Pan-Seared Chicken with Caramelized Onions and Sautéed Mushrooms over Mashed Cauliflower 16

By Judy Beaudin of Scrumptious Catering

Judy Beaudin of Scrumptious Catering created this dish with the goal to satisfy warm winter cravings but with a focus on maximizing healthy, fresh ingredients and eliminating the refined carbohydrates that can cause weight gain.

“Don’t be intimidated by the multiple components,” she says. “Each is very easy and quick to prepare and dinner can be on the table in about an hour from the time you start cooking.”


4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 tablespoon butter

Kosher salt

Freshly ground black pepper

2 8-ounce packages baby portobello mushrooms or a mix of portobello and shitake mushrooms

1 clove garlic, minced

2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme

1 tablespoon olive oil

2 tablespoons butter

Mashed cauliflower

1 large head cauliflower, cored and florets chopped into small pieces

1⁄2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

3 tablespoons butter

1 teaspoon salt

2 cups water

3 tablespoons heavy cream

Caramelized onions

2 red onions, sliced into 1⁄4-inch strips

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 tablespoon butter

1 teaspoons salt

2 teaspoons brown sugar

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar


  1. 1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Allow chicken breasts to come to room temperature. Sprinkle kosher salt and pepper on each side.
  2. 2. Heat a large saute pan over medium heat. When hot, add olive oil and butter, swirling to coat pan. Turn heat tomedium-highh and add chicken breasts to pan. Cook for about 4 minutes, or until chicken releases without sticking, and the bottom side is browned. Flip and cook other side for 3-4 minutes to brown.
  3. 3. Reserving 2 tablespoons drippings in pan, drain pan and move chicken breasts to a rimmed baking sheet. Place in preheated oven. Cook for 12-15 minutes or until internal temperature is 160 F when tested with a meat thermometer. Cover pan with foil and set aside until time to serve.
  4. 4. While chicken is cooking, add 2 tablespoons butter and 1 tablespoon olive oil to drippings in pan. Turn heat to medium and add minced garlic. Stir for 1 minute, loosening browned bits on the bottom of the pan. Add mushrooms and salt. Continue to stir and cook for about 8 minutes or until liquid is absorbed and mushrooms are tender and browned. Stir in fresh chopped thyme and stir for 1 minute.

Directions for mashed cauliflower 

  1. 1. In a medium stock pot, melt the butter over medium high heat. Add cauliflower pieces and saute for about 5 minutes. Add salt and bring to a boil. Reduce to medium heat. Cover and cook until cauliflower is tender, about 10 minutes.
  2. 2. Drain the cauliflower, leaving about 2 tablespoons cooking water in the pot. Add 3 tablespoons heavy cream. Use an immersion blender or transfer to a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. Stir in Parmesan cheese. Add freshly ground black pepper to taste.

Directions for caramelized onions

  1. 1. In a wide-bottom saute pan, heat the olive oil and butter over medium heat. Add onions and sprinkle with 1 teaspoon salt. Saute for 3-5 minutes to “sweat” the onions. Once they begin to soften and become translucent, increase heat to medium-high and continue to cook, stirring often, for about 20 minutes or until onions are a rich brown color. Add brown sugar and balsamic vinegar. Stir to blend and cook for 1-2 additional minutes.

To serve

  1. 1. Spoon mashed cauliflower onto a serving plate. Top with a chicken breast, then layer caramelized onions and mushrooms over the chicken.
  2. 2. Garnish with a fresh thyme sprig and serve by a cozy fire! 

Scrumptious Catering Company is a boutique caterer, specializing in events for under 200 guests. For more information, visit