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This creamy garlic chicken recipe is the ultimate easy comfort food! Tender chicken breasts smothered in a creamy garlic sauce are irresistible. Garlic lovers unite!

Love creamy chicken recipes? Try my Creamy Tuscan Chicken, this Creamy Bacon Chicken, or my Creamy Mushroom Chicken.

cast iron skillet with chicken breasts and a creamy garlic sauce with whole cloves of garlic

Why you’ll love it

This creamy garlic chicken is ready in about 30 minutes. It’s good enough to serve company, but it’s also one of those dishes that works for a quick weeknight dinner. A lovely reader said that it’s “one of the best things I have ever eaten!!!” It was an early hit on the blog and actually shaped the direction of S&L towards easy comfort food.

Yes, I include both garlic powder and an entire head of garlic in this recipe. It’s not a typo! Believe it or not, the garlic cloves themselves don’t make the sauce ridiculously garlicky. The flavor of garlic powder is slightly different than the fresh cloves. I’m going for all-out depth of garlic flavor here without making it overpowering.

What you’ll need

  • Chicken – we’re using two large boneless, skinless chicken breasts cut in half lengthwise to cook faster and more evenly, so it remains tender and melt-in-your-mouth
  • Flour – for a tasty crust on the exterior of the cutlets, and it also helps thicken the sauce
  • Olive oil and butter – for sautéing
  • Garlic cloves – use an entire head of garlic. Don’t worry if you don’t have the exact same number of cloves as I used. It’s not precise.
  • Chicken broth – for the savory base of the sauce
  • Lemon juice – a little bit of acidity for balance
  • Garlic powder – for a different garlicky aspect! It’s a staple in my pantry.
  • Heavy cream – it’s what makes the sauce luxuriously rich
ingredients for creamy garlic chicken on a marble countertop

Do I eat the garlic cloves?

  • You do! If you’ve never really cooked with whole garlic cloves before, don’t worry. Cooking them in the sauce mellows them right out. It’s nothing like biting into raw garlic.
creamy garlic chicken on a plate with mashed potatoes and green beans

How to make creamy garlic chicken

This is an overview with step-by-step photos. Full ingredients & instructions are in the recipe card below.

pan frying chicken in a cast iron skillet and then frying garlic cloves

Cut the chicken breasts into four cutlets, season with salt & pepper, and coat with flour. Pan fry until golden, and then take them out of the skillet. Lightly brown the garlic cloves in the same pan.

making sauce for creamy garlic chicken in a cast iron skillet

Add the broth, lemon juice, and garlic powder to the skillet. Let it up bubble for a few minutes until the liquid has reduced somewhat. Pour in the cream, and return the chicken to the pan to cook until it reaches 165F inside and the sauce thickens. Garnish with parsley if desired.

Tools for this recipe

Check out Natasha’s favorite kitchen essentials, gadgets, and cookware!

Substitutions and variations

  • Sub the cream at your own discretion. If you use something like milk or half-and-half, the sauce may curdle due to the high heat and end up thinner. I recommend reading through the reader comments. There’s tons of tips from readers who have tweaked this recipe to their liking.
  • I use boneless/skinless chicken breasts for this recipe. You can substitute for chicken thighs, but keep in mind those may take a bit longer to cook.
  • For an elegant touch, swap the chicken broth for a dry white wine like pinot grigio or sauvignon blanc.
  • Readers have tried minced garlic in a jar, but the results won’t be the same and our kitchen has not tested that. You’re welcome to experiment.
close-up of creamy chicken skillet with garlic cream sauce

What to serve with creamy garlic chicken

Leftovers and storage

  • Store any leftovers of this creamy chicken in the fridge in a covered container for 3-4 days.
  • Reheat in a saucepan slowly and over a low heat until warmed through.
  • I don’t recommend freezing this one. The chicken will dry out, and creamy sauces don’t hold up well in the freezer.
creamy garlic chicken in a cast iron skillet with whole garlic cloves and plenty of garlic cream sauce

If you made this creamy garlic chicken recipe, leave a star rating and comment below! Questions the post didn’t answer? Let me know. You can find me on Instagram and showcase your creations with #saltandlavender.

