Utah Bites

Chicken Paprikash

Chicken paprikash – called paprikás csirke in Hungarian – is derived from the liberal use of paprika, a spice commonly used in Hungarian cuisine


Chicken paprikash – called paprikás csirke in Hungarian – is derived from the liberal use of paprika, a spice commonly used in Hungarian cuisine. The preferred type of paprika for this traditional dish is sweet paprika, not hot or smoked. Chicken paprikash is typically served with egg noodles or dumpling-style noodles called nokedli, which is similar to spaetzle. 


  • 3 to 4 pounds chicken thighs and drumsticks, or whole chicken legs
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 Tbsp neutral oil, like canola
  • 3 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 large yellow onion, peeled and diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 3 Tbsp Hungarian paprika, preferably sweet (not smoked)
  • 3 Tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup canned crushed tomatoes 
  • 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 lb. egg noodles
  • ¾ cup sour cream
  • ¼ cup minced fresh parsley


  1. Heat the oven to 400 degrees F. and liberally season the chicken with salt and pepper.
  2. Heat the oil and 1 tablespoon of the butter in a large, heavy, oven-safe sauté pan or Dutch oven set over high flame, until the butter is foaming. Sear the chicken in batches, skin-side down, until it is golden and crisp, approximately 5 minutes. Then turn the chicken over, and repeat on the other side, approximately 5 more minutes. Transfer the chicken to a plate to rest.
  3. Pour off all but 3 tablespoons of the accumulated fat in the pot. Return the pot to the stove, over medium heat, and add the onion and garlic. Cook, stirring frequently with a spoon to scrape off any browned bits of chicken skin, until the onion has softened and gone translucent, approximately 5 minutes.
  4. Add the paprika and the flour, and stir well to combine, then cook until the mixture is fragrant and the taste of the flour has been cooked out, approximately 3 to 4 minutes.
  5. Add the crushed tomatoes and broth, whisk until smooth and then return the chicken to the pan, skin-side up. Move the pan or pot into the oven and cook until the chicken has cooked through and the sauce has thickened slightly, approximately 25 to 30 minutes.
  6. Cook noodles according to package directions, drain, and toss with the remaining butter. Place the chicken on top of the noodles on a serving platter, then add the sour cream to the sauce, stir to combine and ladle it over the chicken and noodles. Sprinkle the fresh parsley on top for garnish. 



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Food writer Ted Scheffler

Originally trained as an anthropologist, Ted Scheffler is a seasoned food, wine & travel writer based in Utah. He loves cooking, skiing, and spends an inordinate amount of time tending to his ever-growing herd of guitars and amplifiers.

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