My take on chicken cacciatore, an Italian dish, with chicken thighs slow cooked in a sauce of wine, tomatoes, peppers, onions, and mushrooms, plated with crispy potatoes.
Chicken cacciatore is a Sunday dinner in it’s finest. It’s an Italian dish that is bursting with flavor, and easy to prepare. I love chicken cacciatore, and I desperately wish you guys could smell this plate through the screen!
My take is pretty traditional, but even the most traditional cacciatore recipes have slight variances. My understanding is that this dish is a little bit more of a “what I have on hand” dish. For instance, I’ve seen recipes from Italian chefs that use red wine, and recipes that use white wine. I personally use red wine because I love the way it tastes in the “gravy” (more on that later), and because it’s what I drink most often.
One thing I do with my chicken cacciatore that makes it unique, is serve it with crispy potatoes. And I have zero apologies for that. You, of course, can eat this with whatever you’d like, but I would 100% recommend the crispy potatoes. They are roasted with just olive oil and salt and pepper until super crispy, and taste so good with the thick sauce and chicken thighs. This dish is typically served over pasta, but I personally don’t feel like it’s a saucy enough dish for pasta. The noodles don’t add much, but the crispy potatoes are an absolute winner.
Let’s get started!
First we want to brown our chicken thighs. To do so, we’ll start by melting a couple tablespoons of butter in a dutch oven over medium high heat. Generously salt and pepper your chicken thighs, rubbing the seasoning into the skin. Lightly dredge your chicken thighs in flour and place them skin side down in the melted butter. Brown them for about two minutes on each side, and then remove them from the dutch oven, and set aside. That skin will come out golden and delicious!
Next cut up your veggies into medium thick slices, like shown above. If you have a lot of grease in your dutch oven, drain off any excess other than making sure the bottom is coated. Throw in your peppers, mushrooms, onions, and garlic and cook for just a couple of minutes. Then add your diced tomatoes, thyme, chicken broth, and red wine. (Again, I’ve seen many recipes use white wine, so if that’s what you have on hand then go for it! Definitely needs to be a dry wine though.) Let it simmer for about 2-3 minutes, and then add your chicken back in. Place it skin side up so that it is just resting on top, with the liquid not covering the skin. (Trust me, you don’t want soggy skin that’s mega ewwy.) Put the lid on your dutch oven and throw it in the oven at 350 degrees for 45 minutes. When the timer goes off, remove the lid, and turn the oven up to 400 and cook for just 10 more minutes.
While the chicken cacciatore is cooking the first 45 minutes, you can prep your potatoes. Dice them up and put them on a small baking dish. Throw them in the oven when you turn the temp to 400. When the chicken comes out, raise the temp to 425 (I know so many temp changes, but it’s worth it I promise!), and cook for another 10-15 minutes while you complete the last step.
This next part is the most important part. The aforementioned, “gravy”. It takes this dish from like a 6 to a 10. It’s a game changer. Are you with me?
Using a slotted spoon, remove the chicken and as much of the veggies as you can and place them in a serving dish. Keep as much of the liquid as you can in your dutch oven. I even put the lid on my serving dish after taking the picture above, and drained off more of the liquid back into the pot. Bring the liquid to a boil and cook it down until the sauce becomes thick, like shown below. (Seriously my mouth is watering just looking at this.)
Plate your chicken, veggies, and crispy potatoes, and then pour the gravy over top. I like to sprinkle on parmesan cheese and dried parsley to finish. Enjoy!
- 2 tbsp butter
- 5 chicken thighs
- Salt and pepper
- Flour for dredging
- 1½ red peppers
- 1 medium yellow onion
- 8 oz baby bella mushrooms
- 1 tbsp minced garlic
- 28 oz can diced tomatoes (I used the basil, oregano, garlic seasoned one)
- 1 cup dry red wine
- ½ cup chicken broth
- ½ tsp thyme
- 4-5 small potatoes
- 1½ tbsp olive oil
- Parmesan and dried parsley for platting.
- Start by preheating your oven to 350 degrees and melting 2 tbsp of butter in a dutch oven over medium high heat.
- Generously season your chicken thighs with salt and peppers, rubbing the seasoning into the skin. Pour about ½ cup of flour into a large bowl, and lightly dredge your chicken thighs in it. Place the chicken thighs in the melted butter, skin side down, and brown on each side for about 2-3 minutes per side. Remove the chicken from the dutch oven and set aside. Pour off any excess grease in the dutch oven other than enough to coat the bottom of the pot.
- Next dice up your peppers, onion, and mushrooms to medium thickness. Throw your veggies and minced garlic into the dutch oven and cook for just a couple minutes.
- Add your diced tomatoes, wine, chicken broth, thyme, and a little more salt and pepper to the veggies. Let it simmer for a couple of minutes and then add your chicken back in, placing it just on top of your veggies. You don't want the sauce to cover the skin.
- Place the lid on your dutch oven and put it in the oven for 45 minutes. When the timer goes off, remove the lid and turn the heat up to 375, and cook for 10 more minutes.
- While your chicken is cooking, you can prep your potatoes. Dice your potatoes into small pieces and place on a small baking dish. Cover with olive oil and salt and pepper, and when you turn the oven up to 375, add your potatoes to the oven. When the chicken is done, turn the oven up to 400 degrees and cook for 15 more minutes until crispy.
- When you take the dutch oven out of the oven, use a slotted spoon to remove the chicken and as many veggies as you can into a serving dish. Keep as much of the liquid in the dutch oven as you can. Turn the stove top back up to medium high heat and simmer the liquid until it cooks down into a thick sauce.
- Serve by adding chicken and veggies to a plate with crispy potatoes and pour the sauce on top. Sprinkle with parmesan and dried parsley.