When you hear the term Étouffée, you are likely to think of the New Orleans delicacy of shellfish cooked in a roux based stew with vegetables and seasonings. For an incredible variation, you should try Chicken Étouffée. It’s the same roux based stew made with the “trinity” and served over rice. However, chicken is the star of the dish rather than crawfish or shrimp. Chicken Étouffée can be made ahead of time and reheated, making it the perfect Mardi Gras dish!
Is it Creole or Cajun?
While New Orleans boasts of wonderful Creole and Cajun dishes, the main distinction between the two is tomatoes. Specifically, Creole dishes contain tomatoes, while Cajun dishes typically do not contain tomatoes. Another distinction lies in the preparation of roux. Roux based Creole dishes use butter and flour as the base for the roux. On the other hand, roux based Cajun dishes typically use lard or vegetable oil with flour.
Ingredients for Chicken Étouffée
I used the following ingredients for this amazing New Orleans dish: Skinless and boneless chicken breasts, Creole seasoning, unsalted butter, flour, onions, celery, bell pepper, garlic, petit diced tomatoes, salt, and chicken broth. For the Creole seasoning, I used Emeril’s Essence which is my go-to Creole seasoning.
Making the Chicken Étouffée
I started by trimming the chicken breasts of all fat and cutting them into bite-sized pieces. Then, I tossed the chicken in some Creole seasoning. After melting some butter in a large Dutch oven, I added the chicken and cooked it until it was no longer pink. This took about 5 minutes. When the chicken was done, I removed it from the Dutch oven and wiped the interior of the Dutch oven with a paper towel.
Next, I melted the rest of the butter over medium heat. When the butter was melted, I added the flour and stirred the mixture to form a roux. I cooked the roux, stirring constantly over medium heat until it was the color of peanut butter. This took about 7 minutes.
Once the roux had reached its desired color, I added the onions, celery, and bell pepper and gave the mixture a stir. The vegetables stopped the roux from becoming any darker. I used both red and green bell peppers because that’s what I had on hand.
Next, I added the garlic. After stirring to combine everything, I let the mixture cook for about 10 minutes, stirring often.
Then, I added the tomatoes, salt, and the rest of the Creole seasoning. I stirred everything together and cooked the mixture for about 3 minutes.
Finally, I added the chicken broth. I stirred the mixture over medium heat until it came to a boil and thickened. Then, I reduced the heat to low and simmered the mixture for about 30 minutes.
After 30 minutes, I returned the chicken to the vegetable mixture. Once I added the chicken, I heated the Chicken Étouffée over medium heat for about 15 minutes to ensure that the vegetables were tender and the chicken was thoroughly heated.
I served the Chicken Étouffée with cooked white rice, crusty French bread, and a glass of Chardonnay. It was amazing. Laissez les Bon Temps Rouler! Yum!
I originally published this on February 27, 2019. Since then, I’ve made this amazing dish a number of times and have tweaked the recipe. This repost includes the updated recipe from the many tweaks.
- 1 Tablespoon Creole seasoning, divided (See Tip 1)
- 1 pound skinless and boneless chicken breasts, trimmed of fat and cut into bite-sized pieces
- 5 Tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
- 1/4 cup (1.25 ounces) all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 cup chopped onion, (1 large onion)
- 1 cup chopped celery
- 1 cup chopped bell peppers (See Tip 2)
- 6 cloves garlic, minced
- 14.5 ounce can petit diced tomatoes, drained
- 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
- 2 cups chicken broth
- Cooked white rice for serving
- 2 Tablespoons thinly sliced green onion tops for garnish
- Toss chicken with 1/2 tablespoon Creole seasoning.
- Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a large Dutch oven over medium heat. Add chicken. Cook, stirring occasionally until all pink is gone, about 5 minutes. Remove chicken from Dutch oven; wipe Dutch oven with paper towel.
- Melt remaining 4 tablespoons of butter in Dutch oven over medium heat. Add flour and stir continuously until the roux is the color of peanut butter, 6 to 7 minutes. Add onions, celery, bell pepper, and garlic to the roux. Cook, stirring often, for 10 minutes. Add petit diced tomatoes, salt, and remaining 1/2 tablespoon of Creole seasoning. Cook mixture for 2 to 3 minutes.
- Add chicken broth. Bring mixture to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly, until thickened. Reduce heat to low; simmer uncovered, stirring occasionally, for 30 minutes. Can be made in advance up to this point.
- Heat Étouffée over medium heat. Add the chicken. Cook 15 minutes, or until vegatables are tender and chicken is thoroughly heated.
- Serve over cooked white rice; garnish with sliced green onion tops. Yield: 4 to 6 servings. (See Tip 3)
Chula's Expert Tips
- For the Creole seasoning, I used Emeril's Essence.
- I used both red and green bell peppers because that's what I had on hand, You could also use just green bell peppers.
- Chicken Étouffée can be made in advance and reheated. Also, it makes wonderful leftovers.