This Smothered Chicken recipe will give you the juiciest, most tender chicken with an incredibly flavorful gravy. Here’s some Soul Food at its best!
Southern-Style Smothered Chicken is probably one of the most delicious comfort foods. It’s a family favorite that has been around for centuries!
This authentic recipe will give you the best-Smothered Chicken you’ve ever had. It uses a special technique that makes smothered food what it is, and trust me, and you’re going to keep wanting to make this every night!
This recipe will give you perfectly seasoned chicken with a rich, smooth gravy full of authentic Soul Food flavors.
Want to know how to make it tonight? Keep on reading!
WHAT IS SMOTHERED CHICKEN?
Smothered Chicken is a classic Soul Food dish that is Southern Food. Soul food is an ethnic cuisine traditionally prepared by African Americans originating in Southern US.
This cuisine is strongly influenced by Western African and Native American practices. Think Southern Mac and Cheese, Cornbread, Collared Green, and Fried Chicken, and of course, anything smothered would be your classic Soul Food.
This dish has been a family favorite for centuries, and for a good reason. It’s incredibly flavorful with juicy, tender chicken and perfect seasoning.
WHAT IS SPECIAL ABOUT THIS RECIPE?
Easy: It’s incredibly easy to make and doesn’t require planning ahead!
Pantry-staple ingredients: This dish packs a punch for flavor but only requires pantry-staple ingredients.
Juicy and tender: Many recipes I’ve tried over the years gave me dry chicken that just wasn’t what Smothered Chicken is supposed to be, but this recipe will give you a juicy, tender chicken every single time.
Incredible flavors: Don’t underestimate the simple ingredients this recipe calls for because you’ll get incredible flavors!
Family-friendly: Kids and adults love it, which everyone can enjoy on a weekday night.
HOW TO PROPERLY CLEAN AND PREP THE CHICKEN
One of the most important steps in making this dish is cleaning the chicken properly, so I felt it deserved its own section in the post.
Start by running the sharp side of the knife several times and lightly over the chicken skin.
Next, wash the chicken in cool water, rub it with salt for two minutes, and then rinse it again.
Pat the chicken dry, and it’s ready to use in the recipe!
Remember that drying the chicken is an important step since you will be using oil to sear the chicken, and any drop of water will make the oil splatter (and no one wants that!).
Making Smothered Chicken is incredibly easy to make, and as I mentioned earlier, it requires only pantry-staple ingredients! Here’s what you need:
Chicken: I recommend combining chicken with bones and boneless chicken thighs for the perfect flavor and moistness. Chicken breasts also work great if those are what you have at hand.
Oil: We’ll use olive oil to get the perfect sear on the chicken for an incredible texture and flavor.
Onion: Smothered chicken is incomplete without the onion gravy.
Chicken bouillon: You can go with chicken bouillon or low-sodium chicken broth in this recipe. It’ll give the dish a more robust chicken flavor.
Water: We need it to get the perfect consistency of the onion gravy sauce.
Flour: We'll mix all-purpose flour with classic seasonings to coat the chicken perfectly for that Smothered Chicken effect.
Seasonings: We’ll use onion powder, garlic powder, paprika, all-spice, cinnamon, ginger powder, and one teaspoon of pepper.
🔪 HOW TO MAKE SMOTHERED CHICKEN
Making this recipe at home is so easy you’ll want to make it often! Here’s how to make Smothered Chicken at home step-by-step:
Start by mixing the flour and all the seasonings together. Take three tablespoons from this mix and set it aside.
Now dredge the washed chicken with the remaining flour mixture and tap off the excess flour.
Heat the oil on medium-high heat in a pan and add the chicken. When the bottom of the chicken turns golden, flip to the other side and cook until it turns golden as well.
Remove the chicken from the oil when both sides are golden. We’ll complete the cooking process in our onion gravy.
Next, keep around 4 tablespoons of oil in the pan, add the chopped onion, and fry until they turn light brown in color.
Add the three tablespoons of seasoned flour we separated earlier to the onion and stir for at least two minutes on medium heat.
Pour the cold water over the onion and flour mixture in one go and keep stirring. Next, add the chicken bouillon and continue stirring.
