Cozy and comforting braised chicken stew! This veggie-loaded rustic chicken stew is so easy, warm and comforting on a chilly day
Braising is just about the only thing I enjoy about these cold winter months.
There is just something so therapeutic about the mere thought of braising something, let alone eating it. If you were to ask me what’s my favorite thing to cook, I’d probably say braised anything. Usually braised meat (beef or pork) is served on a bed of polenta or mashed potatoes, or with a loaf of crusty bread is served to wipe the bowl clean and in a perfect world, there would be both. Today I’m sharing with you a delicious braised chicken stew.
But first may we talk a moment about bacon? This braised chicken stew starts and ends with bacon (plus a whole lotta goodness in between) and I’m particularly obsessed with the applewood bacon I get from a nearby butcher. Usually it’s a little more pricey but you definitely get more bang for your buck, meaning more meat than fat, better flavor and the aroma smells like an actual wood fire. Heaven! If you can get your mitts on good quality bacon- do it and use it.
Besides bacon, there’s also copious amounts of fresh vegetables; like onions, carrot, celery, baby redskins and mushrooms. The gravy is made with fire roasted tomatoes, chicken broth and fresh thyme. It’s all kinds of delicious and easy to boot!
One pot. One dinner.
Get all the veg prep out of the way first, it’s not a ton of work but it’s always a good place to start. So wash up the carrots and celery and slice them about a half inch thick. Then coarsely chop a large yellow onion.
Halve about 14 to 16 baby redskin potatoes and quarter 8 ounces of mushrooms. I could only find cremini but white button would work just fine here too.
Set all those prepped veggies off to the side for a moment.
Place the chicken thighs and drumsticks on a cutting board. Trim off any excess skin from the thighs.
Grab the poultry seasoning. I make my own because I’m an overachiever like that. If you want to make your own too you can find the recipe in my cookbook :).
Season with salt and pepper, then sprinkle about a tablespoon of the poultry seasoning over top of all the chicken. I didn’t measure but that’s about how much was left in my little canister there.
Place 4 slices in a 5-quart Dutch oven. Turn the heat on medium-low and cook the bacon until crispy, turning bacon often.
Transfer the bacon to a paper towel lined plate. See what I mean about the bacon? Scrumptious!
Increase the heat to medium-high and place half of the chicken pieced into the hot bacon fat.
Transfer the chicken to a clean platter and repeat with the remaining pieces.
Add in the onion, celery and carrots to the remaining fat in the pot. If for some reason there isn’t much, go ahead and add a little olive oil.
Stir, scraping up the browned bits on the bottom of the pot.
After about 5 minutes the onions should be tender and the carrots and celery are just starting to soften up. Add in 3 tablespoons of all purpose flour, stir to coat and cook for 2 minutes.
Earlier I pureed one 14-ounce can of diced fire roasted tomatoes until chunky. Pour that into the pot.
Add in 4 springs of fresh thyme…
Add in the potatoes and mushrooms.
Pour in the low-sodium chicken broth…
Two bay leaves…
And then place the chicken on top of the vegetables and liquids.
Cover and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 40 to 45 minutes.
Then transfer the fully cooked chicken to a clean platter and preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
Next, bring the stew liquids to a boil and cook for 15 minutes to thicken and reduce.
Fish out the bay leaves and thyme stems.
Then check and double check that the potatoes are tender. Taste and season with salt and pepper.
Lastly, place the chicken back on top of the stew and place into the oven to crisp that skin back up, for about 10-15 more minutes.
Then sprinkle with the chopped bacon and finely minced parsley, then serve.
I used tongs to place a drumstick and thigh into shallow bowls and spooned the rest of the saucy vegetables around it.
You guys, this stew is so flavorful! The chicken is falling away from the bone, the vegetables are perfectly cooked and the “gravy” is bursting with flavor. PLUS there’s bacon!Oh and definitely buy a crusty loaf of bread to dip, dunk and mop up anything left in your bowl.
Enjoy! And if you give this braised chicken stew recipe a try, let me know! Snap a photo and tag me on twitter or instagram!
Braised Chicken Stew
- 1½ pounds bone-in skin-on chicken thighs
- 1½ pounds bone-in skin-on chicken drumsticks
- kosher salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon poultry seasoning, see notes
- 4 slices applewood bacon
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 2 carrots, sliced
- 2 celery stalks, sliced
- 3 tablespoons unbleached all-purpose flour
- 4 sprigs fresh thyme
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 (14 ounce) can fire-roasted diced tomatoes, pureed in food processor
- 8 ounces cremini mushrooms, or white button mushrooms
- 14 baby redskin potatoes, halved, or quartered if large
- 1 quart low-sodium chicken broth
- minced fresh parsley
- Trim off any excess skin on the chicken thighs. Season the chicken with salt and pepper and sprinkle them with poultry seasoning.
- Place the bacon in a 5-quart or larger Dutch oven. Heat on medium-low and cook until crispy, turning often. Once crisp, transfer to a paper towel lined plate to drain.
- Increase the heat under the pot to medium-high. Place the chicken, skin-side down into the hot bacon grease and cook for 2 to 4 minutes or until the chicken skin is golden brown and releases easily from the bottom of the pan. If it's sticks a little just give it a little more time to cook. Flip and sear the other side until browned. Transfer seared chicken to a clean platter and repeat with remaining chicken pieces.
