This dish is so welcome in many cuisines and for good reason. Chicken Cacciatore - Poulet Chasseur is the same idea in Italy and France and we even have an English version called Hunter's Stew. Chicken stewed in a tomato sauce with herbs, carrots, and mushrooms ... It doesn't matter what you call it, you can't go wrong?
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The history of Chicken Cacciatore - Poulet Chasseur ... and Hunter's Stew
Cacciatore in means "hunter" in Italian and Chasseur means "hunter" in French. Therefore, traditionally, this dish would be made from what the hunter brought home ... and that probably was not chicken, but rather rabbit or other wild game. So we English-speaking people are fully justified in referring to it simply as Hunter's Stew!
What part of the chicken is used?
Personally, I like the thighs. They seem to carry on with the "hunter" theme since they are dark meat and juicy. They also stand up well to the low simmer cooking method. However, don't let that stop you from using white meat if that is your preference ... just know that its texture will be a bit different.
Start by seasoning the chicken pieces, then dredge them in a bit of flour. Yes ... gluten-free flour works, too! And if you want to make it grain-free, use an organic, non-GMO potato starch, tapioca starch, or arrowroot powder.
Brown the chicken pieces and set them aside on a platter.
Build the sauce
Pour out some of the fat from the pot, then add the onions. Cook them seven or eight minutes till they start getting soft. Add the garlic and finally, the carrots and mushrooms.
The white wine does a fine job of deglazing the pot, then the tomato sauce and chicken broth are added along with the herbs.
Nestle those chicken thighs back in on top of that cozy sauce and let it simmer away for a while.
How to serve
This is one of those dishes that is so delicious with some creamy side dish ... like polenta with butter and parmesan cheese mixed in! Mashed potatoes are also a wise choice, of course. And I like something green ... like peas or green beans.
Other recipes you might like:
Chicken Cacciatore - Poulet Chasseur
- 8-10 chicken thighs (See notes)
- Salt and pepper for seasoning
- ½ cup flour (See notes)
- 1 large onion chopped
- 3 cloves garlic chopped
- 2 cups carrots sliced
- 8 ounces mushrooms sliced
- pinch red chile flakes
- 1½ teaspoon dried oregano
- 1½ teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 cup white wine
- 1 14.5-ounce tomato sauce
- 1 cup chicken broth
- fresh parsley chopped to serve on top
- Season the chicken pieces with salt and pepper, then dredge them with flour.
- In a Dutch oven over medium high heat and brown the chicken on both sides, working in batches as necessary. No need to cook through ... a nice crispy skin is what we're after. Remove to a platter and set aside.
- In the same Dutch oven, add the onion and garlic and let them soften, 7-8 minutes. Add the carrots and mushrooms, cook about 5 minutes, then add the wine to deglaze, scraping the bottom of the pot to get all the browned bits. Add the tomato sauce and chicken broth, then the oregano and thyme. Stir to combine all of the sauce ingredients.
- Place the chicken pieces on top of the sauce and bring to a boil. Lower the heat to a simmer, cover and finish cooking, 30-45 minutes.
- Serve with polenta or mashed potatoes. I also love to add a green vegetable like green beans or green peas.