Chicken smothered in a deliciously rich and creamy mushroom and bacon gravy. Dig in!
This was one of those times when family dinner was actually…peaceful. If you have a 4 and a 2 year old you know what I’m talking about when I say that peaceful, cooperative family dinners a fairly rare occurrence. But this time was…bliss. Both kids were so engrossed in the meal, so contented, that my husband and I were actually able to enjoy the meal ourselves. We looked at each other with smiles of satisfaction and I had to wonder whether he was in my dream or I was in his. Wow, if only family dinner could always be like this! Both of our kids asked for seconds and our 4 year old remained at the table for a full 7 minutes after everyone else was done, savoring every last morsel. I made a mental note: Serve Smothered Chicken…every night. (If only it were that easy – HA!)
Mushroom and bacon lovers unite in this ultimate comfort dish. It’s one of those emotionally feel-good meals that leaves you feeling warm and fuzzy inside. Give it a try. You’ll find yourself setting aside everything you learned about table manners and picking up the plate to give it six solid licks to lap up every last drop of sauce (not that I’m speaking from personal experience or anything). And if you’re the parent of a toddler and preschooler or teenagers who can’t sit through a family meal without chaos breaking loose, this Smothered Chicken is your new secret weapon. Truly, this recipe belongs in the Top 10 Parenting Tips book.
And of course for those of you who are empty-nesters, married with no children or single with no children, you will thoroughly enjoy this meal, too. You just won’t have the added benefit of experiencing the emotional relief that accompanies a meal eaten in an atmosphere of peaceful cooperation and quiet – and that there, ladies and gents, is what raises this dish from a 10 to a 10++!
Let’s get started!
Cut the chicken breasts in half lengthwise to form thinner fillets. Sprinkle both sides with salt and freshly ground black pepper. You don’t have to do that, it’s just my preference. You can use the breasts whole and use four of them – there will still be plenty of sauce.
Dice up the bacon and slice the mushrooms.
Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat, make sure the pan is good and hot, then add the chicken and sear both sides until browned. Transfer the chicken to a plate and set aside. Leave the browned bits on the bottom of the pan – that’s what’s going to add a lot of glorious flavor to the sauce!
Fry the bacon until crispy. Don’t drain the bacon grease – that’s a MUST for flavor. And don’t worry, it won’t kill you. Keep in mind this is divided between four people. Plus, it’s okay to live a little once in a while.
Add the mushrooms and cook until the mushrooms are soft, 3-4 minutes.
Add the garlic and cook for another minute.
Add the butter, melt, then the flour and stir until combined. Cook for 30 seconds.
While whisking constantly, pour in the heavy cream and milk. Bring the sauce to a simmer and continue whisking until the sauce is thickened.
Add the parsley and salt.
Nestle the chicken breasts in the sauce and spoon some sauce over them. Reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent burning.
And salt and pepper to taste and serve immediately garnished with some fresh parsley.
- 2 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts cut in half lengthwise to form 4 thinner chicken fillets, both sides sprinkled with salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 5 slices thick-cut bacon, diced (use more bacon if using thin-sliced)
- 6 ounces white button or cremini mushrooms, sliced
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1-2 tablespoons butter
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- 1 cup heavy cream or half-and-half
- 2 cups whole milk
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Fresh parsley for garnish
- Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. When the pan is hot, add the chicken and sear both sides until browned. Transfer to a plate and set aside, leaving the browned bits in the bottom of the pan.
- Add the bacon and cooked until crispy. Add the mushrooms and cook until soft, 3-4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for another minute. Add the butter, melt, then add the flour and stir to combined. Cook for 30 seconds.
- While whisking constantly, pour in the heavy cream and milk. Bring the sauce to a simmer and continue whisking until the sauce is thickened. Add the salt and parsley.
- Nestle the chicken breasts in the sauce and spoon sauce over them to cover. Return the sauce to a simmer, reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent burning. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately garnished with some fresh chopped parsley.