Chicken Flatbread Recipe with Balsamic Glaze, Apples, and Caramelized Onions

Chicken Apple Flatbread
A healthy flatbread recipe full of chicken, apples, and caramelized onions and topped with tangy balsamic glaze. Serve it as a main course or beside your favorite salad or pasta dish!

My passion for cooking and eating healthy restaurant-quality food has grown over the last few years. Chicken Flatbread with balsamic glaze is a seriously irresistible meal that is the culmination of two of my favorite culinary pursuits: cooking chicken breasts that are juicy and full of flavor, and how to make a proper pizza with poolish.

Chicken Apple Flatbread

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What is Flatbread?

Most cultures have a flatbread that is a staple in their culinary tradition. Greek pita bread, Tandoori Naan from India, tortillas from South America, and focaccia from Italy are some examples. These flatbread recipes are often simple, quick to make, and nourishing, and sometimes they have dips, sauces, or even toppings to compliment them.

How is Flatbread Different From Pizza?

I like to think of flatbread as pizza that’s not traditional enough. With flatbread, you aren’t restricted to a specific shape, thickness, sauce, or topping. Flatbread gives you the license to make pizza in a very nontraditional way, often a fusion of two different culinary traditions.

Another difference between flatbread and pizza can be the dough. Flatbread can be made with pizza dough which contains yeast, but it can also be made with dough without yeast. When it is made with dough without yeast, it will tend to be thinner and crispier because it doesn’t have the leavening agent to make the dough rise.

How do You Know a Recipe is Worth the Effort?

This chicken flatbread recipe is not for the faint of heart. Not only does it take hours to make, but it also calls for more advanced dough techniques and requires an abundance of ingredients. I won’t sit here and tell you that I make chicken flatbread with balsamic glaze, apple, and caramelized onions every week, or every month for that matter.

However, you are here because you need inspiration, a recipe, or are interested in learning more on your journey of acquiring skills and techniques. This chicken flatbread recipe will definitely do all those things and more.

And, it is SO worth it.

I place this chicken flatbread recipe firmly near the top of my list of recipes to make when we are going to have guests over. It is delicious, visually appealing, scales up easily, and conveys to my guests that I care about them because I am willing to put in the time and effort to craft a meal this impressive.

There is a place in everyone’s repertoire for easy weeknight meals, but equally important, there is a place for recipes like this.

Equipment Needed for the Chicken Flatbread Recipe

To make the chicken flatbread, you will need a few things that you likely already have in your kitchen!

  • A large bowl for the dough.
  • We also recommend a Danish dough whisk to mix the dough. (optional)
  • A kitchen scale to weigh the ingredients.
  • A flat surface to roll out the dough.
  • A pizza peel.
  • Pizza stone or pizza steel (optional)

Ingredients for the Chicken Flatbread with Balsamic Glaze

This chicken flatbread recipe has several distinct phases each with its own ingredient list. I use my favorite pizza dough recipe with poolish for my flatbread.

First, you must make poolish. This is a pre-ferment starter dough that you will use as a base for the flatbread dough. I have an in-depth “how-to” post about Poolish if you want to learn more or scale the recipe. Next, there are the rest of the flatbread dough ingredients, followed by the chicken and pan sauce ingredients, and finally the toppings.

Poolish Ingredients

Poolish is made from equal parts water and flour by weight, with the addition of yeast and a sweetener to feed the yeast. Given time, poolish ferments and the yeast multiplies giving the final dough a delicious flavor and plenty of rise.

Here are the ingredients for the flatbread poolish. Make the poolish the night before and let it ferment overnight in the refrigerator.

  • 162g all-purpose flour
  • 162ml water
  • 3g instant yeast
  • 3g honey

Dough Ingredients

The flatbread dough should be made 3-4 hours before dinner, leaving plenty of time for the dough to rise.

  • Poolish
  • 154 ml water
  • 324 g all-purpose flour
  • 9 g salt

Chicken and Pan Sauce Ingredients

The chicken and pan sauce is really what makes this chicken flatbread recipe unique and interesting. By using the pan sauce we are diverging from a more traditional pizza to a unique experience with nontraditional ingredients we call flatbread.

  • 2 chicken breasts
  • 1 tbsp ghee
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 shallot minced
  • ⅓ cup white wine
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • ½ cup milk
  • 1 tsp cassava flour
  • 1 tbsp capers

Toppings for the Chicken Flatbread

The rest of the chicken flatbread toppings are listed below. Feel free to get creative here and add things like mushrooms or red pepper flakes.

