What's better than buttery, tender, chicken in a homemade white wine, butter, lemon sauce? My recipe for this classic chicken francese is the perfect meal for a family dinner, a Mother's Day entree, or as a meal prep for the week. You'll be raving of it all day (and week).
This is one of my favorite dishes to serve in the spring or summer as it's bright, light, and goes well with a simple arugula salad.
This was inspired by my tuscan chicken (LINK TO RECIPE), as they are both classic, Italian chicken dishes.
What are the Chicken Francese Ingredients?
Making chicken francese is solely based on a few solid, standard ingredients, plus the addition of white wine and lots of lemon. I am a very citrus-forward type of person, so the more lemon in this I found the better, but adjust the lemon according to your liking!
- Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breast: Sliced thin, tenderized with a meat cleaver, and seasoned with a little salt and pepper.
- All-Purpose Flour: I swear by Bob's Red Mill Organic All-Purpose Flour, but if you're gluten free you can swap this for a gluten-free favorite or even almond flour.
- Butter: No one was ever unhappy with the use of butter in a recipe, am I right? We'll use some butter for frying the chicken, and then more butter for the sauce.
- Olive oil
- White Wine: The white wine gives the flavor a little more acidity, and also adds to the buttery, lemon sauce.
- Rosemary: This is for the garnish
See recipe card below for quantities and full instructions.
How do I make this chicken francese?
We'll break this down into two separate stages: battering the chicken, and making the dish itself. Up first, the chicken.
For the Chicken:
Pat dry the chicken breasts and using a sharp slicing knife, fillet the breasts into two (aka butterfly and separate). Dip the chicken into the whisked egg and then into the flour. Coat well and set onto a plate. Repeat until all chicken is egg dipped and floured.
For the Dish:
Pan fry the chicken in a large frying pan coated with olive oil and 2 tablespoons of butter. Add more oil as desired. Lay the chicken into the pan, 3-4 pieces at a time, and let cook for 5 minutes per side.
Cook the chicken and set aside onto a separate plate. Meanwhile, add the rest of the butter to the pan and pour in the white wine. Layer the chicken breasts back in, and add the lemon slices. Turn the heat to a low flame and let simmer for 15-20 minutes, flipping each piece of chicken occasionally to coat all sides. Serve as is or garnish with fresh rosemary.
Hint: Be sure to let the chicken sit in the sauce with the lemon, white wine, and butter for longer than you'd think so that the chicken picks up all of the flavor from the sauce.
What if I don't eat gluten/butter?
This recipe is very flexible, and if you have a dietary need or preference, here's something to consider:
- Swap the regular butter for some vegan butter. Lots of brands out there if you don't eat butter.
- Coat the chicken directly into the flour, or dip into vegan butter instead of the egg.
- For the flour, you can use almond flour instead of regular flour, or swap for gluten free flour.
Looking for ways to spruce up or revamp this recipe? See below for some ideas on variations of this classic chicken dish:
- Spicy - add red pepper flakes to the sauce to give the flavor a little kick.
- Kid-Friendly - slice this chicken into bite size cubes or thinner tenderloins for "lemony chicken tenders"
All of the cooking for this recipe is directly in one pan, so if you have one large pan, that's all you really need, but I'll lay out exactly what you need from start to finish so you can prepare ahead of time like the true Top Chef you are!
- One large pan: As I mentioned, you only need one large pan for this as everything cooks in stages.
- Tongs: To flip the chicken and maneuver the lemons, chicken, etc.
- Cutting Boards: Use two if you have, because you don't want to risk cross contamination of the lemons and the chicken.
- Plates and bowls: I use two plates (one for dipping the chicken in the flour, and one for when the chicken is done frying) and bowls for the whisked egg.
Storage and Leftovers
This recipe will keep in the fridge for up to 3 days after cooking. If you want to freeze this, place in a tightly sealed tupperware and freeze up to one month, defrosting in the fridge overnight.
If you want to prep this meal ahead of time and eat it at a later date, you can make the sauce separate from the chicken and store separately. Pan fry the chicken, and make the sauce in individual (or the same) pans, but don't combine until you're ready to serve the whole dish.
Hungry for More?
Looking for other recipes like this? Try these:
- 1 large pan
- cutting boards two of them: one for the lemons, one for the chicken
- plates and bowls
- 3 large Chicken Breasts sliced thin, tenderized
- 1 cup All Purpose Flour
- 2 Eggs whisked
- 5 tablespoon Butter
- 3 tablespoon Olive Oil avocado oil works well too
- 2 large Lemons thinly sliced
- ½ cup Dry White Wine
- Rosemary Garnish, optional
For the Chicken
- Pat dry the chicken breasts and using a sharp slicing knife, fillet the breasts into two (which means to butterfly and separate)
- Dip the chicken into the whisked egg and then into the flour. Coat well and set onto a plate.
- Repeat until all chicken is egg dipped and floured.
For the Dish
- Pan fry the chicken in a large frying pan coated with olive oil and 2 tablespoon of butter. Add more oil as desired.
- Lay the chicken into the pan, 3-4 pieces at a time, and let cook for 5 minutes per side.
- Cook the chicken and set aside onto a separate plate. Meanwhile, add the rest of the butter to the pan and pour in the white wine.
- Layer the chicken breasts back in, and add the lemon slices. Turn the heat to a low flame and let simmer for 15-20 minutes, flipping each piece of chicken occasionally to coat all sides.
- Serve as is or garnish with fresh rosemary.