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buttermilk habanero chicken stew

Buttermilk Habanero Chicken Stew

A creamy, gluten free chicken stew with serious kick.
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 1 hr
Total Time 1 hr 10 mins
Course Main Course, Soup
Cuisine American, Comfort, Seasonal, Southern
Servings 4


  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 large bone-in chicken thighs about 2 lbs
  • 1/2 cup diced onion
  • 1/4 cup minced habanero pepper *1/3 cup for extra heat
  • 2 cup broth or water
  • 1 cup buttermilk divided into 3/4 and 1/4 cup
  • 1/4 cup honey


  • Place dutch oven on medium-high heat, swirling olive oil to coat bottom evenly. When a bit of smoke appears, place chicken thighs skin side down in pan. Sear until skin is a deep golden brown and crisp, or 3-5 minutes. Remove thighs and set aside.
  • Sautee onions and peppers in fat remaining in pan. Cook slowly until onions are caramelized. Reduce heat and add thighs, broth, and buttermilk. Cover and let simmer for 50-55 minutes. Taste stew and season generously with salt and pepper.
  • Remove chicken thighs, let cool slightly, and debone-making sure to remove any cartilage or excess fat. Using a shredder or fork tines, tear chicken into bite sized strips. Add back to buttermilk texture. Finish by gently stirring in honey and remaining 1/4 cup buttermilk.


  • Be sure to season chicken well with salt and pepper before browning
  • When working with habanero peppers, be relentless about hand washing. You don't want to accidentally get that stuff in your eye.
  • I used skin on, bone in thighs for optimal flavor, but use what you have! Smaller or skinless thighs will have a significantly lower browning time. 
  • If you want to kick the heat up a notch, add additional habanero in 1/2 tbsp increments to suit your taste. 
Keyword buttermilk, buttermilk chicken, chicken stew recipe, gluten free, habanero, one pot