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Creamy Sun Dried Tomato & Parmesan Chicken in a Skillet (No Cream)

20 March 2021

I love cream, who doesn’t? But sometimes it’s just too rich for me. Luckily there are a few easy ways to still create a creamy flavour and texture while keeping the sauce pretty light.

How to do it? I used a mix of low fat milk and corn starch in stead, it works beautifully. I served it with pan fried crispy gnocchi and roasted broccoli, but to keep it even lighter you could also serve it with rice and a simple salad on the side. It’s up to you!

Creamy Sun Dried Tomato & Parmesan Chicken in a Skillet (No Cream)

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Dinner Italian
By Saffron & Cafe Delites Serves: 4
Prep Time: 10 minutes Cooking Time: 20 minutes Total Time: 30 minutes


  • The Chicken:
  • 2 large boneless and skinless chicken breasts, halved horizontally to make 4 fillets
  • 2 tbsp all purpose flour
  • Pepper & Salt
  • The Sauce:
  • 2 tbsp sun dried tomato oil from the jar (or olive oil)
  • 3-4 garlic cloves, grated
  • 150 g jarred sun dried tomato strips in oil, (drained but reserve 2 tbsp of oil for cooking)
  • 250 g sliced mushrooms
  • 1 1/2 cups (low fat) milk
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch mixed with 2 tablespoons of milk
  • ⅓ cup fresh grated Parmesan cheese
  • Small bunch basil, shredded
  • To serve (see notes)
  • 400 - 500 g fresh uncooked gnocchi
  • 1 head of broccoli, stem sliced in pieces and florets separated


The sides


The chicken and sauce will be done fairly quickly, so best to start with the sides.


Preheat the oven to 200°C.


Prepare the broccoli by slicing up the hard stem and separating the florets.


Toss in olive oil and season with pepper and salt.


Lay out on a baking tray lined with baking paper.


Roast for 18 minutes until slightly charred (that's the best part) and just cooked through.


Heat a drop of olive oil in a (non stick) frying pan and add the gnocchi. Let it fry way on medium heat, tossing now and then until golden and crisp on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside. This will take about 20 minutes. Season with pepper and salt.

The chicken & Sauce


In a shallow bowl, combine the flour, salt and pepper. Dredge the chicken in the flour mixture; shake off excess and set aside.


Heat 1 tablespoon of the reserved tomato oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat until hot.


Fry the chicken until golden on each side, cooked through and no longer pink (± 6 - 8 minutes depending on the thickness of your chicken). Set aside.


Add the 1 tablespoon of tomato oil to the skillet; sauté the garlic until fragrant and translucent, ± 1 minute.


Add the sun dried tomatoes and mushrooms and sauté until the mushrooms are just soft.


Reduce heat to low heat, add the milk and bring to a gentle simmer, stirring occasionally.


Add the milk & cornstarch mixture to the centre of the pan and stir it through.


Continue to simmer while quickly stirring the mixture through until the sauce thickens.


Add in the parmesan cheese and allow sauce to simmer for a further minute until cheese melts through the sauce.


Taste and season with pepper and salt to your liking.


Add the chicken back into the pan; sprinkle with the fresh basil and a little extra pepper.


Serve with the gnochhi and roasted broccoli


You can serve this with rice, pasta, bread anything really that's good in soaking up the sauce. In stead of broccoli you could also serve it with cavolo nero for example, or maybe a simple green salad.

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