  • 1 large red onion
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 green apple
  • ½ cup shredded mozzarella
  • 1 tbsp balsamic glaze

Cooking Instructions for the Chicken Flatbread

Make the Poolish

Poolish is quick and easy to make. It should be made the night before or the morning of your meal giving it ample time to ferment. Poolish is equal parts water and flour by weight with the addition of yeast and sugar to feed the yeast.

Poolish for Chicken Apple Flatbread
LEFT: Poolish ingredients mixed.
RIGHT: Poolish fermented after 1 hour at room temperature and 16 hours in the refrigerator.
  1. In a bowl combine 162g flour, 162ml water, 3g honey, and 3g yeast. Stir to combine, cover, and leave it on the counter at room temperature for 1 hour.
  2. Place the poolish in the refrigerator for 2-18 hours, the longer the better. I like to make my poolish around 8 p.m. the night before. It goes in the refrigerator at 9 p.m., then I pull it back out to make the dough 18 hours later at 3 p.m.

Make the Flatbread Dough

Take your well-rested poolish out of the fridge and pour in 154ml of water, stirring it gently till the two become one.

Chicken Apple Flatbread mix poolish with water

Now, we’re going to get a little messy! Take about half of the 324g all-purpose flour and all of the salt, and mix them into the poolish-water blend. Stir it up until everything is combined. Then, add in the remaining flour and start working the dough right there in the bowl. It might seem a little rough around the edges at first, but soon enough, you’ll see a shaggy dough ball forming.

Chicken Apple Flatbread make the dough

Next, let’s give our dough some room to breathe. Pour it out onto a clean work surface and cover it with the bowl. Let it rest for 15 minutes.

After the dough has rested, rub some olive oil on your hands and start kneading the dough into a smooth, shiny dough ball. Once it’s done, find a comfortable place for it in an oiled bowl, cover it up, and let it take another rest for 30 minutes.

Chicken Apple Flatbread dough
LEFT: Shaggy dough ball. RIGHT: rested and smooth dough ball

After 30 minutes, place your dough ball on a clean work surface and cut it into 4 equal parts with a dough knife. Each part will soon become a delicious flatbread! Shape these parts into neat little dough balls and place them on a floured cookie sheet, leaving some room for each to expand. To keep them moist and happy, gently apply some olive oil on top of each ball, then cover the cookie sheet with plastic. Time for another rest, this time for 2 hours.

Chicken Apple Flatbread dough balls
Note: This a double batch, so there are 8 dough balls, not 4.

While the dough balls are resting, let’s get our oven ready. If you have a pizza stone or pizza steel, preheat your oven to a blazing 550°F. If not, don’t worry! Preheat the oven to 400°F and we’ll bake the chicken flatbread right on a cookie sheet.

Caramelized the Onions

Now it’s time to transform the juicy red onion into something delicious.

Take that onion and cut it right down the middle, splitting it into two equal halves. Make sure to divide it through the root – it’s all about balance here. Now, peel back that tough outer layer, revealing the vibrant layers beneath.

With a sharp knife and a steady hand, chop those onion halves into half circles about ⅛ inch thick. Picture each slice as a tiny rainbow, ready to add a splash of color and heaps of flavor to your meal.

Next up, heat up 1 tbsp of olive oil over medium heat. Add the cut onions to the pan string regularly to encourage even cooking.

Chicken Apple Flatbread caramelized onions in a pan

Here’s a tip: stir your onions every few minutes for even cooking. The goal here is to soften and caramelize them, not burn them. It’s a slow dance between the onion and the heat, a process that can’t be rushed. If you see any blackening at all, don’t panic! Just reduce the temperature a bit. Cooking is all about adapting and adjusting, isn’t it?

Once your onions have reached that perfect caramelized state, set them aside.

Cook the Chicken

Now that the scent of caramelized onions lingers in the air it’s time to move on to making the pan sauce.

First things first, let’s get that chicken prepped. Place it in a sealed plastic bag. Then, with a meat mallet (or even just the strength of your own fist), gently flatten the chicken until it reaches an even thickness. This isn’t about power, it’s about precision. You’re not just tenderizing the meat, you’re ensuring it will cook evenly.

Once your chicken is looking nice and even, it’s time for a dash of seasoning. Sprinkle some salt and pepper over one side to taste. Feel free to be generous here; after all, it’s the seasoning that really brings out the flavors of the chicken.

