As the weather warms up, the idea of spending hours in a hot kitchen becomes increasingly unattractive. When the sun is shining we all want light, quick meals, maximum flavour with minimum fuss so we can get back to enjoying the warmth outside.
It’s always good to have a few easy dinner recipes up your sleeve for days when you want a crowd-pleasing meal on the table quickly.
Chicken breasts are always a winner as they cook quickly, are universally popular and soak up loads of flavour. My recipe for Sun-Dried Tomato and Basil Chicken has got you covered.
An easy summer dinner
This is a super easy one-pan meal! First, you sear a couple of chicken breasts until golden brown. Then you can cook up the creamy, Mediterranean inspired sauce all in the same pan. (saves on the washing up, win!) I have to warn you, this sauce is so good that everyone will be fighting over the pan at the end.
This recipe is such a great combination of big summery flavours. The chicken breasts are cooked with:
- fresh basil
- sun-dried tomatoes
- fragrant dried oregano
These are all summer store cupboard essentials, and they all combine to make a seriously good sauce.
Make sure to get plenty of colour on the chicken breasts, that way there’s lots of flavour.
Recommended side dishes
Keep it simple! This is a quick recipe for a middle-of-the-week meal, as it’s ready in around half an hour from the moment you start to cook.
I’d recommend serving this dish with simple sides; a big loaf of crusty bread to soak up the sauce and a big, leafy green salad on the side. If you are looking for inspiration, try my Greek Village Salad and Homemade Tomato and Rosemary Focaccia recipes.
Variations and substitutions
This sauce is also delicious with pork, so you could quickly sear some pork medallions and proceed as per the recipe.
If you’re not a fan of olives or capers you can leave them out or replace them, just be sure to season generously with salt and pepper to make up for the missing flavour.
I hope it’s beautiful and sunny where you are too, take care out there and happy cooking!
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I double this recipe?
Yes! You need to make two changes. You need to cook the chicken in batches, unless you have a seriously gigantic pan, otherwise it will steam rather than browning.
You’ll also need to reduce the creamy sauce for 5 minutes before adding the chicken back to the pan and continuing as in the recipe. Don’t cook the chicken for longer in the sauce as it will toughen, if you need a thicker sauce, use cornstarch as suggested in the notes.
the only chicken breasts I can find at the shops are gigantic! What can I do?
Can Sun-dried tomato and basil chicken be frozen?
Sauces with cream in them can split a little after defrosting. This meal can be frozen but it might not look quite so beautiful. You can refrigerate the fully cooked dish for up to 3 days.
I like to use green olives in this recipe, but Kalamata olives would be delicious too!
- 4 chicken breasts, 200g (7 oz.) ea.
- 2 Tbsp butter
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 2 large cloves garlic, finely diced
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 100g (3.5 oz.) semi-dried tomatoes, diced (see notes)
- 100g (3.5 oz.) green olives, torn in half
- 125ml (½ cup) white wine
- 200ml (just lees than 1 cup) heavy cream
- 125ml (½ cup) hot chicken stock, made from cubes or powder is fine
- zest of 1 small lemon
- small bunch of fresh basil
- 1 Tbsp capers
- sea salt and black pepper
- baguette or other crusty bread
- 1-2 tsp cornflour / cornstarch (see notes)
- FLATTEN CHICKEN BREASTS: Lay the chicken breasts between two sheets of clingfilm or baking parchment. Use a rolling pin or similar to gently beat the thicker end of the breasts so that they are an even thickness. You are not trying to turn the chicken breasts into schnitzel, levelling the chicken breasts will help them to cook evenly. Season generously with salt and pepper.
- BROWN CHICKEN BREASTS: Heat the butter and olive oil in a large, heavy-based frying pan until the butter is melted and foaming. Lay the chicken breasts in the pan and cook, without moving them, for 5 minutes. Turn the chicken breasts and cook a further 5 minutes, then transfer to a plate, cover loosely with foil and keep warm.
- MAKE THE SAUCE: Add the garlic, oregano, tomatoes and olives to the pan and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Pour the white wine into the pan and use a wooden spatula to scrape up all the browned on flavour. Simmer for 1 minute, then pour in the cream and chicken stock. Stir through the lemon zest, then add the chicken breasts and any resting juices back to the pan.
- SIMMER: Bring the liquid to a simmer, then turn the heat to medium and cook gently for 5 minutes until the sauce has thickened slightly. Taste and correct seasoning if necessary.
- SERVE: Scatter over the basil and capers, then divide between 4 warm plates and serve with a crusty baguette or good quality bread to soak up all the sauce.
- Sun-dried tomatoes come in a range from very moist and soft, to desert dry and hard. The sun-dried tomatoes I use here are the kind that come in a jar, covered in oil, rather than the extra-dry, chewy kind.
- If you prefer a thicker sauce, mix 1 tsp of cornflour / cornstarch with 1 Tbsp of cold water and add the pan along with the wine and cream.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 775Total Fat: 38gSaturated Fat: 18gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 17gCholesterol: 175mgSodium: 1233mgCarbohydrates: 54gFiber: 4gSugar: 8gProtein: 50g
Nutrition information is calculated automatically and isn’t always accurate.