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5 from 2 votes

Low-carb Chicken alla Puttanesca

This low-carb Chicken Puttanesca is packed with flavour but low on calories. Serve with spiralized zoodles (a.ka. courgette noodles)
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time35 mins
Total Time45 mins
Course: Main
Cuisine: Italian
Servings: 4 servings
Author: Lucy Parissi


  • salt and pepper to season the chicken
  • 4 large skinless chicken breasts
  • 2 onions peeled and diced
  • 3 garlic cloves smashed (or chopped)
  • 1 tbsp anchovy paste or you can use anchovy fillets
  • 1 x400g | 14oz can chopped tomatoes in tomato juice
  • 3 bunches cherry tomatoes on the vine (optional)
  • 3 tbsp black pitted olives
  • 3 tbsp mini capers
  • 1 tbsp large capers optional
  • pinch ground cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 tbsp crushed chillies
  • olive oil to fry
  • splash sweet vermouth optional


  • Pat the chicken breasts dry with kitchen towel and season with salt and pepper. Heat 1 tbsp of olive oil in a large pan and then sear the chicken breasts on both sides until nicely coloured. Set aside.
  • Add a small splash of vermouth (or water) to the hot pan to deglaze – scrape any bits of chicken that may have stuck on the bottom. Lower the heat and add the garlic, anchovy paste and chopped onions. Cook until the onions are translucent and soft – 5-10 minutes.
  • Turn the heat up and add the chopped tomatoes and a pinch cinnamon. Fill the empty can with water and add to the pan. Stir in the the olives and capers and bring to the boil.
  • Lower the heat to a simmer and add the chicken breasts into the pan. Nestle the cherry tomatoes on the vine among them. Sprinkle with the crushed chillies.
  • Cover, and cook for 20 minutes. Take the lid off and cook for a further 10 minutes or until the chicken breasts are thoroughly cooked and sauce is slightly thickened.
  • Sprinkle with the chopped parsley and serve either with spaghetti (toss them in with the sauce) or with courgette (zucchini) noodles.


Add a little sugar or sweetener if the tomatoes are not very sweet. Add a little lemon juice to the sauce if you prefer it sharper. The courgette noodles don't need any cooking – they will soften once covered with the hot sauce.