Next, heat up 1 tbsp of ghee in a stainless or carbon steel pan over medium-high heat. Wait for it to shimmer – a telltale sign it’s ready for action. Now, carefully place your seasoned chicken in the pan.

Chicken Apple Flatbread chicken in a pan

Here’s a pro tip: let the chicken cook undisturbed for 5-7 minutes before you flip. Your patience will be rewarded with a beautifully browned crust. Continue cooking until an instant-read probe thermometer tells you the chicken has reached an internal temperature of 155°F. Safety first, right?

Once the chicken is perfectly cooked, set it aside to rest. While it’s resting, don’t forget to admire the browned bits left in the pan. These are called fond, and they’re the secret to a mouth-watering pan sauce.

Make the Pan Sauce for the Chicken Flatbread

Toss in the shallot and minced garlic into the pan you used to cook the chicken over medium heat. Let them cook until fragrant, approximately one minute.

Chicken Apple Flatbread sauce aromatics

Pour in the wine and watch as it deglazes the fond from the bottom of the pan. Take a wooden spatula and scrape any stubborn browned bits left from the chicken. You’ll see them start to dissolve into the wine and turn your sauce brown. This is how we make the sauce so full of flavor!

Next, add the chicken broth and a knob of butter. Let it all simmer together, the heat softening the shallots and garlic and reducing the broth to a more concentrated flavor.

Chicken Apple Flatbread sauce

We’re not done yet! In a separate bowl, whisk together milk and cassava flour until smooth, then slowly pour it into the pan while continuously whisking. This will help thicken the sauce and give it a silky texture. Lastly, sprinkle in the capers, adding a pop of tangy flavor that will complement the richness of the other ingredients perfectly.

Chicken Apple Flatbread pan sauce

Once everything is combined, remove the pan from the heat and set it aside. What you’ve created is more than just a sauce; it’s a symphony of flavors that will bring your flatbread to life. The consistency should be like thin gravy – if it’s too thick, don’t hesitate to add more broth. Remember, cooking is about following your instincts as much as it is about following a recipe.

Build and Bake the Flatbread

It’s time to roll up our sleeves and dive into the next exciting stage. Take one of the dough balls. Place it on a well-floured surface. With a rolling pin in hand, gently roll out the dough into a rectangular shape.

Next, it’s time to prepare your pizza peel. Sprinkle it generously with brown rice flour or cornmeal. This will create a lovely, crispy base for your flatbread. Carefully lay your rolled-out dough onto the peel. Give your peel a little shake – see how the dough slides around. That’s a good sign! It means your dough won’t stick when it’s time to transfer it to the oven.

Now, here comes the creative part: adding the toppings. Spoon a few dollops of your homemade sauce onto the dough. Then, layer on the sliced chicken, apple slices, and caramelized onions. And don’t forget a few pinches of grated mozzarella cheese. Doesn’t it look amazing already?

Once your masterpiece is assembled, it’s time to bake. Pop your flatbread into the oven and watch as the heat works its magic, turning the dough into a delicious golden brown.

Uncooked Chicken Apple Flatbread

When you see the dough start to turn that perfect shade of brown, remove the flatbread from the oven and let it rest for a few minutes. This allows the flavors to meld together even more. Then, cut it into slices and serve. There you have it – a homemade flatbread pizza that’s sure to impress!

Chicken Apple Flatbread

Here’s an extra tip: if you’re using a cookie sheet instead of a pizza peel, roll out your dough on a piece of parchment paper first. Then, transfer the paper to the cookie sheet before adding your toppings. This will save you a lot of cleanup time later. Remember, cooking should be fun, not a chore!

So, are you ready to create your own flatbread masterpiece? Let’s get cooking!

Chicken Apple Flatbread

Chicken, apple, caramelized onion flatbread with balsamic glaze

Let us know how you like it!
Total Time: 3 hours
Yield: 4 flatbreads
A healthy flatbread recipe full of chicken, apples, and caramelized onions and topped with tangy balsamic glaze. Serve it as a main course or beside your favorite salad or pasta dish!

