Skillet Chicken with Lemon Thyme Sauce

One skillet is all you need to create this crispy chicken paired with creamy lemon thyme sauce.

chicken with lemon thyme sauce in a skillet

Ok so first of all, how was your weekend!? What did you do? Mine was all kinds of crazy. Two cities and two book signings in two days. But with chaos comes all sorts of fun. I plan to post a little recap of the book tour so far on my blog tomorrow, so check back for Sally’s Candy Addiction shenanigans.

I’m flying home today, but had to get this recipe up on the blog in case you were looking for a new dinner recipe. Ahh! So, I love this recipe. I made it 2 or 3 times before leaving for the book tour trip. It’s relatively healthy, full of lots of fresh flavor, and couldn’t be any easier.

Just another recipe to add to my growing savory section. Speaking of. Have you made my butternut squash mac & cheese yet? Because I’ve been craving it the past week straight. I even dreamed about it one night? What is my life.

chicken with lemon thyme sauce on a blue plate

Anyway, let’s talk about how the heck I came up with this recipe. Well, first of all– zesty lemon and fresh thyme go together like chocolate and peanut bu… ok that’s a total lie. But the flavor combo is a classic and tastes unbelievable with chicken. Today’s skillet chicken actually came from my skillet chicken with creamy cilantro lime sauce. Can we just talk about how that recipe has taken the world by storm in only 3 months? I’m blown away, but simultaneously not surprised at all by its popularity. It’s that incredible.

And today’s dinner recipe was inspired by its goodness!

All you need is one skillet to cook up today’s meal. A one pan wonder, if you will.

chicken breasts in a skillet

First thing’s first. Grab some skinless boneless chicken breasts. You can use bone-in chicken thighs instead if that’s easier. Cook the chicken in the skillet until both sides are browned– the chicken will cook again in the oven so if the centers aren’t cooked all the way through just yet, no worries. Remove the chicken for now and begin working on that incredible sauce!

You’ll need chicken broth and cream for the sauce. You’ll only need a little cream. 3 Tablespoons for the whole recipe– that’s all! It’s the perfect amount of cream to add richness and, well, creaminess. (Duh.) You’ll also throw in lemon, thyme, onion, garlic, and a little butter. Oh my gosh the flavors! It’s all so divine. The sauce is definitely the best part.

The next step is to add the chicken back into the skillet and bake it all until the chicken is completely cooked through. That’s IT. Serve with veggies and smother them with the extra sauce. It does not get any easier.

chicken with lemon thyme sauce with a spatula in a skillet

The chicken is crisp and golden, the thyme and lemon shine through, the sauce is creamy, the preparation is a breeze! Add this rave-worthy meal to your weeknight dinner rotation.

Follow me on Instagram and tag #sallysbakingaddiction so I can see all the SBA recipes you make. 

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chicken with lemon thyme sauce on a blue plate

Skillet Chicken with Creamy Lemon Thyme Sauce

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: serves 4
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Cooking
  • Cuisine: American


One skillet is all you need to create this crispy chicken paired with creamy lemon thyme sauce! I recommend doubling the sauce (all the ingredients used in step 4) if you like lots of extra sauce.


  • 45 skinless boneless chicken breasts
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup chicken broth (I recommend reduced sodium)
  • zest & juice from 1 lemon (about 2 Tbsp juice)
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped onion
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves
  • 3 Tablespoons heavy cream*
  • 2 Tablespoons unsalted butter, cubed
  • optional: lemon slices and more thyme for garnish


  1. Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C).
  2. If the chicken breasts are uneven in thickness, pound them down so they’re all even. This way all the breasts will cook through simultaneously. Sprinkle each with salt and pepper.
  3. In a large ovenproof skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and cook for 6-7 minutes, turning once. You want the chicken nice and browned on the outside. (It doesn’t have to be cooked all the way through yet.) Set chicken on a plate and cover tightly with foil until step 5.
  4. Remove skillet from heat and add the broth, lemon zest & juice, onion, garlic, and thyme. Return to heat. Cook and stir to scrape up the browned bits from the bottom of the skillet. Bring to a boil. Allow to boil gently, uncovered, for 10 minutes or until the liquid is reduced to around 1/4 cup. Reduce heat to medium-low, then add the cream and butter. Stir until butter has melted.
  5. Add chicken to the sauce and place the skillet in the preheated oven. Bake until the chicken is completely cooked through, about 5-10 minutes.
  6. Serve chicken with sauce spooned on top and any of the listed optional garnishes. Leftovers keep well in the refrigerator for a few days. Reheat to your liking.


  1. Milk: You can use whole milk instead, but for the thickest, richest sauce I highly recommend heavy cream. If using whole milk, make sure it is at room temperature to help prevent curdling.
  2. Adapted from Skillet Chicken with Creamy Cilantro Lime Sauce.

Keywords: lemon thyme chicken, skillet lemon chicken

chicken with lemon thyme sauce on a blue plate

Try my cilantro lime version next!

chicken breasts in a skillet with cilantro lime sauce

More savory recipes for you!


  1. Made this for dinner today! It was super easy and really flavorful. I bought thin-cut chicken so I just skipped the oven part and it was still great. Thanks for the great recipe!

  2. Omg Sally ! I just tried the lemon thyme chicken and it was AMAZINGLY delicious! I’m not a fan of lemon but hello this recipe made me a believer .  I’m so happy you are posting more dinner recipes!!  Thank you for yet another wonderful meal! 

  3. Wow! I made this last night and it was awesome!  Just the right amount of lemon. I’m one of the ones who would love to see you do a savory and/or salads cookbook. You’ve posted some really delicious S/S recipes, and this chicken is one of them! 

  4. I made this spontaneously last night, but didn’t haven any lemons so I used bottled lemon juice plus orange zest! It was delicious. I can’t wait to have it again!

  5. Hi Sally,

    I made this chicken for dinner last night and it was so good!  To save some calories, I used fat free half and half instead of heavy cream.  The flavors are completely on point…this recipe is definitely a keeper!

    Thanks for sharing this fantastic recipe!


  6. I made this recipe today and it was so delicious I licked the plate! I used whole milk @ room temp, still perfect. I think next time I’ll cut the onions lengthwise instead of dicing them. That might preserve their “onionness” a bit more.

  7. Hi Sally! Will it be alright if I switch up the recipe by replacing thyme with Rosemary? Or would everything be out of balance?

    1. That would be perfectly OK! I always change up the herbs and spices.

  8. Thank you so much for making this a part of my life! Omg this has to be the best thing I’ve ever made! It was absolutely delicious! I couldn’t believe I made something so good.

  9. James Serafin says:

    I was thinking of replacing lemons with oranges, and chicken broth for beef broth. Is this doable? Also for a low fat tip y’all! -swap out, heavy creams and whole milks with water ( lightly salted)

    1. Sounds delicious! Shouldn’t be a problem.

  10. Can this been done with skin on bone in chicken thighs

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      I don’t see why not!

  11. It’s absolutely delicious. The taste is creamy and light. I love it. Thank you for sharing this wonderful recipe. I’ll add it on my dinner recipe. Thank you!

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