Ultimately, it was a comfortable and well deserved victory for the Blues that didn't look likely after a frustrating first half.
A trademark Frank Lampard volley late on put the game out of Bolton's sight to mark a return to winning ways and our first Barclays Premier League victory in over a month.
After the midweek Champions League defeat it was a reaction and performance by the players that will have undoubtedly pleased the manager.
Frank Lampard's 12th goal of the season ensured all three points for the Blues and capped a fantastic display by the midfielder, much to the delight of the home supporters.
Andre Villas-Boas made three changes to the side which lost 3-1 at Napoli in midweek. Ashley Cole came in for the injured Jose Bosingwa at left-back, while Lampard and Michael Essien replaced Florent Malouda and Raul Meireles respectively. In the absence of captain John Terry, who is expected to be out for 4-6 weeks, Lampard skippered the side.
An expertly timed tackle by Lampard on Nigel Reo-Coker in the fourth minute released Daniel Sturridge for the first real chance of the game. The Blues attacker advanced from just inside the Bolton half to the edge of the penalty area, but as a gap opened up for him he could only fire his effort straight at Adam Bogdan.
Shortly after it was a case of roles reversed, as Sturridge turned supplier, but with Lampard through on goal the angle was narrowed preventing him from getting a shot away.
It was a determined start by the Blues as we looked to seize an early advantage, but with Bolton looking to hit us on the break both David Luiz and Gary Cahill, playing against his former club, needed to be alert.
For all our possession in the opening 20 minutes, however, Bogdan was yet to be severely tested, although it took a timely interception from David Wheater to cut out a dangerous looking Mata cross with both Drogba and Sturridge looming.
After a succession of Blues corners had failed to cause the visitors any problems, a wonderful flighted cross by Lampard was met by Ivanovic, but the defender could only manage to direct his header wide.
Sturridge was looking the most likely to break the deadlock and he was unlucky to see his curling effort well saved as it was heading into the far corner.
With the Blues breaking quickly following a Bolton corner, the ball was worked inside to Sturridge, but with Lampard in space to his right, he opted to tee up Cole, whose left-footed strike fizzed past Bogdan's post.
An unchanged Chelsea side came out for the second half and within two minutes of the restart we were ahead.
After bringing the ball out of defence, David Luiz exchanged passes with Ramires, and as the Brazilian jinked into the box he sent a delightful curling effort into the far corner beyond the outstretched Bogdan.
It was a fantastic start to the second half, and just what Villas-Boas will have wanted, although a minute later Bolton were almost level when Reo-Coker fired inches wide from the edge of the penalty area.
As the game opened up, we looked to double our advantage, and David Luiz almost scored his second of the game when he met Juan Mata's corner, only for his header to be cleared off the line by Miyaichi.
Two minutes later and it was Drogba's turn to go close, as he latched on to Mata's pass the Ivorian's strike clipped the top of the bar with Bogdan well beaten.
Drogba, though, didn't have to wait long to get his name on the scoresheet, as he powered a header past Bogdan from Lampard's corner in the 60th minute to make it 2-0 and give us some much needed breathing space.
With the Blues sensing the game was ours for the taking, a powerful Essien drive from long-range a minute later almost put the game beyond Bolton's reach, while Lampard also went close.
With Drogba nursing a knock, Fernando Torres was introduced to the action with fifteen minutes remaining, and three minutes later the game was put to bed. Mata'a pinpoint cross from wide on the right landed at the feet of Lampard who was lurking at the back post, and the midfielder smashed his volley home to the delight of the home crowd.
Torres fired over from a tight angle as we chased a fourth goal in the closing stages, but securing three points was all that mattered today, and we head into next week's match away at West Bromwich Albion in good heart.
Chelsea (4-3-3): Cech; Ivanovic, Cahill, David Luiz, Cole; Ramires (Mikel 88), Essien, Lampard (c); Sturridge (Kalou 79), Drogba (Torres 76), Mata.
Unused substitutes: Turnbull, Bertrand, Malouda, Meireles
Scorers: David Luiz 47, Drogba 60, Lampard 78
Bolton (4-2-3-1): Bogdan; Steinsson, Wheater, Ream, Ricketts; Reo-Coker (c), Muamba; Tuncay (Eagles 74), Pratley, Miyaichi; Ngog (Sordell 65)
Unused substitutes: Jaaskelainen, Boyata, Knight, Robinson, Klasnic
Booked: Pratley 42
Referee: Michael Oliver