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This easy, one pot chicken marsala is made in less than 30 minutes, prep included! Whip up this easy dinner and enjoy rich mushroom marsala cream sauce on top of seared, juicy chicken. It’s a meal your family or guests would happily enjoy!
If there’s one trick I’ve learned for making a weeknight dinner exciting, it’s to include a luscious, flavorful sauce. It can jazz up the simplest ingredients, even the humble chicken breast.
In just one pan, with common, easy to find ingredients, this chicken marsala recipe takes 2 chicken breasts and feeds at least 4. Caramelized mushrooms, garlic, and marsala wine build a beautiful flavor profile for a sauce that’s finished with all the good things, butter and cream. The result? A lick-the-spoon-clean chicken dinner that will take you only 30 minutes to get on the table.
What is Marsala Wine?
Marsala wine is a fortified, sweet wine that originated in Sicily. Fortified means that a distilled spirit has been added to the wine, in the case of Marsala, often brandy or a spirit made from a neutral grape. It can be marketed as sweet or dry (it tends to be sweet anyway), and is most commonly used to make delicious sauces.
The authentic stuff is fantastic if you can get your hands on it, but your supermarket marsala works perfectly in this recipe!
This version of creamy chicken marsala uses heavy cream and cornstarch for a quick and fool proof thickening method rather than flour, I think you’ll find the ingredients easy to find, and they come together in a truly lovely way.
- 2 chicken breasts – I use full size chicken breasts, you can also use 4 chicken cutlets.
- Button or baby bella mushrooms – I really recommend brown mushrooms for this!
- Garlic – Fresh garlic or prepared jarred garlic here, I would not substitute garlic powder.
- Marsala Wine – Can’t make chicken marsala without it!
- Chicken stock – You can also use vegetable stock if you don’t have chicken.
- Unsalted butter – This is important for flavor!
- Oil – The combination of oil and butter builds flavor but also allows the chicken to brown effectively.
- Salt & Pepper – Because we’re cooking!
- Heavy Cream – Cream, rather than relying on flour and butter, means a guaranteed creamy sauce.
- Cornstarch – This is the secret trick for a quick, flavorful sauce that works every time.
- Water – Just a touch to activate the cornstarch.
PRO TIP: Cornstarch is thickener made from corn. Mix it with cool water to make a slurry, then whisk into a hot liquid, to create a glossy, creamy sauce in just moments. It doesn’t affect flavor, and it’s fairly foolproof!
How to Make One Pot Chicken Marsala
This recipe is designed to yield plenty of extra, creamy marsala sauce. We all know that’s the best part! Be sure to have a pot of pasta, rice, or a nice loaf of bread on hand to soak up all the extra goodness. You can easily serve 4 with this, or double it and feed more!
The real secret to making this in 30 minutes or less? Taking a few minutes to first prepare your ingredients.
- Pull your chicken out of the fridge before you do anything else, the closer it comes to room temperature, the more evenly it will cook.
- Prep ALL of your ingredients before you begin cooking. Slice your chicken and mushrooms, mince your garlic, and have your other ingredients measured and ready. Those first 10 minutes of prep time are the secret to a successful 30 minute meal!
When you’re ready to cook…
- Heat a large, rimmed skillet over medium heat. When hot add in a tablespoon each of oil and butter.
- When butter is melted, add in your mushrooms with a ¼ tsp of salt. Let caramelize, stirring occasionally, about 3 to 4 minutes.
- Meanwhile, season your chicken with 1 teaspoon of salt, and 1/2 teaspoon of pepper (that’s total, not each).
- Remove your mushrooms from the pan once caramelized and turn up the heat to medium high, adding the next tablespoon of butter and oil.
- When butter is melted again, add your chicken to the pan, let it brown completely on each side. Don’t move it for a few minutes to ensure a good sear. This usually takes about 3 to 4 minutes per side.
- Remove the chicken to a wire rack set over a paper towel (keeps the crusty edges crusty), and turn the heat down to low. Add your garlic and stir for 30 seconds or until fragrant.
- Slowly pour in the marsala wine, scraping the bottom of the pan to release the browned bits (flavor). Next add in the stock, and return the heat to medium. Bring it all to a simmer.
