Olive Garden Chicken Marsala Recipe at Home

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Published: 03/08/2024 | Updated: 03/27/2024

Master the Olive Garden Chicken Marsala recipe, where crispy chicken pairs seamlessly with a lush marsala wine sauce for an elegant flavor harmony. This homage to the Olive Garden classic elevates your dining experience, making it a standout choice for both festive occasions and refined weekday meals.

 

olive garden chicken marsala recipe

Learn the culinary techniques to mirror Olive Garden’s signature dish and finish with a sprinkle of fresh parsley for a genuine flourish. Ideal for an exquisite meal or a relaxed weekend indulgence, this recipe invites the essence of Olive Garden into your home.

Equipment Needed

  • Large skillet
  • Meat tenderizer or rolling pin
  • Whisk
  • Mixing bowls
  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Plate for dredging
  • Aluminum foil (to keep chicken warm)

Prep Time

Setting the stage for this delicious dish will require some prep work. Allocate about 40 minutes of your time to ensure the chicken is cooked to perfection and the flavors in this dish meld beautifully.

Recipe Requirements

  • 4 chicken breasts, pounded to even thickness
  • 1 cup of all-purpose flour for dredging
  • 2 tbsp of olive oil
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 medium onion, sliced
  • 1 cup sliced fresh mushrooms
  • ½ tsp dried thyme
  • ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup dry Marsala wine
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • Chopped fresh parsley for garnish.

How to Proceed: Step-by-Step Instructions to Create the Classic

  1. Begin by combining the flour, dried thyme, and freshly ground black pepper in a shallow dish. Dredge each chicken breast in the flour mixture, shaking off any excess flour.
  2. Heat the olive oil and 1 tbsp of unsalted butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the pieces of chicken and cook until the chicken is lightly browned on each side, about 2-3 minutes per side. Transfer the cooked chicken to a plate and cover to keep warm.
  3. In the same skillet, add the remaining 1 tbsp of butter along with the sliced mushrooms and onion around the chicken pieces. Saute until the mushrooms and onions are golden brown and soft, approximately 2 more minutes. If needed, cook for about 2 minutes longer or until all the vegetables are properly cooked.
  4. Lower the heat to medium-low, pour in the Marsala wine, and let it simmer for about 10 minutes, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the skillet.
  5. Stir in the chicken stock and heavy cream, bring the mixture to a gentle simmer, and cook until the sauce thickens.
  6. Return the chicken to the skillet, spooning the sauce over the chicken, and cook until the chicken is cooked through. Garnish with chopped fresh parsley before serving.

Additional Choices

  • For a gluten-free version, use a gluten-free flour blend instead of all-purpose flour.
  • If you’re avoiding dairy, substitute the heavy cream with a plant-based cream alternative.
  • For those who do not consume alcohol, use a combination of white grape juice and a splash of sherry vinegar as a Marsala wine substitute.

Nutritional Information

  • Calories: 450 kcal per serving
  • Total Fat: 18g
  • Saturated Fat: 8g
  • Cholesterol: 120mg
  • Sodium: 390mg
  • Total Carbohydrates: 22g
  • Dietary Fiber: 1g
  • Sugars: 5g
  • Protein: 38g

Expert Tips to Follow

  • Incorporating 2 tbsp of unsalted butter into the sauce for an authentic Chicken Marsala can add a rich, velvety finish. Don’t avoid adjusting the seasoning with ½ tsp of salt or herbs to taste, as this can significantly enhance the flavors in this dish.
  • For optimal flavor, use a high-quality Marsala wine rather than a generic cooking wine. Opt for a dry Marsala to impart the complex, nutty flavor quintessential to this dish. Be mindful of the wine’s quality as it is the backbone of your sauce, and an inferior wine can result in a less than satisfactory outcome. Consider a sprinkle of chopped parsley or a lemon wedge for garnishes to brighten the dish before serving.
  • Don’t skip pounding the chicken breasts to an even thickness; this ensures even cooking and tender meat.
  • Keep the heat consistent when sauteing the mushrooms and onions to achieve a golden brown color without burning.
  • Let the Marsala wine reduce sufficiently to concentrate the flavors before adding the chicken stock and cream.
  • When adjusting spices and seasonings, start with ½ tsp and incrementally add until the desired taste is achieved. This method allows for more control over the flavor profile. A pinch of salt or a dash of freshly ground pepper can make a significant difference to overcome blandness. For an enhanced presentation, garnish with fresh herbs or a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese.
  • When reheating leftovers, do so gently to prevent the chicken from becoming tough and the sauce from separating.

Preparing the Perfect Dish

When serving your Chicken Marsala, a side of creamy mashed potatoes makes an excellent companion, soaking up the savory sauce. For a balanced meal, consider pairing with steamed green beans or a crisp salad.

Vegetarians might enjoy the Marsala sauce over a grilled portobello mushroom as an alternative to chicken. The rich flavors of this dish make it an ideal choice for a special weekend dinner, perhaps reminiscent of a meal at Olive Garden this weekend.

How to Store and Reheat

  • Place any leftover Chicken Marsala in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 3-4 days.
  • For longer storage, freeze the dish in a covered airtight container for up to 3 months.
  • To reheat, thaw in the refrigerator if frozen, then warm gently on the stove over low heat to maintain the quality of the sauce and chicken.
  • If using a microwave, cover the dish and reheat on medium power to avoid drying out the chicken.

