Forty Years of Chicken Creole

There is one thing that my ex-husband was right about and I was wrong.  Chicken Creole.  It was the early 1970’s.  He was a medical student and I was a graduate student.  We lived on my teaching assistantship; we lived on very little.  Chicken was about 25 cents a pound, so we were always looking for recipes.  He found a recipe in my aunt’s “Fairyland Cooking Magic” cookbook, copyright 1955 by Fairyland P.T.A., Lookout Mountain, Tenn.  I love my aunt’s Fairyland cookbook which I still have along with a Watkins Cook Book copyright 1943.

“I may eat the chicken, but that sauce sounds terrible.”  I ate those words along with licking the dish clean.  That began my love affair with chicken creole.

I typed the recipe on my college, portable Smith-Corona typewriter, as I did with all of my favorite recipes.  As the years went by, changes were made to the recipe.  I started using diced boneless chicken.  I wanted that sauce covering as much of the chicken as possible.  When I’m wrong, I’m really wrong.  It became a family staple.  My children were raised on chicken creole, starting with it being ground in my little baby food grinder.

In 1984 I shared the recipe in our church cookbook.  It was probably the only recipe in the Baptist cookbook with alcohol.  The amount which by the way, over the years had doubled from the original recipe.


When my children became adults, I delighted when they called wanting to know how to make chicken creole for a special occasion.  The recipe continues to evolve.  Made with fresh, ripe heirloom tomatoes, green pepper, fresh herbs and a bottle of dry white wine captures a summer garden and is my current choice.

All this talk of chicken creole and I can almost taste it right now.


  1. Ohhhh, that sounds delicious! I have a bunch of tomatoes and thinking I just need to try that recipe! Thanks for sharing! Happy that was the only thing you were wrong about Connie! 😉 Have a great day!

  2. Love this, Connie! I don’t think my family would eat it, but I might try it anyway.

  3. I have such fond memories of eating chicken creole : ) I love that I can share this family recipe with Hiram (he loves it too!).

  4. I love this post Connie. I don’t love chicken though, so no chicken creole for me! I find it so interesting how a food, a special recipe, can become so important in our lives and bring floods of memories to our minds. I have a couple of these myself, from my childhood, and I created some of these memories for my son as well. Thanks for sharing this story.

  5. Sounds delicious! Especially with fresh heirloom tomatoes…my favorite summertime treat!

  6. backing up in a sec
    to write the recipe in my cool stuff book:)
    thanks for the yummy share
    (and I’m blaming the snack i’m now eating
    on you)

  7. I realize I’m commenting on this a bit late, but I’ll never forget the first time I tasted it. Matt and I had just started dating and it was the first meal he cooked for me. We sat on the floor of his apartment on Marketplace and shared a bottle of white wine. Seems like yesterday. 🙂 Ten years later we share a beautiful daughter who will no doubt love this recipe just as much.


  1. […] I was writing this post about my life long love affair with a chicken creole recipe, my mind was traveling back to those […]

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