This one-pan Creamy Tuscan Chicken is made with tender, juicy chicken thighs simmered in a mouthwatering sun-dried tomato and spinach cream sauce. On the table in just 30 minutes, the whole family will love this easy and delicious weeknight dinner recipe.
Tuscan Chicken Recipe
This delicious Tuscan chicken is, hands down, one of the most flavorful chicken recipes you’ll ever make! Made with simple ingredients like seasoned chicken and thighs smothered in a luscious cream sauce, this fantastic meal will have the whole family asking for seconds!
Quick and easy to make, it uses just one pan, saving time in the kitchen with less to clean up.
Leftovers (if you have any) are just as delicious reheated the next day for an easy lunch or repeat dinner. Serve your Tuscan chicken over rice, cooked pasta, or quinoa, and add a side of veggies like asparagus or broccoli.
Where Did Creamy Tuscan Chicken Originate?
Creamy Tuscan chicken, as we know it here in the US, was originally inspired by the Olive Garden (an American restaurant chain).
How to Make Creamy Tuscan Chicken
(Full ingredients and instructions are in the recipe card below)
1. Prepare the chicken: Pat the chicken dry with paper towels and season generously with salt, black pepper, and Italian seasoning. If you’d like, you may also season your chicken thighs with a little paprika, garlic powder, or onion powder (about 1/2-1 teaspoon of each).
2. Sear and cook the chicken: Heat the olive oil in a large skillet set over medium-high heat. Add the chicken thighs, skin-side down, and sear until golden brown, approximately 3 minutes. Flip over and sear the other side. Reduce the heat to medium/medium-low and cover the pan with a tight-fitting lid.
Continue to cook the chicken until the internal temperature registers 160°F as measured with a digital meat thermometer, approximately 15 minutes.
- NOTE: if you prefer crispy chicken skin, see the section below.
3. Remove chicken: Remove the chicken to a clean plate and set them aside.
4. Cook the aromatics: Return the skillet to medium heat. Cook the onion for 2-3 minutes or until just starting to soften. Add the garlic and fresh thyme and continue to cook for 1 minute more.
If there are leftover charred bits stuck to your pan, deglaze with a tablespoon or two of water, chicken broth, or dry white wine. But don’t toss out those charred bits! They add loads of yummy flavor to your sauce.
5. Prepare the sun-dried tomato cream sauce: Add in the chicken broth, sundried tomato pesto, chopped sundried tomatoes, and spinach to the onions. Mix well to combine and cook until the spinach has wilted (approximately 1 minute). Stir in the heavy cream and bring to a gentle simmer. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese and additional salt, to taste.
6. Return the chicken. Nestle the cooked chicken thighs into the simmering cream sauce. Cook everything, all together, for 2 minutes, or until the chicken is heated through.
How to get crispy chicken skin?
- Preheat oven to 400F.
- Pat your chicken thighs dry with a paper towel and season with salt, pepper, and Italian seasoning.
- Sear both sides of your chicken thighs in a large oven-safe skillet (cast-iron skillets are great for this sort of thing) until golden brown. Transfer the skillet to the oven.
- Bake until the internal temperature of your chicken registers 160°F.
For the cream sauce: You may prepare the sun-dried tomato cream sauce as the chicken cooks, or wait until the chicken is removed from the oven, set it aside on a clean plate, and continue with the instructions as written.
Recipe Notes & Tips
- Bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs will require the longest cooking time (when compared to boneless chicken thighs or chicken breasts). Save time by cooking boneless skinless chicken thighs, chicken tenders, or large chicken breasts that have been sliced in half lengthwise (to create cutlets).
- Always use an instant-read thermometer to ensure that your chicken is fully cooked to 165F.
- If you don’t care for whole sun-dried tomatoes, swap them for fresh grape or cherry tomatoes. You’ll want to add about 1 cup.
- You can swap the heavy cream for something lighter like whole milk or half-and-half, but I do not recommend it. Using milk or cream that is lower in fat is more likely to separate or curdle when exposed to high heat (or acidic foods) and ultimately doesn’t taste as good.
How to Serve Creamy Tuscan Chicken
I love serving this amazing comfort food with farro, mashed potatoes, garlic bread, or cooked pasta – anything that absorbs the delicious creamy sauce. It’s also great with a side of fresh greens like this arugula salad or roasted veggies.
Have you tried making this Creamy Tuscan Chicken Recipe?
Tell me about it in the comments below! I always love to hear your thoughts. And tag me #theforkedspoon on Instagram if you’ve made any of my recipes, I always love to see what you’re cooking in the kitchen.
Creamy Tuscan Chicken Recipe
For the Chicken
- Transfer chicken thighs to a clean plate and pat dry with a paper towel. Generously season both sides with salt, black pepper, and Italian seasoning.
- Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken thighs, skin-side down, and sear until golden brown, approximately 3 minutes. Turn over and sear the other side for 3 minutes. Reduce heat to medium and cover the pan with a tight-fitting lid.
- Continue to cook the chicken until the internal temperature registers 160°F as measured with a digital meat thermometer, approximately 15 minutes.
- Remove chicken to a clean plate and set aside.
- Return the skillet to medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, for 2-3 minutes or until just starting to soften. Add the garlic and fresh thyme. Continue to cook for 1 minute more.
- Add the chicken broth, sundried tomato pesto, roughly chopped sundried tomatoes, and fresh spinach. Mix well to combine with the minced onions. Add the heavy cream and bring to a simmer. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese and salt, to taste.
- Nestle the cooked chicken thighs into the simmering cream sauce. Cook everything, all together, for 2 minutes, or until chicken is heated through.
- Serve with your favorite sides (like quinoa, cooked pasta, or farro) and garnish with fresh thyme and crushed red pepper, if desired.
- This recipe is also fantastic with boneless skinless chicken thighs, chicken breast cutlets, or shrimp.
- For best results use full-fat heavy cream.
- Leftovers: Keep leftovers stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat in the microwave for approximately 1 minute, or until reheated.
(Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and specific brands of ingredients used.)