Baked Chicken Parmesan

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Photography Credit: Elise Bauer

When we were kids, my mother used to make a broiled chicken dish which we called Chicken Parmesan. It was so good, we would fight over the drippings. Then my mother gave up wheat for 20 years and the recipe is lost somewhere in the deep storage of her mind, currently unaccessible. (By the way, this is the main reason I put recipes on the web, they don’t get lost or forgotten!)

We had a hankering for Parmesan chicken the other night so I hit the recipe books and Epicurious and came up with something really quite good. Not as drop-dead delicious as mom’s, and the reason why? Mom remembered as we were eating that she used to dip every piece of chicken in melted butter before rolling it in the breadcrumb/Parmesan mixture. Well no wonder we were fighting over the drippings! You can do the same, if you really want a treat. This recipe doesn’t do that, but if you want, just substitute the vinegar for melted butter and then add some more butter to the coating liquid.

Update: We recreated mom’s recipe for Parmesan chicken. Check it out for an alternative to this recipe.

Baked Chicken Parmesan Recipe

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  • Yield: Serves 4.

Parmesan chicken is traditionally made with boneless, skinless chicken breasts. We use breasts, but thighs too, if we are starting with a whole chicken.

Ingredients

Sauce:

  • 2 medium garlic cloves, peeled and minced
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 can (28 oz) crushed tomatoes (we use Muir-Glen)
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon sugar
  • Salt and ground black pepper

Chicken:

  • 3 Tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 Tbsp white-wine vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 4 (5-oz) skinless boneless chicken breast halves (or deboned thighs)
  • 3/4 cup of breadcrumbs (we make our breadcrumbs from old French bread)
  • 1 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
  • 3 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted

Method

1 Prepare the sauce. In a large saucepan, heat the garlic and oil together over medium high heat until the garlic starts to sizzle. Stir in the tomatoes, basil, oregano, sugar, a pinch of salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer. Continue to simmer until sauce thickens a bit and flavors meld, about 10-12 minutes. Taste sauce, adjust seasoning if necessary, cover and keep warm.

2 Preheat oven to 450°F. Cut each chicken breast half in half for smaller pieces. With a meat pounder, pound the chicken pieces to flatten them to an even thickness - between 1/4 - 1/2 inch. You might find it easier to put the chicken between layers of plastic wrap before pounding.

3 Whisk together mustard, vinegar, salt, and 1/4 teaspoon of pepper in a large bowl, add the chicken pieces, tossing to coat well.

4 In another bowl, mix together the bread crumbs, grated cheese, and 1/4 teaspoon of pepper. Mix well and add in the melted butter. Transfer to a shallow plate. Dredge the chicken pieces 1 piece at a time in the crumb mixture, coating completely. Press the crumbs in gently to adhere and transfer to a stick-free baking sheet. Bake in the middle of the oven until golden brown and cooked through, about 15 minutes.

Serve with a side of rice or pasta. Ladle sauce over the chicken.

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Notes:

Sauce recipe is from The Best Recipe cookbook.

The chicken Parmesan recipe is adapted from one found on Epicurious.com.

Showing 4 of 28 Comments

  • Janet

    This is a great recipe and one of the best, easiest chicken parm recipe I’ve made. I love that it’s baked in the oven. The flavor was incredible! I used a combination of plain breadcrumbs and panko. I will absolutely be making this again. A big hit for the family – THANK YOU (and your Mom!)

  • Steve

    OMG Elise this was so friggn’ fantastic that I threw out all my old chicken parmigiana recipes. I had to use Italian seasoned bread crumbs as that was all I had but feel it was not a risk.
    I took pics and texted my kids to taunt them. Home cooking at its finest and this may be the recipe that gets them to come home more often?
    Thanks Elise for all that you do
    Steve

  • Jenny C

    I just made this recipe with my daughter the other night (with rice) and we loved it. Very flavorful chicken that went so well with the sauce that was so simple to make. The only thing I did different was add a touch of water to the sauce as it was very, very thick at first but turned out great! This recipe has already made it to my recipe box and I look forward to making it again in the very near future. Thank you Elise for your great recipes.

  • lathapandi

    simply fantastic

  • samaneh

    what can i use Insted of white wine?
    Thanks for your sharing

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