The Best Chicken Parmesan | Culinary Hill

This version of Chicken Parmesan is made with a cheesy coating of bread crumbs so it’s extra crispy and so delicious with the homemade marinara sauce and spaghetti.

It may taste Italian, but this humble dish is All-American and loved by everyone. There are so many different ways to make it, but I keep my Chicken Parmesan easy but homemade, right down to the tomato sauce. I make extra sauce so everyone can help themselves. I think you’ll love it.

Ingredient notes:

  • Chicken: Butterfly and pound the chicken into thin cutlets so it cooks quickly and evenly without burning.
  • Bread crumbs: Panko bread crumbs, also known as Japanese bread crumbs, keep breaded and fried foods extra crispy. You can also substitute fresh bread crumbs you grind yourself.

Step-by-step instructions:

  1. First, make the sauce. Add a tablespoon of olive oil to a saucepan, stir in the garlic, then add the dried herbs and the crushed tomatoes (they may splatter, so keep the lid handy). Bring the sauce to a boil, then reduce the heat and let the sauce cook while you prepare the chicken.
  2. Butterfly the chicken breasts: Cover a cutting board completely with a piece of plastic wrap. Add chicken breasts. Working with one breast at a time, place your palm on top of the breast and slice in half horizontally so you have two cutlets. Repeat with the second breast.
  3. Butterfly the chicken breasts: Cover a cutting board completely with a piece of plastic wrap. Add chicken breasts. Working with one breast at a time, place your palm on top of the breast and slice in half horizontally so you have two cutlets. Repeat with the second breast.
  4. Dredge each breast into the flour, then tap off the excess. Next, dip the breast through the beaten egg; hold the chicken over the liquid to let any extra egg wash fall back into the bowl. Then settle the chicken in the bread crumbs, pressing the crumbs into the cutlet to really get them to stick.
  5. In a large skillet, heat the oil until shimmering. Add the cutlets, two at a time (or more, depending on the size of your skillet) and fry until deep golden brown and cooked through. This should take about 3 minutes per side, flipping as needed.
  6. Transfer the cutlets to a wire rack set over a baking sheet lined with foil. Top each cutlet with mozzarella, then broil until the cheese is brown and melted. Serve the Chicken Parmesan on a platter with the sauce and cooked spaghetti.

Recipe tips and variations:

  • Make ahead: The cutlets can be pounded out, breaded, and stored covered in the refrigerator one day in advance. Unfortunately, they cannot easily be frozen and then reheated in a pan or oven.
  • Chicken thighs: You can substitute boneless, skinless chicken thighs for the chicken breast. Just pound them out in a similar fashion.
  • Chicken Parm Sandwich: Slice some soft, crusty rolls in half. Butter the inside of each and sprinkle with garlic powder.  When the chicken is cooked, add a cutlet to the inside of the hoagie and top with the fontina mozzarella mixture.Place open faced sandwich under broiler on a foil-lined baking sheet and broil for 2-4 minutes, until cheese is melted and begins to bubble. Spoon sauce inside sandwich, close, and serve.
  • Chicken Milanese: The same breaded chicken cutlets but served with a fresh arugula salad instead of the marinara.
  • Chicken Piccata: The same breaded chicken cutlets but served with a lemon butter sauce instead of the marinara.

More delicious Italian recipes:

 

The Best Chicken Parmesan

This version of Chicken Parmesan is made with a cheesy coating of bread crumbs so it’s extra crispy and so delicious with the homemade marinara sauce and spaghetti.
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American, Italian
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 810kcal
Author: Meggan Hill

Ingredients

For the sauce:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • 28 ounces crushed tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes optional (only if you like the spice)
  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

For the chicken:

  • 16 ounces boneless skinless chicken breasts (about 2 large, see note 1)
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup panko bread crumbs (see note 2)
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • Cooked spaghetti for serving
  • Minced fresh parsley for garnish

Instructions

To make the sauce:

  • In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, add olive oil and heat until shimmering. Add minced garlic and stir until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add crushed tomatoes (Be careful! They may splatter when they hit the hot oil, so keep the lid handy), basil, oregano, and red pepper flakes (if using). Bring the sauce to boil over medium-high heat.
  • Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until the flavors have blended, about 10 to 15 minutes longer. Season to taste with salt and pepper and keep warm over medium-low heat while preparing the chicken.

