This Blackberry Chicken with sweet, tart and savory blackberry butter sauce is a real show stopper! I will show you just how simple it is to make. With a few pantry staples, and frozen Oregon blackberries, you can elevate boneless skinless chicken breast from boring to sophisticated in just 30 minutes!
This post was sponsored by The Oregon Blackberry and Raspberry Commission. All opinions expressed here are my own. I was compensated for my time.
Why This Recipe Works
If your family loves chicken as much as mine does, then you are probably always on the lookout for a new way to prepare it that the whole family will love. I’ve shared more than 65 chicken recipes over the years, and I always love coming up with creative new ways to cook with it and make it more interesting.
This Blackberry Chicken is exactly that: an interesting and creative way to prepare chicken! It can be served with simple sides like my lemon quinoa steamed broccolini or grilled asparagus. Or you can add it on top of noodles or rice to soak up all that dreamy blackberry sauce!
Ingredient Notes For Blackberry Chicken
Frozen Oregon Blackberries
While fresh blackberries do work in this recipe, I prefer to use frozen Oregon berries for several reasons.
- Frozen blackberries are harvested and then flash frozen at the peak of their freshness which locks in bright berry flavors and peak nutritional values.
- Frozen blackberries from Oregon are grown on multi-generational family farms. It is important to these families to maintain the lands they farm on using sustainable practices.
- When thawed frozen berries have a naturally juicy texture that lends itself perfectly to make sauce! As they thaw and simmer in the red wine sauce, all that juicy goodness makes its way into the sauce making the most delicious berry taste!
To balance the acidity in the wine and blackberries, I found that I needed to add a touch of honey for sweetness. Don’t worry this is not a sweet sauce. The shallot and thyme make this definitely savory!
Because blackberries are pollinated by honey bees, I felt this was an appropriate sweetener! (Check out my Pear, Avocado and Honey Smoothie inspired by honey bees too!)
You can also use another natural sweetener if you prefer, such as agave, maple syrup or date molasses.
Boneless Skinless Chicken Breast
I used boneless skinless chicken breast to make this recipe. The quick saute, and velvety sauce with a touch of butter gives the lean chicken ejoyable richness and the chicken is not dry at all!
I love boneless skinless chicken thighs too, and they would work perfectly here. No need to pound them, but make sure to cook them opened up and flattened out, so they cook evenly. You’ll want four boneless skinless thighs for this recipe.
For the red wine sauce look for a mild red wine, like Pinot Noir. If you can find a Willamette Valley, Oregon Pinot even better! It will be right at home with the flavors of the Oregon Blackberries without competing for center stage.
How To Make Sauteed Chicken with Blackberry Sauce
This recipe is two main components, the chicken and the sauce. They are both cooked in the same pan but they have to take turns! Read on to see how to make this recipe.
Prepare The Chicken
Step 1. Pound The Chicken: One of the keys to cooking sauteed chicken breast without drying it out is to pound it to even thickness.
- Remove the chicken tenders from the breast meat and reserve them for another use like baked chicken fingers.
- Layer the chicken between two pieces plastic wrap. This just helps to keep the chicken from making a mess. Use the smooth side of a meat mallet to pound them to an even thickness
- You want the fat side to compress down (and spread) to a thickness equal to the thinnest part of the chicken, about ½ -inch thick.
- Remove the top piece of plastic and then while it is still laying on the plastic, sprinkle it with salt.
Step 2. Dredge with Flour: To help the chicken brown, and to also facilitate it soaking up the blackberry sauce it is coated with flour before browning. A simple dusting is all it takes!
Step 3. Saute The Chicken: To brown the chicken, cook it in oil in the skillet all by itself for about 3 minutes per side. It will not be cooked through, but it will continue cooking in a later step. Set it aside on a plate and keep it warm while you prepare the sauce.
Step 4. Make Blackberry and Wine Sauce:
- First sautee the shallot and thyme in a little more oil in the skillet for a minute to brown the shallot a bit.
- Then add in the red wine, blackberries, broth, salt and honey. Bring it to a simmer and let the blackberries thaw.
- Press down on them to check that they are tender. They should be easily crushed with the spoon (this takes about 2 minutes.)
Step 5. Puree and Strain the Sauce: Puree the sauce in the blender. (Use caution when blending hot liquids. Make sure the top is firmly on the blender before starting the motor.) Pour the pureed sauce through a fine mesh sieve back into the skillet.
