Mississippi Chicken

Mississippi chicken, a dish renowned for its rich flavors and comforting qualities, has gained immense popularity across the United States. Initially emerging from the heart of Southern cuisine, this dish combines simple ingredients to create a taste that resonates with homeliness and tradition. Characterized by its tender, slow-cooked chicken that’s generously seasoned with spicy pepperoncini and a blend of savory spices, Mississippi Chicken stands out as a quintessential example of comfort food. Its simplicity in preparation and depth of flavor have contributed to its widespread acclaim.

Historical Background

Tracing its roots, the recipe for Mississippi chicken originated in the Southern United States, a region famous for its soulful and hearty cooking styles. Over time, this dish has evolved, incorporating various local ingredients and cooking methods, reflecting the diverse culinary landscape of the area. This evolution signifies not only the adaptability of the recipe but also the rich culinary heritage of the South. Today, Mississippi Chicken is more than just a regional specialty; it’s a symbol of Southern hospitality and home cooking.

Mississippi Chicken, primarily known for its tender, slow-cooked chicken and flavorful sauce, is a staple in Southern cooking. The dish’s unique flavor comes from a combination of pepperoncini peppers, ranch dressing mix, and au jus gravy mix, creating a mouthwatering experience. For those who enjoy exploring the history of iconic dishes, Mississippi Chicken is a perfect example of culinary evolution and regional influence.

Cultural Significance

Mississippi Chicken holds a special place in Southern cuisine, often featured in family gatherings and community celebrations. Its presence extends beyond the dining tables of the South, influencing modern American cooking with its unique flavor profile. This dish exemplifies the fusion of simplicity and flavor, a hallmark of Southern culinary traditions. As it continues to be embraced by various cultures and regions, Mississippi Chicken not only enriches the American culinary scene but also serves as a bridge connecting people through the universal language of food.

Recipe and Preparation

Ingredients and Variations

Mississippi Chicken, celebrated for its versatility, starts with a standard set of ingredients. At its core, the dish requires boneless chicken breasts or thighs, pepperoncini peppers, ranch dressing mix, au jus gravy mix, and butter. These ingredients combine to create a rich, flavorful sauce that tenderizes the chicken during cooking. Furthermore, the recipe invites creativity through variations. For a healthier twist, cooks often substitute butter with olive oil or use low-sodium mixes. Some adventurous chefs add garlic or onion for extra depth, while others might include cream cheese for a richer sauce. This adaptability makes Mississippi Chicken a favorite among home cooks who enjoy personalizing their meals.

Step-by-Step Cooking Guide 

Begin by placing the chicken pieces in a slow cooker. Next, scatter the pepperoncini peppers around the chicken. Evenly sprinkle the ranch dressing and au jus gravy mixes over the top. Then, slice the butter into thin pieces and lay them across the chicken. Cover and cook on low heat for about 6-8 hours or on high for 4 hours, ensuring the chicken becomes tender and infused with flavors. For an enhanced experience, halfway through the cooking, baste the chicken with the juices collected at the bottom of the cooker. Once cooked, the chicken should be moist and easily shredded with a fork. This slow cooking method allows the flavors to meld beautifully, resulting in a dish that’s both simple to prepare and delicious to eat.


4-6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts 🍗
1 packet ranch dressing mix 🌿
1 packet au jus gravy mix 🍛
6-8 pepperoncini peppers 🌶️
1/2 cup unsalted butter 🧈
Salt and pepper to taste 🧂


Season Chicken: Season the chicken breasts with salt and pepper. Place them in your slow cooker. 🍗🧂

Add Mixes: Sprinkle the ranch dressing mix and au jus gravy mix over the chicken. 🌿🍛

Add Peppers and Butter: Place the pepperoncini peppers around the chicken and add the butter on top. 🌶️🧈

Cook: Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high for 3-4 hours. The chicken should be tender and easily shredded. 🕒

Serve: Serve the Mississippi Chicken with its gravy, perfect with mashed potatoes, rice, or a simple salad. 🍽️

Preparing Mississippi Chicken is a journey of flavors. Start by placing the chicken in a slow cooker, adding the pepperoncini peppers, ranch dressing mix, and au jus gravy mix. The slow cooking process, similar to making tender and flavorful pot roasts, allows the chicken to absorb the spices and become incredibly tender. After several hours, the chicken is ready to be served, ideally with a side that complements its rich flavor profile.