To make the chicken:

  • Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil for easy cleanup. Top with a wire rack coated with nonstick spray.
  • Cover a cutting board completely with a piece of plastic wrap. Add chicken breasts. Working with one breast at a time, place your palm on top of the breast and slice in half horizontally so you have two cutlets. Repeat with the second breast.
  • Arrange all four cutlets in a single layer on the plastic wrap-covered cutting board. Cover with a second piece of plastic wrap. Pound chicken breasts to an even thickness, about 1/4-inch. Remove top layer of plastic wrap and season breasts with salt and pepper.
  • In a shallow dish, add flour. In a second shallow dish, add eggs and beat lightly. In a third shallow dish, combine panko, grated Parmesan, parsley, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Stir to combine.
  • Working with one cutlet at a time, dredge in flour and shake off excess. Dip in eggs and tap gently on side of dish to remove excess. Add to panko mixture and press gently until crumbs adhere. Transfer to a large plate and repeat with remaining cutlets (cutlets can be wrapped in plastic and refrigerated for up to 1 day in advance).
  • Line rimmed baking sheet or large plate with 3 layers of paper towels. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, heat vegetable oil until just smoking, about 400 degrees (this can take a few minutes). Add 2 cutlets and fry until deep golden brown and cooked through, about 3 to 5 minutes per side.
  • Drain cutlets well on paper towel-lined plate and transfer to prepared wire rack. Repeat with remaining 2 cutlets.
  • Adjust oven rack 4” from broiler element and preheat broiler. Top each breaded cutlet with about 1/2 cup cheese. Broil until cheese is melted and beginning to brown, about 2 to 4 minutes. Serve the chicken Parmesan on a platter with the sauce and cooked spaghetti, if desired. Garnish with parsley.

Notes

  1. Chicken: Butterfly and pound the chicken into thin cutlets so it cooks quickly and evenly without burning.
  2. Bread crumbs: Panko bread crumbs, also known as Japanese bread crumbs, keep breaded and fried foods extra crispy. You can also substitute fresh bread crumbs you grind yourself.
  3. Make ahead: The cutlets can be pounded out, breaded, and stored covered in the refrigerator one day in advance. Unfortunately, they cannot easily be frozen and then reheated in a pan or oven. 
  4. Chicken thighs: You can substitute boneless, skinless chicken thighs for the chicken breast. Just pound them out in a similar fashion.
  5. Chicken Parm Sandwich: Slice some soft, crusty rolls in half. Butter the inside of each and sprinkle with garlic powder.  When the chicken is cooked, add a cutlet to the inside of the hoagie and top with the fontina mozzarella mixture.Place open faced sandwich under broiler on a foil-lined baking sheet and broil for 2-4 minutes, until cheese is melted and begins to bubble. Spoon sauce inside sandwich, close, and serve.
  6. Chicken Milanese: The same breaded chicken cutlets but served with a fresh arugula salad instead of the marinara.
  7. Chicken Piccata: The same breaded chicken cutlets but served with a lemon butter sauce instead of the marinara.

Nutrition

Serving: 1cutlet with sauce | Calories: 810kcal | Carbohydrates: 41g | Protein: 49g | Fat: 52g | Saturated Fat: 33g | Cholesterol: 204mg | Sodium: 992mg | Potassium: 1153mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 11g | Vitamin A: 1329IU | Vitamin C: 23mg | Calcium: 487mg | Iron: 6mg
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Publisher: Culinary Hill