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Chicken Marbella (with Boneless Breasts)

Chicken Marbella… a delicious dish and simple recipe with tender chicken, briny capers, salty green olives and sweet prunes! I know it sounds like an interesting combination however this dish wins with everyone! This is the perfect chicken dish for a dinner party, holiday or a weeknight dinner. 

Bonus? The kids love it too, it is actually one of my kid’s favorite meals! I love when I find meals that the whole family eats! Tonight I served the chicken with rice pilaf and broccoli.

chicken marbella in a large baking dish

Ingredients

This famous dish originally came from “The Silver Palate Cookbook” by Sheila Lukins and Julie Rosso. I have made a few slight changes but nothing dramatic… we can never have too many olives and prunes in ours so feel free to adjust those amounts. For this recipe you will need:

  • boneless, skinless chicken breast
  • garlic
  • dried oregano
  • Salt and Pepper
  • red wine vinegar
  • olive oil
  • pitted prunes
  • green olives
  • capers with caper juice
  • bay leaves
  • brown sugar
  • white wine

See the recipe card at the bottom of this post for all ingredient amounts and full recipe directions as well as a printable recipe card!

How to Make Chicken Marbella

This chicken dish is so simple to make! All you are going to do is combine all the marinade ingredients: garlic, oregano, salt, pepper, olive oil, red wine vinegar, pitted prunes, green olives, capers and bay leaves.

Then, trim the boneless chicken breasts and combine chicken with marinade. Mix well to coat the chicken completely. I like to prep the chicken the night before we plan to cook it and store it in a food safe plastic storage bag in the refrigerator to marinate.

The chicken should marinate for a minimum of 4 hours. The end result will be very tender, juicy and flavorful chicken. 

ingredients for chicken marbella in a bowl marinating
Chicken and marinade ingredients combined in a large bowl.

Once you’re ready to make your chicken you will move it over to a large baking dish. Place the chicken pieces into a single layer. Then, pour brown sugar and wine on top. Bake at 350 degrees for 45-60 minutes or until internal temperature reaches 165 degrees. 

Finally, remove bay leaves. Serve and enjoy! If serving for a holiday or dinner party you can move the chicken to a pretty serving platter.

Need to decide what side dishes to serve with your chicken marbella? Check out these 24 side dish ideas that pair perfectly!

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need to use boneless skinless chicken breasts?

No! The original recipe uses 2 whole chickens which would include the thighs and wings. You can use any chicken pieces as well as bone in or boneless such as: boneless chicken thighs, skinless chicken thighs or bone-in chicken thighs. Be sure to cook the chicken thoroughly and use a meat thermometer to make sure the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 165 degrees.

Do I need to use the olives and prunes?

I know this sounds like an interesting combination of ingredients. I promise the saltiness of the olives and sweetness of the prunes come together to give this dish so much flavor. This classic dish should be made as is the first time. If you truly don’t like certain aspects then change it the next time (or for allergies of course). 

How do I store leftover chicken marbella?

Leftover chicken marbella should be left to cool and then stored in an airtight container for up to 5 days in the refrigerator. As the flavors sit they are even better the next day. You will love this delicious dish as leftovers as much as the first time you have it. 

chicken marbella with boneless breasts

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Did you love Chicken Marbella? Here are some more recipes for you to try: Gluten-Free Chicken Marinade, One Pot Cheesy Chicken Pasta, Gluten-Free Teriyaki Chicken Wings, Chicken Bone Broth, Crock Pot Hawaiian Chicken, Crock Pot Chicken Enchiladas, Almond Crusted Chicken, BBQ Chicken Salad, Citrus Chicken Pasta, Chicken Pot Pie, Lemon Chicken Orzo, Crock Pot Orange Chicken and Lemon Grilled Chicken.

chicken marbella in a large baking dish

Chicken Marbella

Yield: 10 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Additional Time: 4 hours
Total Time: 5 hours 15 minutes

Chicken Marbella is marinated and baked with green olives, prunes and capers.

Ingredients

  • 5 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breast (Original recipe called for 2 chickens, quartered. Any part of the chicken will work.)
  • 1 head of garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup dried oregano
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1 1/2 cups pitted prunes
  • 1 1/2 cups green olives
  • 1/2 cup capers with juice
  • 6 bay leaves
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup white wine

Instructions

  1. Combine all ingredients except brown sugar and wine.
  2. Marinate for 4 hours to overnight.
  3. Put chicken in a large baking dish and pour brown sugar and wine on top. 
  4. Bake at 350 degrees for 45-60 minutes or until internal temperature reaches 165 degrees.
  5. Remove from oven and remove bay leaves.
  6. Serve and enjoy!

Notes

Recipe can be halved or quartered to make a lesser amount. Chicken should be marinated for at least 4 hours.

Recipe adapted from "The Silver Palate Cookbook" by Sheila Lukins and Julie Rosso

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 10 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 662Total Fat: 24gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 18gCholesterol: 193mgSodium: 910mgCarbohydrates: 33gFiber: 4gSugar: 22gProtein: 72g

Did you make this recipe?

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LilliR

Friday 3rd of June 2022

So glad to know this can be made with boneless chicken breast because I don’t like thighs or drumsticks.

Melissa Samartino

Friday 3rd of June 2022

Yes! We prefer boneless chicken breasts as well!!

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