Chicken and Potatoes with a Garlic Parmesan Cream Sauce

Smelling garlic sautéing in melted butter, is there anything more scrumptious? This recipe for Chicken and Potatoes in a Garlic Parmesan Cream Sauce hits the nail on the head when it comes to scrumptious meals. It has a parmesan cream sauce that is quick and easy, the chicken thighs come out moist and tender, and the potatoes melt in your mouth. At just around twenty dollars, including a bottle of Chardonnay, our family of six had plenty to eat. I am excited to share with you this recipe which is a monthly go-to for our family.

Chicken and Potatoes in a Garlic Cream Sauce served on white plate

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Published September 3, 2021
Updated March 11, 2022
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Remember, when dealing with raw chicken, to wash your surfaces with an antibacterial cleaner after you cook or prep. I like to keep a container of antibacterial wipes open on the counter, so it is easy to clean up and not cross-contaminate surfaces.

Cost Breakdown for One 9 X 13

6 Chicken thighs, boneless and skinless $6.33
3 Tbsp butter $0.36
3 cups spinach $0.74
1 cup heavy cream $0.77
4 Tbsp butter $0.36
1/2 cup shredded parmesan $1.65
1 bottle Chardonnay costs $2.95. Yes, ALDI wine is delicious and inexpensive!
Total cost=$13.16 for one 9 X 13 pan.

Cost for the Second Pan

chicken thighs $6.70
3 Tbsp butter $0.36
3 cups spinach $0.74
1 cup heavy cream $0.77
4 Tbsp butter $0.36
shredded parmesan $1.65
For dinner we need to feed six people, so I made two pans and added only $10.58 to the total cost of dinner.
In the end the total cost for our meal was $23.74
Price per serving comes to just shy of $2.00. Not bad!
And to be honest, this dinner fed six people who had 2-3 servings and lunch the next day for Tyler.
When looking at the cost breakdown you will notice that flour, seasonings and broth are not added to the cost because buying in bulk cuts the cost for these items to pennies. Calculating cost of 2 Tablespoons of flour when I buy twenty-five pounds is quite difficult. However, one day those numbers will happen. I also buy chicken broth in bulk form and use the concentrated style that you can mix into hot water. For us, this helps cut down on all of those liquid broth containers and having them in the fridge. Sometimes I even use chicken base, which is still cheaper than pre-made stock; there is nothing wrong with buying stock. I do it sometimes. This week’s shopping did not include stock as we already had stock concentrate and soup base.

Why From Scratch?

Firstly, cooking a meal for our family is one of my joys. I love to know what is in my food and what we feed our kids. Shopping for food at the grocery store knowing the food is going to be prepared and cooked is so much fun. At the end of the day, I have peace knowing our kids, in general, have eaten healthy. I have not always known how to cook from scratch, and I used to make all boxed meals, frozen or pre-packaged meals. Using raw ingredients to make a meal from a recipe has been a journey since 2015. Also, having a family of six one one income sent me on a journey to stretch our food budget. Don’t get me wrong, popping in a frozen pizza is our “on the rush” go-to and we enjoy going out to eat at a restaurant.

Secondly, I cook from scratch is to save money. As we are on a budget and trying to save money, we cannot afford to go out to eat a lot. I have found that making food from scratch and buying ingredients in bulk really help us save money on our food bill.
Each week we put aside $170 for our food. That’s it. We take cash out of our bank weekly for our envelopes and we really try to stick to that routine. It can get difficult, for me at least, to want to whip out the debit card to pay because it is convenient and easy. And that swipe of the card just feels goooood, am I right?! One thing we learned on our debt free journey from Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University, is to pay cash. so that is what we do. If you have not taken this course, I highly recommend it! It helped Tyler and I pay off two cars, cut up thirteen credit cards, have zero credit card debt, just went on a family vacation paying in cash, and have cash in a savings account for the first time in over a decade.
Frankly, this system works for us, and I am not pressuring anyone into signing up and following our path. You do you!
But I am super curious… What is your system? Do you have a budget? Let me know!! To learn more about Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University, click the link to Amazon to buy his course.
Dave Ramsey is not a sponsor of this blog

Third and finally, cooking from scratch helps manage food allergies. For instance, in 2019, allergy testing showed I have allergies to almond, strawberry, apple, lemon, lime, kiwi, peach, pear, plum, carrot, celery… just about every tree fruit. Therefore, it is difficult to find any packaged foods that do not contain, or have been processed in a factory, almonds. For example, as more and more packaged foods come to the market, keep vigilant with your own food needs and restrictions if you have any. There are so many foods that have been changed recently and have ingredients that you would be surprised about. Cooking from scratch helps to manage symptoms from eating a food that causes oral food allergy symptoms, and also reduces my need to ever use an EpiPen.
If you have questions about Oral Allergy Syndrome, check out this site!! WebMD has so many examples and ways for you to learn to manage eating with OAS. My OAS journey has been a long one and one that I am still managing to get a grasp on.

