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Chicken Vesuvio

This Chicken Vesuvio is made up of simply seasoned, crispy-skinned chicken thighs simmered to tender perfection in a lemony white wine sauce. The dish is finished with peas and served over crispy roasted potato wedges.

Classic Chicken Vesuvio

The explosion of flavor that comes with every bite of this glorious chicken dish reminds me of the volcano it’s named after (Mt. Vesuvius). Juicy chicken thighs are seared to a gorgeous golden brown and simmered low and slow in a white wine sauce bursting with lemony flavor, garlic, and hints of oregano. The result is tender and flavorful chicken that is served over crispy roasted potatoes along with the sauce and a smattering of peas for the perfect pop of color.

Like much of Italian cuisine (ok, fine, this dish comes from Chicago, but it does have roots in Italian cuisine! 😃), this recipe takes simple ingredients and elevates them to greatness. It’s so elegant and delicious but shockingly easy to make.

Chicken Vesuvio with potatoes served on a plate with a fork.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

I love the beautiful simplicity of this flavor-packed Italian-American entree. Here are some of the things that make it so special.

  • Simple and few ingredients. In the classic Italian way, this dish uses simple and few ingredients that all shine through beautifully in the finished product. I love a dish that you can take one bite of and almost decipher what goes into the recipe. Who needs a long list of obscure ingredients when you can make something equally (if not more) tasty with just a few, carefully curated goodies?
  • The BEST chicken. Every bite of chicken is so tender and absolutely saturated with all of the lemony, garlicky goodness of the sauce. It’s some of the best chicken I’ve ever had.
  • Great any time of year. This recipe is just light and bright enough to serve as a summer entree but also has enough richness to make it a wonderfully warming wintertime meal. It’s sure to become a year-round favorite.

What is Vesuvio Style Chicken?

Vesuvio-style chicken is an Italian-American dish. It came to be in Chicago but is named after the famous Mt. Vesuvius in Naples, Italy. The dish includes perfectly seared chicken seasoned simply with salt, pepper, and oregano and finished in a garlicky white wine-lemon sauce with peas. The result is a flavorful chicken dish that is served over golden brown potatoes.

Ingredients for chicken Vesuvio separated into bowls.

Recipe Ingredients For Chicken Vesuvio

Here’s a list of ingredients needed to make this chicken Vesuvio recipe.

  • Bone-in skin-on chicken thighs: You could use boneless skinless thighs, drumsticks, legs, or chicken breasts, but be aware that the cooking time will vary.
  • Yukon gold potatoes
  • Salt, Ground Black Pepper, and Dried Oregano
  • Chicken Stock & Dry White Wine
  • Garlic
  • Olive oil & Butter
  • Frozen Peas
  • Lemons: I highly suggest using fresh lemons here as opposed to bottled lemon juice.
    Spooning sauce over chicken vesuvio on a plate.

    How to Make Chicken Vesuvio

    Here’s a basic overview of how to make this Italian-American favorite. For more detailed instructions, have a look at the recipe card at the bottom of this post.

    • Roast the potatoes. Toss the potatoes in the salt, ground black pepper, oregano, olive oil, and lemon juice and roast at 425˚F for 25 minutes.
    • Sear the chicken. Season the chicken with sea salt, ground black pepper, and oregano and sear in olive oil over medium-high heat for 2-3 minutes on either side. Remove from the pan and set aside.
    • Make the sauce. Sauté the garlic in butter; add the chicken stock and bring to a boil. Add the white wine and cook to evaporate a bit. Reduce the heat to low.
    • Finish it off. Stir in the chicken and the lemon juice. Cover and cook for 25 minutes, adding the peas 10 minutes before the cooking time is up.
    • Serve. Serve the chicken and peas over the potatoes with the sauce and garnish with fresh parsley.
    Chicken and peas in lemony sauce in a pan near a bowl of roasted potatoes.

    Tips for Success

    When done right, this chicken Vesuvio recipe produces an entree that will have you craving the next bite before you’ve finished the last.

    • Chicken Cuts: A chicken Vesuvio recipe is traditionally made with bone-in breast and leg quarters. However, I used bone-in chicken thighs. If you’d like to use other cuts, you can, but keep a close eye on the internal temperature — 165°F for breasts and between 180 and 185°F for drumsticks ensures the chicken is cooked perfectly.
    • Pat the chicken dry. If you want succulent, crispy-skinned chicken, I encourage you to pat your chicken dry with a paper towel before searing it. Removing excess moisture from the meat will allow the chicken to sear instead of steam, giving it that nice, golden brown you’re looking for.
    • Don’t crowd the pan. When browning the chicken, make sure that each thigh has plenty of room to wiggle. If you crowd the pan, the temperature will drop. As a result, the chicken will steam instead of sear and will likely release its juices.
    • Leave the chicken juices behind. After searing the chicken and removing it from the pan, leave the drippings behind; the fat adds flavor.
    • Scrape the pan. When you add the stock to the pan, scrape the bottoms and sides to get any browned bits into the sauce. They contribute greatly to the flavor of the sauce.
    • Let the wine evaporate. After adding the wine, let the alcohol cook off for a couple of minutes before reducing the heat to low. If you’d like to avoid the wine altogether, use extra chicken stock instead.
    Overhead of chicken Vesuvio on a plate with a fork.

