Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Step-by-Step Recipe: Sauteed Chicken Breasts with Creamy Mustard Sauce

This recipe is how I learned why stainless steel pots and pans really are different from nonstick.  The first time I made this recipe, I made it in a nonstick pan, and it did not come out right--because it's not advisable to try to make a pan sauce in a nonstick skillet.  This recipe is also how I learned to make a real pan sauce, and how easy it is!  It comes from my beloved Martha Stewart Everyday Food cookbook.  The dish has a mildly French feel to it, due to the mustard (soooooo good) and the tarragon in the sauce.  It's also really quick to make, and seems fancier than it really is.

As I said the other day, I made this chicken dish with the potato-fennel gratin.  I also sauteed some spinach on the side.  (Why?  Because sauteed spinach is delicious, and because if the sauces from either the chicken or the gratin mixed in with the spinach, it would be delicious.) 

Recipe and pictures below the cut!

First, assemble the ingredients.

Season the chicken with salt and pepper.  Heat the oil in a stainless steel (not nonstick) skillet or sautee pan, and add the chicken.  Sautee on one side until the chicken releases, 5-6 minutes.  Sautee on the other side, until chicken is brown and cooked through.  Remove the chicken to a plate and keep warm.

Carefully add the wine to the pan (it will sizzle), and stir.  Allow to reduce by half, and add the mustard, cream, and tarragon.  Allow to cook, stirring, for a couple of minutes.  Reduce heat to low.  Pour the accumulated chicken juices from the plate with the chicken breasts into the sauce and stir.  Note: the recipe says you can use wine or chicken broth, but I think the wine is much better.  The broth results in a saltier sauce.

Spoon the sauce over the chicken breasts and serve.  Enjoy!

Sauteed Chicken Breasts with Creamy Mustard Sauce, from Martha Stewart's Everyday Food cookbook
Serves: 4.  Time: 20-25 minutes

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (6 ounces each)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine, or chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon dried tarragon (or 1 tablespoon chopped fresh)

  1. Sprinkle chicken breasts with salt and pepper. In a large skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add chicken; saute until cooked through, 10 to 12 minutes, turning once. Transfer to a plate; keep warm.
  2. Pour wine into hot skillet; cook, stirring, until reduced by half, about 1 minute. Whisk in cream, mustard, and tarragon. Cook, whisking, until thickened, about 2 minutes.
  3. Pour any accumulated chicken juices into sauce. Right before serving, drizzle cream sauce over chicken.


  1. Wow, that is one fabulous and yummy chicken recipe! The sauce seems so flavorful and I will really have a mouthful of that recipe. Thanks for sharing this yummy chicken breast recipes here. Have a great day!

  2. Thank you so much for information about this technique! My first time using my indoor grill and the chicken turned out fantastic!! Your instructions were easy to follow and yielded results even better than what I had hoped for. I look forward to delving deeper into your blog and learning even more. Thanks again:) Techlazy.com Crazyask.com Howmate.com

  3. Ok, you have just made my day. I was just talking to my husband about wanting to make more things from scratch. This is awesome. UpdateLand