Serving Suggestions

Mississippi Chicken pairs wonderfully with a variety of side dishes. Classic accompaniments include mashed potatoes, steamed vegetables, or a crisp green salad, balancing the richness of the chicken. For a heartier meal, serve it over a bed of cooked pasta or rice. When presenting, spoon the flavorful juices over the chicken for added moisture and garnish with fresh herbs for a pop of color. This dish also works well as a filling for sandwiches or wraps, offering a versatile option for leftovers. Remember, the key to a great presentation lies in the contrast of colors and textures, making the meal not only delicious but also visually appealing.

Mississippi Chicken pairs beautifully with a variety of sides. A classic choice is garlic mashed potatoes, which offer a creamy and smooth texture that balances the dish’s robust flavors. Alternatively, a light salad or steamed vegetables can provide a refreshing contrast to the hearty chicken.

Mississippi chicken in oven

Cooking Mississippi Chicken in the oven is a great alternative to using a slow cooker. Here’s a simple recipe to make this delicious dish in your oven:


  • 4-6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 packet of ranch dressing mix
  • 1 packet of au jus gravy mix
  • 6-8 pepperoncini peppers
  • 1/2 cup of pepperoncini juice (from the jar)
  • 1/2 cup of chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) of unsalted butter
  • Optional: garlic cloves, onion slices


  1. Preheat Oven: Begin by preheating your oven to 375°F (190°C).
  2. Prepare Chicken: Arrange the chicken breasts in a single layer in a large baking dish.
  3. Add Seasonings: Sprinkle the ranch dressing mix and the au jus gravy mix evenly over the chicken. If you’re using garlic or onions, add them now.
  4. Add Peppers and Liquids: Place the pepperoncini peppers around the chicken. Pour the pepperoncini juice and chicken broth over the top.
  5. Add Butter: Slice the butter into thin pieces and place them evenly on top of the chicken.
  6. Bake: Cover the baking dish with aluminum foil and bake in the preheated oven for about 45 minutes.
  7. Check and Continue Baking: Remove the foil and bake for an additional 15-20 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through and the top is starting to brown.
  8. Rest and Serve: Let the chicken rest for a few minutes after taking it out of the oven. You can shred the chicken in the dish with two forks, mixing it with the juices, or serve the breasts whole.

Serving Suggestions:

Serve your Mississippi Chicken with sides like mashed potatoes, steamed vegetables, or over rice to soak up the delicious sauce. A side salad or some crusty bread also pairs well with this dish.

This oven-baked version of Mississippi Chicken is just as flavorful as the slow-cooked variety, with a slightly quicker cooking time. Enjoy the tender, juicy chicken with its unique blend of spicy and tangy flavors!

Mississipi Chicken

Nutritional Information and Dietary Considerations

Health and Nutrition

Mississippi Chicken, while indulgent, can be adapted to fit various dietary needs without sacrificing its distinctive flavor. Nutritionally, the standard recipe is rich in protein, thanks to the chicken, and provides a moderate amount of fat from the butter and dressing mixes. However, the calorie count can be high, primarily due to these same ingredients.

For those following a gluten-free diet, the recipe can be easily modified. You can substitute the traditional ranch and au jus mixes with gluten-free alternatives, readily available in most grocery stores. Additionally, ensuring that the pepperoncini peppers and any added seasonings are gluten-free is crucial for maintaining a safe eating experience.

For individuals on a low-carb diet, Mississippi Chicken naturally fits the bill, as it primarily consists of protein. To further reduce carbs, one can opt for a homemade ranch seasoning mix, eliminating hidden sugars found in pre-packaged mixes. When serving, replacing traditional sides like mashed potatoes with low-carb alternatives such as cauliflower mash or a leafy green salad complements the dish while keeping the meal within low-carb guidelines.