    Serving Suggestions

    I love pairing this delicious chicken dish with a light salad, some veggies, or a good piece of bread.

    Overhead shot of two plates of chicken Vesuvio near a squeezed fresh lemon and fresh parsley.

    How to Store and Reheat Leftovers

    • Refrigerator: Cool completely before transferring the chicken and potatoes to an airtight container; keep it refrigerated for 3 to 4 days.
    • Freezer: Once the chicken Vesuvio has cooled to room temperature, seal it in an airtight container and store it in the freezer for up to 3 months.
    • To reheat: If the chicken is frozen, allow it to thaw in the refrigerator before proceeding with the following instructions. To reheat, arrange the chicken Vesuvio on a sheet pan, cover with aluminum foil, and bake at 350˚F for 10 to 15 minutes or until heated through.

    More Chicken Dinner Ideas

    Looking for more succulent, flavorful chicken recipes to try for dinner? I’ve got some great ones for you. Here are a few of my favorites.


    A skillet with Chicken and peas in lemon sauce to make Vesuvio.

    Chicken Vesuvio

    Katerina | Diethood
    Chicken Vesuvio is made with tender, crispy-skinned chicken thighs simmered in a lemony white wine sauce with peas and served over roasted potatoes.
    Servings : 4 servings
    Prep Time 10 minutes
    Cook Time 45 minutes
    Total Time 1 hour


    For the potatoes
    • 2 pounds Yukon gold potatoes, quartered lengthwise
    • 2 teaspoons sea salt
    • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
    • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
    • ¼ cup olive oil
    • 2 lemons, juiced
    For the chicken and the sauce
    • 4 large bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
    • 1 teaspoon sea salt
    • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
    • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
    • 2 tablespoons olive oil
    • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
    • 10 cloves garlic, smashed
    • 1 cup chicken stock
    • ½ cup dry white wine, or ¼ cup chicken stock if you would prefer not to use alcohol
    • 2 lemons, juiced
    • 1 cup frozen peas
    • cup chopped fresh parsley, for garnish


    For the potatoes
    • Prep. Preheat the oven to 425˚F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
    • Season the potatoes. In a medium-sized mixing bowl, combine the potatoes, salt, ground black pepper, oregano, olive oil, and lemon juice. Toss to coat the potatoes evenly.
    • Roast. Arrange the potatoes in a single layer on the prepared baking sheet and bake for 25 minutes or until golden brown and easily pierced with a fork.
    For the chicken and the sauce
    • Season the chicken with salt, ground black pepper and oregano.
    • Sear the chicken. Heat the olive oil in a large heavy-bottomed skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken thighs, skin side down. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes or until the skin is golden brown. Flip the chicken and cook for an additional 2 minutes. Remove the chicken from the pan and set aside, leaving the drippings in the pan.
    • Saute the garlic. Add the butter to the pan. Once it has melted, add the garlic cloves and sauté until aromatic.
    • Make the sauce. Add the chicken stock to the pan. Bring the mixture to a boil, scraping any browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Add the white wine and cook until evaporated, about 3 minutes. Reduce the heat to low.
    • Finish cooking the chicken. Return the chicken to the pan and squeeze the lemon juice over it. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Add the frozen peas. Cover and simmer for an additional 10 minutes or until the juices from the chicken thighs run clear.
    • Serve. Serve the chicken and peas over the potatoes with the sauce and garnish with fresh parsley.


    • Chicken: Usually, chicken Vesuvio uses a quartered chicken, including the bone-in breast and leg. But, for ease, I went with bone-in thighs. If you prefer other parts, that’s fine; just check the internal temp — aim for 165°F for breasts and 180-185°F for drumsticks to make sure it’s fully cooked.
    • Potatoes: I like using Yukon gold potatoes, but any baking potatoes will work, including russet.
    • Peas: Canned peas work just as well in most recipes that call for fresh and frozen. I suggest rinsing the canned peas before adding them to the pan 5 minutes before the dish is done.
    • Pat dry the chicken first for a crispy skin.
    • Don’t overcrowd the pan when browning the chicken to prevent it from steaming.
    • Use fresh lemons for the lemon juice.
    • Leave behind the chicken juices in the pan for extra flavor. Scrape the pan to mix any browned bits into the sauce.
    • Let the wine cook off for a few minutes after adding, or use more chicken stock instead.
    • Leftovers: Cool completely before transferring the chicken and potatoes to an airtight container; keep it refrigerated for 3 to 4 days. 


    Serving: 1 chicken thigh plus sauce and potatoes | Calories: 871 kcal | Carbohydrates: 61 g | Protein: 33 g | Fat: 55 g | Saturated Fat: 17 g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 8 g | Monounsaturated Fat: 27 g | Trans Fat: 1 g | Cholesterol: 172 mg | Sodium: 1899 mg | Potassium: 1651 mg | Fiber: 11 g | Sugar: 7 g | Vitamin A: 1220 IU | Vitamin C: 125 mg | Calcium: 133 mg | Iron: 5 mg | Net Carbs: 50 g

    Nutritional info is an estimate and provided as courtesy. Values may vary according to the ingredients and tools used. Please use your preferred nutritional calculator for more detailed info.

    Course: Dinner
    Cuisine: American, Italian
    Keyword: Chicken vesuvio, chicken vesuvio recipe
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