On my first trip to France in my early twenties, I came back with a set of French blue-handled bistro flatware that I ended up using for years, and seven jars of various types of Dijon mustard.
The mustard! I couldn't get over how good the mustard was, and so many varieties.
There was Dijon with herbes de provence, Dijon with tarragon, smooth Dijon, whole grain Dijon. For a girl raised on the bright yellow hot dog mustard, I was in heaven. These days I always have at least a couple jars on hand in the fridge, perfect for this Dijon chicken recipe.
A Quick and Easy Weeknight Meal
This is a true weeknight meal, ready in just over a half an hour from start to finish. The key is using thinly-pounded chicken cutlets, which cook in just a few minutes on the stovetop.
The sauce also comes together quickly. Sauté a few shallots in butter until softened, and then simmer with a little white wine, dried thyme, and of course, dijon mustard. Stir in the heavy cream at the end to finish the creamy sauce.
Best Chicken to Buy
Use boneless, skinless chicken breasts for this recipe, and then cut them into three roughly equal-sized pieces before pounding them into an even thickness. Don't forget to remove the tenderloin and pound that thin as well. (It's the bit on the underside of the chicken breast that looks like it's only semi-attached.)
Be Careful Not to Overcook the Chicken!
Because the chicken is so thin and cooks so quickly, it can be easy to overcook it and end up with rubbery chicken. A few minutes per side in the pan--just enough to brown each side--is really all you need.
If you're not sure they're cooked all the way, slice one of the cutlets open and check to make sure it's opaque all the way through.
What to Serve Alongside
More Easy Skillet Chicken Recipes
- Skillet Chicken Parmesan
- Italian Skillet Chicken with Spinach, Tomatoes, and Onions
- Herbes de Provence Skillet Chicken with Potatoes and Greens
- Skillet Chicken with Baby Bok Choy
- Skillet Chicken Puttanesca
Creamy Dijon Mustard Chicken
- 1 to 1 1/4 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil + more for lightly coating chicken
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 cup sliced shallots
- 1/2 cup dry white wine (can sub chicken stock)
- 1/2 cup water
- 4 tablespoons Dijon mustard, smooth, whole grain, or a mixture of both
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
Cut chicken breasts and pound thin:
Remove chicken breasts from package and sprinkle with salt. Remove the tenderloin from each breast and set aside. Cut each chicken breast into 3 pieces, approximately the same size. Coat with just a little olive oil.
Place the breast pieces between two pieces of plastic wrap or parchment paper and use a mallet, empty wine bottle, or rolling pin to pound the chicken pieces to an even thinness of about 1/4 inch. Repeat with the tenderloin pieces.
Lightly brown the chicken cutlets:
In a large, heavy-bottomed sauté pan, heat the olive oil on medium high to high heat. Stir in the butter. When the butter is foamy, add the chicken pieces to the pan. Do not crowd the pan, if necessary work in batches.
Lightly brown chicken on one side, turn over and brown the other side. Do not overcook the chicken. The pieces are thin and they will cook quickly. Remove the chicken pieces from the pan and set aside while you make the sauce.
Cook the shallots:
Add sliced shallots to the pan. Lower the heat to medium. Stir to coat with the remaining fat in the pan. Cook until softened, about 5 to 6 minutes.
Make the sauce:
Add white wine to the pan and increase the heat to high. When most of the wine has evaporated, add the water, the mustard, and the dried thyme. Simmer until reduced by half.
Add chicken back to pan, drizzle in cream:
Reduce the heat to low. Add the chicken back to the pan and coat with the sauce. Remove the pan from heat and drizzle in the cream. Taste and adjust seasonings, adding more salt if necessary.
Serve with egg noodles, rice, mashed potatoes, puréed celery root or parsnips, or serve alone or with vegetables for low carb version.