When it comes to wine, chicken cordon bleu is one of the most difficult dishes to pair.
It’s a hearty, filling dish with delicate flavors: the rich creaminess of the sauce and melted cheese, the savory saltiness of ham, and the delicate juiciness of chicken breast all play off each other in a way that leaves your mouth watering.
There are some wines that can stand up to these powerful flavors, but they have to be just as powerful—and just as complicated.
So, what wine goes well with Chicken Cordon Bleu?
Ultimately, you need a wine with a lot going on. The best choice is a wine with delicious fruit flavors balanced by a nice oak finish with some complex notes of smoke or spice. A good cabernet sauvignon or merlot will do it, but if you want something a little more unique, look for an Aglianico or Australian shiraz.
In this article, we’ll tell you how to choose the right wine for your chicken cordon bleu and what varieties will enhance the flavors of this rich dish.
Top 9 Wines to Serve with Chicken Cordon Bleu
Ultimately, the answer depends on how you’re making the chicken cordon bleu—this will influence what kind of wine goes well with it.
For example, if you prepare the chicken cordon bleu in a more traditional style, with bread crumbs and cheese, then try serving it with a white Bordeaux or Chablis.
If you’re making a more modern version, with asparagus and goat cheese instead of ham and Swiss, go with a Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Grigio.
If you still need help choosing, then keep reading!
1. Cabernet Sauvignon
Cabernets are a great choice for chicken dishes because they’re typically dry and fruity.
The dryness provides a nice contrast with the rich, creamy sauce you’ll likely serve with your chicken cordon bleu.
And the fruity flavors compliment the flavors of the chicken itself and any spices you might add.
If you’re serving this meal to guests, I’d recommend using a standard-sized bottle of Cabernet, like what you’d find in most liquor stores.
If you’re just making it for yourself or your family, though, you can find smaller bottles that will still provide a satisfying glass or two of wine.
I also recommend getting a bottle that’s been aged for at least three years.
This will give the wine more time to develop its flavor profile and give you better value for your money.
I usually opt for wines from California because they tend to be more affordable, but there are plenty of other regions that produce great Cabernets as well!
2. Pinot Noir
Pinot Noir is one of the best kinds of wine to pair with chicken cordon bleu.
The reason is that pinot noir is a dry, crisp red wine that pairs well with most poultry dishes.
Also, if you have a more buttery variety of chicken cordon bleu, this will work even better with the creamy texture of pinot noir.
Here are 3 tips to keep in mind:
- For your first time serving pinot noir with this meal, consider using a bottle from California or Oregon. These wines will be the most reliable for a first try and are usually fairly easy to find in local stores.
- If you’re planning to use a less popular region, like Burgundy, France, read up on what kinds of flavors these wines tend to exhibit so that you can make sure it’ll be a good match for the meal and guests.
- If you’re feeling adventurous, consider trying some different types of Pinot Noir from different regions—the flavor profiles can vary quite a bit!
Let’s be real: chicken cordon bleu is a classic.
But did you know it’s even better with Albarino?
Albarino is a type of white wine that pairs well with chicken cordon bleu because of its citrus notes.
When you’re pairing wine and food, it’s important to go for the things that complement each other, with each ingredient making the other stand out more.
Albarino is a Spanish wine, so it’s a great match if you’ve got some of those flavors in your meal already, or you could also use it to enhance a meal prepared in another style.
You can serve this with or without dessert—it goes well with ice cream, but it’s also great on its own.
Just make sure not to drink too much!
Malbec is a great wine to serve with chicken cordon bleu.
The rich, spicy qualities of this wine pair beautifully with the creamy white sauce and ham of this dish.
But don’t stop there!
You can really bring out the flavor of Malbec by pairing it with a little garlic and butter.
Make sure your chicken cordon bleu has at least a healthy dose of both garlic and butter in it, because then you’ll be able to taste the wonderful synergy between the sweet spices in your meal and the spicy notes in your glass of Malbec even more strongly!
And don’t forget—when you’re serving Malbec, make sure it isn’t too cold!
Serve it at room temperature or slightly chilled—not totally iced-down like a chardonnay would be.
Sangiovese is a great wine to serve with this dish because it’s incredibly versatile and can be paired with a lot of different food options.
Chicken cordon bleu is no exception.
