How to Poach Chicken

First, remove the chicken from your neighbor’s coop under the cover of darkness. Kill, pluck and chop into pieces.

Then, add the following things to a large pot of water: 1 onion in quarters, a bay leaf, about 2 tablespoons salt, pepper, 1 bunch thyme, 1 bunch parsley. Bring to a boil.

Add the cut up chicken (or just bone-in chicken breasts, that’s good too), reduce heat and allow to simmer (not boil!) for about 30 minutes loosely covered or until the chicken is cooked through. Remove the chicken from the broth and debone. The leftover, strained broth can be used as chicken stock.

My thoughts:

Poaching is a great way to cook chicken to use recipes that call for shredded chicken or in cold salads. The chicken will be very moist and flavorful. Sometimes if I buy a large pack of chicken, I just go ahead and poach it. It is a great way to “cook once, eat twice”, you will have cooked chicken on hand for quick meals throughout the week.


  1. So Rachel, feeling a little spunky lately? Knocking down old ladies and steeling chickens under the cover of darkness. Next thing you know zucchini will be mysteriously appearing on your neighbors front porch! πŸ˜‰

    I grew up on my moms poached chicken. She used it for sandwiches, salads, all kinds of things. Thanks for reminding me!

  2. Hi Rachel. I poach chicken pretty often – it is a great way to have it on hand for meals throughout the week. I like to add a few carrots – it adds great flavor to the stock.

  3. oh…. so that’s where my chickens are going. And all this time, I thought it was a FOX πŸ˜‰

  4. ohya its hightime i poach a chicken i think, all that amazing residual meat and stock, YUM!

  5. Go back to step 1 – can you please give directions on how to kill and pluck chickens? πŸ˜‰

    Thanks for this. I’ve always been leery of poaching chicken for fear of not cooking it well enough. Guess I can stop begging my mom to make these recipes any time I come over.

  6. OK, I’m such a dork. I usually poach chicken when a recipe calls for shredded chicken, but have always just done it in plain water. I don’t know why it didn’t dawn on me to add veggies and herbs and get better flavored chicken AND chicken stock out of it!!!

  7. It’s the killing and stealing part I think I need help with.