Home » Recipes » Main Dishes » Pecan Chicken in Bourbon Maple Cream Gravy

Pecan Chicken in Bourbon Maple Cream Gravy

Crispy Pecan Chicken topped with Bourbon Maple Cream Sauce and Bacon Crumbles. Chicken doesn’t get any better than this y’all.

Pecan Chicken in Bourbon Maple Cream Sauce

I’ve been thoroughly enjoying cooking from Southern Living Off the Eaten Path: Favorite Southern Dives and 150 Recipes that Made Them Famous which features recipes from “Favorite Southern Dives”. It’s like taking a road trip without leaving your kitchen. After having a huge winner with Chocolate Meringue Pie, I moved on to my second recipe from this book, Pecan Chicken in Woodford Reserve Maple Cream Sauce. It’s from Lynn’s Paradise Café in Louisville, Kentucky.

Cooking With Bourbon

I have been salivating over the picture for months. Any recipe with bourbon immediately catches my eye. Love the stuff. And how timely that my Pumpkin Pancakes with Bourbon Vanilla Maple Syrup were featured yesterday in Buzzfeed’s 23 Ways to Use Whiskey In Every Meal. Now I have a long list of Bourbon recipes to try including Chocolate, Whiskey, and Bacon Chili and Creamy Blueberry Cream Cheese Pie

Pecan Chicken in Bourbon Maple Cream Sauce

Make It Spicy

I changed the proportions of the ingredients up a little and added some cayenne pepper and the end result was one of my favorite meals that I’ve cooked. Ever.

Pecan Chicken in Bourbon Maple Cream Gravy on a plate with mashed potatoes.

When it comes to telling you what I love about this dish I don’t know where to begin. Everything! I love everything about this.

I’ll start with the chicken. Coating a chicken breast in chopped pecans and pan frying it is one of my favorite ways to cook chicken. Pecans add such a wonderful buttery crunch. Just the chicken alone would make a delicious meal.

The Gravy. Oh, the gravy. I do so love you.

Finished chicken dish on a plate and bottle of bourbon.

The gravy is quite sweet. I added a little cayenne pepper to balance the sweetness some. Think chicken and waffles. Only no waffles. The gravy is out of this world. I mean, can you go wrong with heavy cream, maple syrup, bourbon, and bacon? I think not.

Serve with some mashed potatoes  and get a little bit of mashed potatoes, a small piece of chicken, and a whole lot of gravy for each bite. Heaven!

It’s a down-home meal made a little gourmet!

Type Of Bourbon To Use

You can use pretty much any bourbon for cooking. I typically use Maker’s Mark. Jim Beam and Four Roses are other good choices.

Pecan Chicken in Bourbon Maple Cream Gravy on a plate with mashed potatoes.

How To Tell If Chicken Is Done

I recommend investing in an instant-read thermometer so there is no guess work. Chicken is done when it reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees F. If you don’t have a thermometer, press down on the chicken. If it still has quite a bit of give and doesn’t feel fairly firm, it needs to cook longer. When you think it is done, cut into the thickest portion of a piece. The juices should run clear.

Recipe Tip

The sauce is definitely on the sweet side. If you don’t have a sweet tooth, reduce the maple syrup to 1/4 cup or less.

Pecan chicken covered in gravy and bacon.

More Amazing Chicken Recipes

Pecan Chicken in Bourbon Maple Cream Gravy

Pecan coated chicken breasts topped with a sweet Bourbon Maple Cream Gravy and bacon. Serve with mashed potatoes for a delicious comfort food dinner.
PREP: 4 hours 10 minutes
COOK: 35 minutes
TOTAL: 4 hours 45 minutes


  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • Vegetable oil
  • 3/4 cup pecan halves
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt

Bourbon Maple Cream Gravy

  • 3 bacon slices
  • 1/4 cup chopped shallots
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup whole grain Creole mustard
  • 1/4 cup bourbon
  • 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream


