Easy Garlic Butter Chicken (Breast or Thighs)

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Easy Garlic Butter Chicken is made with just a few simple ingredients and packed with juicy flavor! It’s an easy weeknight dinner, made with boneless, skinless chicken thighs or boneless chicken breasts and a rich two-ingredient sauce.

Why You’ll Love This Garlic Butter Chicken Recipe!

Easy Chicken Recipe. This 25-minute recipe has simple ingredients, making it perfect for busy weeknights! Serve it with this make-ahead Cheesy Mashed Potatoes casserole.

A New Family Favorite. Don’t underestimate this garlic butter chicken breast recipe — It has so much flavor and is sure to be a hit in your house!

Versatile Meal. This chicken entree goes with all kinds of sides, from creamy mashed potatoes and a refreshing side salad to steamed veggies and pasta!

After just one mouthful of this garlic chicken and the delicious garlic butter sauce, you’ll want to add this recipe to your list of go-to favorites!

ingredients for garlic butter chicken on a table.

Ingredient Notes

  • Chicken | This simple recipe uses boneless, skinless chicken breasts or chicken thighs.
  • Salt and pepper | Season the chicken with kosher salt and black pepper. Freshly ground black pepper is best.
  • Dried herbs | Bring more flavor to the chicken with dried oregano and thyme.
  • Olive oil | Use olive oil to cook the chicken breasts or thighs.
  • Broth | Chicken broth will help deglaze the pan and boost the sauce’s flavor.
  • Butter | Unsalted butter will be the base of the garlic sauce.
  • Garlic | Mince fresh garlic cloves for the savory butter sauce.
  • Fresh parsley | If you’d like, chop fresh Italian parsley for a lovely garnish.

How to Make Garlic Butter Chicken

Today’s easy chicken dinner is not your ordinary piece of chicken — it pleases the picky eaters while satisfying more sophisticated palates.

STEP 1 | Season chicken

First, let’s get the chicken properly seasoned. In a shallow bowl, sprinkle salt, pepper, oregano, and thyme on top of the chicken and toss to coat it evenly.

seasoning chicken; searing in a cast iron pan; making the pan sauce for garlic butter chicken.

STEP 2 | Cook the chicken

Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Then, add the seasoned chicken pieces to the skillet and cook, without disturbing, for 3-4 minutes.

Next, turn the chicken and cook another 3-4 minutes or until they are cooked through and golden brown.

STEP 3 | Remove the chicken

Best practice is to use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature. When the chicken reaches 165 degrees F, it is cooked through. Then, remove the chicken to a clean plate.

seared chicken in a cast iron skillet with a garlic butter pan sauce.

STEP 4 | Create the pan sauce

Next, pour the chicken broth into the skillet to deglaze the bottom of the pan, allowing it to sizzle for a few minutes.

Next, melt the butter, add the fresh minced garlic, and sauté for about 30 seconds until fragrant.

STEP 5 | Sear chicken and coat with sauce

Now, return the chicken to the pan and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes, stirring to ensure the chicken is well coated with the savory garlic butter sauce.

STEP 6 | Garnish and serve!

Finally, remove the skillet from the heat and garnish with fresh parsley if desired. Before slicing into the garlic butter chicken thighs or breasts, allow it to sit for a few minutes, retaining the juices. Slice it just before serving.

Tips from the Home Chef’s Kitchen

Cooking the chicken without disturbing allows the outside of the pieces to perfectly cook and sear on the outside.

 Aim to have your chicken breasts close to even thickness for even cooking. If they are not similar in size, adjust the cooking time accordingly.

Watch the garlic carefully. It is easy to burn. As soon as it is fragrant and slightly golden, move on to the next step.

Before slicing into the garlic butter chicken thighs or breasts, allow it to sit for a few minutes, retaining the juices. Slice it just before serving.

chicken in a skillet with broccolini on a table.

For more hit recipes with incredible sauces, try these Pan-Seared Pork Tenderloin Medallions With Mushroom Sauce, Chicken Meatballs with Honey Garlic Sauce, and this Pumpkin Pasta Sauce with Mushrooms and Sage, perfect for fall!

Variations and Substitutions

  • Chicken Seasoning. Use your favorite Italian seasoning blend instead of the dried herbs, if preferred.
  • Steak and Pork. The garlic butter sauce is also delicious on other meats, like steak and pork!
  • Veggie Sauce. It’s also a tasty way to add flavor to roasted or steamed vegetables.
  • Add Heat. Sprinkle some red pepper flakes into the sauce for a kick!
  • Freshly minced or pressed garlic is best in this recipe. If you don’t have any, substitute one teaspoon of garlic powder (or more if desired) in the sauce.
  • Replace the broth with dry white wine to deglaze the pan and add a flavor twist.