This creamy chicken skillet recipe is loaded with garlic and the the most amazing melt-in-your-mouth chicken. Make it for dinner tonight!
4.88 from 470 votes

Creamy Garlic Chicken

This creamy garlic chicken recipe is the ultimate easy comfort food! Tender chicken breasts smothered in a creamy garlic sauce are irresistible. Garlic lovers unite!
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes
Total: 30 minutes
Servings: 4

Ingredients 

  • 2 large boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • Flour for dredging
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons butter divided
  • 1 whole head garlic cloves peeled
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth or stock
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 cup heavy/whipping cream
  • Parsley chopped (optional)

Instructions 

  • Cut the chicken in half lengthwise so you have 4 smaller cutlets. Generously season them with salt & pepper and coat them in the flour. 
  • Add the olive oil and 1 tbsp of the butter to a skillet over medium-high heat. Once the pan is hot, sauté the chicken for 4-5 minutes/side or until it’s nice and golden. Take the chicken out of the pan and set it aside.
  • Reduce the heat to medium (or even med-low if using cast iron), and add the rest of the butter to the pan. Let it melt and then add the garlic cloves. Cook them for 3-4 minutes, stirring often, until they’re lightly browned on the outside. 
  • Add the chicken broth, lemon juice, and garlic powder to the pan. Let it bubble for around 4 minutes or until the liquid is noticeably reduced. 
  • Stir in the cream and add the chicken back into the pan. Let it cook for another 5 minutes or so, until the sauce is reduced and the chicken is cooked through. Serve with freshly chopped parsley if you wish.

Notes

  • I recommend using fairly large boneless/skinless chicken breasts for this recipe since we’re cutting them in half lengthwise. If you have smaller ones, use 4 of them and leave them intact.
  • If your garlic cloves are particularly gigantic like some of mine were, feel free to cut them in half so they’re all roughly the same size.

Nutrition

Calories: 435kcal, Carbohydrates: 6g, Protein: 26g, Fat: 34g, Saturated Fat: 18g, Cholesterol: 169mg, Sodium: 313mg, Potassium: 514mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 1g, Vitamin A: 1083IU, Vitamin C: 6mg, Calcium: 57mg, Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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Hi! I’m Natasha.

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1,571 Comments

  1. I need help. I made this tonight. I bought chicken breast but fillets, like they were already cut in half. Cooked 5 min per side as stated. 5 min again once with sauce but it was over cooked it was like eating rubber. I followed exactly the heat and timing. They were the similar size as well. Also at the end of the dish, it looked fine but the oil started seperating from the sauce and it no longer looked like sauce. What did I do wrong??

    1. Hi Daisy! I’m sorry you’re having a stressful time with this recipe. The chicken fillets you used are quite small, right? They would definitely need less time than 5 min/side – that’s the timing for 2 fairly large chicken breasts that are cut in half lengthwise (see the step-by-step pix in the blog post to give you a better idea of the thickness I had in mind). If in doubt, always use an instant read meat thermometer since every piece of chicken will vary. Chicken tenders do cook very fast. It sounds like the sauce curdled. Did you use cream that was at least 33% fat (whipping cream or heavy cream)? If it’s lower fat (like light cream or half-and-half), there’s a good chance it’ll separate, especially if cooked at a fairly high heat as suggested in the recipe. It also can curdle if you add it in cold straight from the fridge.

    1. Hi Kathie. I’m not shocked by your 3-star review given you didn’t use heavy cream, going against all the advice in the blog post, since the resulting sauce would be a watery mess.

  2. 5 stars
    I NEVER have leftovers when I make this! I usually cook for 6 so I always double the recipe thinking I’ll have leftovers to take to work the next day. NOPE. It’s delicious and suits everyone in my home’s food preferences.

  3. 5 stars
    This was excellent.

    I tried it out for myself tonight because I had cream I had to use up.

    I now plan to make it for my “boyfriend” next week because it turned out so good. 🙂

  4. This sounds very delicious. I wanna make this tonight but I don’t have heavy cream. Can I use Mexican cream as replacement?

    1. Hi! I haven’t ever cooked with that before. I can’t speak to results. If you’ve made similar subs in other recipes, it could work. Let me know if you try!

  5. 5 stars
    One of the best “simple” recipes I’ve ever made! My whole family loved it, including 5 & 3 year old boys – they scarfed every bite.