Chicken with tarragon is a magic combination that I never get tired of!
This recipe has been a family favourite for years because it's easy, economical and absolutely delicious. Whether you are entertaining or enjoying a family meal at home, this is a great recipe that always turns out perfect.
For this dish you can use any part of the chicken or even leftovers and the meat will stay succulent due to the easy sauce.
Best of all this dish is on the table in 30 minutes from start to finish so it's perfect for a midweek treat too. Just set the veggies to cook while you tend to the chicken.
What are the ingredients?
With chicken breasts more expensive we often use thigh meat at home. It has a richer, gamier flavour and the meat stays moist when it's cooked on the bone. Nowadays it's difficult to buy chicken breast with the skin on and I do like a little bit of crispy skin. Of course, feel free to remove the skin.
If you have not used juniper berries before they are the main flavouring in gin and the clean aromatic flavour goes perfectly with the tarragon.
This dish calls for fresh tarragon, which I grow in the garden, but if you can't get it then used dried. Dried tarragon is one of only a few that isn't gritty and woody and I often throw some dried tarragon in my chicken gravy.
You will also need crème fraîche, white wine and chicken stock. I always keep a pot of reduced fat crème fraîche in the fridge as it has a longer shelf life than cream and is more stable in sauces. It's also good for a quick pasta sauce or to make a yummy dip.
How to make this dish
Trim off any visible fat and excess skin and dredge the thighs in seasoned flour. Heat a little oil and butter in a large shallow pan and put the chicken in skin down for about 5 minutes until golden. Turn over the chicken to brown and remove some of the excess fat from the pan if you like.
Next add the wine and allow to bubble for a couple of mintes to reduce and then the stock, most of the tarragon and juniper berries. Feel free to leave out the wine and add some extra stock instead.
Simmer for 10-15 minutes until the chicken is cooked through. To keep the skin crispy try not to pour the liquid onto the chicken.
Check the seasoning then stir the crème fraîchethrough the sauce. Serve with the remaining tarragon sprinkled over.
Crunchy skin, moist meat and an creamy tarragon sauce with juniper.
What could be better?
I used to make this dish with skinless chicken breast. It's easier to cut each breast into 3 or 4 strips so that they cook quicker. You could also use cooked chicken pieces from the store or leftover roast chicken. Just reduce the cooking time to 10 minutes but be sure that it is hot.
Creamy sauces don't tend to do well when they are frozen and reheated so I wouldn't recommend freezing.
With a creamy sauce you need a good crispy potato to dip in it! Try my French Scalloped Potatoes or French Parmentier Potatoes. Serve with Griddled Asparagus with Serrano or Roasted Winter Vegetables .
For a weeknight boil some new potatoes and some broccoli or green beans while the chicken is cooking.
You may also like
- Herby Spatchcock Chicken
- French Cassoulet with Chicken
- One Pan Lemon Garlic Chicken Bake
- Creamy Chicken with Sun Dried Tomatoes
- Harissa Chicken Traybake
- Guinea Fowl with Chestnuts and Bacon
- Chicken and Chorizo Traybake
Chicken with Tarragon and Juniper Berries
- Large skillet/frying pan
- 8 chicken thighs skin trimmed
- 6 juniper berries lightly crushed
- 2 tablespoon low fat creme fraiche
- 1 tablespoon fresh tarragon
- 2 tablespoon flour
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 50 ml dry white wine
- 150 ml chicken stock
- Season the flour and dredge the chicken.
- Heat the oil and butter in a large shallow pan and put the chicken skin down for about 5 minutes until the skin is nicely browned then turn over.
- Add the stock, wine, juniper and herbs and simmer for about 15 minutes until cooked.
- Stir through the creme fraiche before serving.
Disclaimer: The nutritional information provided is approximate and is calculated using online tools. Information can vary depending on various factors, but we have endeavoured to be as accurate as possible.
Detailed instructions for this recipe, including step by step photographs, hints and tips, can be found in the main article.
We sometimes take for a granted that we have years (or decades) of cooking experience, that the average visitor may not. Add to, or remove from, the list below with health and safety tips.
- Cook to a minimum temperature of 165 °F (74 °C)
- Do not use the same utensils on cooked food, that previously touched raw meat
- Wash hands after touching raw meat
- Don't leave food sitting out at room temperature for extended periods
- Never leave cooking food unattended
- Use oils with high smoking point to avoid harmful compounds
- Always have good ventilation when using a gas stove
Thanks so much Dave. I think it's great because you can use any chicken you have. I originally made it with bonesless breast but the thights have so much more flavour. Happy eating!
This is a great tasting dish and very easy to pull together. I made my first batch earlier in the summer and have made it 2 other times since - trying one with boneless skin on thighs and one with boneless skinless thighs. Each was great.
Thanks for sharing this recipe!
Thanks so much Ellie. I've used chicken breast before but a whole chicken sounds fantastic. I'd love to know how you made it?
Thank you so much for this recipe! I bought some juniper berries for another recipe and was looking for other things to do with them, this is perfect!
This sounds wonderful. A perfect dish for my family.
Delicious, creamy and flavorful and definitely a unique recipe too. Love your recipe and want to try it out.
This is my kind of a chicken dinner - quick and delicious!
What an great recipe! My family loved it ❤️
I live in France. My husband is French. I make this dish once a month and use a whole chicken. Simply delicious. Thank you
I have never cooked with Juniper berries, I really must change that! Lovely to have a recipe to help me along so now I need to go in search of some ?
Thanks Mimi. It's a great flavour but I forgot to say that you don't want to eat one though!
What a lovely recipe. I only use juniper berries when I make terrines! I'll have to try this!