In summary, Mississippi Chicken’s nutritional profile is flexible and can be adjusted to meet various dietary requirements, making it a versatile dish for health-conscious individuals.


Q: What makes Mississippi Chicken unique compared to other chicken dishes?

A: Mississippi Chicken stands out due to its distinctive combination of pepperoncini peppers and a mix of ranch and au jus, which creates a uniquely tangy and savory flavor profile. This dish, slow-cooked to perfection, offers a melt-in-your-mouth tenderness that sets it apart from other chicken recipes.

Q: Can I make Mississippi Chicken in an Instant Pot or pressure cooker?

A: Absolutely! To adapt the recipe for an Instant Pot, simply place all the ingredients in the pot and cook on high pressure for about 15 minutes. This method is perfect for those who want to enjoy the dish but are short on time.

Q: Is Mississippi Chicken spicy?

A: The spice level of Mississippi Chicken largely depends on the amount and type of pepperoncini peppers used. The dish typically has a mild to moderate spice level, but you can easily adjust it to suit your taste by altering the quantity of peppers.

Q: What are some common side dishes to serve with Mississippi Chicken?

A: Mississippi Chicken pairs well with a variety of sides. Popular choices include mashed potatoes, steamed vegetables, or a simple salad. For a low-carb option, consider serving it over cauliflower rice or alongside roasted vegetables.

Q: How can I store and reheat leftovers?

A: Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to three days. To reheat, simply warm the chicken in a saucepan over medium heat or in the microwave, ensuring it’s heated through before serving.

Q: Are there any tips for making the best Mississippi Chicken?

A: For the best results, use high-quality chicken and let it cook slowly and gently. This method allows the flavors to infuse deeply into the meat. Also, don’t be afraid to experiment with additional seasonings or ingredients to tailor the dish to your liking.

Q: What do you eat with pulled chicken?

A: Pulled chicken is a versatile dish that pairs well with a variety of sides. Here are some popular options to enjoy with pulled chicken:
  1. Coleslaw: A classic pairing, coleslaw adds a crunchy and creamy texture that complements the softness of the pulled chicken.
  2. Cornbread: Sweet or savory, cornbread is a comforting side that goes well with the rich flavors of pulled chicken.
  3. Baked Beans: A staple at barbecues, baked beans offer a sweet and savory flavor that pairs nicely with pulled chicken.
  4. Macaroni and Cheese: Creamy and rich, mac and cheese is a favorite side that adds a comforting element to the meal.
  5. Potato Salad: Whether it’s a classic, mustard, or mayo-based version, potato salad is a hearty side that balances the flavors of pulled chicken.
  6. Green Salad: A fresh green salad with a light dressing can provide a refreshing contrast to the richness of the chicken.
  7. Roasted Vegetables: Roasted veggies like carrots, Brussels sprouts, or asparagus add a healthy and flavorful touch to your meal.
  8. Corn on the Cob: Sweet corn, especially when grilled or roasted, is a delicious and easy side that complements the smoky flavors of pulled chicken.
  9. Garlic Bread: For those who love a bit of crunch, garlic bread is a great side to soak up any extra sauce.
  10. Sweet Potato Fries: Their sweet flavor and crispy texture make sweet potato fries a delightful side for pulled chicken.

These sides can be mixed and matched based on your preferences and the specific flavor profile of your pulled chicken dish.

Mississipi Chicken


In conclusion, Mississippi Chicken captivates with its unique blend of tangy, spicy, and savory flavors, making it a standout dish in Southern cuisine. Its ease of preparation and versatility in serving options further enhance its appeal, offering a delightful experience for both cooking enthusiasts and busy home cooks. This dish not only promises a delicious meal but also an opportunity to explore the rich culinary traditions of the South. Therefore, I encourage you to try this recipe, experiment with your personal touches, and share the warmth and comfort of Mississippi Chicken with your loved ones.

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