Storage and Reheating Tips

  • Place any leftovers in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 3 days.
  • To reheat: Heat the recipe on the stovetop in a skillet with butter or olive oil, or use the microwave to warm it up in short bursts. You can also heat the leftovers in the oven at 350°F while covered with aluminum foil to prevent the meat from drying out.
garlic butter chicken on a serving plate on a table.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do chicken breasts and thighs cook at the same time?

Most cuts of chicken cook at about the same rate. The key is to get the thickest part of the chicken to at least 165 degrees F for both chicken thighs and breasts.

Can I add vegetables to the chicken?

Sure! If you have more time, add veggies to the skillet and increase the cooking time.

How do you make chicken skin super crispy?

If you’re using chicken thighs for this recipe, get crispy skin by patting the chicken dry before searing the outside in a hot skillet. Cooking the chicken undisturbed will also help the skin crisp.

a garlic butter chicken breast sliced in two with a fork on a plate.

Looking for More Chicken Recipes?

Enjoy Juicy Chicken Breasts with Creamy Dijon Mustard Sauce or Smoky BBQ Grilled Chicken Kabobs; no marinade needed! Also, try my Nashville-Style Hot & Crispy Chicken Sandwich or this Carrabba Family Recipe, Italian Grilled Chicken Winner winner chicken dinner!

What to Serve with Garlic Butter Chicken

Garlic butter chicken goes well with various side dishes such as mashed potatoes, steamed or roasted vegetables (like carrots, green beans, or broccoli) roasted baby potatoes, rice, or a fresh salad.

close up image of a garlic butter chicken breast in a cast iron skillet.

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garlic butter chicken in a cast iron skillet on a woven placemat.

Easy Garlic Butter Chicken (Breast or Thighs)

Easy Garlic Butter Chicken is made with just a few simple ingredients and packed with flavor! It’s an excellent and easy weeknight dinner.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Course Chicken
Cuisine American
Servings 6 servings
Calories 308 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme
  • 3 tablespoon olive oil
  • ½ cup chicken broth
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 6 cloves garlic minced
  • fresh Italian parsley chopped for garnish

Instructions
 

  • Ina shallow bowl, season the chicken with salt, pepper, oregano, and thyme. Toss to coat evenly.
  • Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the seasoned chicken pieces to the skillet and cook, without disturbing, for 3-4 minutes. Turn the chicken and cook another 3-4 minutes or until they are cooked through and golden brown.
  • Remove the chicken to a clean plate.
  • Pour the chicken broth into the skillet to deglaze the pan. Allow it to sizzle for a few minutes, then add the butter to the skillet and allow it to melt. Add the minced garlic to the skillet and sauté for about 30 seconds until fragrant.
  • Return the chicken to the pan, and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes, stirring to ensure the chicken is well coated with the garlic butter.
  • Remove the skillet from heat. Garnish with fresh parsley if desired.

Notes

    • Cooking the chicken without disturbing allows the outside of the pieces to perfectly cook and sear on the outside.
    •  Aim to have your chicken breasts close to even thickness for even cooking. If they are not similar in size, adjust the cooking time accordingly.
    • Watch the garlic carefully. It is easy to burn. As soon as it is fragrant and slightly golden, move on to the next step.
    • Before slicing into the garlic butter chicken thighs or breasts, allow it to sit for a few minutes, retaining the juices. Slice it just before serving.
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Nutrition

Calories: 308kcalCarbohydrates: 1gProtein: 33gFat: 19gSaturated Fat: 7gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0.3gCholesterol: 117mgSodium: 637mgPotassium: 582mgFiber: 0.2gSugar: 0.1gVitamin A: 286IUVitamin C: 3mgCalcium: 21mgIron: 1mg

Life Love and Good Food does not claim to be a registered dietician or nutritionist. Nutritional information shared on this site is only an estimate. We recommend running the ingredients through an online nutritional calculator if you need to verify any information.

Keyword boneless chicken, chicken breast, chicken thighs, easy dinner, pan-seared, skillet
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was.
Sheila Thigpen, blogger

About Sheila Thigpen

Recipe Developer, Food Photographer, Food Writer

Sheila Thigpen is the publisher of Life, Love, and Good Food — a Southern food blog — and the author of Easy Chicken Cookbook and The 5-Ingredient Fresh and Easy Cookbook. After 20+ years in the publishing industry, she retired in 2018 to focus on her own creative endeavors full time. She and her husband live near the beautiful Smoky Mountains and have a precious little granddaughter who has stolen their hearts. As an influencer, Sheila has collaborated with brands like Creamette, Kroger, HERSHEY’S, Hamilton Beach, Garafalo Pasta, OXO, Smithfield, Valley Fig Growers, and more.

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