Traditional Chicken Divan

Total Time
1hr 15mins
Prep 30 mins
Cook 45 mins

No mayonnaise, no "cream of whatever" soups - just an old fashioned chicken divan recipe that is definitely worth the extra effort. You can substitute chicken thighs for the breasts and use any combination of shredded cheese that you happen to have on hand. You can also substitute any dairy product (i.e. cream) for the milk depending on how decadent you would like to be. The recipe can be doubled or tripled easily and it freezes beautifully. Serve over rice.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Preheat oven to 325.
  2. Steam broccoli for 5 minutes until crisp-tender. Alternatively, place broccoli in a shallow bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Microwave for 2-5 minutes (depending on the strength of your microwave) until crisp-tender. Drain in colander.
  3. In a medium frying pan, saute chicken breasts in olive oil until lightly browned, about 4-5 minutes per side. Remove from heat and drain on paper towls.
  4. In a small saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Whisk in flour and cook for 1-2 minutes to eliminate the taste of raw flour. Then gradually whisk in chicken broth, sherry and milk or half and half, until incorporated. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer until the sauce is the consistency you desire. Add just a dash of nutmeg. Add 3/4 of the cheese blend and whisk until combined. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  5. In a 9x13 dish arrange chicken breasts (either whole or sliced) and broccoli. Pour sauce over top and sprinkle with remaining cheese. Cover with aluminum foil. Make several slits in the aluminum foil to allow the steam to escape.
  6. Note: At this point, the dish can be frozen or refrigerated.
  7. Bake in the oven for 30-45 minutes, taking off the aluminum foil for the last 10.


Most Helpful

Fabulous! This recipe was exactly what I was looking for! Had 3 very large chicken breasts that I had boiled the night before and needed to find a recipe to use them in. Didn't have the exact ingredients but it didn't matter! Here's how I did it: used boiled shredded chicken breasts, a bag of frozen broccoli cooked on the stove top and drained, used vegetable broth because it was all I had, used half milk and half heavy cream (needed to use it up), used cooking white wine instead of sherry (thought I had sherry but it was the wine, oh well), and used colby/monterey jack cheese in the sauce and sharp cheese on top. Made in 2 8x8 pans like another reviewer suggested. I was worried I wouldn't have enough sauce since I had a lot of chicken so I used extra milk and extra cheese and it turned out great! The point is this recipe is forgiving when you don't have the right ingredients on hand. I can't wait to make it with the sherry. Thank you so much for this recipe!

mybirdzone April 14, 2009

What extra effort? It was a very easy and fast dish to prepare. It's nice to see a recipe for Chicken Divan that doesn't contain canned soup. Basically, when you cook melted butter and flour in equal parts, you are making a roux. I would only add that it is not necessary to use a separate pan to make the sauce. I browned the chicken breasts in a stainless steel frying pan and used the same pan to make the sauce. The added bonus to this method is that you are getting all of the flavor from the chicken that is left in the crispy bits at the bottom of the pan. Less dishes to wash as well.

janet.paton_12644926 October 28, 2013

This is exactly what I was looking for - a chicken divan recipe without any weird additives! I like to make this with low-fat milk and low-fat cheddar. Also, instead of using broth, I make the sauce in the pan I browned the chicken in, and increase the milk and sherry a tad. Thanks for sharing a winner.

Marina K November 15, 2010

Join the Conversation

  • all
  • reviews
  • tweaks
  • q & a