like.
Ingredients (for 2)
- 2 boneless chicken breasts
- 1 pint heavy cream
- 1/3 cup finely grated parmesan cheese
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped parsley
- Fresh ground black pepper
- Heat a sauté or sauce pan over medium heat and pour in the cream
- Bring the cream to a simmer and cooked until reduced by a third (15 – 20 minutes)
- Add several grinds of black pepper and the cheese stirring to incorporate
- Taste the sauce and adjust the seasoning if needed – set to the lowest heat possible, while you cook the chicken
- Season both sides of the chicken with salt and pepper
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees
- Heat a sauté pan over high heat, until it just starts to smoke, and coat the bottom with olive oil
- Gently lay in the chicken breasts in the pan to sear the first side for 3 – 4 minutes – with out touching or moving them
- Once seared, turn the chicken over to sear the other side for 2 – 3 minutes.
- If the breasts are thin, they may be fully cooked by this time. If not, move the whole pan into the oven for 2 – 4 minutes to finish cooking them through
- Remove the chicken from the oven and let them rest for 3 – 4 minutes
- While the chicken rests, check on the alfredo sauce, heating it if needed, as it may have thickened too much. If so, thin it out with some water while you re-heat
- Just before serving, add the chopped parsley to the sauce
- Serve the chicken with any side dishes you like, and spoon some alfredo sauce right over the top.
With simply cooked chicken breasts, I don’t usually go with a Chardonnay. However, because we’re pairing the chicken with a rich, creamy alfredo sauce, I think the body in Chardonnay, as well as the Oak will stand up very nicely with the cream sauce. Enjoy!