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Cooked fricase de pollo served in a large skillet.

Fricase de Pollo (Chicken Fricassee)

Fricase de pollo (chicken fricassee) is a traditional Cuban dish. Made with chicken, stewed in a flavorful tomato sauce and finished with potatoes and olives, it’s the ultimate comfort food.
Course Main Course
Cuisine Cuban
Keyword chicken stew, Cuban chicken stew, fricase de pollo
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 733kcal
Author Elizabeth


  • 8 pieces Chicken about 2 pounds use legs, thighs, or a combination
  • teaspoon Salt divided (1 teaspoon to season the chicken and ½ teaspoon for the sauce)
  • ½ teaspoon Ground Cumin
  • ½ teaspoon Dried Oregano
  • ¼ teaspoon Black Pepper
  • 2 tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 small Onion finely diced
  • 3-4 Garlic Cloves minced
  • 1 tablespoon Tomato Paste
  • ½ cup White Wine
  • 16 ounces Canned Tomato Sauce
  • ¾ cup Water
  • 1 Bay Leaf
  • 12-16 ounces Potatoes peeled and cut into 1-2 inch pieces (about 2 medium potatoes) we used russet potatoes
  • ½ cup Pitted Spanish Olives


  • Sprinkle the chicken on both sides with the 1 teaspoon of salt.
  • Heat the olive oil in a large, deep skillet (or a large, wide pot) over medium heat. Add the chicken to the skillet and cook for 5 minutes, turn the chicken and cook another 5 minutes.
  • Remove the skillet from the heat and remove the chicken from the skillet. Place it on a pan or plate and keep warm. Cover the chicken loosely with a piece of aluminum foil, and/or place the pan in the microwave. It will stay warm away from drafts.
  • Place the skillet back over medium heat. The oil should still be hot, but if it’s not give it a minute or so over the heat.
  • Add the onions and cook for 2 minutes, stirring frequently.
  • Add the garlic, tomato paste, ½ teaspoon salt, oregano, cumin and black pepper to the skillet. Cook for 1 minute while stirring constantly.
  • Carefully add the wine, to the skillet. Stir, while gently scrapping all the bits off the bottom of the skillet with a wooden spoon or spatula. Cook for 1-2 minutes until most of the liquid has cooked out.
  • Add the tomato sauce, water and the bay leaf and stir.
  • Add the chicken to the sauce, including any juices collected on the plate. Arrange them in the sauce so that they are not overlapping.
  • When the sauce comes back to a simmer, lower the heat to medium-low and cover the skillet. Cook the chicken fricassee for 15 minutes, keeping the sauce at a simmer.
  • Give the skillet a quick shake every once in a while, to make sure the chicken isn’t sticking to bottom. Stir the sauce about halfway through the cooking time.
  • Uncover the skillet, give the chicken and sauce a stir. Add the potatoes and the olives. Give everything a good stir to combine. Arrange the ingredients so they’re not mounded.
  • Raise the heat to medium and bring the sauce to a simmer. Lower the heat to medium low. Keep at a simmer. Cover the chicken fricassee and cook for another 15-20 minutes. Give the skillet a quick shake every once in a while.
  • The potatoes should be fork tender and the chicken at least 165°F.
  • Use tongs to remove the bay leaf and discard. Serve the fricassee on a bed of white rice, if desired.



Keep the peeled and cut potatoes in a bowl covered with cold water if not using right away. This keeps them from browning too quickly. Just remember to drain the water before adding them to the pan.
Use a pan that has a tight fitting lid and is large enough that the chicken fits without overlapping.


Calories: 733kcal | Carbohydrates: 32g | Protein: 47g | Fat: 44g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Cholesterol: 170mg | Sodium: 1932mg | Potassium: 1392mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 936IU | Vitamin C: 38mg | Calcium: 79mg | Iron: 5mg