This recipe for Marry Me Chicken has taken over social media for the past few weeks (10/22/23). I first stumbled upon it in the NYT Cooking daily email, but then ran into it on various cooking instagram sites. I laughed at the name, but I will say that both my husband and I were silent for the first few bites, savoring each bite.
The flavor of the sauce was so deep and intense….why? I’ve made tons of similar dishes and my mind was racing to figure out how/why was this soooo incredible. It’s hard to go wrong with garlic, basil, tomato, parmesan and heavy cream…but it’s also easy to be medicore. I will say that the sauce that this creates is hard to beat. The NYT recipe suggests serving this dish over pasta, rice or polenta. I went for pasta and doubled the sauce ingredients to make sure that we had plenty. I also substituted a package of fresh flavor bomb tomatoes for the sun-dried tomatoes since neither my husband or I are partial to them. Crusty bread for soaking up the sauce is highly recommended!
Another plus is that this is a one pan recipe, aside from the pot to boil the pasta in!
- 3 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts, or 6 chicken cutlets (~2¼ pounds total)
- Kosher salt and black pepper
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- 3 TBL extra-virgin olive oil, plus more as needed ← I didn’t need more
- 3 TBL unsalted butter
- 3 garlic cloves, chopped ← I doubled to make more sauce
- 1 TBL tomato paste ← I doubled to make more sauce
- ½ tsp dried oregano ← I doubled to make more sauce
- Red pepper flakes, to taste ← I used ½ tsp for doubling the sauce, if not then use ~¼ tsp
- 1 cup low-sodium chicken sauce ← I doubled to make more sauce
- ½ to ¾ cup heavy cream ← I used 1 cup
- ½ cup grated Parmesan ← I doubled to make more sauce
- ⅓ cup sliced sun-dried tomatoes, packed in oil ← I substituted a package of small fresh flavor bomb tomatoes
- fresh basil for serving
- If using chicke breasts, start from the thickest end and slice each chicken breast in half horizontally so you end up with a total of 6 cutlets. Season both sides well with salt and pepper
- Scatter the flour on a large plate and coat the cutlets, shaking off the excess. Transfer the cutlets to a sheet pan or large plate in a single layer
- Heat the oil in a large pan over medium-high. Once hot, reduce the heat to medium and add the butter. As soon as the butter melts, add the cutlets and cook until golden on one side, about 5 minutes. Flip the chicken and cook the other side until golden, 4 to 5 minutes. Do this in batches, if needed, adding more oil, if needed. Transfer the cutlets to a plate or sheet pan. Note: I did two batches of 3 cutlets each and I did NOT need more oil
- Reduce heat to low, add the garlic and cook, stirring often, until fragrant, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the tomato paste, stirring until the color deepens, about 2 minutes. Add the oregano and red pepper flakes, to taste (I used ½ tsp since I was doubling the sauce). Increase the heat to medium, add the chicken stock and bring to a simmer, scraping up any bits from the bottom of the pan, until the liquid is reduced by half, about 5 minutes (this took a tad longer since I was doubling the sauce)
- Add the heavy cream and warm through, stirring, until it thickens slightly, about 3 minutes. Watch the cream closely, reducing the heat if necessary, to maintain a gentle simmer. If using fresh tomatoes, add them during this 3-min process.
- Stir in the Parmesan and the sundried tomatoes if NOT using fresh tomatoes. Add more cream, if you like, and season the sauce (I did neither). Place the chicken back in the pan to warm through, about 4 minutes. Remove from the heat and scatter basil on top.