  • Prepare Pecan Chicken. Combine chicken and buttermilk in a large zip-top bag and place in refrigerator for 4-6 hours.
  • Pour 1 inch of Vegetable oil in a large, deep skillet or sauté pan. Heat oil to 350 degrees.
  • Place pecans in a food processor and process until finely chopped. Place in a pie plate and combine with flour and 2 teaspoons salt.
  • Remove chicken from buttermilk and discard buttermilk. Dredge chicken in pecan-flour mixture, turning to coat both sides well.
  • Fry in oil 6 to 7 minutes per side, or until cooked through. Place on wire rack to drain off oil. Keep warm.
  • Prepare Maple Bourbon Gravy. Cook bacon in a large saucepan over medium heat until crispy. Place bacon on paper towels. And crumble once cooled.
  • Add shallots to bacon drippings and sauté over medium heat for 2 minutes. Stir in flour and cook, stirring continuously for 2 minutes.
  • Whisk in maple syrup, Creole mustard, bourbon, Dijon mustard, salt, black pepper, and cayenne pepper.
  • Cook and stir for 3 minutes. Gradually whisk in cream. Bring to a simmer over medium heat and cook, stirring frequently for 5 to 8 minutes, or until thickened. If too thick, thin with a little milk.
  • To serve, top chicken with gravy and sprinkle with bacon crumbs.


The gravy is fairly sweet. If you don’t have a sweet tooth, you probably want to reduce the maple syrup to 1/4 cup of even less.
Nutritional info is provided as an estimate only and can vary based on brands of products used and measuring techniques.


Calories: 915kcal | Carbohydrates: 55g | Protein: 37g | Fat: 58g | Saturated Fat: 26g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 7g | Monounsaturated Fat: 20g | Trans Fat: 0.04g | Cholesterol: 191mg | Sodium: 1962mg | Potassium: 819mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 23g | Vitamin A: 1500IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 194mg | Iron: 3mg
Author: Christin Mahrlig
Course: Dinner, Main Dish
Cuisine: Southern
Keyword: bourbon, fried chicken

Want to Save This Recipe?

Originally published March 28, 2014.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating

I accept the Privacy Policy

22 thoughts on “Pecan Chicken in Bourbon Maple Cream Gravy”

  1. Ruby @ The Ruby Red Apron

    Oh my! This gravy sounds beyond incredible. And the pecans all over the chicken!? Love it!

  2. Carol at Wild Goose Tea

    Wow I am SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO glad I didn’t miss this post. How southern can you get with this winner. I love pecan crusted dishes anyway. I see something that is pecan crusted and I order it. Plus you clicked right into my current cooking thinking—–cooking with boozeother than wine. Every since I made a peanut butter pie in a cocoa crust using bourbon instead of water for the crust.

  3. Dedy@Dentist Chef

    wow, Pretty damn delicious pecan crusted chicken…..
    lovin the touch of bacon on the creamy bourbon maple gravy !!!

  4. Oh dear.. this is delicious chicken! I like the gravy recipe, I would probably make double.. 🙂

  5. Pamela @ Brooklyn Farm Girl

    I am so all over this. I mean seriously, maple creamy gravy? Give me a spoon! 🙂

  6. Cailee @ hellohealthyeating.com

    This looks delicious!! Your photography is so nice as well!! Hope you have a great rest of your weekend!

  7. Amy (Savory Moments)

    This gravy looks and sounds phenomenal! Wow! The chicken looks so crispy, too – what an excellent meal!

  8. easyfoodsmith

    The chicken with that gravy looks heavenly. I can imagine the textures and flavors rolling on my tongue…yumm.

  9. Jamie@Milk N Cookies

    Wow — this has so many of my favorite ingredients. Bacon, pecan, bourbon, dijon AND maple syrup?! And I love that you added cayenne pepper for a bit of a kick. I have a feeling this would become a favorite in my household VERY quickly!

  10. I love pecan crusted chicken but with that bourbon maple cream gravy??? Holy moly! Both my husband and his dad would seriously love me if I made this for them : )

  11. Wow, this chicken looks fabulous Christin! Crispy chicken coated in pecans with loads of maple cream gravy? Totally drooling and pinning 🙂

  12. Consuelo @ Honey & Figs

    You girl make southern food look 1000 times more delicious than it is already.
    This. Chicken.
    I don’t think it ould get any more perfect. I’m so drooling here right now!

  13. Nicole ~ Cooking for Keeps

    I can see why this is one of your favorite meals you’ve cooked ever, it looks FANTASTIC!! So crispy, and that gravy??? Gahhhh — a total dream.

  14. Trevor aka The Burger Nerd

    Oh my! If it tastes even half as good as it looks I can see why it’s now one of your favorite meals.It’s nice to see a fun and indulgent dish with some booze and heavy cream 🙂 Awesome looking recipe, thanks for sharing it.

Scroll to Top