Chicken Skillet with Mustard-Cider Sauce

In this quick stove-top dish, hard cider, thyme and whole grain mustard combine for a delicious pan sauce over bone-in chicken pieces. Perfect for a week night meal when you are pressed for time but still expect a flavorful dinner, and I do mean spot-on Fall flavors!

Instead of using just thighs, we decided on a combination, white meat for the Mrs., and dark for The Mr. Two bone-in breasts halves were chopped in half again to create four pieces and were combined with 4 thighs.

Now, after reading through the preparations, we both realized there would be no way the Brussels sprouts would be tender in the small amount of time they allotted. I made the executive decision to brown them in the pan drippings after the chicken was removed. After a couple of minutes, the apple wedges were then added for 4 minutes as per instructions. This method worked out well, with the sprouts browning, absorbing the pan flavors and softening just enough.

The other major change was at the end. After removing all of the poultry and veggies to a platter and covered with tinfoil to keep warm, we reduced the thin pan sauce down to a thicker consistency. Bring the sauce to a rolling boil for a couple of minutes and when you can drag a spatula through it and leave a trail, the sauce has thickened. Remove foil from platter, and pour the sauce over its contents. Top with bacon—oh, of which we used 7, instead of 4, thick slices 🙂

Chicken Skillet with Mustard-Cider Sauce

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print


  • 4 slices bacon, chopped
  • 8 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs (about 3 1/2 lbs.)
  • 2 med. tart red apples, cored and cut into wedges
  • 1 12-oz. bottle hard cider
  • 2 Tbsp. chopped fresh thyme
  • 2 Tbsp. whole-grain mustard
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 12 oz. Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved (2 cups)


  1. In a very large skillet, cook the bacon over medium heat until crisp. Remove from the pan, reserving the drippings in the skillet.
  2. Add the chicken, skin side down, and cook until browned, 10-12 minutes, turning once. Remove the chicken from the skillet.
  3. Add the Brussels sprouts to the pan drippings cut side down, let them brown undisturbed for 2-3 minutes. Add the apples to the sprouts, and cook until browned on both sides, stirring occasionally, about 4 minutes total. Remove the apples and sprouts, keep divided on a plate. Drain and discard drippings from skillet if necessary.
  4. Add the cider, thyme, mustard and salt to the skillet, scraping up any browned bits. Bring to a boil, and reduce heat to a simmer.
  5. Return chicken to skillet and cook, covered for 10 minutes.
  6. Add the Brussels sprouts, cook, covered for 5 minutes.
  7. Add the apples, cook, uncovered, until the chicken is done (at least 175°F), 3 to 5 minutes more.
  8. After removing all contents from skillet to platter, cover the food with tinfoil. Heat the sauce to a rolling boil and reduce down until a spatula can pull through and leave a trail.
  9. Divide the chicken, Brussels sprouts, and apples among dinner plates. Spoon the cider mixture over the top, and sprinkle each serving with the cooked bacon.

Roughly adapted from a recipe in Fine Cooking Magazine

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