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Smothered Chicken with Bourbon and Miso

4 Servings

50 minutes 25 minutes active

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This is our adaptation of a recipe from “Smoke and Pickles” by Edward Lee. It's a fantastic Asian-inflected spin on an all-American favorite: smothered pork chops. A combination of umami-rich ingredients, woodsy bourbon and sweet-tangy orange juice produces a silky, deeply flavored mushroom sauce for smothering tender bone-in chicken legs. And to serve on the side? Steamed Asian rice or light, fluffy biscuits—the choice is yours.




Don't worry if you have the wrong variety of miso. We preferred dark miso, such as red (aka) or barley (mugi) miso, but white (shiro) miso is easier to find and more versatile. The sauce will be a little sweeter and milder, but still delicious.

50 minutes

25 minutes active


  • 2

    tablespoons soy sauce

  • 1

    tablespoon dark miso, such as red or barley miso (see note)


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Nick C.
December 20, 2022
Wonderful - a staple
Easy and tasty, this is a recurring staple on our menu
christine d.

This chicken is delicious, I only wish I had made mashed potatoes to enjoy that gravy with.

Barbara K.

This was surprisingly disappointing, especially after the other 2 recipes I made from this site this week. It was fairly bland, had to add a lot of salt. Too much sweetness from the onions, I'd use less next time. No big flavor from the miso and bourbon (I did use white miso). Using chicken stock instead of water would probably help.

Erica L.

I thought this was very nice-subtle yet complex and satisfying. It had a hint of sweetness, and mine didn’t need any additional salt at all, but I did make sure to thoroughly season my chicken. I will probably reduce the onion the next time I make this because I found the flavor a bit too pronounced, especially since it’s only lightly sautéed.

Randi B.

Made this tonight exactly as written except used a mix of mushrooms. It was delicious and great for a cold day! Thanx. So far we've had a lot of good luck with Milk Street recipes!

Ann D.

A complete dump in the trash, and it seemed so promising. And I don't know why. I did use dried shiitake mushrooms, reconstituted in warm water, and sliced. And, I used the soaking liquid instead of 2 cups of water. Used red miso. Any advise please!

Kathryn A.

I was underwhelmed. If I make this again, which is unlikely, I'll get red miso (used white) and decrease the water from 2 C to 1 C. But more likely I would just make regular Bourbon Chicken instead of this "elevated" version as it did not work for me.

Austin H.

I actually really enjoyed this recipe. If you are from the south you already know smothered pork chops. I don't know if all places in the world enjoy smothered pork chops and this could be a regional dish but this was much better than smothered pork chops I have had in the south. I think this magazine has really given me a appreciation for miso and what it can do to a dish.

Jennifer B.

Wow, love it or hate it, according to the comments. We loved it, even better the next day. The sauce was sublime. I also made sure the thighs were well cooked.

Kerry G.

I think it's good, but next time I won't bother with the chicken skin. you crisp it, only to put it back in the pot where it gets uncrispy again. The mushroom gravy is very good.

Dominique D.

Absolutely delicious. Rich and warm from the miso and whiskey, but not too fatty or heavy. I did use boneless, skinless thighs, browning them before stewing them in the broth mixture. Love that I can front load all the ingredients, leave it to stew for a bit, and end up with a flavor packed, tender and moist chicken dish. Perfect!