Make the best chicken hearts recipe- my pan fried chicken hearts! We’re cooking chicken hearts to be tender and succulent, with flavorful onions and garlic. Sauteed chicken hearts are perfect for appetizers or a healthy main dish. Learn where to buy raw chicken hearts, the nutrition benefits of organ meats, and more! You’ll love this easy offal recipe that’s naturally low carb, keto, Paleo, and gluten free.
What do chicken hearts taste like? Chicken hearts are a muscle meat that’s more similar in flavor to chicken thighs than to strong-tasting organ meat like chicken liver.
If you tend to be put off by the strong taste of organ meats, don’t be afraid to give chicken hearts a chance. I think you’ll find they’re quite mild compared to other chicken innards you may have tried.
Chicken hearts aren’t the most common protein food in the U.S. Sometimes you can find grilled chicken hearts skewers at Brazilian steakhouses, but that’s about it.
It’s too bad they aren’t easy to find, since they’re so delicious and nutritionally dense. Eating organ meats may also help reduce food waste. I feel like they could become quite popular if they were readily available in stores.
I’m keeping this recipe simple by sautéing chicken hearts in oil with garlic and onions. However, don’t be afraid to try cooking chicken hearts in ghee or lard with different herbs and spices. Mushrooms and leeks would be other wonderful additions to this dish.
- 💕 Where to buy chicken hearts near me?
- ⭐ Chicken Hearts Nutrition
- 🥘 Chicken Hearts Ingredients
- ❓ How to clean chicken hearts?
- 🔪 How to Cook Chicken Hearts
- 🤔 When are chicken hearts done?
- 💡 How long to boil chicken hearts?
- 🌡️ Chicken Hearts Storage
- 🥗 How to Serve Chicken Hearts
- 📋 Chicken Hearts Calories
- 💭 Expert Tips from a Dietitian
- 👩🏻🍳 Recipes with Chicken Hearts
- The Disclaimer…
- 📖 Recipe
💕 Where to buy chicken hearts near me?
You can sometimes find packages of chicken hearts and gizzards in East Asian stores and Hispanic markets. Another place to find chicken hearts for sale are local farms and farmer’s markets. I called the meat department at my local Whole Foods and ordered through them.
If you have no luck with local grocery stores, you can also purchase chicken hearts online. US Wellness Meats occasionally has pastured chicken hearts available, which you can purchase here.
⭐ Chicken Hearts Nutrition
Why eat chicken hearts? What are the benefits of chicken hearts? Here are the nutrition facts for chicken hearts (per Cronometer for 4 ounces/113 grams):
- Calories: 174
- Carbs: 1 gram
- Fiber: 0 grams
- Fat: 11 grams
- Saturated fat: 3 grams
- Cholesterol: 154 mg
- Protein: 18 grams
- Thiamin: 12% DV
- Riboflavin: 49% DV
- Niacin: 28% DV
- Pantothenic Acid (Vitamin B5): 29% DV
- Vitamin B6: 20% DV
- Vitamin B12: 138% DV
- Folate: 20% DV
- Vitamin A: 1% DV
- Vitamin C: 6% DV
- Calcium: 1% DV
- Iron: 38% DV
- Magnesium: 4% DV
- Phosphorus: 20% DV
- Potassium: 6% DV
- Selenium: 7% DV
- Zinc: 50% DV
Chicken hearts are an excellent source of many B vitamins, plus iron, zinc, and phosphorus. In addition, chicken hearts are high in protein and taurine. Chicken hearts, like many organ meats, are what we call a nutrient-dense food.
Chicken hearts are kosher if prepared from kosher animals. Some other benefits of eating chicken hearts are that they’re keto friendly, low carb, Paleo, and gluten free.
Chicken hearts are high in cholesterol, but so are other healthy foods including eggs and shrimp. If you want to lower your blood cholesterol, lowering your intake of saturated fat is more important than lowering dietary cholesterol.
🥘 Chicken Hearts Ingredients
To make this chicken hearts recipe, you only need a few simple ingredients:
- Fresh chicken hearts (or frozen chicken hearts that have been thawed)
- Olive oil (canola oil or another cooking oil may be used)
- Garlic cloves
- Thinly sliced onions
- Salt and black pepper
Quantities of all ingredients are in the recipe card at the bottom of the post!
To thaw frozen chicken hearts, leave them in the fridge for 24-48 hours.
The kitchen equipment needed are a good knife, a small enameled cast iron Dutch oven, and a meat thermometer. I won this heart-shaped Dutch oven in a contest, and I’m convinced it’s one of the cutest things ever. It’s the perfect size for cooking chicken hearts!
❓ How to clean chicken hearts?
Do chicken hearts need to be cleaned? No, the USDA does not recommend washing raw poultry before cooking (source). Rinsing these foods can actually cause the bacteria to spread around the kitchen.
🔪 How to Cook Chicken Hearts
Cut the peeled onion in half, and then cut it into thin half-moons. Mince the garlic cloves.
Put the onions, garlic, and oil in a Dutch oven and cook for 5-10 minutes on the stove over medium-high heat. Stir occasionally.
