Braised Garlic Chicken & Capers with Lemon-Anchovies Sauce

5 from 1 vote

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Braised Garlic Chicken & Capers with Lemon-Anchovies Sauce is a robust flavor party for your dinner table. Easy-to-make and economical, this recipe is a fancy looking meal that is composed of simple and ordinary ingredients.

A close up of chicken on a plate

Braised Garlic Chicken & Capers with Lemon-Anchovies Sauce

a plate of chicken and salad

We receive a ton of recipes via email, each and every day. Many are bookmarked, a few are discarded, and some are moved to the top of the “make right away” list. This recipe for Braised Garlic Chicken & Capers with Lemon-Anchovies Sauce was inspired by one of our favorite sources, Melissa Clark, food columnist for the New York Times.

We’ve learned that braising is not only fun, it can really make you look like you know what you’re doing in the kitchen and importantly, it is so easy to do!

How to Braise

Four Basic Rules for Braising Anything

A skillet of meatballs
See some of our other braised recipes here
    • Season your meat well on all sides.
    • Use a heavy-lidded pot like a dutch oven.
    • Pour oil into pot, over medium high heat.
    • Add meat to pot and brown on both sides.
    • Remove the meat from pot and set aside and tent loosely with aluminum foil.
    • Classically composed of two parts onion to one part carrots and one part celery, a mirepoix can be made up of whatever vegetables or aromatics with which you want to flavor your meat.
    • Use the drippings from the meat to saute, once again over medium-high heat.
    • Brown the mirepoix to a golden yellow, without scorching the ingredients.
    • Stir your liquid into the pan, typically a broth, wine, or juice.
    • Scrape up and stir well, to incorporate the brown bits that are leftover from searing process. These are concentrated flavor bombs and will add immense depth and flavor to your finished dish.
    • Put the meat back into the pot, with the liquid and mirepoix.
    • The meat should be surrounded by the liquid but not submerged within it. Avoid diluting the flavor by using too much liquid. If necessary, reduce the liquid prior to adding the seared meat.
    • Bring the liquid to a simmer, cover the pot then slide it into an oven pre-heated to 325° F.
    • Bring your braise to the next level by these two simple but optional steps:
      • If your recipe includes added vegetables, place them in the pot minutes before the meat is done. If your pot is low on liquid, less than an inch or so, add a splash more.
      • Once your meat is fork-tender, remove it from the pot and skim the fat from the top of the liquid.  Then, reduce your liquid to a thick and flavorful sauce. Once it coats the back of a spoon, place your meat back in the pot and allow  heat through.

A chicken drumstick on a plate

If you think you don’t like anchovies or you have never cooked with anchovies before, it’s time to put your big girl (or boy) pants on and give them a try! Anchovies provide depth and character to their dishes like no other ingredient.

Here are just a few examples of dishes that are greatly enhanced by anchovies:

The combination of garlic, anchovies, and lemon give this Braised Garlic Chicken & Capers with Lemon-Anchovies Sauce a deep and complex flavor that you’re going to love. We hope you give this chicken dish a try and as always, please let us know how you like it!  -Dan

A plate of chicken dinner


Braised Garlic Chicken & Capers with Lemon-Anchovies Sauce

5 from 1 vote
Inspired by Melissa Clark from The New York Times
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 40 minutes
Total: 50 minutes
Yield: 4 servings


  • 2 lbs chicken thighs, chicken thighs and drumsticks
  • Kosher salt and black pepper to taste
  • 1 head of garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
  • Extra-virgin olive oil, about 1/4 cup
  • 1 tin anchovies, flat
  • 2 generous tablespoons of drained capers, patted dry
  • 1 large pinch crushed red pepper flakes
  • Juice from 2 fresh lemons
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic


  • Pre-heat oven to 350° F. Season chicken on all sides, with salt and pepper then set aside while you prepare the mirepoix of garlic, anchovies, and capers. Using a dutch oven or other oven-proof skillet, heat oil over medium-high setting. When the oil is hot, add the smashed garlic, the anchovies, capers, and red pepper flakes. Stir and saute until garlic is browned and anchovies have melted away, about 3 to 5 minutes.
  • Add the chicken to the pan, sear evenly on all sides until lightly browned, then remove from pan and set aside.
  • Add lemon juice and wine to pan, stir and deglaze, scraping up brown bits on bottom and sides of pan. Bring to quick simmer for about 30 seconds and turn burner off and stir in minced garlic.
  • Return chicken to pan. Cover pan and place in oven for about 30 minutes or until it is done. Place chicken on heated serving platter. Reduce liquid to thicken if necessary. Cover chicken with resulting sauce and serve.


As shown, we served this chicken with a side of sauteed zucchini and yellow squash, accented with roasted cherry tomatoes, which we allowed to cook in the pan at the end of the braising process.


Calories: 565kcal, Carbohydrates: 2g, Protein: 39g, Fat: 38g, Saturated Fat: 10g, Cholesterol: 230mg, Sodium: 311mg, Potassium: 560mg, Fiber: 0g, Sugar: 0g, Vitamin A: 175IU, Vitamin C: 0.2mg, Calcium: 44mg, Iron: 2.2mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Entree
Cuisine: American
Tried this recipe?Mention @plattertalk or tag #plattertalk!

Meet the Platter Talk Guys

Dan & Scott split their time between Wisconsin and Southwest Florida and are dads to six boys. Good food runs through their veins, and they love showing others how to cook easy recipes.

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  1. 5 stars
    How fun! This chicken dish looks so yummy! I love the anchovies and capers. So good!!!

  2. 5 stars
    Anchovies do add so much flavor to any dish. This chicken looks fantastic and full of flavor. Wish I lived next store because I would just invite myself over for dinner 🙂

  3. All these flavors together sound fabulous. What a great way to kick up ordinary chicken!

  4. Love the big flavors going on in this must make dinner! Looks so delicious! Totally awesome that you shared the braising steps! That will be so helpful to someone who hasn’t ever used the braised cooking method!

  5. Mm, this sounds delicious! I love that you break down the steps of doing a braise, too — dishes always seem so much simpler when their steps are laid out like this! And you’re absolutely right about anchovies… I was afraid to use them for years, but they do add something special to a dish.

  6. That chicken looks so delicious! Although I do have to confess a fear of anchovies, maybe this is incentive to get over it?