Ingredients for Chicken and Potatoes in a Garlic Cream Sauce

6 chicken thighs
3 Tbsp butter
1 Tbsp Italian seasoning
3 cloves minced garlic
1 tsp thyme
3 cups freshly chopped spinach
1/2 cup heavy cream
16oz potatoes, peeled
1/4 cup butter
2 Tbsp flour
1 cup chicken broth
1/2 tsp basil
1/2 cup freshly shredded parmesan
salt and pepper to taste

Chicken and Potatoes ingredients on countertop
I love to use boneless skinless chicken thighs

Chicken and Potato with Cream Sauce Directions

1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees and spray a 9X13 baking dish with non-stick spray.
Having your ingredients out before you start to cook helps to stay organized. Personally, having all of your ingredients chopped, sliced, shredded, minced or cut ahead of time helps cooking run much smoother; rather than taking more time and risking over-cooking or burning some of the food. Additionally, it is serious fun to read through the recipe and dump bowls of freshly chopped and cut foods into the pan to cook; just like a pro on television you can be your own Sioux chef.

Chicken and Potatoes ingredients next to cutting board
Have all of your ingredients out and ready to go!

2. Season the tops of your chicken thighs with salt, pepper and Italian seasoning. There is no need to season both sides at this time because you can season the other side when the chicken is cooking.

chicken thighs seasoned with salt, pepper and Italian seasoning on cutting board
I love to use a dishwasher safe cutting board when handling raw chicken.

3. Melt 2 Tablespoons butter in a large pan over medium-high heat.

butter melting in large saucepan on stove

4. Add the chicken, seasoning side down so it can cook the seasoning into the meat and season the opposite sides while in the pan. When you flip the chicken over the seasoning will then be on both sides.

chicken seasoned in pan on stove
Season the opposite side while cooking in the pan!

5. Sear both sides of the chicken thighs for 2-3 minutes.

chicken thighs flipped and cooking on opposide side
Does not need to be fully cooked as it will finish in the oven.

6. Carefully pick up each piece with a fork and then place into a sprayed baking dish.

seared chicken thighs in baking dish

7. Wash the potatoes, peel off skins if desired, cut each in quarters or small chunks and then place the potatoes in the baking dish with the chicken. The potatoes do not have to be super small pieces.
This colander is simply amazing as it keeps your food away from the water splash on the bottom of a sink. I love to peel potatoes right in our sink and using our disposal makes quick work of the peels. I bought this colander on Amazon so I could get the fast shipping and excellent return policy. The price will likely change over time, so click this link to check the current price of this colander on Amazon.

8. Melt 1 Tablespoon butter in the same pan and then stir in chopped spinach. You don’t have to finely chop the spinach as it will cook and wilt down. Just give it a quick couple of chops with the knife.

chopped spinach on cutting board

9. Cook for 2 minutes while stirring. The spinach will wilt down a considerable amount. If you want more spinach, feel free to add more. Six cups were used here as the recipe was doubled.

spinach in hot pan wilting with melted butter

10. When fully wilted, set aside in a bowl to be used later. As you can see, the six cups of spinach reduced to just shy of one cup.

wilted spinach in glass bowl

Make the Creamy Parmesan Sauce

1. Melt 1/4 cup butter in the pan and then add the minced garlic. It is ok to have drippings and leftover bits in the pan as they add a considerable amount of flavor to the cream sauce.

melted butter in large saucepan with sauteed garlic
Leave the drippings! It helps add flavor to the sauce.

2. Cook until fragrant, typically 1-2 minutes. Whisk in 2 Tablespoons flour and make sure the flour does not get clumpy. A whisk helps to make sure there are no chunks and make sure to cook the flour for two minutes.

flour added to melted butter and garlic in saucepan
Use a whisk to break up any clumps.

3. When flour is fully combined, whisk in chicken broth, thyme and basil. Adding broth to the butter will sometimes cause steam, make sure you keep hands away to avoid getting burned by the steam.

4. Stir for a few minutes to make sure all of the seasonings are combined and so the sauce is brought to a slight boil.

sauce cooking in large saucepan
This creamy sauce is so good, but keep going and add the heavy cream!

5. Stir in 1/2 cup heavy cream and then use a whisk to combine. Additionally, be sure to scrape up all of those bits off of the bottom of the pan and incorporate them into the creamy sauce.

heavy cream added to saucepan for chicken and potatoes in a garlic cream sauce
Heavy cream helps to thicken the sauce.

6. When the sauce is starting to get thick whisk in freshly shredded parmesan cheese. Using fresh shredded is key to any cream sauce as the cheese will blend smoothly. Using pre-shredded for a cream sauce will just result in a chunky sauce that will not be smooth because pre-shredded cheese has a coating preventing the shreds from sticking to each other while in the package.

shredded parmesan cheese added to large saucepan
The creamy sauce just leveled up with parmesan.

7. Add the cooked spinach back into the creamy sauce and stir with a whisk to combine.

wilted and cooked spinach added to creamy parmesan sauce
Add the spinach!