Ingredients
 

Poolish

  • 162 g all-purpose flour
  • 162 ml water
  • 3 g instant yeast
  • 3 g honey

Dough Ingredients

  • Poolish
  • 154 ml water
  • 324 g all-purpose flour
  • 9 g salt

Chicken and Pan Sauce Ingredients

  • 2 chicken breasts
  • 1 tbsp ghee
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 shallot minced
  • cup white wine
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • ½ cup milk
  • 1 tsp cassava flour
  • 1 tbsp capers

Toppings

  • 1 large red onion
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 green apple
  • ½ cup shredded mozzarella
  • 1 tbsp balsamic glaze

Instructions

Make The Poolish

  • In a mixing bowl, add all of the poolish ingredients and stir until well combined. Cover and leave at room temperature for 1 hour. Place in the refrigerator for 2-16 hours. This can be done the night before or the morning of for best results giving the poolish time to ferment.

Make the Dough

  • Take the poolish from the refrigerator and add in 154ml water, stir till combined.
  • Add and mix in approximately half of the 324g all-purpose flour and all of the salt stirring to combine. Add in the remainder of the flour and work the dough in the bowl until a shaggy dough ball forms. Pour out the dough onto a clean work surface and cover it with the bowl. Let rest for 15 minutes.
  • Put some olive oil on your hands and work the dough into a smooth dough ball. Place the dough in an oiled bowl and cover, rest for 30 minutes.
  • Place the dough ball on your clean work surface and cut it with a dough knife into 4 equal parts. Form the equal parts into dough balls and place them on a floured cookie sheet with space around each ball. Gently apply olive oil to the tops of each ball and cover the cookie sheet with plastic. Rest for 2 hours.
  • One hour before baking the flatbreads, preheat your oven to 550°F with a pizza stone or pizza steel in it. If you don't have access to one of these, preheat the oven to 400°F and bake the flatbread on a cookie sheet.

Make the Caramelized Onions

  • Cut the large red onion in half splitting the onion into 2 equal parts, dividing it through the root. Peel back the outer layer and chop the onions into half circles about ⅛ inch thick.
  • Heat 1 tbsp olive oil over medium heat and add the onions. Stir every few minutes for even cooking. The goal is to soften and caramelize, not burn. Reduce the temperature if the onion blackens at all. Set aside to use as a topping.

Cook the Chicken

  • Flatten the chicken with a meat mallet or your fist in a sealed plastic bag. Once it is even thickness, season one side with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Add 1 tbsp ghee to a stainless or carbon steel pan over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add the chicken and allow to cook for 5-7 minutes before you flip. Remove the chicken to rest once it has reached an internal temperature of 155°F on an instant-read probe thermometer. Use Stainless steel or carbon steel, or even maybe cast iron because the browned bits left in the pan called fond are going to help in making the pan sauce.

Make the Pan Sauce

  • Add the shallot and garlic to the pan you used to cook the chicken stirring and cooking for a minute until fragrant.
  • Add the wine to the pan and scrape with a wooden spatula to release all of the browned bits.
  • Add the chicken broth and butter and simmer for several minutes softening and cooking the shallots and garlic, and reducing the broth.
  • Whisk together the milk and cassava flour and add them to the pan sauce while whisking. Last, add the capers. Remove from heat and set aside to use as the sauce for the flatbread. The consistency should be thin gravy, if its too thick, add more broth.

Build and Bake the Flatbread

  • Place one of your dough balls on a well-floured surface and roll it out with a rolling pin into a rectangular shape. Sprinkle your pizza peel with brown rice flour or cornmeal. Lay the dough on the pizza peel and shake the peel making sure that the dough slides around and doesn't stick.
  • Add a few serving spoons of the sauce to the dough and top with sliced chicken, apple slices, caramelized onions, and just a few pinches of the grated mozzarella cheese.
  • Bake the flatbread in your oven for several minutes until the dough begins to brown. Remove from the oven and rest for a few minutes before cutting it and serving.
  • NOTE: If you are baking your flatbread on a cookie sheet, roll the dough out on a piece of parchment paper, then transfer that to the cookie sheet before adding your toppings. This will keep your cookie sheet clean.
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Equipment

  • 1 pizza stone or pizza steel optional
  • 1 Pizza Peel optional
  • 1 pan that is not non-stick coated – Stainless or Carbon Steel

Nutrition

Calories: 775kcal | Carbohydrates: 107g | Protein: 42g | Fat: 19g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 105mg | Sodium: 1409mg | Potassium: 711mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 294IU | Vitamin C: 5mg | Calcium: 151mg | Iron: 7mg
Course: Bread, Entree, Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine: American, Italian
Keyword: Flatbread, Healthy
chicken apple flatbread on a pizza peel

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