Chicken Marsala is Really Very Tasty!


Occasionally, I go to the Whole Foods by my work when I forget lunch. I am sometimes seduced by the hot food bar. “Come to me…” it taunts. “All kinds of cuisines…look, above me, it says Global…” It looks good, it all smells good, but when I get back to work I am almost always disappointed. Except not by the Chicken Marsala. Never by you, Chicken Marsala.

So, when I was at the store the other day and I saw some Marsala wine, I decided to pick it up and make my own Chicken Marsala. And so I did. Oh! So good. And I even decreased the butter that was in the original recipe (6 tablespoons, I believe) and used half and half instead of full on cream. It worked fine with half and half and sure, it would probably have been creamier with the cream, but I didn’t miss it. Just, if you use half and half instead of cream, try to keep it at a simmer (instead of an actual boil) after adding the h&h.

Oh, and I made the recipe with half of the chicken listed below (2 huge breasts, about 1.25 pounds total) and made the full sauce recipe. Good move!

Chicken Marsala
Adapted from a recipe in Gourmet Magazine
1 3/4 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth (14 fl oz)
2 tbsp finely chopped shallot (or white onion)
2 tbsp unsalted butter
1 big clove garlic, minced
12 oz mushrooms, trimmed and thinly sliced (I used a mix of cremini and shitake)
1 1/2 tsp finely chopped fresh sage
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp black pepper
1 cup all-purpose flour
4 skinless boneless chicken breast halves (2 lb total — or use 2 breasts for 2 people but make all the sauce)
2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons dry Marsala wine
1/2 cup heavy cream (or half and half)
1 tsp fresh lemon juice
More fresh, chopped sage and some chives for garnish

Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 200 degrees F. Bring broth to a boil in a 2-quart saucepan over high heat, then boil, uncovered, until reduced to about 3/4 cup, about 15-20 minutes.


Cook the shallot (or diced onion) in 2 tablespoons butter in a big, heavy skillet over moderate heat, stirring, until shallot begins to turn golden, about 1 minute. Add mushrooms, garlic, 1 teaspoon of the sage, salt, and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until liquid mushrooms give off is evaporated and mushrooms begin to brown, 6 to 8 minutes. Remove from heat and set mushrooms aside in a bowl. You’ll reuse the big skillet to cook the chicken — don’t bother wiping it out.


Put flour in a wide shallow bowl. Gently pound chicken to 1/4 inch thick between 2 sheets of plastic wrap using the flat side of a meat pounder or a rolling pin. Pat chicken dry and season with salt and pepper, then dredge in flour, 1 piece at a time, shaking off excess.


Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in the skillet over moderately high heat and sauté chicken, (in batches, if needed) turning over once, until golden and just cooked through, about 4-6 minutes total. Transfer cooked chicken to a baking sheet, arranging in 1 layer, then put in the oven to keep warm.


Add 1/2 cup marsala wine to skillet and boil over high heat, stirring and scraping up brown bits, about 30 seconds. Add reduced broth, cream, and mushrooms, then simmer, stirring occasionally, 5 to 6 minutes. Add remaining 2 tablespoons wine and 1/2 teaspoon sage.


Add chicken back to pan to coat in sauce. Serve over pasta, giving it all a quick squirt of lemon juice (about a teaspoon’s worth) before serving. Garnish with fresh sage and chopped chives.


This was really very good. I think we’ll definitely have it again. Mainly because it was so good but also because I have a whole bottle of Marsala wine at home now…

2 Replies to “Chicken Marsala is Really Very Tasty!”

  1. Mmmm, creamy chicken goodness on top of my favorite dinner starch! What can be wrong with that besides nothing?! That bit of Italian-esque deliciousness will find its way onto my dinner table soon…thanks for sharing.

  2. Found you through your Chicken Marsala recipe! Marvelous, and wonderful site – Would love to be on your e-mail list if possible

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