Vinegar-Glossed Chicken

This vinegar-glossed chicken is made with inexpensive bone-in chicken pieces, rosemary, and garlic, and relies on red wine vinegar to deglaze the pan and create a spectacular sweetly sour pan sauce.

This dish has been in heavy rotation in our home for at least 20 years. Originally made from an Italian recipe, it has morphed into our own. When the rosemary and vinegar are added to the pan of chicken, alchemy occurs. The vinegar deglazes the brown bits and reduces into a syrup, permeating the chicken with an agrodolce (sweet and sour) flavor. The dish is even better the day after it’s made.–Lucinda Scala Quinn

Vinegar-Glossed Chicken

Chicken pieces in a sauce of vinegar, garlic, rosemary in a white plate, knife and fork on the side
This vinegar-glossed chicken is made with inexpensive bone-in chicken pieces, rosemary, and garlic, and relies on red wine vinegar to deglaze the pan and create a spectacular sweetly sour pan sauce.
Lucinda Scala Quinn

Prep 45 mins
Cook 20 mins
Total 1 hr 5 mins
6 to 8 servings
629 kcal
5 / 4 votes
Print RecipeBuy the Mad Hungry: Feeding Men and Boys cookbook

Want it? Click it.


  • 1 cup best-quality red-wine vinegar
  • 2 to 3 garlic cloves minced (about 2 tablespoons)
  • 3 sprigs of rosemary (about 1 tablespoon minced)
  • 5 1/2 pounds bone-in chicken pieces (large pieces, such as breast, should be cut in half)
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3/4 cup homemade chicken stock or canned chicken broth plus more as needed


  • At least 15 minutes and up to 2 hours before cooking, combine the vinegar, garlic, and rosemary in a small bowl.
  • Thoroughly season the chicken pieces with salt and pepper. Heat a 14-inch skillet (or a couple smaller skillets) over medium-high heat and swirl in enough oil to coat the bottom of the skillet. Place the chicken in the skillet, skin side down. You should hear an immediate sizzle when the chicken pieces hit the pan. Don’t crowd the chicken; leave space around each piece and work in batches. Don’t move the pieces of  o it takes a couple of minutes to sear the chicken so it doesn’t stick.
  • Cook the chicken until browned on all sides, about 10 minutes per batch. Transfer to a plate while you brown the remaining batches. You may need to reduce the head a little to keep the chicken from overbrowning. The chicken won’t yet be cooked through.
  • Place all the browned chicken pieces back in the skillet. Add the chicken broth and scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Lower the heat, and simmer until the chicken is cooked through, and the sauce is reduced, 15 to 20 minutes.
  • Increase the heat to high and pour in the vinegar mixture. Tilt the skillet to swirl the sauce and stir as the vinegar evaporates and the mixture reduces to a glaze, 8 to 10 minutes. Serve immediately.
Print RecipeBuy the Mad Hungry: Feeding Men and Boys cookbook

Want it? Click it.

Show Nutrition

Serving: 1portionCalories: 629kcal (31%)Carbohydrates: 2g (1%)Protein: 53g (106%)Fat: 43g (66%)Saturated Fat: 12g (75%)Polyunsaturated Fat: 9gMonounsaturated Fat: 18gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 213mg (71%)Sodium: 251mg (11%)Potassium: 590mg (17%)Fiber: 1g (4%)Sugar: 1g (1%)Vitamin A: 412IU (8%)Vitamin C: 5mg (6%)Calcium: 43mg (4%)Iron: 3mg (17%)

Recipe Testers’ Reviews

We really liked this dish. It definitely fed men and boys, which is a big plus as far as I’m concerned. It was also delicious, another big plus.

I did kind of wish there was more sauce in the end because the sauce was so, so tasty. But that could easily be remedied by doubling the sauce recipes. (We’re a big sauce family.)

I would actually try this same dish with boneless, skinless chicken breasts when I’m pressed for time, which is just about always. I think it could be equally great that way.

If you need something to call your guests to the table, just let them inhale this enticing aroma! They won’t be able to resist. This chicken is flavorful, lovely to look at on the plate, and even better in the mouth. The red-wine vinegar infused with some garlic and fresh rosemary would be good on just about anything, and on this chicken it is perfect. There’s just enough zing to bring out the great taste of the cooked chicken that’s still juicy and moist inside while retaining some degree of crispness on the outside.

You won’t be disappointed. It’s an ideal recipe for a dinner party—the smooth, vibrant taste of the dish will elevate the entire evening.

Originally published April 07, 2020


#leitesculinaria on Instagram If you make this recipe, snap a photo and hashtag it #LeitesCulinaria. We'd love to see your creations on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.


  1. 5 stars
    For our Easter Brunch my Nona used Cornish Game Hens for her Chicken Frico. She’d thaw them out and cut into separate pieces (leg, breasts, thighs etc,) Same recipe as yours after that. She came to America when she was 16 years old, a butcher’s daughter. She prepared and served beautiful meals as you might imagine.

    1. Victoria, thank you for sharing this memory of yours. So many times food brings me back to memories of my grandma and her simple yet perfect approach to cooking. I can only imaging the magnificence of what she put on the table…and the wonderful company of those who sat around it with you. Again, we appreciate you reminding us of the lineage of recipes and we hope you enjoy this one!

  2. This is very similar to a dish from the Philippines called adobo…Many recipes (my family’s included) includes soy, which is what the anchovies commented on above would add – a saltiness that’s delicious with the tanginess!

  3. 5 stars
    I made this recipe with using 3.5 lbs of boneless and skinless chicken thighs. It was delicious. I served it with a potato. My husband says it was very tender, tasted good, and not too messy. I have to agree with him. I love the glaze it made when it cooked down. I can taste the sweet and sour in the recipe.

    I was skeptic about the recipe but seeing that I like recipes with clear directions and few ingredients, I want to take a crack at it. It did not disappoint. Plus, if I did not get rid of the chicken soon it would have gone bad. I hate wasting food and money.

    This is a great meal for everyone. The aroma of it being made is good. And the taste of the red wine vinegar is not strong at all. This is a staple recipe in my house. It was the first time using red wine vinegar.

  4. 5 stars
    I made this over the weekend using just chicken thighs…wow! This is a fabulous recipe, simple and absolutely delicious! I served it with creamy Parmesan polenta. If you haven’t made this yet, do it and don’t be afraid to test it out on company…it presents beautifully and they’ll love it!

  5. Years ago I found a recipe called Hunter’s Chicken which was like yours with the addition of tomatoes. I loved to make it because the splash of vinegar changed the profile of the dish. Thanks for the reminder.

    The interview was terrific! I grew up in a household of women, and when I encountered “hormones” was mystified by their copious eating, hence our the nickname “Hoovers.” Thank you.

Have something to say?

Then tell us. Have a picture you'd like to add to your comment? Attach it below. And as always, please take a gander at our comment policy before posting.

Rate this recipe!

Have you tried this recipe? Let us know what you think.

Upload a picture of your dish