- Once bubbling, let it cook for 2 to 3 minutes, then slowly begin adding in the cream while whisking. Next add in the final tablespoon of butter and stir until melted. Taste it now, add more salt if needed.
- Whisk together the cornstarch and water to make a slurry. Then begin pouring it in slowly to the sauce, whisking constantly. The sauce should thicken quickly, keep stirring.
- When thickened return mushrooms and chicken to pan and cook until everything is hot. Serve immediately!
- Wiping mushrooms clean with a damp paper towel, rather than washing them under water, will prevent them from retaining excess water. You’ll get better, quicker caramelization.
- Taste as you go! Taste a mushroom once they’re caramelized and add a dash more salt if you want it. Taste the marsala sauce before you add the cornstarch and adjust seasoning as needed.
- Be sure to whisk constantly and add your cream and cornstarch slurry in slowly. This helps the sauce become creamy without lumps, and ensures your sauce won’t break.
Absolutely. You can either slice in half, pound to about ½ inch thick, or use thin chicken cutlets that are prepped for you. I found that slicing an average chicken breast in half gave me the right thickness for it to cook through, without over or undercooking.
The cream plays an essential role in mellowing out the intensity of the wine for a pleasant rounded flavor. If you need to leave it out, increase the chicken stock to 1 cup, and use 1 tablespoon of cornstarch with half a tablespoon of water to thicken it properly.
Sure! I think that’d be delicious.
Yes. Let it cool to room temperature then store in a freezer safe container for up to 3 months. Allow to thaw in the fridge, then reheat in a pan or the microwave to enjoy later.
Eat & EnJoy
This has pretty instantly become a family favorite in my house. It’s so easy and satisfying. I promise you won’t be missing pricey chicken marsala from a restaurant. I hope you have fun making it, and as always Happy Eating!
Looking for more easy dinner ideas? Check out these recipes!
- Pork Tenderloin Spinach Salad
- Marsala Cream Pasta
- Lemon Garlic Baked Salmon
- Creamy Lemon Broccoli Pasta
- Minestrone Soup (Olive Garden Copycat)
- Grilled Steak with Basil Garlic Sauce
- One-Pot Veggie Pasta
- 2 large chicken breasts or 4 chicken cutlets
- 3 cup mushrooms, sliced 12 small mushrooms
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 12 ounces marsala wine 1 1/2 cups
- 2/3 cup chicken stock
- 3 tbs butter divided
- 2 tbs oil divided
- 2 ounces heavy cream 1/4 cup
- 1 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp pepper
- 2 tsp cornstarch
- 1 tsp cold water
- Slice your chicken breasts in half and set aside. Wash and slice your mushrooms and set aside. Mince garlic and assemble remaining ingredients.
- Heat a large, rimmed skillet over medium heat. When hot add in a tablespoon each of oil and butter. When butter is melted, add in your mushrooms with a ¼ tsp of salt. Let caramelize, stirring occasionally, about 3 to 4 minutes.
- Season your sliced chicken with 1 tsp of salt and a ½ tsp of pepper.
- Once golden, remove mushrooms to a bowl. Turn heat to medium high and add another tablespoon each of oil and butter.
- When the butter is melted, add chicken to the pan and sear on each side, until golden brown. About 3-4 minutes per side.
- Remove chicken and turn heat to low. Add garlic and stir until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
- Slowly pour in Marsala wine, scraping the brown bits from the bottom of the pan. When all the wine is added, add the chicken stock and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Once bubbling, let cook for 2 to 3 minutes.
- Slowly, while stirring, add in the heavy cream and final tablespoon of butter until completely combined. Taste and adjust salt if desired.
- Whisk together two teaspoons of cornstarch with one teaspoon of cool water until smooth. Slowly add the slurry into the pan while stirring.
- When sauce is thickening, return mushrooms and chicken to the pan, coating them with sauce and mushrooms until everything is hot.
- Serve immediately with a generous serving of sauce.
Nutrition information and cooking times are provided as a best estimate. Values may vary based upon ingredients and equipment.