Chicken with Mushroom and Tarragon Cream Sauce

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Chicken breast is not my favourite meat in the world. Growing up I had some fairly bad experiences with the ‘white meat’. It was almost always overcooked, dry, bland and rubbery. Sound familiar? Things didn’t change when I first started dieting as a teenager. My friends told me that in order to lose weight I had to eat chicken breast morning, noon and night.

You see, chicken breast is a very lean meat and, as such, is believed to be good for the dieting crowd. I was also told to avoid seasoning it with salt for fear of retaining water. That may all be true but consuming 3 chicken breasts a day with nothing more than a dash of pepper is not exactly healthy either! The last piece of sage advice I received from my wise friends is that chicken breast would have to be either grilled, poached or roasted in the oven without any oil. Again, oil is fat and fat was, and for many people still is, the enemy! I’ve come a long way since my ‘dieting’ days. I know that healthy fats are in fact healthy and bad fats are not. I also know that eating a lean protein like chicken breast is not necessarily as important as consuming an animal that was allowed to pasture and was raised without the use of antibiotics and hormones.

Paleo Chicken Mushroom Tarragon Cream Sauce Whole30 Primal Recipe Easy 20 minute meal summer

What I didn’t know was that, aside from myself, many people love chicken breast for it’s neutral flavour, shape, colour and texture. Me? I think it’s the least inspiring meat known to man. There are so many things I’d rather eat. I’m talking lamb, beef, bison, venison, fish, shellfish, pork, goat, alligator. You name it! Chicken, especially breast, is possibly the last thing I think of when I want meat. Don’t get me wrong, I love the dark meat of chicken. Thighs, legs, and wings, will be devoured with delight! Just keep that white stuff to yourself! So, when I say that I have created a chicken breast recipe that I actually enjoy eating I want you to know that I sincerely mean it.

Paleo Chicken with Mushroom and Tarragon Cream Sauce

Paleo Chicken Mushroom Tarragon Cream Sauce Whole30 Primal Recipe Easy 20 minute meal summer

This recipe for Paleo Chicken with Mushroom and Tarragon Cream Sauce is one such recipe. Probably up there with my Chicken Piccata, which I absolutely love! In fact, they’re very similar as far as cooking technique and instructions go. I start by dredging some thinly-sliced chicken breasts in tapioca flour and shallowing frying them in a bit of avocado oil before creating a pan sauce. Instead of the garlic, capers, stock and lemon juice used in the Piccata, I opt for some mushrooms, garlic, coconut milk and tarragon. The result is a creamy, velvety, luxurious sauce that gets spooned overtop of the crispy chicken.

Paleo Chicken Mushroom Tarragon Cream Sauce Whole30 Primal Recipe Easy 20 minute meal summer

If you are not a fan of coconut milk (I’ve heard there are a few of you out there) then this may not be the recipe for you. However, I encourage you to try it because the flavour ends up getting very muted by the garlic and tarragon. In fact, I’ve made this for my family a few times now and they can’t believe there’s no cream in it!

I love to serve this overtop of some mashed yams. I think the white-fleshed, Japanese yams work really well here. The orange, sweet potatoes are too sweet.  To make the yams, I peel and cube them, throw them in a pot of salted boiling water, drain, add chopped garlic, a pinch of salt, a glug or two of EVOO and mash with a fork. If you prefer something I bit lighter, you can serve the Chicken with Mushroom and Tarragon Sauce overtop of  some cauliflower purée. Both options work really well!

3 Tips When Dredging with Tapioca Starch

Be sure to follow these three steps when dredging meat with tapioca flour. Otherwise, you may end up with a gummy finished product!

1. Make sure the chicken is very dry before dredging. Take your time to thoroughly pat the chicken with paper towel. Otherwise the starch will absorb the surface moisture.

2. Do not dredge ahead of time. Ideally, you want to dredge the chicken immediately before frying. Otherwise the starch will absorb the moisture of the chicken and it will not brown as nicely.

3, Make sure your oil is preheated. If your oil is not hot enough the starch will absorb it and it will not get as crispy.

I hope you like it and let me know what you think in the comments below!

Cheers,

Ronny

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INGREDIENTS: (serves 2)

2 chicken breasts – thinly sliced lengthwise

227 gr mushrooms – cremini, button, or portobello

2-3 cloves garlic – finely chopped

1 tbsp ghee

1 cup full-fat coconut milk

2-3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

1 tbsp fresh tarragon – finely chopped

small bunch of chives – finely chopped for garnish

tapioca flour – enough for dredging chicken

salt and pepper

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METHOD:

  1. Slice chicken breasts lengthwise into 1/4″ filets. Season all sides with salt and pepper.
  2. Preheat 2-3 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
  3. Meanwhile, lightly dredge the seasoned chicken breast filets in tapioca starch.
  4. Carefully add the dredged chicken filets to the hot oil and pan-fry for 4-5 minutes per side or until golden brown and cooked through. Note, depending on size of skillet you may have to work in batches.
  5. Transfer browned chicken to a paper towel-lined tray.
  6. Reduce heat to medium-low, add 1 tbsp ghee and mushrooms. Season with a pinch of salt and sauté 5-7 minutes or until softened and slightly browned. Add garlic and sauté an additional 60 seconds.
  7. Pour in coconut milk and use a wooden spoon to scrape off any brown bits that formed on the bottom of the pan. Season with black pepper. Bring the sauce to a simmer and reduce by 1/2 – approximately 5-7 minutes. Taste sauce for seasoning and adjust as needed. Add the chopped tarragon at the very last minute.
  8. Transfer browned chicken to a serving platter and spoon the mushroom and tarragon sauce overtop. Garnish with finely chopped chives and serve with mashed yams or cauliflower purée.

