Chicken with Tomato Herb Pan Sauce

posted in: Chicken, Main Dish        date:

Chicken breasts are elevated with a tomato herb pan sauce made with butter, oregano and cherry tomatoes.

Chicken with Tomato Herb Pan Sauce

In case you haven’t noticed, I really like tomatoes. I dread when summer ends and tomatoes are no longer in season. Luckily, there’s still some time left before that happens, and I plan on taking advantage of local, in-season tomatoes as long as I can. I have a few favorite recipes that use tomatoes, but I was beyond excited when I saw this one in July’s Bon Appétit. With cherry tomatoes and fresh herbs, it’s hard to go wrong.

This simple dinner looks incredibly stunning and tastes even better. The tomatoes, oregano and butter create a luscious pan sauce that is hard to resist. Eric and I enjoyed it so much that we even put some on top of the garlic rice pilaf we served with this. The chicken, even without the sauce, was incredibly flavorful, thanks to a technique we picked up from the insanely smart people at America’s Test Kitchen. Instead of just searing the chicken as the recipe called for, we coated it in a small amount of flour. Not only does the flour help create a wonderfully crisp crust, it also helps keep moisture inside, creating a chicken breast that’s nicely browned outside and perfectly juicy inside. I have reflected our changes below. If you’re looking for a way to dress up weeknight chicken, this is a great way to do so.

Chicken with Tomato Herb Pan Sauce

  • YIELD: 2 servings
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature

  • 1 garlic clove, minced

  • 1½ teaspoons chopped fresh oregano

  • ½ teaspoon sweet paprika

  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

  • 2 teaspoons olive oil

  • 2 cups cherry tomatoes (11-12 ounces)

  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley

  • 1

    In a small bowl, mix together the butter, garlic, oregano and paprika. Season to taste with salt and pepper and set aside.

    Heat oven to lowest possible temperature. Season both sides of the chicken breasts with salt and pepper. Measure the flour onto a plate. Working with one breast at a time, press both sides into the flour. Shake gently to remove excess flour and repeat with remaining breast.

  • 2

    Melt 1 tablespoon of the oregano butter with the 2 teaspoons of oil in a large skillet set over high heat. Reduce to medium-high when the butter stops foaming. Lay the chicken breasts in the skillet and sauté until browned on one side, about 4 minutes. Flip and continue cooking 3-4 minutes. Transfer to a small pan or oven-safe plate and keep warm while preparing sauce.

  • 3

    Increase heat to high and add tomatoes to the skillet. Cook, stirring occasionally, until they begin to char and burst, about 5 minutes. Add remaining butter. Crush tomatoes slightly to release their juices and continue stirring until butter has melted. Using a wooden spoon, scrape the bottom of the skillet to loosen the browned bits.

    Remove chicken from oven and stir in any juices that may have accumulated. Slice chicken and top with tomato sauce. Sprinkle with fresh parsley and serve.

SOURCE: Adapted from Bon Appétit, July 2011
COMMENTS: ( 20 )
  • I love fresh tomatoes too! Nothing beats them fresh off the vine from the garden. It’s be so ungodly hot that at first I was afraid I was going to have to use the oven to bake this dish, but as it’s all stove top this is going in my “must try soon” list. Thanks!

    • Courtney

      It’s been insanely hot here, too, and that’s another reason I like this dinner so much. All you need the oven for is to keep the chicken warm. If you don’t want to turn the oven on at all, you could always tent the chicken with foil while you make the sauce.

  • Sounds easy and delicious!

  • This looks wonderful! I’m hoping to be overrun with grape tomatoes from the garden soon so we can try this.

  • Blog is the New Black

    Looks and sounds delicious!

  • penandra

    This is similar to a recipe Mark Bittman had in the NYTimes a few years ago . . . but without the oregano! Although it has been insanely hot in most parts of the country, Northern California has been having cool nights and the only tomatoes ripening in my garden is the cherry tomatoes! Thank you for sharing this recipe . . . I know what I’m having for dinner this evening!

  • Beautiful! Looks delish!

  • Your photos are beautiful and this looks like such a delicious meal! Definitely saving this one 🙂

  • The Café Sucré Farine

    I am totally with you – one of the things I like best about summer is TOMATOES! And I’m getting ready to have a plethora of them from my garden – this is a great recipe to utilize some of them – thanks so much, Chris

  • This looks delicious and right up our alley – can’t wait to make it!

  • What a great recipe to use the masses of cherry tomatoes that are growing in my back yard!

  • That pan sauce is gorgeous! This really looks like a fabulous meal.

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  • Wow, that sounds absolutely delicious. I’m going to try it tonight!

  • This recipe looks great – I’m so happy I landed on your page, quite by accident really. I am always on the lookout for new and interesting recipes for my household and to make for special occasions. I cannot wait to try this recipe very soon. Thank you very much for posting!

  • Susan

    I made this tonight, it was WONDERFUL! I added a few more garlic cloves because I love garlic, and I served it with whole wheat angel hair pasta. Delicious, I will be making this again and again. Thank you so much !!

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  • a3m24ie

    I tried this last night–tasted pretty good for how bad it turned out! Any suggestions on how to not burn the garlic pieces? I’ve had trouble with that before in other recipes…

    Hopefully next time I won’t burn the remainder of the butter sauce so that I won’t need a new pan for my tomato sauce, thus losing the chicken juices 🙁

  • Michelle

    I cooked this today for lunch, it was delicious!! Thanks for the recipe, totally worth to try 🙂