- Drain the fat in the pot, leaving 2 tablespoons behind. Add in the onions, celery and carrots and cook for 5 to 8 minutes. Stir in flour and cook for 2 minutes. Pour in tomato puree and add in thyme sprigs and bay leaf. Add in the mushrooms and potatoes, then pour in the broth and give it a stir. Place chicken on top and cover, increase the heat to high and bring to a boil. Once at a boil, reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 40 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Use tongs to remove the fully cooked chicken to a platter. Bring the stew to a rapid boil for 15 minutes to reduce. Remove thyme sprigs and bay leaf.Taste the broth and season with salt and pepper. Place chicken back on top of the sauce and vegetables again and slide the uncovered pot onto the center rack of your preheated oven and bake for 10 to 15 minutes or until the skin has crisped back up.
- Meanwhile finely mince the parsley leaves and coarsely chop the bacon.
- Remove the braised chicken from the oven and sprinkle with both parsley and the bacon.
- Serve with good crusty bread to soak up any leftover sauce. Enjoy!
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Yumm in my book! Boooyah! I do love braised dishes.
Me too Kathryn, I could eat them all day everyday! 🙂
Can I be honest? Cooking with chicken thighs have always scared me (almost as much as my own thighs!!!!) But then I look at how good this stew looks and I think…….motivational talk here, I can do it! Love the tomato broth. Looks scrumptious.
Thanks so much! I know what you mean Laura, I had a thing against bone-in chicken for a long time. You can DO IT! 🙂
How hearty and yummy! That bacon sounds delicious!
I need to make more braised dishes! This chicken stew looks incredible!
This is a winner!!!! Perfect for this cold weather. It was simple enough for me to make and it did turn out without a Dutch oven (FYI) although it wouldn’t hurt to go purchase one! Kids ate it and my husband said to add it to our rotation of meals. Thanks Laurie!!!
I’m so glad! That’s really good to know that it worked out for you just fine without having a Dutch oven! Thanks for leaving a review!
Laurie, I made this recipe last night and although it was delicious a few things we missing from the actual recipe. 1. Thyme and bay leaves were not listed in the ingredients. 2. The 1st mention of bay leaves is when the recipe says to remove the thyme and the bay leaves.
Gah! Sorry about that Diana, I appreciate the heads up and have made the changes! I’m happy to hear that you enjoyed the recipe. Have a great day!
I love your recipes and enthusiasm. I’ve made many variations on the chicken pot pie and it’s always gone within a short while.
It’s snowing here in Massachusetts today, a great day to try out this dish I think.
Just made this for dinner. DH (darling Husband) loved it and I think we will have it again. I didn’t shave thighs and legs, but chicken breasts and legs! LOl it worked well. The breasts were w/o skin and I think they got a little too dry by putting them in the oven the last time. BUT despite my variation, I loved it and will recommend it to my family and friends
thank you for this easy to follow recipe
First of all Happy Birthday!!! Hope you have an awesome party with your loved ones, and that the year ahead brings you so much more than this one did!
Now for the whining and moaning part…
I tried this last night and even tweeted some pics in all the excitement of making it (I’m always super excited when I try new recipes)! Sadly…. I screwed up near the very end, by leaving it to reduce on high for too long without stirring. Boo hoo. I never ruin dinner. Until last night. So yeah. You can imagine how that turned out.
So, to prevent such things from happening, maybe add a note saying to make sure to stir or check up on the reducing step, the only reason I left it longer than you suggested is because I wanted it to reduce a bit more (still seemed too watery). Also, the chicken didn’t seem fully cooked, so I thought a bit more won’t hurt. Well…. turns out I was dead wrong that way.
Planning to repeat it today…. We’ll see how that goes. Also not sure a 4 quart dish is large enough to cook comfortably all the ingredients.
Thank you E! I’ll take a look at it now 🙂
Well I made it past the critical moment today, it’s in the oven for the final stage as I’m typing this. I probably could have reduced it a bit more but I freaked out due to the small episode from last night. Looking forward to trying it out!
Replaced applewood with maple cured bacon – I think we prefer maple over applewood, around here, eh? 😉
One thing I should say, the cooking times you indicate seem insufficient for me. Also a slight inadvertence between “large onion” and “medium onion”, in step by step vs. print version. Also the add in bay leaves moment is different. The fish out moment of the bay leaves and the thyme sprigs is also different, from step by step to print out, as is the final seasoning (after in step by step and before reducing in print out).
Regardless, I’m super excited to try it out in a few minutes….. Hopefully nothing goes wrong this time around!
I’ll take a look at the recipe, Thanks E! And I hope you enjoyed it! <3
Definitely a keeper, once I’ve “mastered” it;)
Thanks, Laurie! Couldn’t imagine my life without you (therefore my mild panic attack last night when your blog was down….)!
You’re so kind E! Oh my gosh, I was so scared/nervous/anxious on Monday! Luckily it all worked out! <3
Than k you for sharing
Wow. Great flavor but entirely too much liquid. My chicken did not sit on top and crisp. They drowned!
Hi Howey! Sorry to hear that your chicken sunk. I may just remake this recipe and see if some tweaks should be made. I appreciate you making this recipe and your feedback 🙂