Easy, One Pan Southern Smothered Chicken is a quick Southern recipe featuring seared and baked chicken thighs drizzled in brown gravy. This healthy dish is made with onions and spices all in a cast iron skillet.
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I love a good comfort food dish, yall! This recipe will show you how to cook smothered chicken, Cajun or Creole style, The most common way to eat it is with rice, but I love to pair it with vegetables, too.
If you’re asking yourself, “What’s a good Southern soul food meal….perfect for Sunday dinner?” I got you! This meal is perfect.
What is Smothered Chicken?
Smothered chicken is a classic, Southern recipe. We often smother pork chops, too. You make the chicken first on the stove and then pop it in the oven to bake and finish cooking.
Many recipes call for either a whole cut up chicken or chicken thighs. The chicken is then smothered in brown gravy and typically with onions.
What Kind Of Chicken to Use. Bone-in vs Boneless Thighs
You can use any chicken you want. Traditionally, bone-in chicken thighs are used. You can use skinless chicken if you prefer.
Bone-in chicken thighs are a lot juicer, thanks to the bone. They also require a longer cook-time than boneless. I find it only adds about an additional 5 minutes.
Boneless chicken thighs are typically cheaper and will cook faster. They are not as moist as bone-in thighs.
What Can I Season the Chicken With?
How to Make Smothered Chicken Thighs
- Ensure the chicken thighs are dry and season both sides of the chicken.
- Add the chicken to a heated cast iron skillet with olive oil. Sear both sides of the chicken.
- Remove the chicken and set aside.
- Add butter and onions to the skillet.
- Next add in broth and cream.
- Return the chicken to the pan and bake.
How to Substitute Chicken Breasts or Legs
Chicken breasts will require 15-20 minutes to bake at the same temperature. Always use a meat thermometer to check the chicken has reached an internal temperature of 165 degrees.
Chicken legs will require 20-25 minutes to bake at the same temperature.
What Goes Well/Side Dish Pairings
Keto Low-Carb Cornbread
Southern Soul Food Homemade Cornbread
Instant Pot Collard Greens
Southern Soul Food Baked Macaroni and Cheese
Southern Green Beans
Keto Low Carb Orange Chicken
Roasted Ranch Potatoes
Chicken and Avocado Salsa
Southern Collard Greens
Southern Mustard Greens
Southern Candied Sweet Potatoes
Seafood Mac and Cheese
Instant Pot Teriyaki Chicken
More Southern Recipes
Red Beans and Rice
Baked Turkey Wings
Southern Sweet Potato Casserole
Air Fryer Lamb Chops
Air Fryer Scallops
Southern Chicken Spaghetti
Air Fryer Turkey Legs
Southern Smothered Pork Chops
You will love my Smothered Pork Chops, Smothered Steak, Smothered Chicken Wings, Smothered Potatoes and Onions, and Smothered Turkey Wings recipes, too! Check out our list of the Best Authentic Soul Food Recipes here.
Soul Food Smothered Chicken Thighs
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Ensure the chicken thighs are dry and season the chicken thighs with the Creole seasoning, thyme, garlic powder, salt and pepper to taste.
- Heat a cast-iron skillet on medium-high heat. Add 1 teaspoon of olive oil.
- When hot, add the seasoned chicken thighs. Sear both sides of the chicken, about 2 minutes on each side. The chicken does not have to fully cook through as it will be baked later.
- Remove the chicken from the skillet and set it aside.
- Add the onions and cook the onions until they are translucent and fragrant.
- Lower the heat to medium-low and add in the chicken broth and heavy cream. Stir to combine for 2-3 minutes. Do not allow the sauce to boil.
- Return the chicken to the pan. Place the skillet in the oven and bake for 20-25 minutes. Use a meat thermometer and ensure the chicken has reached an internal temperature of at least 165 degrees before removing it from the oven.
- Cool before serving.
- A pan that retains heat well, works best for this recipe a cast iron or stainless steel pan. If you use something else, results will vary.
- If you don’t want to use Creole Seasoning, substitute it with whatever you prefer. The use of Cajun Seasoning is also popular.
- You can use skin-on thighs or remove the skin/purchase the chicken skinless. This is a matter of preference.
- Boneless chicken thighs will require 15-20 minutes of cook time.
- Chicken breasts will require 15-20 minutes to bake at the same temperature. Always use a meat thermometer to check the chicken has reached an internal temperature of 165 degrees.
- Chicken legs will require 20-25 minutes to bake at the same temperature.