Chicken loaf with some thin slices cut on a slate plate

Gourmet Chicken Loaf

This gourmet chicken loaf is perfectly spiced and slow cooked to lock in all the delicious flavors.  The loaf is encased in chicken skin to capture even more moisture and enhance the taste of the loaf.  It can be cut in thin slices to make sandwiches or to enjoy as an entree or an appetizer.

Gourmet chicken loaf is an old fashioned meat loaf that can be enjoyed hot or cold.  When served hot, try it with some piping hot gravy (see my simple recipe in the notes section).  When served cold, it can be cut into extremely thin slices and served up on a sandwich or as part of a fancy charcuterie selection.

The green herbs infused throughout the loaf consist primarily of scallions and thyme.  These complement the chicken and you can play with the herbs to obtain a flavor that suits you.  Instead of scallions and thyme, try substituting Italian parsley, chives, tarragon or shiso leaves to get the flavor that works best for you.

The secret to this delicious loaf is in the cooking method.  Rather than baking this loaf like a meatloaf, Gourmet Chicken Loaf is prepared in a terrine dish and immersed in a water bath.  Although this meatloaf is not really a terrine, the cooking method results in a super smooth loaf without the grainy or rough texture of a typical baked meatloaf.

It’s important to tightly wrap your loaf with the juices sealed in to ensure they are completely incorporated back into the loaf.  The recipe calls for at least 18 hours for the loaf to rest in the refrigerator, but I prefer letting it sit for at least a day, and even better, for two days if you can wait. The longer it sits, the smoother the texture will be when you slice it.

This gourmet chicken loaf can me enjoyed as the star of your charcuterie board, served with toast points, whole grain mustard and sour pickles.  It’s also amazing when reheated and served with gravy and mashed potatoes – just like your favorite meatloaf.  Wait until serving to slice it to keep those lovely flavors sealed in as long as possible.

Gourmet Chicken Loaf

Gourmet chicken loaf reminds me a bit of the chicken roll I used to buy at the deli when I was a child.  It’s cooked terrine style in a hot bath which helps blend the flavors and keeps the chicken soft and juicy.  The flavor of the chicken breast is enhanced with bullion, chicken fat (from the skin) and salt to tenderize the loaf.  As with most terrines, the trick is to wrap up the loaf tightly with the juices to incorporate them back into the loaf, then refrigerate for at least a day – two is even better- to let the juices completely soak into the loaf.

20 minutes + 18 hours to cool 2 hours Makes 16 slices
PREP 20 minutes + 18 hours to cool
COOKING 2 hours
YIELD Makes 16 slices
Chicken loaf with some thin slices cut on a slate plate


  • 3 medium chicken breasts (2 lbs)
  • 1 TBSP chicken bouillon granules
  • 1/2 onion
  • 6 chopped scallions
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 egg
  • 2 TBSP fresh Thyme
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 lb chicken skin

Ingredients for chicken loaf on a board


  • Preheat the oven to 170 degs C/340 degs F.
  • Dice the chicken into 1 inch squares.

Chicken breast diced into one inch cubes in a food processor.

  • Chop up the onions and garlic.
  • Chop all the ingredients except the chicken skin in a food processor until it has a coarse consistency.

Chicken loaf mixture chopped coarsely

  • Stretch the chicken skin across the bottoms and sides of a terrine pan.  Make sure that some of the skin is overlapping.

Chicken chin stretched across a terrine pan

  • Fill the terrine pan with the ground chicken mixture.

Chicken loaf mixture in the terrine pan on to- of the skin

  • Stretch the chicken skin across the top of the loaf.

Chicken loaf in the terrine with the skin encircling it.

  • Cover the terrine pan with aluminum foil.  Place in a deep baking pan and fill with boiling water so it comes up to the halfway point on the terrine pan.

Two terrines in a baking pan in a boiling water bath. The terrines are covered with foil..

  • Cover the baking pan and put in the oven.  Bake the loaf for 1 1/2 – 2 hours.  Use a meat thermometer to check that the loaf reaches an internal temperature of 180 degs F.  Remove from the oven.
  • Allow the terrine pan to sit for 30 minutes.
  • Lay down some plastic wrap and turn the terrine pan upside down to remove the loaf.  Wrap snugly in the plastic capturing as much of the juice as possible.

Chicken loaf wrapped in plastic and placed back in the terrine pan, now ready to refrigerate

  • Put the loaf back in the terrine pan and refrigerate for at least 18 hours.
  • Slice and serve the loaf.

Chicken loaf slices with Mayo on the side


  • Try this optional chicken gravy recipe to complement this tasty chicken loaf:
    • 2 cups chicken consommé
    • 1-2 TBSPS drippings from the chicken loaf
    • 2 TBSP butter
    • 2 TBSP flour
    • Salt and pepper to taste
    • Heat the butter and flour in a saucepan over medium high heat until they combine and begin to bubble.  Stir for two to three minutes until the mixture thickens into a bubbling paste.  Gradually add the chicken consommé and the gravy stirring continuously to thicken.  Remove from the heat.  Add salt and pepper to taste.
  • Refrigerate leftovers without slicing and slice before serving to keep fresh.


Chicken Loaf Gravy (Optional):


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