Bake the Chicken and Potatoes

Finally, carefully pour the creamy parmesan sauce over the chicken and potatoes in the baking dish. Use a rubber spatula to scrape all of the excess sauce onto the potatoes so it evenly covers everything in the pan.

creamy sauce poured over chicken and potatoes in baking dish

Bake for 45 minutes or until the internal temperature of the chicken thighs reach 165 degrees. Especially with chicken, make sure to use a thermometer. I highly recommend a digital one that has a big temperature and usage range. A quick read thermometer is so helpful when the people are ready to eat, and you do not want to take two minutes making sure you do not kill them with food poisoning. Not that your people would be impatiently waiting for this meal as they have only had to endure the smells for the last eighty odd minutes or so…

For this meal we enjoyed tasting the garlic with the creamy parmesan sauce. The chicken thighs had the perfect number of cooked skins that added a great crispiness to their meat. If desired, using bone-in chicken thighs would give a great crispiness and flavor to the dish. In the past I have used bone-in chicken thighs and it was just as delicious but took about 15-20 minutes longer. Additionally, a way to spruce up this dish would be to serve it with roasted or steamed cauliflower and garlic bread. Mental note for the next time the family wants this meal.

Enjoy!
~Monica

Chicken and Potatoes in a Garlic Cream Sauce Recipe

Ingredients for Chicken and Potatoes

6 chicken thighs
3 Tbsp butter
1 Tbsp Italian seasoning
3 cloves minced garlic
3 cups freshly chopped spinach
1 tsp thyme
1/2 cup heavy cream
16oz potatoes, peeled
1/4 cup butter
2 Tbsp flour
1 cup chicken broth
1/2 tsp basil
1/2 cup freshly shredded parmesan
salt and pepper to taste

Chicken and Potatoes Directions

  1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees and spray a 9X13 baking dish with non-stick spray, then set baking dish aside.
  2. Season the tops of your chicken with salt, pepper and Italian seasoning.
  3. Melt 2 Tablespoons butter in a large pan over medium-high heat.
  4. Add the chicken, seasoning side down, and season the opposite sides while in the pan.
  5. Sear both sides of the chicken thighs for 2-3 minutes, then carefully pick up each piece with a fork and place into the prepared baking dish.
  6. Wash potatoes, peel off skins if desired, and cut each in quarters and then place in the baking dish with the chicken thighs.
  7. Melt 1 Tablespoon butter in the same pan and stir in chopped spinach, then cook on medium for 2 minutes stirring often. When fully wilted, set aside in a bowl to be used later.
  8. Melt 1/4 cup butter in the pan and then add the minced garlic. Cook until fragrant; around 1-2 minutes.
  9. Whisk in 2 Tablespoons flour to the butter and garlic mixture, allowing the flour to cook for two minutes.
  10. When flour is fully combined, whisk in chicken broth, thyme and basil.
  11. Stir in 1/2 cup heavy cream to the flour mixture and then whisk to combine.
  12. When the sauce is starting to get thick whisk in freshly shredded parmesan cheese.
  13. Add the cooked spinach back into the creamy sauce and then stir gently to combine.
  14. Finally, carefully pour the sauce over the chicken and potatoes in the baking dish.
  15. Bake for 45 minutes or until the internal temperature of the chicken thighs reach 165 degrees.

A few of my favorite things

Published by Monica's Scratch Kitchen

I have not always had the skills to cook and bake from scratch. As a young wife, I bought every meal frozen or boxed and presented it to my husband with a flourish, believing myself a decadent cook. As our budget shrunk, and our family grew, I looked for ways to stretch our money to nourish our kids with the best for their hungry appetites. Hoping to find recipes and meals that they would love to eat. Through the last 5 years, I have learned so many cooking and baking lessons, and experienced many wins and failures. Come along with me on this journey as I share my recipes that work, how to make them on the cheap, and my tips and tricks to get my kids to eat homemade deliciousness! I will also share updates to our house that we have done in the last year since our move. With one income, we do most of the work ourselves and with amazing family and friends to help out, cutting costs but keeping style and money in the bank! I am a wife and mother of 3 boys and 1 princess. When I was a kid, I remember being asked what I wanted to be or do when I grew up. My response was, "a mom", and I am proud to grow up and be a mom to 4 amazing kids! Samuel is 11, Matthew is 8, Levi is 4, and Elliana is almost 2. We have been blessed to have kids who love to explore foods, to try new recipes, and enjoy helping us around the house. With 4 kids, you better believe they help clean! My husband Tyler and I have been married almost 13 years. We love our kids, we love outdoors, camping, canoeing, grilling, watching movies, and just hanging out making memories. A few years ago I gifted Tyler with his own "menu" book, where we write meals and foods we have loved to eat. Weekly our family decides what our meals will be and I make up a grocery list with what we need. It literally is my favorite chore! I love to shop, so shopping for food on a budget is my biggest win! Thank you for taking the time and visiting my site, Subscribe so you do not miss a post! Keep coming back to hear about new recipes, updates on our home, fun times with our kids, and how to make homemade deliciousness! ~Monica

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