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47 replies on “Chicken with Mushroom and Tarragon Cream Sauce”

Hi Susan, I think both would work here. The only difference would be in texture. Almond and coconut flour are both fairly coarse compared to Tapioca starch, which is a very fine powder. If you only have almond and coconut flour, use the former so that the coconut flavour doesn’t take over. 🙂

I made this for dinner tonight! My father, a very picky Portuguese man, is not really a fan of anything that’s not Portuguese, and he doesn’t typically enjoy coconut. However, he loved this recipe! You hardly notice a coconut flavour. (He didn’t taste it at all)! It was fantastic! I will definitely be making it again in the future.

I made this recipe a few weeks ago, not sure if my dad would like it..he typically only eats portuguese food and will almost always find something he doesn’t like about a dish. I was worried about this dish because of the coconut milk because my dad is one of those folk that do not enjoy the taste of coconut milk, however the garlic really mutes the flavour like you mentioned..my dad enjoyed it! He didn’t even taste the coconut. This recipe was incredibly delicious and I will be making this again in the future 🙂

This dish comes together so quickly that I wouldn’t really recommend using a slow cooker. Instead, I would recommend focusing on butterflying the chicken breast thinly so that it cooks even quicker. You should be able to get everything on the table in under 30 min.

Wow! This was amazing! We’re on day 22 of Whole30 nd this was just what we needed to spice things up. I will trying more of your recipes ASAP! Thank you for what you do!

This was delicious. My only complaint is that the mushrooms let out a lot of water which I left in and added the coconut milk. That was a mistake as the sauce was too watery. I salvaged it by adding more coconut milk and some tapioca starch as a thickening agent!

I made this after making the pork chop version from whole 30 F&E cookbook – Both DELISH. Served over cauli mash and we were very happy campers. And I tried tarragon for the first time!

Ronny,
Thank you so much for such a delicious and inspiring recipe!!! I’ve done this dish twice, both times the whole family loved it and it’s now my to go recipe. I’ve skipped the dredging, also instead of coconut milk, I used heavy whipping cream, and I used a very good quality dry terragon. Next time I will try with fresh terragon and coconut milk.
Thanks!!!

Wow!! This recipe is so simple yet so delicious!!! Thanks for sharing… will print and keep in my recipe binder. 🙂

Okay, I just made this on Sunday and have since shared this with no less than 17 people. IT IS SO GOOD. I served it over garlic mashed cauliflower. All the noms.

Hey Ronny! Loved this recipe tonight but my chicken was a little gummy in some places where the tapioca starch was. Then when places on a paper towel after cooking the breading stuck to the paper towel any tips?

Yes, that sometimes happens! I share 3 tips for avoiding similar results in the future in the recipe post above. One thing I’ve done lately is transfer the cooked chicken to a parchment paper-lined tray in the place of paper towel. I will have to edit that into the instructions!

This is best served immediately because the chicken can start to get soggy and the sauce will dry out. There is also a chance of the chicken drying out if the oven is too hot. If absolutely necessary, keep the pan-fried chicken and sauce separate in the oven. The chicken can go on a wire rack and the sauce can stay in the pan. When time to reheat, place the sauce back on the stove top and reconstitute with a splash of coconut milk. Then add chicken back to pan to reheat in the sauce.

This was such a great recipe! It was quick and easy to put together, too! I used Robin Hood all purpose gluten free flour instead of the tapioca flour and it turned great. I also added frozen peas for some extra veggies. I have made so many of your recipes now and each one has turned out amazing, so thank you for sharing your talent with the rest of us!

I think it’s best to make and serve immediately. If making ahead, the chicken will become a bit soggy and the sauce will become too thick. There are ways to avoid this but it’s no easier than making from scratch.

Definitely! If they’re skin-on and bone-in, you’ll have to factor in a longer cooking time but it can be done! I also wouldn’t bother with dredging them in the starch first if that’s the case.

[…] It’s important to note that although each of these flours are technically Whole30 compliant ingredients, when used to make a healthy, paleo version of certain unhealthy treat foods, like my Paleo Pancakes, they fall under the category of SWYPO and are off limits during your round of the program. Nevertheless, they are perfectly suited to other applications, like using arrowroot starch to lightly dredge chicken for my Chicken with Mushroom and Tarragon Cream Sauce. […]

Can you please format pages like this for the recipe to print on one page with a small picture of the final product. Right now this only allows us to print all 12 pages, even if I just pick the ones with the recipe on it, it is divided among sheets. Love your recipes 🙂

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Hey, I’m Ronny!

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