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Chicken Marsala with Pancetta & Cream

Scott Phillips

Servings: two.

You can buy thin cutlets or ask your supermarket butcher to cut some for you. This recipe is easily doubled, but you’ll likely need to cook the chicken in batches.


  • Olive oil
  • 2 oz. pancetta (about a 1/4-inch thick slice), cut into a 1/4-inch dice
  • Flour for dredging (about 1/2 cup)
  • 4 thin chicken breast cutlets, about 1/2 lb. total
  • Coarse salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper, preferably on the coarse side
  • 1/2 cup dry Marsala wine
  • 2 to 4 Tbs. heavy cream
  • Minced fresh flat-leaf parsley (optional)

Nutritional Information

  • Nutritional Sample Size per serving
  • Calories (kcal) : 420
  • Fat Calories (kcal): 140
  • Fat (g): 16
  • Saturated Fat (g): 5
  • Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 1
  • Monounsaturated Fat (g): 8
  • Cholesterol (mg): 100
  • Sodium (mg): 720
  • Carbohydrates (g): 25
  • Fiber (g): 1
  • Protein (g): 36


  • Coat a large skillet lightly with olive oil and set it over medium-high heat. Add the pancetta and cook until just crisp and lightly browned. Remove with a slotted spoon, leaving the fat in the pan, and set aside.
  • Put the flour on a plate. Pat the cutlets dry. Season them on both sides lightly with salt and amply with pepper. Heat the skillet with the pancetta fat over medium high. Add more olive oil, if needed, to get about 2 Tbs. fat in the pan.
  • When the fat is hot, dredge a cutlet through the flour on both sides (see Tips for moist sautéed chicken). Shake off the excess flour and immediately put the cutlet in the pan. Do the same with as many cutlets as will fit in the pan without touching. Sauté the cutlets, turning once, until browned on both sides; if thin, they should cook through in just a few minutes total. Transfer the cooked cutlets to a plate and continue sautéing the rest, adding more oil if necessary. Transfer these to the plate as well.
  • Pour off the excess fat. With the pan over medium-high heat, add the Marsala and scrape up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Cook until the Marsala is reduced by about a quarter. Stir in the cream and boil until you get a nicely thickened sauce. Return the chicken and pancetta to the pan and turn the cutlets over to coat. Let them reheat for 30 seconds to 1 minute. Serve with the sauce and a sprinkling of parsley, if you like.


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Reviews (19 reviews)

  • Krispie | 01/11/2019

    This is delicious and so easy. This timeI didn’t have enough pancetta so I combined pancetta and prosciutto. AndI made. 1.5 times the sauce based on other reviewers. Otherwise I followed the recipe exactly. Greaat!!! This is a crowd and kid pleaser. I will definately make this again!

  • scribbly1 | 09/15/2015

    Here I (fka schrocknik)am again commenting on this recipe which I am going to be able to do this this week after living temporarily for 2 years, but now I'm settled in a new home of my own, and I'm dying to do this dish again -- it's fun! But I'm a purist and will follow the recipe, but double it. Another time, I'll throw in mushrooms. Yes, I'll pound the 1/2 chix breasts and then bread them as follows: dredge in flour (shaking off excess), then egg, then bread crumbs or panko. I'll use 1/4" of pure olive oil to cook, discarding most for the sauce. This is one of two favoriterecipes to go on the road with, visiting friends and family, and cooking.

  • SeeBeth | 01/08/2015

    Pitch perfect, made even better by ease of recipe. Will make again and again.

  • ceh1225 | 03/16/2014

    Great meal - have made this twice and each time have gotten positive reviews.

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