Turn the heat on the stovetop down to medium. Add the raw chicken hearts, salt and pepper. Cook for 5-8 minutes more, stirring frequently.
In the photos, I’ve garnished the dish with a little parsley, but this is optional.
🤔 When are chicken hearts done?
Chicken hearts, like other parts of the chicken, should reach a minimum safe internal temp of 165F (74C). I recommend using a meat thermometer to check for doneness. It’s also important not to overcook them, as they’ll get tough and rubbery.
💡 How long to boil chicken hearts?
Boil chicken hearts in water for 30 minutes, or longer if desired. Remember to make sure the chicken hearts reach a safe temp of 165F (74C). The color inside the chicken hearts is not a good indicator of whether they’re fully cooked.
🌡️ Chicken Hearts Storage
Cooked chicken hearts can be kept in a covered container in the fridge for up to 3-4 days. Both raw and cooked chicken hearts can be frozen. I recommend storing them in a vacuum sealed freezer bag for long-term freezer storage.
🥗 How to Serve Chicken Hearts
Chicken hearts make a nutritious snack by themselves, or a tasty main course. To make it a meal, try these side dishes for chicken hearts:
📋 Chicken Hearts Calories
How many calories in chicken hearts? Raw chicken hearts have 174 calories per 4 ounces (113 grams). This chicken heart recipe has 280 calories, 10.4 grams net carbs, and 18.5 grams protein per serving.
💭 Expert Tips from a Dietitian
This is a level 2 recipe (transition or weight maintenance). Are chicken hearts good for you? Do chicken hearts have iron? Packed with highly bioavailable iron and zinc, and rich in B-complex vitamins, chicken hearts are definitely nutritious.
I often see chicken hearts described as “lean protein,” but that’s not quite true. Chicken hearts are actually much higher in fat than other parts of the chicken, such as skinless chicken breast.
The higher fat content doesn’t mean chicken hearts are bad. It does mean that chicken hearts are higher in calories by weight than leaner options. You get a nice moderate calorie entrée if you choose chicken hearts.
I see two main factors that might prevent you from trying chicken hearts. The first is that they are not readily available in US grocery stores. You may have to do some hunting around to find them (particularly if you want them at a good price).
The second issue is that there may be some cultural squeamishness around eating hearts. If this is the case, I hope you’ll push through and give them a try anyway. You may be surprised and find out you like them!
I think of meals like this as a special delicacy to be savored. Every chicken has only one tiny heart. A meal like this reminds me to be thankful for the many animals who have helped to nourish me and my family.
To make deep fried chicken hearts, batter the chicken hearts and heat the fryer oil to 350F (177C). Deep fry chicken hearts for 3-4 minutes, until they reach a safe internal temp of 165F (74C).
Air fry chicken hearts in an air fryer preheated to 400F (200C) for 15-20 minutes. Check on the chicken hearts and stir them about every 5 minutes. The chicken hearts are done when they reach a safe temperature of 165F (74C).
I recently paid $3.99 per pound for chicken hearts at my local Whole Foods. Expect to spend more if you purchase chicken hearts online. For example, here they’re $16.09 per pound at the time of writing.
Pressure cook chicken hearts on high in the Instant Pot for 20 minutes, then let the pressure naturally release for 10 minutes. You may have to extend the cooking time if you’re cooking chicken gizzards and hearts together. Instant Pot chicken hearts should be cooked in broth (between min and max fill lines).
You can make roasted chicken hearts in an oven by cooking them for 20-25 minutes at 400F (200C). Use a meat thermometer to ensure they’ve reached 165F (74C), and add cooking time as needed.
Chicken hearts are healthy for dogs if used as an occasional treat, not the whole diet. Cook the chicken hearts and let them cool before serving to your canine friend.
👩🏻🍳 Recipes with Chicken Hearts
Looking for other ways to use chicken hearts? Make chicken hearts curry, or chop them finely and use in place of some of the ground beef in one of these recipes:
All recipes on this website may or may not be appropriate for you, depending on your medical needs and personal preferences. Consult with a registered dietitian or your physician if you need help determining the dietary pattern that may be best for you.
The nutrition information is an estimate provided as a courtesy. It will differ depending on the specific brands and ingredients that you use. Calorie information on food labels may be wildly inaccurate, so please don't sweat the numbers too much.
For more information on how the three recipe levels may help with a weight management goal, refer to my overnight oats no sugar post. Let's get cooking!
Chicken Hearts (Chicken Heart Recipe)
- 8 ounces chicken hearts 227 grams
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 8 ounces onion 227 grams (about ½-1 onion)
- 2 cloves garlic
- salt and pepper, to taste
- Cut the peeled onion in half, and then cut it into thin half-moons. Mince the garlic cloves.
- Put the onions, garlic, and oil in a small ceramic-coated cast iron Dutch oven and cook for 5-10 minutes on the stove over medium-high heat. Stir occasionally.
- Turn the heat on the stovetop down to medium. Add the chicken hearts, salt and pepper. Cook for 5-8 minutes more, stirring frequently.
- Chicken hearts should reach a minimum safe internal temp of 165°F (74°C). I recommend using a meat thermometer to check for doneness. Add additional cooking time if needed, and enjoy!