Pour in the milk and stir until the mixture boil. Reduce the heat until it simmers, then add the chicken to the sauce.
Cover the pan and let the chicken cook for 20 – 25 minutes or until completely cooked. Stir occasionally in the middle.
Your Smothered Chicken with a perfect creamy gravy is ready to serve! Garnish with some fresh parsley for extra flavor.
- Serve the smothered chicken over a bed of fluffy white rice and garnish with green onions for added color and flavor. Add a side of steamed vegetables like broccoli or asparagus for a complete meal.
- Pair this dish with creamy mashed potatoes and roasted carrots for a classic southern-style meal. The rich, savory gravy from the chicken will be the perfect addition to the creamy potatoes.
- Serve the smothered chicken on top of a toasted slice of thick-cut bread for a twist on the classic southern dish, chicken and waffles. Add a drizzle of honey or maple syrup for a touch of sweetness.
- Create a hearty sandwich by placing the smothered chicken between two toasted bread slices. Add sliced avocado, tomato, and lettuce for a refreshing and healthy twist.
- Serve the smothered chicken over a homemade mac and cheese bed for the ultimate comfort meal. The creamy mac and cheese will pair perfectly with the rich and flavorful chicken gravy.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
‘Smothered’ means to brown the meat with some oil and then simmer it in a small amount of water to make a delicious, brown gravy. Any type of meat can be smothered, including chicken, beef, turkey, and even duck and rabbit. Vegetables such as potatoes, corn, and okra can also be smothered.
To ensure the chicken is fully cooked, use a meat thermometer and ensure that it reads an internal temperature of 165°F (74°C) in the thickest part of the chicken.
Yes, ensure to sear the chicken breast and not overcook it. This way, it will not dry when later cooked in the gravy.
Add carrots - When frying the onion add finely chopped carrots.
Potato cubes - You can add small cubes of potatoes but do not add more than ⅓ cup since potatoes tend to absorb the flavors in gravies.
Use half and half - Instead of milk for a richer gravy; you can use half and half.
Read the comments below for more ideas from my readers, who have added mushrooms and other ingredients to make it their own!
🍲 MORE CHICKEN RECIPES YOU'LL LOVE
🌡️ STORING AND REHEATING
To store leftovers, let the dish cool down to room temperature. Then transfer the leftovers to an airtight container and store it in the fridge. The Smothered Chicken will last for three to four days in the fridge.
You can reheat the Smothered Chicken either in the oven or microwave. If using the microwave, place the leftover in a microwave-safe dish and heat it for a minute and thirty minutes.
Freeing leftovers with creamy or dairy-based sauces or gravies is not recommended. Freezing alters the consistency and texture of the sauce, making it grainy and unappetizing.
Smothered Chicken A Soul Food
- 3 chicken legs and 3 chicken thighs with skin
- ½ cup oil
- 1 large onion chopped
- 1 chicken bouillon
- 2 ½ cup cold water
- ½ cup milk
- 3 tablespoon of the seasoned flour mentioned below
SEASONING THE FLOUR:
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 teaspoon black pepper powder
- ½ teaspoon all spice powder
- ¼ teaspoon cinnamon powder
- ¼ teaspoon heaped ginger powder
- Mix all the flour seasoning together, take three tablespoon from this mix and keep aside.
- Wash the chicken and pat dry. Dredge the chicken in the seasoned flour and keep aside.
- In a pan, heat the oil and add the chicken. When the bottom of the chicken turns golden flip to the other side and cook until golden.
- Remove the chicken from the oil when both sides are golden. At this point, the chicken is not completely cooked.
- Keep around 4 tablespoon of oil in the pan, add the chopped onion and fry until light brown.
- Add three tablespoon seasoned flour to the onion and stir for at least two minutes on medium heat.
- Pour the cold water over the onion and flour mixture in one go and keep on stirring. Add the chicken bouillon and continue stirring.
- Now add the milk and stir until the mixture comes to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and add the chicken to the sauce.
- Cover the pan and let the chicken cook for 20 – 25 minutes or until completely cooked. Stir occasionally.
- Serve with rice or mashed potato.
- How to store smothered chicken is mentioned in the post.
- you can go for chicken breast but do not overcook it.
- This post is updated with more information and step-by-step images.