Rich, creamy Chicken with Spinach and Mushrooms is the ultimate comfort food recipe that takes about 30 minutes to prepare and is ideal for busy weeknights. It features boneless, skinless chicken, baby Bella mushrooms, spinach, garlic, and leeks smothered in a flavorful and surprisingly healthy Greek yogurt-based cream sauce.
This recipe is always a winner when you want a one-skillet dinner that's hearty comfort food with a healthier twist.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
Boneless, skinless chicken is always a good go-to for a quick meal, whether you use it as a base for soups like Creamy Chicken and Corn Chowder, cook it with rice and aromatic seasonings in Easy Chicken Biryani, or shred leftovers and use it in Chicken, Berry, and Brown Rice Bowls.
This creamy chicken with spinach and mushrooms recipe is one of my favorite ways to dress up chicken. You’ll love it because:
- It’s packed with protein from lean chicken and Greek yogurt.
- The chicken is super moist tender, and falls apart with a fork.
- It’s a complete meal that cooks in about 30 minutes in one pan, so cleanup is easy.
- This recipe is easy and fuss-free, and it never disappoints.
Here's what I use to make my chicken with spinach and mushrooms. Substitutions and variations are listed below.
See my recipe card for the complete list of ingredients with measurements.
Chicken. Use boneless, skinless chicken pieces. Chicken with the skin on will leave the sauce too greasy. And chicken with bones will take longer to cook. I've made this with both chicken breasts and thighs. Both work well as long as your chicken pieces are similar in size.
Mushrooms. I prefer Crimini (also known as mini or baby Bella) mushrooms here because they add a rich, umami flavor to the sauce. They are the young, baby version of Portabella mushrooms.
Spinach. I use baby spinach. You don't have to remove the stems because they're very tender. If you have regular large spinach leaves on hand, you can use them, but chop them down to about one-inch pieces and remove the tougher stems.
Dry sherry. This provides a subtle sweetness and rich, nutty flavor. Use a good sherry from the wine department, NOT cooking sherry in the little bottles near the vinegar and salad dressings. It's full of preservatives. Regular sherry keeps in your pantry for a LONG time, and it's good to have on hand for recipes like this.
Full-fat plain Greek yogurt. Full-fat yogurt is less likely to curdle in the sauce than low-fat or non-fat yogurt. It adds a tangy flavor along with lots of protein.
Substitutions and Variations
- Use white button mushrooms if you don’t have Crimini or baby Bella mushrooms.
- You can also use Portabella mushrooms — the very large mushroom caps. Just make sure you cut them into bite-sized pieces.
- You can use canned mushrooms if you're in a pinch and don't have any fresh mushrooms on hand.
Try other greens: This recipe is a great way to eat more leafy greens! Try:
- Baby kale
- Curly or Lacinato (dinosaur) kale
- Swiss chard
Chop any large leafy greens into one-inch bite-size pieces. Make sure you remove any tough stems.
Instead of sherry, you can substitute dry vermouth, white wine, or Marsala wine. Or leave it out and use a squeeze of lemon juice to brighten the flavor of the sauce.
Instead of Greek yogurt, feel free to use sour cream if you prefer it. You can also substitute ¼ cup of heavy cream.
Add cheese. Feel free to experiment with your favorite cheese. Grated parmesan, shredded Gruyere, or shredded sharp cheddar would be a delicious addition.
Step By Step Instructions
First, season and brown your chicken. Use a non-stick pan if you have one. Put the olive oil in a large saute pan with a lid (you'll need the lid later). Once your oil is hot, lay the seasoned chicken down in a single layer, and do not touch it for at least 3 minutes.
If you try to flip your chicken too early, it will stick if your pan doesn't have a non-stick surface. You don't have to get your chicken super brown, but a bit of gold in spots gives it a nicer flavor. Once it's brownish on one side, flip it over using a pair of tongs. The second side should only need 2-3 minutes. Then, remove your chicken from the pan and set it aside.
Second, add the sliced leeks, mushrooms, and garlic to the pan and cook for another 5 minutes. Stir them occasionally and let them start to turn gold and give off some of their liquid. This will make your sauce more flavorful. The vegetables will cook down quite a bit.
Third, sprinkle your vegetables with flour and stir it in well. Let it cook for about 1 minute to remove the raw flour taste. Then, add your sherry, most of the chicken stock (you might need more or less depending on how thick you like your sauce), and thyme to the pan. Bring it to a boil and let the sauce thicken.