Recipe Notes

This dish is a celebration of flavors any time of the year, but especially during the colder months when a hearty meal is most comforting. Fresh garlic and a teaspoon of dried oregano can be added for an extra layer of flavor. For a bit of texture, top with 1 medium onion, sliced and caramelized, to bring a touch of sweetness to the dish.

Mastering Chicken Marsala goes beyond following a recipe; it’s about embracing Italian cooking traditions and experimenting until the sauce and chicken harmonize. Employing devices like an Instant Pot can offer convenience, but the real art lies in balancing the ½ cup of Marsala wine and seasonings to achieve that authentic Italian flavor.

olive garden chicken marsala recipe

What is Olive Garden Chicken Marsala made of?

The Olive Garden Chicken Marsala is made from thinly pounded chicken breasts, coated lightly in flour, and pan-fried to perfection. The dish is famous for its rich Marsala wine sauce and mushrooms, featuring a blend of dry Marsala wine, chicken stock, and fresh parsley.

This easy copycat recipe captures the essence of Olive Garden’s beloved dish, allowing you to recreate the tender chicken and savory, creamy marsala wine sauce at home.

What type of Marsala wine is best for Chicken Marsala?

For Chicken Marsala, it’s best to use dry Marsala wine. Dry Marsala lends the dish its signature rich flavor without adding excessive sweetness, creating a balance that complements the savory elements of the chicken and mushrooms.

This fortified wine is key in achieving authentic taste in recipes like the Olive Garden Chicken Marsala and other classic chicken recipes.

What’s the difference between chicken piccata and Chicken Marsala?

The primary difference between Chicken Piccata and Chicken Marsala is their sauces and cooking methods. Chicken Piccata is typically made with a sauce of lemon, butter, and capers, while Chicken Marsala features a rich Marsala wine sauce with mushrooms.

Chicken Piccata often has a lighter, tangier flavor, whereas Chicken Marsala offers a deeper, umami-packed taste due to the Marsala wine and mushrooms. Both dishes use tender chicken, but their flavors reflect their unique sauce ingredients.

What is traditionally served with Chicken Marsala?

Traditionally, Chicken Marsala is served with starchy sides like fettuccine Alfredo, garlic mashed potatoes, or simple steamed vegetables to complement the rich flavors of the Marsala sauce.

These sides absorb the creamy Marsala wine sauce beautifully, making every bite a delightful combination of textures and flavors. Fresh parsley is often sprinkled on top as a garnish, adding a burst of color and freshness to the dish.

What is a substitute for Marsala sauce?

A good substitute for Marsala sauce combines chicken stock, a splash of sherry or a similar fortified wine, and a bit of cream to mimic the creamy texture. This mixture can be seasoned with sautéed mushrooms and garlic for depth.

While not identical, this alternative aims to effectively replicate the savory, slightly sweet profile of Marsala sauce, complementing dishes like pan-fried or breaded chicken cutlets.

Olive Garden Chicken Marsala Recipe at Home

Prep Time40 minutes
Course: Dinner/Lunch, Fancy Appetizer, Quick & Easy
Keyword: olive garden chicken marsala recipe
Author: Natalie

Equipment

  • Large skillet
  • Meat tenderizer or rolling pin
  • Whisk
  • Mixing bowls
  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Plate for dredging
  • Aluminum foil (to keep chicken warm)

Ingredients

  • 4 chicken breasts, pounded to even thickness
  • 1 cup of all-purpose flour for dredging
  • 2 tbsp of olive oil
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 medium onion, sliced
  • 1 cup sliced fresh mushrooms
  • ½ tsp dried thyme
  • ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup dry Marsala wine
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • Chopped fresh parsley for garnish.

Instructions

  • Begin by combining the flour, dried thyme, and freshly ground black pepper in a shallow dish. Dredge each chicken breast in the flour mixture, shaking off any excess flour.
  • Heat the olive oil and 1 tbsp of unsalted butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the pieces of chicken and cook until the chicken is lightly browned on each side, about 2-3 minutes per side. Transfer the cooked chicken to a plate and cover to keep warm.
  • In the same skillet, add the remaining 1 tbsp of butter along with the sliced mushrooms and onion around the chicken pieces. Saute until the mushrooms and onions are golden brown and soft, approximately 2 more minutes. If needed, cook for about 2 minutes longer or until all the vegetables are properly cooked.
  • Lower the heat to medium-low, pour in the Marsala wine, and let it simmer for about 10 minutes, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the skillet.
  • Stir in the chicken stock and heavy cream, bring the mixture to a gentle simmer, and cook until the sauce thickens. 
  • Return the chicken to the skillet, spooning the sauce over the chicken, and cook until the chicken is cooked through. Garnish with chopped fresh parsley before serving.

Notes

  • This dish is a celebration of flavors any time of the year, but especially during the colder months when a hearty meal is most comforting. Fresh garlic and a teaspoon of dried oregano can be added for an extra layer of flavor. For a bit of texture, top with 1 medium onion, sliced and caramelized, to bring a touch of sweetness to the dish.
  • Mastering Chicken Marsala goes beyond following a recipe; it's about embracing Italian cooking traditions and experimenting until the sauce and chicken harmonize. Employing devices like an Instant Pot can offer convenience, but the real art lies in balancing the ½ cup of Marsala wine and seasonings to achieve that authentic Italian flavor.

More Olive Garden Copycat Recipes

Olive Garden Italian Margarita Recipe
Olive Garden Meatball Recipe
Olive Garden Stuffed Mushrooms Recipe
Olive Garden’s Classic Lasagna Recipe
Olive Garden Shrimp Scampi Recipe

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