This tarragon chicken recipe is not only easy, but full of flavor. Perfectly seared chicken breast surrounded by a creamy tarragon mustard sauce. An easy weeknight one skillet chicken dinner.
Have you ever had fresh tarragon before? For me it’s one of those herbs that I have always passed in the grocery store and here I am apologizing to tarragon for doing that. It’s actually from the sunflower family and the French variation is what is used in cooking. People are turned off when hearing it has a licorice taste, but as a licorice hater myself, it is actually more mild and when used correctly, it lends so much flavor to a dish.
Let’s start with the chicken. I used boneless skinless chicken breasts and pounded them thin. Remember my tip when pounding chicken breast, use plastic wrap to cover them so the juices don’t get everywhere. Season the chicken on both sides with kosher salt and black pepper, the tarragon sauce has flavor, but no excuse not to preseason your protein! Next, coat the chicken in all purpose flour, this will help it develop a delicious crust. Shake off any excess flour.
Cooking the dish
In a seasoned cast iron pan over medium high heat, I sear the chicken breasts on each side for 2-3 minutes until they develop a nice golden brown crust. Don’t worry about fully cooking them, the chicken breast will finish cooking in the sauce.
Now comes the best part, the tarragon sauce! I deglazed the pan with white wine, take this chance to scrape up any chicken bits that may have been left behind (bits=flavor). Once the liquid has reduced, add in butter, garlic, shallot, and the fresh tarragon. Sauté for a few minutes until the shallots become translucent.
Next we are going to add in chicken broth, dijon mustard, and lemon zest. Use a whisk to combine all the ingredients. I didn’t want to add heavy cream to the sauce, but I wanted it to be more thick, so I used corn starch. Add a tablespoon and whisk until combined. Allow the sauce to come to a boil, then lower the heat to simmer so it can thicken.
Return the chicken breasts back into the skillet, top with fresh tarragon, and place in the oven. Oven cook time will depend on the size and thickness of the chicken breast, the internal temperature should be 165 degrees F. Mine took 15 minutes to fully cook through.
Pairs well with
This chicken breast surrounded by delicious tarragon mustard sauce is such a star, but of course you need a side! I recommend rice, vegetables, or potatoes to help soak up all the delicious tarragon sauce. I used a garlic and herb boxed rice (hey, no shame in boxed rice!), but feel free to use your personal favorite.
I hope you enjoy this delicious tarragon chicken in a made from scratch tarragon mustard sauce!
Love one skillet chicken recipes?
- Roasted Garlic Chicken
- Chicken Saltimbocca
- Thai Red Chicken Curry
- Lemon Chicken and Asparagus
- Tuscan Chicken with Tortellini
- Chicken Milanese
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Made this recipe and loved it? Leave a star rating below!
- 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
- 2 tablespoons canola oil or high smoke point oil of choice
- ⅓ cup all purpose flour
- ¼ cup dry white wine
- ½ stick unsalted butter
- 1 shallot minced (3 tbsp)
- 4 cloves garlic minced (3 tbsp)
- 1 tablespoon fresh tarragon chopped + more for garnish
- 1 cup low sodium chicken broth
- 1 ½ tablespoons dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest
- 1 tablespoon corn starch
- Kosher salt & fresh ground black pepper
- Place chicken breasts on a cutting board, cover with plastic wrap, and using a meat mallet thinly pound the chicken breast. Season each side of the chicken with a pinch of kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper. Pour the all purpose flour into a bowl, then proceed to coat each side of the chicken breast in flour. Shake the breast to get rid of excess flour, repeat with remaining chicken breast.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F
- In a seasoned 10 or 12 inch cast iron skillet, over medium high heat on the stovetop, add 2 tbsp oil. Once shimmering, add the chicken breasts (depending on size you may need to do 2 at a time). Sear each side for about 2 minutes until a golden brown crust forms, remove and set aside (they will finish cooking in the oven).
- Lower the heat to medium/low, add in ¼ cup of white wine and deglaze the pan. Once the liquid has reduced by half, add in the butter, garlic, shallot, and fresh tarragon. Sauté for 3-4 minutes until butter has melted/shallots begin to turn translucent. Next, add in the chicken broth, dijon mustard, and lemon zest, whisk together until combined. Add in 1 tbsp of corn starch and whisk to combine, allow the sauce to come to a light boil, then reduce the heat to simmer. Give the sauce a taste and add a pinch of kosher salt and some fresh black pepper as needed.
- Return the chicken breasts into the sauce, top with a few twigs of tarragon, and place into the oven for about 10 minutes. Cook time will vary depending on size of chicken breast and thickness, internal temperature should be 165 degrees F, use a digital thermometer to check. Remove from oven and serve with your favorite side, spooning sauce over the chicken.
- When pounding chicken breasts, place them inside a zip top bag or in layers of plastic wrap to avoid a mess.
I never rate recipes but I had to tonight. This is honestly one of the best chicken recipes I have ever made. I absolutely loved the sauce. I was looking to use some tarragon from my garden. This is an absolute winner!
My hubs has been searching for a tarragon chicken recipe to mimic a dish his mom made growing up. He’s never been able to give me specifics, so when I found this I thought we’ll give it a try. He said it’s definitely different from his mom’s, but we both loved it and will definitely keep it in the rotation as it is sooo easy! I even shared the link in my foodie group on FB!
Hi Amanda! Although it was not the same as his mom’s dish, I’m so glad you both enjoyed it and thank you so much for sharing it!
Turned out great! Awesome recipe! Just make sure when adding corn starch to make a slurry with a little cold water first before you introduce it to the sauce! If not gluten intolerant, flour can also be used to make a little roux for thickening.
What can be a replacement of white wine?
Hi! You can just omit and add an extra 1/4 cup of chicken broth
Just made this recipe. Very tasty. A bit too strong for my wife but I loved it. Will reduce the mustard in the future but will definitely make again.
Hi Ralph, thank you so much for making the recipe! I hope your wife enjoys it more the second time around, I think reducing the mustard should help.
I’ve never cooked with tarragon before, so I bought a jar of the dried stuff and then found this recipe. Only add about half of the tarragon if using dried, and sprinkle on a little before roasting. I also added a bundle of asparagus after step 4 and let it cook for a couple minutes before step 5. Turned out great!! Thank you!
So glad you enjoyed it Larry! What a great idea to add asparagus to the dish.
This is the best chicken I’ve ever had! My first time purchasing tarragon that I purchased for a French potato salad. I even printed a totally different chicken recipe, but when I realized how delicious tarragon is I decided on a chicken breast recipe featuring that. I’m so pleased I chose this one as it’s so simple and I had every ingredient in my kitchen. This is so amazing with sauteed kale and the warm french potato salad. Thank you for this gem!
I’m so glad you loved it Paris! The French potato salad sounds incredible and the perfect side
My husband who is an awesome cook, just rated this recipe 15 out of 10 :). It was so delicious, I added more fresh tarragon than the recipe indicated to boost the flavor even more. Thank you for posting! It will become our “go to” recipe for life!
Marta this is such an amazing compliment, thank you! So glad you both loved the recipe.
The prep time was more like 30 minutes, cook time 30 minutes. But the food was great. Will use again.