Step 6. Cook the Chicken in the Sauce: To finish cooking the chicken, add it and any juices from the plate back into the skillet with the sauce and bring it to a simmer. Cook the chicken, while turning it often until it is cooked through and the internal temperature reads 165 degrees F.
Step 7. To Finish and Serve: Remove the chicken to a plate to rest. Whisk the unsalted butter into the sauce off the heat. Slice and serve the Chicken with the sauce. You can add parsley on top for garnish if you like.
FAQs and Expert Tips For This Recipe
You can use fresh berries in place of the frozen berries, but they will take slightly longer to soften in the wine mixture. Check to see if they are tender by pressing them with your spoon. Add more broth or water to thin if they sauce evaporates too much with the additional cooking time.
You can definitely make this without the flour and it will still be wonderful. The sauce will still be nice and thick and velvety without the flour. I do not recommend a gluten-free flour instead, and would simply say skip the dredging step and continue with the recipe as directed.
If you do not cook with wine, no problem! Instead you can substitute, 1/4 cup additional chicken broth mixed with 1/4 cup unsweetened pure cranberry juice or tart cherry juice. (These are different from cranberry cocktail and are very sour.) If you can’t find either of those juices you can use 1/3 cup broth plus 2 tablespoons lemon juice.
You can use a rolling pin or the smooth side of a small skillet to pound the chicken.
More Berry Recipes To Try
- This Raspberry vinaigrette is made with frozen raspberries and pairs well greens topped with almonds and goat cheese.
- This Blueberry Quinoa Tabbouleh is a twist on traditional tabbouleh and makes the most of fresh blueberries.
- This recipe for Chocolate Raspberry Paleo Muffins is a yummy breakfast or snack!
- This Red White and Blue Buttermilk Berry Tart is a beautiful dessert for the Fourth of July.
For more information about Oregon Berries, please visit their website here. If you make this recipe, please come back and leave a star rating and review, or share a photo on instagram and tag me and Oregon Berries. We would love to see your creations!
Happy Cooking! ~KatiePrint
This 30 minute Blackberry Chicken recipe is a gourmet dinner for Mother’s Day or a busy weeknight. The velvety blackberry sauce drizzled over sauteed chicken is a innovative, creative and delicious way to prepare boneless skinless chicken breast.
1 pound boneless skinless chicken breast
1 teaspoon coarse kosher salt, divided
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 shallot, minced
1 teaspoon dry thyme or 2 teaspoons fresh
1 ½ cups frozen blackberries, thawed
½ cup Pinot Noir
2/3 cup chicken broth
2 teaspoons honey
2 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
Chopped parsley for serving
1. Layer chicken between two pieces plastic wrap. Pound to even thickness, about ½ -inch thick. Remove plastic and sprinkle all over with ½ teaspoon salt.
2. Spread flour on a plate and dredge the chicken in it. Shake off excess. Discard the remaining flour.
3. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat until shimmering but not smoking. Add chicken and cook until browned, about 3 minutes per side. Transfer the chicken to a plate and cover with foil. (It will continue cooking in a later step.) Reserve skillet.
4. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil to the skillet and add the shallot and thyme. Sauté until the shallot is starting to brown, 30 to 90 seconds. Add blackberries, wine, honey and the remaining ½ teaspoon salt and bring to a simmer while stirring. Simmer until the blackberries are very soft and can be easily crushed with the back of a spoon, 2 to 4 minutes.
5. Transfer the blackberries to a blender and puree until smooth. Pour the blackberry mixture through a fine mesh sieve back into the skillet, pressing with the spoon. Discard solids in the sieve.
6. Add the chicken and any accumulated juices from the plate to the skillet and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook, turning the chicken often until the chicken is cooked through and the sauce is thick, 6 to 8 minutes. Remove from the heat and swirl and stir in the butter. Slice the chicken and serve with the sauce, topped with parsley.
Substitution For Wine
If you do not cook with wine, no problem! Instead you can substitute, 1/4 cup additional chicken broth mixed with 1/4 cup unsweetened pure cranberry juice or tart cherry juice. (These are different from sweetened juice or cranberry cocktail and are very sour.) If you can’t find either of those juices you can use 1/3 cup broth plus 2 tablespoons lemon juice.
- Serving Size: 4 ounces chicken and 3 Tablespoons sauce
- Calories: 350
- Sugar: 9 g
- Fat: 16 g
- Carbohydrates: 16 g
- Fiber: 3 g
- Protein: 30 g