Chicken Florentine combines thinly sliced seared chicken cutlets with a creamy, garlicky spinach sauce atop a bed of sauteed garlic spinach. We love this dish because it's simple and can be made in under an hour. Oh, and it's also incredibly tasty!
We are big fans of easy chicken dishes and have a number of recipes here, such as chicken with cherry tomatoes and capers.
Chicken Florentine, or creamy chicken with spinach, is one of our newest favorites and we're happy to share this one with you!
We held off making this one because often times when we've ordered Chicken Florentine in a restaurant, we've been underwhelmed.
So we made sure the version we're bringing to you is full of flavor, creamy texture, and all-around goodness.
How to make Chicken Florentine
Each number corresponds to the numbered written steps below.
- Mince 5 cloves of garlic and, in a large pan over medium heat, saute the garlic in a ¼ cup of olive oil.
- Once the garlic turns lightly golden, add 16 ounces of fresh baby spinach and mix with tongs to allow the spinach to be coated with the garlic oil. If the spinach is dry, add 2 ounces of water to help it steam. Cover with a lid. Note: Rinsing to clean the spinach in a colander before cooking will usually leave enough moisture for steaming.
- After about 2 minutes the spinach will wilt and you can remove the lid and turn off the heat. Season with salt and pepper to taste and set aside.
- Mince 3 cloves of garlic, 1 large shallot, and 3 tablespoons worth of Italian flat leaf parsley. Fillet and pound thin 3 chicken breasts. Pat the chicken dry and season well with salt and pepper on both sides. Dredge the chicken in flour on all sides and shake to remove the excess. Place the cutlets on parchment paper and set them aside.
- Heat a large skillet to about a 4/10 heat-wise or essentially between medium to medium-low heat. Add 2 tablespoons of olive oil, and 2 tablespoons of butter, and once hot, add the chicken pieces. Note: work in batches to not overcrowd the pan.
- Sear the chicken for 3 minutes per side (or until cooked through), then place on a plate lightly tented with foil. Continue to work in batches adding more oil and butter if required.
- Once the chicken is done, turn the heat down to medium-low and add the shallots to the pan and saute for 2 minutes or until they begin to soften. Then, add the garlic and continue to cook for another 1-2 minutes until fragrant.
- Add ¾ cups of dry white wine and 1 cup of chicken stock and turn the heat up to high. Scrape the bottom of the pan to dislodge the brown bits. Once the liquid reduces by half (about 3 minutes), turn the heat down to medium.
- Add 1 ¼ cups of cream and the 4 ounces (about half a box) of thawed, drained, and chopped frozen spinach.
- Allow the sauce to simmer for a few minutes or until the Florentine sauce begins to thicken. Taste test the sauce and season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Return the chicken, its juices, and ¾ cup of grated Parmigiano Reggiano to the pan and simmer for 2 minutes or until the chicken is hot again. Add the parsley, mix together, and then remove the pan from the heat.
- Drain the garlic spinach made in steps 1-3 of any accumulated water (there will be a lot of it!), then place on a platter. Serve the chicken on top of the garlic spinach. Enjoy!
Top tips for creamy Chicken Florentine with spinach
- The spinach. As with most things "Florentine", spinach plays a key role. For this recipe, we used 2 types of spinach. First is baby spinach with garlic and oil that serves as a nest upon which the chicken will be placed. The second spinach is the frozen spinach used to make the sauce. If you prefer to use all fresh spinach to do this, you definitely can. Note: It is very important to drain the sauteed spinach before laying the chicken Florentine on top of it. Sauteed spinach will have a lot of accumulated water.
- The chicken. We used chicken breasts that we filleted and pounded to about a ½ inch thick. A thinly pounded cutlet allows for more even cooking and we recommend doing this for the best results. Alternatively, if you wish to use boneless, skinless chicken thighs you can but you'll likely need to cook them longer (about 6 minutes per side).
- The wine. Dry white wine, such as sauvignon blanc or pinot grigio is used for Chicken Florentine. If you prefer to not use alcohol you can do so by replacing the wine with additional low sodium chicken stock.
More great chicken recipes
If you're looking for more great chicken recipes similar to creamy Chicken Florentine, we think you'll love these!
- Spinach mushroom chicken - baby spinach and cremini mushrooms with chicken in a garlicky white wine sauce.
- Creamy sun dried tomato chicken - chicken, sun dried tomatoes, and spinach in a creamy sauce.
- Chicken Milanese - Golden fried chicken cutlets topped with tomato, mozzarella, and basil.
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- 3 large chicken breasts filleted and pounded flat
- flour for dredging
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 6 tablespoons butter divided
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 large shallot minced
- 1 cup low sodium chicken stock
- ¾ cup dry white wine
- 1 ¼ cups heavy cream
- ¾ cup Parmigiano Reggiano finely grated
- 4 ounces frozen spinach thawed, drained, and chopped
- 3 tablespoons Italian flat leaf parsley minced
- salt and pepper to taste
For the spinach
- 16 ounces fresh baby spinach
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 5 cloves garlic sliced
- salt and pepper to taste
For the spinach
- Saute the garlic in a ¼ cup of extra virgin olive oil over medium heat.
- Once the garlic turns lightly golden add the spinach and mix with tongs to coat with the garlic oil. If the spinach is dry add 2 ounces of water to help steam. Cover with a tight lid.
- After 1-2 minutes the spinach will have wilted. Remove the lid and turn off the heat. Season with salt and pepper to taste and set aside.
For the Chicken Florentine
- Pat the chicken dry and season well with salt and pepper on both sides. Dredge the chicken in flour on all sides and shake off the excess. Place the floured cutlets on parchment paper and set aside.
- Heat a large skillet to medium heat. Add 2 tablespoons of olive oil and 2 tablespoons of butter to the pan and once hot add the chicken pieces. Do not crowd the pan. Sear the chicken for 3 minutes per side (or until cooked through) then place on a plate lightly tented with foil. Work in batches, using more butter and oil if required, and set all chicken aside.
- Turn the heat down to medium-low and add the shallots to the pan and saute for 2 minutes or until they begin to soften. Next, add the garlic and continue to cook for another 1-2 minutes or until fragrant.
- Add the wine and chicken stock and turn heat to high. Scrape the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon to dislodge all of the brown bits. Once the liquid reduces by half (about 3 minutes) turn the heat down to medium.
- Add the cream and spinach and simmer for a few minutes or until the sauce starts to thicken.
- Taste test the sauce and season with salt and pepper to taste. Return the chicken, its collected juices, and the grated Parmigiano to the pan and simmer for about 2 minutes or until the chicken is hot again.
- Add the parsley, mix together, then remove the pan from the heat. Drain the garlic spinach of any accumulated water then place on a platter. Serve the chicken on top of the garlic spinach. Enjoy!
- Boneless skinless chicken thighs can be substituted. You will need to cook them longer (about 6 minutes per side) than thin-sliced cutlets.
- Use either store-bought thin chicken cutlets or fillet and pound out chicken breasts to about a ½" thick. A thinly pounded cutlet will allow for more even cooking and will only take a few minutes per side to cook.
- Leftovers can be saved for up to 3 days and can be reheated in the microwave or on a stovetop over medium heat.