My chicken Creole is a signature take on a beloved, classic New Orleans dish, y'all. Tenderized and seasoned chicken breast strips, set aside while the Cajun trinity veggies and garlic brown down to form the rich, deep flavor base. Then, stewed tomatoes, tomato sauce, and a bit of broth are added to the pan, and cook a while before the chicken pieces are added. A few more simmering minutes later, it all meshes into one amazingly simple yet sophisticated dish that's fancy enough to serve for special occasions. Yep and yay...
Yes, It's as Delicious As It Looks, Y'all...
Chicken Creole is a classic south Louisiana stew-like dish that is served alongside rice. A first cousin of the famous shrimp Creole, this poultry-studded dish is also tomato-based with pops of browned veggies, bay, and citrus.
What stands out about chicken Creole is its simplicity. Unlike a traditional Cajun stew, there is no roux to make for this dish. So, it cooks in much less time.
And, unlike jambalaya dishes that include rice in the one-pot preparation, this dish allows variations on the traditional rice topping for modern lower-carb diets.
Chicken Creole is not spicy. However, what I think you will love about it is its graduated flavors that start slow and then grow bigger and bigger until they flavor-pop like fireworks in your mouth.
Yep, the almost addictive quality of this is encouraged by its humble, low-cost ingredients and delightfully foolproof preparation. Indeed.
Chicken Creole Ingredient Essentials & Substitutions
- I used thinly sliced boneless chicken breast strips for this recipe. I bought them pre-packaged, so the prep went super quick. However, you can also cut them horizontally with a sharp knife, and then cut them into strips. A pound goes a long way in the recipe, making enough to feed four people.
- The browned Cajun trinity veggies create the base notes that this chicken Creole needs to truly be called an authentic south Louisiana dish. Therefore, don't skip them. You can save time by prepping them the night before and having them ready in the fridge until ready to use.
- Fresh lemon zest and lemon juice are a MUST in this chicken Creole. They are both crucial to the chicken seasoning and the final flavor of the dish. So, go out of your way to get at least one large lemon that you can juice and zest. Or, this dish is not going to come out as intended and you will most likely be disappointed.
- Stewed tomatoes and tomato sauce give this easy Louisiana chicken dish its distinctive Creole flair. Use as written to experience the best recipe results.
- Dried paprika and dried parsley play off of one another in the dish. You can also use fresh parsley, just don't add it to the chicken seasoning. Instead, add it in at the end, when you only have about 5 minutes of cooking time left so that it does not burn.
Top Recipe Tips
For best results, use a meat mallet to tenderize the chicken before you season it. Then, season and set it aside. But, not for too long, y'all, or the lemon juice will literally start to cook the chicken and make it tough. So, don't go over the time it takes to brown the veggies and you'll be just fine.
Chop the stewed tomatoes before you use them in this chicken Creole recipe. If you don't, they'll be too big and awkward to eat in the prepared dish.
How to Make Chicken Creole
To start, season the chicken with the citrus and herbs.
Then, pour the chopped Cajun trinity veggies and butter or oil into the skillet.
When the veggies brown, add the garlic and cook for one more minute.
Turn the heat down to medium-low. Now, add the stewed tomatoes, tomato sauce, and bay leaf to the mixture.
Then, stir in the chicken broth. Cover partially and cook for a bit, stirring often.
Finally, add the seasoned chicken strips to the pot. Then, continue cooking until the sauce deepens in color and the chicken is cooked up to safe eating temperatures.
And that's it, y'all!!
Once you get the prep done, this chicken Creole practically cooks itself! So trust me, you won't believe how easy it is to pull off, I promise!
And the flavors, oh the flavors...So simple at the start. But then the citrus, bay, and seasonings hit different points on your tongue. So, the flavors do a can't-stop-won't-stop dance on your tongue both individually and simultaneously.
But, truly the best part of this chicken Creole recipe is its versatility. You can make it on weeknights after work with no stress. And, you can show it off to your friends and family on the weekends and special occasions cause it's just that good.
Share with those who know how to hang on to a good thing once they've gotten it. Much food love, and see y'all on the yum side...
If you like this chicken Creole recipe, then you'll likely also love these similar dishes, as well.
What to Serve With Chicken Creole
Serve on top of rice or cauliflower rice, and alongside one of these sides.
- 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, sliced thin horizontally then cut into strips
For the Chicken Seasoning
- ½ teaspoon lemon zest
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 2 teaspoons dried parsley flakes
- ½ teaspoon dried paprika
- salt, black pepper, and cayenne pepper to taste
For the Chicken Creole
- 3 tablespoons oil or butter
- 1 medium-sized yellow onion, chopped
- 1 medium-sized green bell pepper, chopped
- 2 fresh celery stalks, trimmed and chopped
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1 14.5-ounce can stewed tomatoes
- 1 15-ounce can tomato sauce
- ½ cup chicken broth Swanson is gluten free
- 1 dried bay leaf
- additional salt, black pepper, and cayenne pepper
- Use a meat mallet to tenderize all of the chicken breast strips.
- Then, season the chicken breast strips and set aside.
- Heat a greased 12-inch cast iron skillet over medium-high heat on the stove.
- Brown the chopped onion, bell pepper, and celery in the butter or oil.
- When browned, stir the minced garlic into the veggies and cook for one additional minute, stirring constantly.
- Reduce the heat to medium-low. Add the stewed tomatoes, tomato sauce, chicken broth, and bay leaf to the pot, and stir until well combined.
- Simmer for 20 minutes, stirring often.
- Add the seasoned chicken strips to the pot, and stir until combined.
- Cook for an additional 20 minutes, or until a meat thermometer inserted into the chicken pieces reads at least 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
The information shown is an estimate provided by a third-party, online computer-generated nutrition calculator, not a registered dietitian or certified nutritionist. Actual nutritional content will vary based upon brands used, measuring methods and individual portion sizes, along with other factors.See our full nutrition disclaimer here.