The best way to serve this dish is in a warm, homey environment—and sangiovese is the perfect wine for that!
Here are some tips for making this work as a full meal:
- Bring the sangiovese to room temperature before serving.
- Remember that chicken cordon bleu is traditionally served with pasta and vegetables on the side. You’ll want to make sure you have enough for everyone.
- Serve sangiovese out of a carafe or glass decanter so your guests can pour their own glasses.
6. Petite Sirah
Petite Sirah is the perfect wine to serve with chicken cordon bleu, because it can handle the bold flavors of Swiss cheese and ham while being light enough to complement the chicken.
When serving this dish and this wine, make sure you pair the white wine version of the Petite Sirah with the chicken, and use a red wine version for the cheese and ham.
This will toe the line between making your guests wish they had an entree that was all white meat, or all cheese and ham—in other words, their favorite part of chicken cordon bleu.
In order to make this work, go ahead and put a slice of ham on top of your fresh pasta (or whatever side you are serving), and then top that with shredded Swiss cheese.
Then pour generously until everyone at your table has a glass of Petite Sirah!
7. Pinot Grigio
Chicken cordon bleu is a dish that’s known for being rich, savory, and delicious.
But let’s be honest—it’s also known for being a little heavy on the cheese.
That’s why we love Pinot Grigio so much with this meal: it’s crisp and refreshing, which makes it the perfect complement to a dish like this.
So what do we recommend?
Well, our favorite Pinot Grigio comes from Italy.
If you can’t find an Italian brand, though, don’t worry—the trick is to find something that has a smooth finish and low acidity.
As for how to make this work as a meal?
We suggest you fire up your grill (or your oven) and get some chicken breasts marinating in lemon juice and white wine.
And then—get ready for it!—you stuff them with ham and Swiss cheese! (Oh, yes.)
If you’re feeling fancy, try tossing together some arugula with cherry tomatoes and chopped basil in balsamic vinegar.
Sprinkle a dash of olive oil on top before serving.
8. Sauvignon Blanc
Sauvignon Blanc is a white wine that complements chicken cordon bleu.
The chicken and ham in chicken cordon bleu have fatty, salty flavors that are nicely paired with a slightly acidic wine.
Sauvignon Blanc has a relatively low level of acidity compared to other wines.
It also has herbal and citrus elements that pair nicely with the chicken and ham.
It’s also an affordable option.
If you’re planning a dinner party, you don’t want to spend all your money on wine—you want to be able to afford a nice dinner!
Sauvignon Blanc is usually inexpensive enough that it won’t break the bank, yet still good enough that your guests will love it.
Monastrell is a type of wine made from the Monastrell grape, which is sometimes called Mourvedre or Mataro.
It is a very deep red wine, and it can be rather complex. This makes it ideal for pairing with food because it has enough complexity to stand up to other flavors.
This wine goes particularly well with chicken cordon bleu, as the chicken adds even more complexity to the dish.
To make this meal even better, try marinating the chicken in sherry for at least eight hours before cooking it.
The sherry will add an extra layer of flavor to the meat, and will complement the big flavor of the wine. Remember not to cook the chicken in the sherry!
This is a perfect meal for a special occasion, so try serving it in front of your fireplace. If you do not have a fireplace, you could use some candles instead.
How to Choose What Wine to Serve with Chicken Cordon Bleu
When it comes to chicken cordon bleu, there are a few things you’ll want to keep in mind when choosing what wine to serve with it.
First and foremost, you’ll want to consider the cheese.
Chicken cordon bleu is traditionally made with swiss cheese, which has a mild flavor but a salty taste (which can get overwhelming if not balanced out by the right wine).
You’ll also want to consider if your chicken is baked or fried—baked chicken is typically less greasy and thus will go better with a more acidic white wine, whereas fried chicken will need something heavier and richer to pair with its oilier taste.
Finally, consider how much sauce is on your dish.
If you’re going for an extra-saucy recipe, you may want something that’s a little drier on the palette.
Top 9 Wines to Serve with Chicken Cordon Bleu
- Cabernet Sauvignon
- Pinot Noir
- Petite Sirah
- Pinot Grigio
- Sauvignon Blanc
- Pick your favorite wine from this list to serve with your meal.
- Follow the instructions.
- Enjoy your wine along with your delicious meal!