This Creamy Tuscan Chicken is the perfect healthy dinner option that’s great for everything from family dinners to date nights in! It’s flavor loaded with sun-dried tomatoes and herbs, with some extra veggies in there as well. It’s classic comfort food made easy and healthy too.
Do you just love creamy sauces? I sure do! And so I’m on a mission to make some of my old favorites healthier this year by making them dairy free. I’m not too proud to admit it wasn’t have been long ago that I wouldn’t have been caught dead making a cream sauce without any heavy cream. My how times have changed… but in a good way!
Once I got over the idea I couldn’t make a ‘decent sauce‘ without the ‘real thing‘, I started remaking some classics at a rapid rate. So I hope you’ll enjoy all the healthy comfort food coming your way this year. Tuscan chicken is one of the first ones I wanted to remake because it’s been a long-time favorite.
With that said… let’s jump right in to talk about the ingredients for this Creamy Tuscan Chicken!
- Chicken – I used chicken breasts in this recipe, but you can use chicken thighs as well. The chicken breasts are simmered in the sauce for 10-15 minutes until they’re completely done. Chicken thighs take about 5 minutes to finish cooking in the sauce. This will vary a bit depending on the thickness. Just simmer down the sauce for about 10 minutes, then add the chicken thighs in in the last 5 minutes or so of the cooking time.
- Onion & garlic – These 2 make up the base of the flavor, and add a lot of savory flavor to the sauce. Also each of the ingredients listed here that adds flavor are what keep this sauce from tasting like coconut.
- Italian seasoning – is a good pairing with the sun-dried tomatoes. But you can also mix it up with Herbs d’ Provence or freshly chopped thyme or rosemary. If you use the fresh herbs, they’re a 2:1 ratio to dried. So for this recipe with 2 teaspoons of Italian seasoning called for, you would use 2 tablespoons of chopped fresh herbs. Be sure to check your labels for seasoning mixes. The Italian seasoning I use doesn’t contain anything but herbs. But some mixes have all sorts of extras from salt and sugar to powdered milk in Italian seasoning.
- Sun-dried tomatoes – these add so much wonderful flavor to the sauce. They are also part of any classic Tuscan Chicken I’ve ever been served in restaurants. Be sure to check your labels for any unwanted ingredients. I’ve had good luck buying my sun-dried tomatoes from health food stores. The brands I’ve seen there haven’t had any ‘extras’ in them.
- Chicken stock – Homemade chicken stock always tastes the best. But of course I don’t always have it around by any means. My next best choice is frozen bone broth, followed by boxed chicken stock. Try to look for low sodium if you can. Some of the boxed chicken stocks are quite high in salt. That’s why the salt listed in the recipe says ‘to taste’. The chicken stock I used in this dish was unsalted. But you would need way less salt if you have a full sodium boxed chicken stock, or maybe no added salt at all. Simply taste to see at the end of the cooking time.
- Coconut cream – is what I’ve been using in place of heavy creamy these days. You can buy cans of coconut cream, or refrigerate cans of coconut milk and scoop the hardened cream from the top. Also you can 1:1 replace the coconut cream with my Cashew Cream or regular heavy cream if you’re looking for a nice treat!
- Spinach – is the perfect way to add another veggie to your plate. It also adds a nice pop of color and some extra nutrition too!
Now we’re ready to make this recipe step by step!
Start by prepping all the ingredients before you begin cooking. The ‘hands on’ time for this recipe isn’t much. So it’s best to have everything ready to go before starting to cook. But if you’ve been cooking for a long time, you’ll find you’d be able to prep the different steps as you go to save time!
Then we’re going to brown the chicken breasts on both sides before removing them from the pan.
Steps 3 & 4:
Next cook the onions and garlic together until the onions are softened and browned. Then we’ll add all the sauce ingredients along with the chicken. Finally bring the sauce to a simmer and cook together with the chicken until the chicken is done in the center.
Lastly pile the chopped fresh spinach across the top of the skillet. It will look like a lot, but remember spinach fairly melts down into nothing. Let it sit for a minute or so to wilt a bit. Then carefully mix it in and allow to just wilt, about 1 more minute.
The final step is to add some optional fresh basil and serve!
What to serve with this Creamy Tuscan Chicken:
- Roasted Sweet Potatoes or Simple Roasted Sweet Potato Noodles
- How to Cook Spaghetti Squash (oven & Instant Pot)
- The Best Mashed Potatoes, (there’s a dairy free version)
- Crispy Rosemary Potatoes
- Garlic Butter Sautéed Mushrooms
- Caramelized Bacon Brussels Sprouts
- Easiest Garlic Roasted Green Beans
And finally some more creamy recipe inspiration!
For all of our dairy free recipes, head over to the recipe index where you’ll find all sorts of yummy things to make. From there you can use the filters on the side of the page to choose anything from breakfast to dinners or desserts!
I sure hope you enjoy this Creamy Tuscan Chicken. And if you do get a chance to make it, I hope you’ll leave me a comment/rating below. I absolutely love hearing from you here!Print
The classic comfort food dish made healthier with extra veggies!
1 1/2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts, 3
2 tablespoons olive oil, or reserved oil from the sun-dried tomatoes
1 onion, finely diced, 3 cups
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons Italian seasoning, no salt or sugar added
1/2 cup chopped sun-dried tomatoes, oil packed and drained, about 1/2 of an 8 oz jar
1 cup chicken stock, I used this Homemade unsalted chicken stock
1 cup coconut cream, see notes
4 cups chopped baby spinach, 4 ounces
1 teaspoon sea salt, or to taste, see notes
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Optional: chopped fresh basil
Prep all the ingredients before you begin to cook. Then preheat a 10-12″ skillet over medium high heat. When the pan is hot but not smoking add 1 tablespoon of the oil and swirl to coat the bottom of the pan.
Brown the chicken breasts 3-4 minutes per side before removing them from the pan.
Add the remaining tablespoon of oil along with the onions and garlic. Lower the heat to medium and cook until the onions are browned and softened, 5 minutes.
Add the Italian seasoning, sun-dried tomatoes, chicken stock, and coconut cream.
Bring the sauce to a boil scraping up the browned bits from the bottom of the skillet. Add the chicken back to the pan and reduce the heat to maintain a simmer.
Cook to reduce the sauce and turn the chicken once, after about 5 minutes for even cooking. When the chicken is done, 10-15 minutes, add the spinach in an even layer across the skillet. Or you can remove the chicken from the pan, add the spinach, then add the chicken back in after it’s wilted.
Let the spinach sit over the simmering sauce for about 1 minute to help it wilt. Then carefully mix it in. Season to taste with sea salt and pepper. Then serve with the optional fresh basil.
The amount of salt you need will vary greatly depending on your taste and the ingredients you use. Start by tasting the final dish and adding a small about at a time. The reason for this variance is because chicken stock varies a lot. The chicken stock I used here was unsalted which is why I used 1 teaspoon sea salt.
For the coconut cream you can use cans of coconut cream. Or refrigerate a can of coconut milk, then scoop out the hardened cream from the top which measures about 1 cup of coconut cream per can of coconut milk. The refrigeration is needed to make the cream easier to scoop out. You can also use 1 cup coconut milk from the can but the sauce won’t be quite as creamy.
- Category: Dinner
- Method: Stove Top
- Cuisine: Italian
Keywords: Dairy Free Tuscan Chicken, Healthy Tuscan Chicken, Paleo Tuscan Chicken, Whole30 Tuscan Chicken