My Mom’s Chicken Marsala with the Best Almond Green Beans!
We’re throwing it back today with my mom’s chicken marsala!
You may remember that this was one of the first recipes I ever shared on the blog, and for mostly selfish purposes, I wanted to create it again with the green beans she often makes so I could post as it as meal. So I can easily find dinner ideas. Because, you know, I can’t find dinner ideas in my head, but I can find dinner ideas on my own website! It’s a thing.
Plus, this is a verrrry delicious weeknight meal that reminds me of my childhood.
Oh and… I know, I know! First thing you probably notice? No mushrooms. NOPE. There aren’t any mushrooms in this recipe.
My mom never puts mushrooms in her chicken marsala because my dad can’t stand them (if you’re a longtime reader, then you recall!) – so here we are. This was probably nice when we were kids because she didn’t even have to fight us all on eating mushrooms.
But it also made me grow up thinking I didn’t like mushrooms, when in actuality I LOVE THEM.
For the sake of nostalgia (< this is terrifying), this recipe, and the million others you can find on the internet WITH mushrooms, I’m leaving them out. This is how my mom made it every single week!
Yes, my mom made this chicken marsala once a week when I was growing up. She cooked dinner almost every single night and we ate like a lot of other families in the 90s – we had taco night, pasta night and she just happened to throw a chicken marsala night in there too.
IT WAS WORTH IT.
We all absolutely loved this meal when I was growing up but I probably wouldn’t have told you it was my favorite. We had so many other favorite dinners that while enjoyed this one, it rarely made the cut. Looking back now, I think I just took it for granted. Ha!
A few things my mom does differently in her chicken marsala? She always uses chicken tenders. And she leaves out the mushrooms. She doesn’t use cream in her recipe! I guess it’s sort of like a bastardized version of chicken marsala but it’s just so good. I even used to get excited about the leftovers and eat them when I came home from school.
A few things I do differently from my mom’s chicken marsala? I add a pinch of allspice. I know it sounds weird, but when I was in college I had a bite of chicken marsala that was made with cinnamon. YES. Cinnamon. It was very interesting and incredible. I actually made it with cinnamon in my original post.
But! Now that my palate has become slightly (I mean, ever so slightly) more sophisticated, I use allspice. It’s not as cinnamony (obviously) but still adds that hint of… what is that?!
I also add a drop of cream to the sauce but honestly? You could leave it out and it would still be great. Says my mom who has made it without cream for, like, 30 years.
And finally, I don’t like to have my chicken marsala swimming the sauce. I prefer to have it in a low simmering sauce, but not a TON of sauce. Just the right amount.
Let’s talk about the green beans!
My mom inadvertently browns butter to make these green beans. She wouldn’t even realize it if you told her, but she adds butter to a skillet with a ton of sliced almonds. They toast and the butter browns and it all happens at once and not only does it smell LIKE HEAVEN but it also looks like a skillet full of flavor that I want to devour instantly.
Then she tosses in the green beans and it all comes together.
My mom actually made an entree and at least (!!) two sides nearly every.single.night. and now I’m very much like HOW ON EARTH DID YOU DO THIS?! Because my other side dish to this would probably be quick rice or a leftover potato that I’d make Eddie heat up.
Really what I’m trying to say here is that it pairs wonderfully with rice or potatoes. Yes.
And that’s a wrap!
This is comfort in a skillet. It’s not overly indulgent and rich, but it’s just comforting enough for a weeknight meal, which is just how my mom cooked when I was growing up.
Chicken Marsala with Almond Green Beans
- 1 ½ pounds boneless, skinless chicken tenders
- ½ cup all-purpose flour, plus more for sprinkling
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 shallot, diced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- pinch of allspice
- 1 cup dry marsala wine
- 1 cup chicken stock
- 1 to 2 tablespoons heavy cream
- fresh parsley, for sprinkling
- 1 pound green beans
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- ⅓ cup sliced almonds
- pinch of salt
- pinch of pepper
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- Place the flour in a dish and stir in the salt, pepper, smoked paprika and garlic powder. Lightly dredge each piece of chicken into the flour mixture.
- Heat an oven-safe skillet over medium heat and add the olive oil. Add each chicken piece and brown on both sides, cooking about 2 minutes per side. When the chicken is finished, transfer it to a plate (you can even use a paper towel lined plate - that’s what my mom does!).
Add the butter to the skillet. Stir in the shallots, garlic and pinch of salt, pepper and allspice. Cook until the onions soften, about 5 minutes. Pour in the marsala wine, scraping the bottom of the pan so some of the flavor is released. Stir in the chicken stock. Bring the mixture to a boil then reduce it to a simmer. Sprinkle in a pinch of flour and whisk. Stir in the cream. Add the chicken back into the skillet. Transfer the skillet to the oven and cook for 15 minutes.
Remove from the oven and sprinkle with fresh parsley. I usually find this to be seasoned enough, but add some salt and pepper if you need it. Serve immediately with the green beans.
- Start by blanching the green beans. Prepare an ice bath - fill a large bowl with ice and cold water.
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Once boiling, add the green beans and cook for 3 to 4 minutes. Use a strainer to immediately transfer the beans to the ice bath. Let them chill in the bath for 5 minutes. Pat the beans dry with a paper towel.
- Heat a large skillet over medium-low heat and add the butter. Once melted, add in the garlic and the almonds. Stir to toss everything together. Cook, stirring often, until the almonds toast and the butter browns, about 3 to 4 minutes. Add the green beans and toss well. Heat over low heat until the green beans warm with the butter and almonds.