Chicken Parmesan Recipe

Chicken Parmesan is one of those dishes that you might think of as relegated solely to the world of restaurant dining, what with the clearly complex, involved process that must go into making such a good-looking and great-tasting entree. However, you might want to skip the restaurant meal and make it yourself. Chicken Parmesan is actually something you can more than handle making yourself in the comfort of your very own kitchen. "This recipe really isn't hard but the end result is impressive," says chef and food writer Maren Epstein of Eating Works. "I like to serve chicken parm at parties. It's always well received and seems impressive even though it's easy to make."

In fact, it's quite a far cry from a difficult meal. Epstein calls the dish "a good weeknight home-cooked meal since you can do it in one pot." 

And for the record, chicken Parmesan isn't a true Italian dish per se, but rather a truly Italian-American dish that became popular here in the wake of the major emigration from Italy in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, according to Paesana. And it's not named for the Italian city of Parma, either, but rather all for the cheese that's stacked into every bit of this dish. Take a few bites, and you won't be worrying about etymology, though. You'll simply be enjoying a wonderful meal.

Gather your ingredients for chicken Parmesan

Not surprisingly, the star ingredient here, at least in terms of flavor, is none other than Parmesan cheese. Therefore the fresher and more fragrant the Parmesan, the better the finished dish will be. You can use pre-grated cheese or, better yet, grate it fresh yourself. Definitely be sure that you don't use a dried Parmesan from a can, as that just won't yield the taste you deserve.

All in all, the ingredients you will need to make chicken Parmesan is 2 chicken breasts, 1 cup of Italian bread crumbs, 2 cups of Parmesan cheese, grated and divided, ½ a cup of all-purpose flour, 1 tablespoon of Italian seasoning, 3 eggs, a 28-ounce jar of tomato sauce, and 8 ounces of mozzarella cheese. Try to get the best Parmesan that you can afford, perhaps like authentic Parmesan, as that will definitely be the primary carrier of the dish's flavor.

Pre-heat and prep the chicken

First things first: preheat the oven to that trusty 350 degree Fahrenheit heat, the temperature of so many different recipes.

Now, using a sharp boning knife, butterfly both chicken breasts (a trick that's also great for cooking surprisingly good hot dogs, by the way). To do so, slice each piece in half horizontally, leaving a small part attached at the very end, and then fold them open. Next cover the breasts with plastic wrap and, using a meat tenderizer or a mallet, flatten the chicken pieces until they are each no more than 1 inch thick. Don't worry if the meat separates a bit, as you can reform it loosely into a more uniform shape. And you can always trust that the cheese will help to bring everything together in the end, anyway.

Prepare breading and coat the chicken Parmesan

Combine the bread crumbs and one cup of the grated Parmesan cheese on a plate. Place the flour on a second plate. Then, whisk the eggs and place them into a bowl, stirring in 2 tablespoons of flour to make a slurry.

Now dredge a piece of chicken breast in the flour, then dip it in the egg, making sure to thoroughly coat the entire piece of chicken in the egg mixture. Finally, dredge the chicken in the bread crumbs, coating both sides well. Place the fully coated pieces on a foiled-lined, greased baking sheet. Repeat the process until all of the pieces of chicken have been coated in this manner.

Bake the breaded chicken Parmesan

Lay the breaded chicken pieces out on the foil-lined, greased baking sheet large so they are not touching. Place the chicken into the oven on the top rack and allow it to cook until the breadcrumbs are golden brown on the exposed side, which should take about 10 minutes. Then flip the breasts over and cook the other side until the breading browns, another 10 minutes.

During this initial bake, "an easy mistake to avoid is burning the chicken," says Epstein. "Keep an eye on the bread crumbs. The second they turn golden brown all over, take [the chicken] out of the oven." After all, little else would completely change the taste of your dish (for the worse, we're sorry to report) than some burned breadcrumbs.

Cover chicken Parmesan in sauce and cheese and bake again

Place the chicken into a deep baking dish — a cast-iron skillet or Dutch oven works great here — with a layer of the sauce on the bottom. Then, top the meat generously with the rest of the sauce and the mozzarella cheese. Now garnish generously with the remaining one cup of Parmesan atop that.

Place the baking dish back into the oven and cook until the cheese melts and the sauce bubbles. Remove the pan from the oven and serve. Garnish with parsley and enjoy.

As for pairing ideas, Epstein recommends some classic Italian dishes that will play well with this meaty, saucy entree. "I like serving chicken parm with an eggplant dish or some pasta like penne a la vodka," she says. A crisp green salad might not hurt either, offsetting the richness of your entree dish.

Chicken Parmesan Recipe
5 from 40 ratings
Chicken Parmesan is actually something you can easily make yourself in the comfort of your very own kitchen. Here's your ticket to cheese and chicken glory.
Prep Time
15
minutes
Cook Time
45
minutes
Servings
4
servings
chicken parmesan
Total time: 60 minutes
Ingredients
  • 2 chicken breasts
  • 1 cup Italian bread crumbs
  • 2 cups Parmesan cheese, grated and divided
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 28 ounce jar tomato sauce
  • 8 ounces mozzarella cheese
Optional Ingredients
  • Parsley, chopped
Directions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Then, use a boning knife to butterfly both chicken breasts by slicing them in half horizontally, leaving a small amount of meat at the end to open up along the cut.
  2. Cover the breasts with plastic wrap. Using a mallet or meat tenderizer, flatten chicken pieces until they are no more than 1 inch thick.
  3. Combine bread crumbs and 1 cup Parmesan cheese on a plate. Place the flour on a second plate. Then, whisk the eggs with 2 tablespoons of flour to make a slurry and put on a third plate.
  4. Dredge one piece of chicken breast in flour, then dip it in the egg mixture, making sure to coat the entire piece. Next dredge the chicken in the bread crumb mixture. Place the coated pieces onto a greased, foil-lined baking sheet.
  5. Place the chicken into the oven on the top rack. Cook until the breadcrumbs are golden brown, about 10 minutes. Flip the chicken pieces and cook for another 10 minutes.
  6. Place a layer of sauce into a baking dish. Place the chicken on top, followed by the rest of the sauce and the sliced mozzarella. Top generously with the remaining 1 cup Parmesan.
  7. Place back into the oven and cook until the cheese melts and the sauce bubbles.
  8. Garnish with parsley and enjoy.
Nutrition
Calories per Serving 881
Total Fat 46.5 g
Saturated Fat 24.8 g
Trans Fat 0.1 g
Cholesterol 276.7 mg
Total Carbohydrates 46.4 g
Dietary Fiber 4.9 g
Total Sugars 10.1 g
Sodium 2,665.2 mg
Protein 68.7 g
The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
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