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cast iron skillet of chicken fricassee

Chicken Fricassee Recipe with Tarragon

  • Author: Brooke
  • Prep Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 2 hour 40 minutes
  • Yield: 11 servings 1x


Chicken fricassee with tarragon is a French country comfort food that your family will love for dinner tonight!  This low carb main course recipe shows you how to cook perfectly juicy bone in chicken thighs and drumsticks and make a yummy lemon and tarragon gravy.



  • 5 chicken thighs
  • 6 chicken drumsticks
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons salted butter
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 1/2 cups onion, finely chopped (173g)
  • 1 1/2 cups carrots, finely diced (210g)
  • 3/4 cup celery, finely diced (100g)
  • 4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cup white wine
  • 6 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 6 sprigs fresh parsley
  • 6 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 4 egg yolks, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 4 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons fresh tarragon, roughly chopped


  1. Prep the chicken. Rinse and pat dry, then place it on two plates and generously sprinkle both sides with salt and black pepper.
  2. Sear.  Divide the butter between two heavy-bottomed, high sided skillets.  Melt the butter over medium-high heat until it’s frothy, then add the oil.  Place the drumsticks skin side down in one skillet and the thighs in the other without overcrowding.  Fry the meat on one side until it’s golden brown, about 5 minutes.  Turn down the heat to medium low once the butter starts to brown.  Flip it once to brown the other side for 5 minutes, then place the pieces on a clean plate.  Pour out most the fat from both skillets into a small bowl, reserving 1 tablespoon in each skillet.
  3. Saute the mirepoix. Divide the onion, carrot, and celery between the two skillets and turn the heat to medium.  Scrape the browned bits off the bottom of the pan with a wooden turner.  Stir the mirepoix occasionally until the onions turn golden brown, about 8 minutes.
  4. Make the roux.  Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of flour over the veggies in each skillet and stir until the flour is absorbed.  Keep stirring until the flour smells nutty, roughly two minutes.
  5. Deglaze the pan.  Pour the white wine into each skillet over the mirepoix.  Let it boil and thicken for about a minute.  Scrape up any remaining brown bits off the bottom of the pot with a wooden turner.  Slowly whisk in the stock, dividing it between the two skillets.
  6. Make the bouquet garni.  Gather up some fresh thyme, parsley, and a bay leaf.  Arrange into a small bouquet and tie with kitchen string.  Make another bouquet for the second skillet.
  7. Braise the chicken.  Return the drumsticks and thighs to each skillet, along with the juices from the plate.  Add the bouquet garni.  Don’t submerge the seared chicken in the stock; 1 to 1 1/2 inches of liquid is all you need.   Partially cover each skillet with a lid askew or with foil.  Bring the skillets to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and cook for 35 minutes.  The meat should have an internal temperature of 165 F in the thickest part.  Remove the cooked chicken and place on a large plate; also, remove the two bouquet garnis.
  8. Reduce the liquid by simmering it uncovered for 5 minutes over medium low heat.  You should end up with about 3 1/3 cups (788 ml) of liquid.
  9. Make and temper the liaison.  While the sauce simmers, make the liaison, which will help thicken the sauce.  Whisk the cream into the room temperature egg yolks.  Add 1/2 cup of the hot cooking liquid, one tablespoon at a time, to the liaison.  Make sure to whisk constantly during this tempering process.  Slowly add the liaison to the sauce, whisking constantly.  Make sure the sauce is simmering and not boiling, or the egg yolks will scramble and ruin the sauce.
  10. Finish the sauce.  As a finishing touch, add two tablespoons of freshly squeezed lemon juice to each skillet and whisk it in, then sprinkle on the fresh tarragon.  Return the chicken pieces to each skillet and let it heat through for a few minutes over low heat.
  11. Serve.  Place the chicken on a platter and pour the sauce into a gravy boat.  Serve the chicken and gravy warm with mashed potatoes, rice, buttered noodles, or polenta.


  • If you want to use a whole chicken put aside the wing tips for another dish.
  • Patting the chicken dry, then only flipping it once while searing will produce a crispy chicken skin.
  • If you have leftover gravy, store it covered in the fridge and use on mashed potatoes, rice, or toast.
  • If the sauce isn’t thick enough, add an additional tablespoon of flour when making the roux and simmer the sauce longer uncovered.
  • If you plan to serving this to children, cut the meat off the bone and pour the sauce on top before serving.
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: French

Keywords: with cream, French, easy

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