This skillet chicken with cheddar chive sauce will be your new favorite spring dinner. The fresh chives and bright spring green garlic make it so lovely. It’s a cozy quick dinner for any day of the week.

skillet chicken with cheddar chive sauce

Why We Love This Recipe For Skillet Chicken with Cheddar Chive Sauce

This chicken and cheese sauce is creamy and cheesy. It’s family-friendly comfort food. But actually it’s healthier than you’d think because the sauce is made without heavy cream. Instead it uses chicken broth and non fat milk to keep calories in check. I like to serve it with this fresh green bean recipe, Glazed Roasted Carrots, mashed potatoes or cauliflower rice.

I love serving it in the spring and summer when green garlic and fresh chives are in season at the farmers market or in the garden. (Check out this site to find a farmers market near you.)

Recipe Highlights

  • Sharp cheddar adds a delicious tanginess to the cheese sauce.
  • Chicken broth and nonfat milk keep the calories in the sauce in check.
  • Even picky eaters will love it.
  • It’s a one-skillet recipe.

Key Ingredients For This Sautéed Chicken with Cheese Sauce

green garlic, chives
  • Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs: I use thighs because they’re so juicy and tasty. You could swap in the same amount of chicken breast. Cut them in half and adjust the cook time as needed.
  • Green Garlic: Green garlic is an immature garlic plant and is available in the spring from farmer’s markets, CSAs and well stocked supermarkets. It is more mild than mature garlic. If you can’t find it, substitute 1 cup of leek and 1 clove of chopped garlic. Follow the same instructions for how to clean a leek for green garlic.
  • Fresh Chives: You need a half cup for this recipe. You could use the greens only from scallions if you can’t find chives.
  • Dry White Wine: Any dry white wine will do here.
  • Reduced-Sodium Chicken Broth: Any store-bought chicken broth is great here.
  • Non-Fat Milk: I use non-fat milk here to cut calories. Reduced-fat or whole milk will also work.
  • Sharp Cheddar Cheese: Buy the sharpest you can find as this is what gives the cheese sauce its tangy, cheesy flavor.
  • Pantry Staples: Kosher salt, freshly ground black pepper, canola oil, all-purpose flour, dried thyme.

Step-by-Step Instructions to Make This Recipe

Step 1: Dredge chicken

Season the chicken with salt and pepper, then dredge the chicken in flour until well coated on both sides, shaking off excess. Set the chicken aside and discard the flour mixture, reserving ¼ cup for later.

Step 2: Start cooking chicken

Heat oil in a large heavy skillet over medium-high heat and cook the chicken until browned on both sides, 2 to 4 minutes per side. Transfer the chicken to a plate. Note the chicken will continue to cook in step 4.

Step 3: Start making cheese sauce

Add the green garlic or leeks, thyme and salt to the same skillet. Cook the aromatics until fragrant and starting to brown slightly, 1 to 3 minutes. Add the wine and cook, scraping up any browned bits until the wine has almost completely evaporated, 1 to 2 minutes. Sprinkle the reserved ¼ cup flour over the green garlic mixture and stir to coat. Stir in the broth and milk until the flour is dissolved. Bring the sauce to a simmer and cook until the sauce is slightly thickened, about 1 minute.

Step 4: Combine sauteed chicken with cheese sauce

Return the chicken and any accumulated juices from the plate to the skillet with the sauce and return to a simmer. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer, turning the chicken over in the sauce occasionally until the chicken is no longer pink in the center and is cooked through, 4 minutes longer. Transfer the chicken to a serving platter. Remove the skillet from the heat and stir in cheddar and chives into the sauce until the cheese is melted. Spoon the sauce over the chicken and serve.

Chicken and Cheese Sauce in a serving plate

FAQs and Expert Tips

How do you store this chicken and cheese sauce?

Let the dish cool down to room temperature before transferring it to an airtight container. Store in the fridge for up to 3 days. Reheat in a skillet or in the microwave until it’s hot before serving.

Can this recipe be made ahead?