If your sauce seems too thick, add more chicken stock. If it's too watery, let it cook longer, and some of the liquid will evaporate.
Fourth, season the sauce with salt and add the chicken to the pan. Sprinkle the spinach on top. Cover the pan and let the chicken finish cooking, and the spinach wilt for about 5 more minutes.
Fifth, stir the Greek yogurt into the sauce when ready to serve. See my note in the expert tips section below for tempering yogurt or sour cream.
Whether you use breasts or thighs, make sure all of your chicken pieces are similar in size. Cut any thicker breast portions in half into cutlets using this technique. Pound any thicker pieces to about ½-inch thick.
Make sure you don’t flip your chicken too early, especially if you’re using a regular (not non-stick) saute pan. It will stick to the pan if you flip it too early.
If using chicken breasts, don’t overcook them because they have a tendency to dry out. The higher fat content in chicken thighs keeps them more moist, even if you cook them for longer.
Use only the leek's tender white and light green parts. The darker green tops are tough.
Also, before slicing your leeks into thin rounds, take your chef's knife and slice down lengthwise. That allows you to open it up so you can rinse it. Leeks are notoriously dirty inside because they grow underground. Give them a good rinse before slicing.
Temper your Greek yogurt (or sour cream) to prevent it from curdling in the hot sauce. Mix 3-4 tablespoons of the hot sauce into your yogurt or sour cream, then add that mixture back into your sauce.
What Goes with Chicken with Spinach and Mushrooms?
This dish really is a complete meal, but if you want to serve it with sides, I recommend:
- Mashed potatoes (they always get my vote!)
- Cooked brown rice or other grains like barley or farro
- A hunk of sourdough bread to sop up the sauce
- Roasted vegetables like cauliflower and carrots for even more color
- A simple side salad
Yes, you can prepare it up to a day ahead of time. Prepare everything up to the last step before adding the yogurt. Then refrigerate your chicken dish. Reheat the chicken with spinach and mushrooms without the yogurt, and once it's hot and ready, stir in the yogurt.
This dish will keep covered in the refrigerator for up to 48 hours. Reheat it over medium-low heat so the sauce doesn’t curdle. I do not recommend freezing this dish because of the cream sauce.
Both are healthy, lean protein options as long as you remove the skin. A 4-ounce (100 g) portion of chicken thighs has about 50 more calories and 8 g more fat than chicken breast. Chicken breast has slightly more protein.
Other Related Chicken Recipes
Winner winner chicken dinner! Don't miss these other tasty, easy chicken recipes.
Chicken With Spinach and Mushrooms
- 1.25 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs or breasts
- salt and pepper
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 large leek white and light green parts only, sliced thin
- 1 pound Crimini (Baby Bella) mushrooms quartered
- 8 medium garlic cloves minced
- 1 tablespoon flour
- ¾ cup chicken stock more if the sauce seems to thick
- 3 tablespoons Dry Sherry
- ½ teaspoon dried thyme
- 2 cups baby spinach packed
- ½ cup plain Greek yogurt full fat (see note below for nonfat)
- Season both sides of your chicken with salt and pepper
- Heat the olive oil in a large saute pan (use a non-stick pan if you have one) over medium-high heat. When the oil is hot, lay the chicken in a single layer in the pan.
- Let the chicken cook for 3-4 minutes on the first side. When it starts to turn light gold in spots, flip the chicken pieces over and let them cook for another 3 minutes on the second side. Remove the chicken from the pan and set it aside.
- Add the leeks and mushrooms to the pan and saute them for about 5 minutes or until they are wilted and start to caramelize. Add the garlic and cook for another 2 minutes.
- When the vegetables are cooked, sprinkle the flour over them and stir it in breaking up any clumps. Cook for 1 minute, then add the chicken stock, sherry, and thyme. Stir the mixture and let it come to a boil. If the sauce seems too thick once it boils, add a little extra chicken stock. The sauce should coat the spoon but not be gummy.
- Add the chicken back to the pan and top with the spinach. Cover the pan and let the chicken finish cooking through and the spinach wilt. This should take about 4-5 minutes.
- Remove the pan from the heat, and stir everything well to incorporate the spinach. Gently stir the yogurt into the sauce and mix well, so everything is combined.