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Lemon artichoke chicken is a simple skillet, stove top braise that uses pantry staples to deliver big flavor. Saucy chicken drums and thighs are coated in a lemon artichoke sauce that’s delicious over rice or pasta.
In the warmer months of the year, my obsession with braises means I often have to find a way to get my fix, without having the oven on for 3 hours or more.
Enter skillet lemon chicken with artichokes. It’s a simple stovetop braise that features light and bright flavors of lemon and artichoke hearts, all cooked down into saucy goodness.
In reality though, even though I tend toward chicken braises in the summer, they can be made all year. This lemon artichoke chicken especially, since it features pantry staples that I pretty much always have – or can easily get – 12 months out of the year.
So get out the dutch oven and get ready for a lemony, succulent chicken dinner that the entire family will enjoy.
Why Lemon Chicken with Artichokes is an easy, from scratch family meal
Chicken with artichokes and lemon is of those really tasty dishes that make cooking from scratch fun. I used a handful of ingredients that I pretty much always have on hand to make a hearty, flavorful meal that we ate for dinner, and lunch the next day.
- Chicken – I used 2 thighs and 2 drumsticks, but you can use whatever combination of bone-in cuts you like. (Yes I know they’re whole, so it looks like 2, but I butcher whole chickens and it’s simple to separate them after cooking!)
- Salt, pepper, garlic powder – these three make up a quick seasoning for the chicken.
- Sweet onion – I’m a little obsessed with sweet onions, I just love the flavor they bring to dishes. If not sweet, go with white onions or shallots. (or whatever is in your pantry!)
- Garlic – a few cloves of fresh garlic make the sauce sing. You could also use homemade roasted garlic!
- Lemon – just one medium lemon is all you need, zested and juiced
- Chicken stock – you can use store bought or homemade stock or broth, either chicken or vegetable.
- White wine – I literally always have a bottle of white wine in the fridge for cooking. I stick with pinot grigio, chardonnay, or viognier.
- Artichoke hearts – one 8 ounce jar of artichokes in water, unseasoned.
- Thyme – you can use fresh or dried here, or swap in rosemary if you prefer.
- Cream – A splash of heavy cream makes the sauce luscious, but you could also use half and half, coconut milk, or skip it all together.
- Oil – a high heat oil like grapeseed, canola, or sunflower oil makes searing the chicken easy.
How To Make Creamy Chicken with Artichokes and Lemon
A braise, especially a stove top one, is a really easy way to get tender, fall off the bone chicken with a sauce built right in. This lemon artichoke chicken is easy to make with a dutch oven or enameled cast iron skillet. In a pinch, a heavy duty, rimmed sauté pan would also work, so long as you have a lid for it.
To begin, get your pan heating with the oil over medium high heat. Then, gently pat the chicken dry and season it with salt, pepper, and the garlic powder.
Sear it on both sides until a golden brown crust forms, then remove it to a plate on the side and drop the burner down to medium heat. Add in the onions and garlic and stir frequently until softened.
Add the zest and the juice of the lemon with the white wine, stock, drained artichoke hearts, and thyme. Stir and bring it to a boil. Salt lightly to taste (you’ll adjust this later too, so go easy), then add the chicken and all the juice back into the pan.
Drop the burner down to medium low this time, cover the pan, and let it cook for 45 minutes while you do whatever else you need to for dinner. We like this with rice, pasta, homemade rolls, and a nice vegetable side dish.
After 45 minutes, remove the lid and turn up the heat again to medium high. Stir in the cream gently and let it simmer. Once reduced and thickened to a creamy sauce, taste it. Adjust the final salt and pepper as needed, and serve your chicken with artichokes and lemon to a hungry table.
Tips for Making Perfect Braised Chicken
- Bone-in is best. It allows the chicken to get tender and the sauce to cook at the same rate.
- When cooking with wine, always choose one that you would drink. For this recipe, any dry white wine is great (especially one with citrus notes), but avoid the sweet varietals like moscato.
- Taste every step that you can. Obviously don’t lick raw chicken please, but do taste the braising liquid before you return the chicken to the pan, before you add the cream, and before you serve. Restaurant quality flavors are often the result!
- Store leftover lemon artichoke chicken off the bone but in the sauce. It makes a really yummy, easy, saucy lunch the next day.
Frequently Asked Questions
I always try to anticipate the questions I would ask if I were reading this recipe, but if you have any I haven’t answered here, please leave a comment below.
Can I use boneless chicken instead? Yes you can, but instead of returning the chicken to the pan before closing it, let the sauce simmer, covered, for 10-15 minutes, then return the chicken to the pan, and cover again.
Can I use fresh artichokes to make this? I suppose technically it’s possible. But I personally wouldn’t go through the drama of turning 8 or more artichokes just to get the hearts for this. It’d be very, very costly, and time consuming.
Can I make this ahead? Sure, braises are often better the next day. I’d cook it until it was time to add the cream, then remove it from the heat and let it cool in the pan, uncovered. Then, refrigerate the whole thing. When you’re ready to cook, simply put the pan back on the stove and heat gently. When simmering, add the cream and continue with the recipe.
Can I use a slow cooker? It can be done! I always recommend searing the chicken first, but you can then build the sauce in your slow cooker on high, and cook the chicken for 2-3 hours.
You’ll love this Lemon Artichoke Chicken Braise because…
It’s a family friendly, simple meal that can be made any time of year. I love this recipe because it’s light enough to give me my braise fix in the middle of summer, but still has all the tender beautiful saucy goodness of a winter one.
I hope you enjoy the flavors in this dish, and if you love a good braise like I do, check out these other fun recipes on the blog:
- Dr. Pepper Braised Boneless short ribs
- Orange Braised chicken
- Mojo Style Braised Pork
- Red Wine Braised Brisket
- Crock Pot Pineapple Pork
I’d love to hear what you think, feel free to tag me on Instagram @theflourhandprint so I can see how it went! Until next time, Happy Eating!
- 4 pieces bone in chicken*
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon oil Grapeseed, canola, or vegetable
- 1 cup sweet onion 1/2 a medium onion
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic 3 cloves
- 1 medium lemon
- 3/4 cup dry white wine*
- 3/4 cup chicken stock
- 8 ounce jar of artichoke hearts in water drained
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme or 3 sprigs fresh
- Prep all your ingredients by dicing the onion, mincing garlic, zesting and juicing the lemon and draining the artichoke hearts.
- Begin heating your pan with the oil over medium high heat.
- Pat chicken dry and season with salt, pepper, and garlic powder.
- Sear in hot oil for 3 to 5 minutes on each side, or until a brown crust forms.
- Remove chicken to a plate and turn the heat down to medium. Add the onions and garlic to the pan and stir frequently, until the onions are softened and tender, about 5 minutes.
- Add in the lemon zest and juice, white wine, stock, artichoke hearts, and thyme and brine to a boil.
- Taste and add a pinch of salt if needed. Reduce the heat to medium low and return the chicken to the pot, skin side up, and cover.
- Cook for 45 minutes, or until chicken is fall off the bone tender.
- Remove the lid, turn the heat back up to medium and add the cream.
- Let it simmer, stirring, until the sauce is reduced and thickened. Taste and adjust salt and pepper, then serve.
Nutrition information and cooking times are provided as a best estimate. Values may vary based upon ingredients and equipment.