To make ahead of time, prepare the chicken according to the recipe instructions (except this time, make sure to cook it all the way through), then store it separately from the sauce in the fridge. Reheat the chicken and sauce in a skillet over medium heat, whisking in extra milk as needed to thin out the sauce, until everything is hot and bubbly.

What types of cheese can be used in place of cheddar?

A variety of cheeses can be used in the cheese sauce, including gruyere, fontina or Monterey Jack. The type of cheese will affect the flavor and texture of the sauce.

Serving Suggestions

  • Either this Roasted Asparagus or this Grilled Asparagus would pair well with this springy chicken recipe.
  • If you like chicken pot pie, then you know how tasty chicken, creamy sauce and carrots are together. These Garlic Butter Cooked Baby Carrots complete this chicken recipe if you ask me!
  • Barley, whole-wheat couscous or brown rice would all be great whole-grain sides to soak up that cheesy sauce.

Thanks so much for reading! If you are new here, you may want to sign up for my email newsletter to get a free weekly menu plan and the latest recipes right to your inbox. If you make this recipe, please come back and leave a star rating and review. I would love to hear what you thought!

Happy Cooking! ~Katie

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skillet chicken with cheddar chive sauce

Skillet Chicken with Cheddar Chive Sauce


  • Author: Katie Webster
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 6 servings 1x

Description

This sauteed chicken with cheese sauce will be your new favorite spring dinner. The fresh chives and bright spring green garlic make it so lovely. It’s a cozy quick dinner for any day of the week.


Ingredients

Units Scale
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 6 boneless skinless chicken thighs, fat trimmed (about 1 1/2 pounds)
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 cup finely chopped green garlic* see ingredient note
  • 1/2 teaspoon dry thyme
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • 1 1/2 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 cup non-fat milk
  • 1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh chives

Instructions

  1. Sprinkle ½ teaspoon salt and pepper all over the chicken. Place flour in a shallow dish and dredge chicken in the flour, until coated, shaking off excess and setting aside. Reserve ¼ cup left-over flour mixture and discard the remainder.
  2. Heat oil in a large heavy skillet over medium-high heat. When oil is shimmering, but not smoking, add chicken to skillet and cook until browned on both sides, 2 to 4 minutes per side. Transfer chicken to a plate. Note chicken will continue cooking in step 4.
  3. Add green garlic or leeks, thyme and the remaining ½ teaspoon salt to the skillet, and cook, stirring until fragrant and starting to brown slightly, 1 to 3 minutes. Add wine, and cook scraping up any browned bits until the wine has almost completely evaporated, 1 to 2 minutes. Sprinkle the reserved ¼ cup flour over the green garlic mixture and stir to coat. Stir in broth and milk and stir until the flour is dissolved. Bring to a simmer, stirring often, and continue cooking until the sauce is thickened slightly, about 1 minute.
  4. Return the chicken and any accumulated juices from the plate to the skillet and return to a simmer. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, turning the chicken over in the sauce occasionally until the chicken is no longer pink in the center and is cooked through, 4 minutes longer. Transfer chicken to serving platter. Remove skillet from heat and stir cheddar and chives into the sauce until the cheese is melted. Spoon the sauce over the chicken and serve.

Notes

Make-Ahead Instructions: To make this skillet chicken with cheddar chive sauce ahead of time, prepare the chicken according to the recipe instructions (except this time, make sure to cook it all the way through), then store it separately from the sauce in the fridge. Reheat the chicken and sauce in a skillet over medium heat, whisking in extra milk as needed to thin out the sauce, until everything is hot and bubbly.

  • Prep Time: 35 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Category: Main Course
  • Method: Stove Top
  • Cuisine: American

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 thigh, and 1/3 cup sauce
  • Calories: 274
  • Sugar: 10 g
  • Fat: 11 g
  • Saturated Fat: 2 g
  • Carbohydrates: 29 g
  • Fiber: 11 g
  • Protein: 19 g

Keywords: skillet chicken,chicken with cheese sauce