Parmesan crusted chicken is easy enough to make for a busy weeknight but also special enough for company.
Parmesan crusted chicken is a great dish to add to your repertoire. It’s easy enough to make for a weeknight dinner but also elegant enough for company, and it appeals to the whole family. Kids especially love it because it bears some resemblance to chicken fingers. There are two secrets to success: first, pounding the chicken breasts to an even 1/4-inch thickness tenderizes the meat and ensures even cooking; second, a three-step breading method ensures that the coating adheres to the meat while it cooks, resulting in a crispy crust and juicy interior every time. The fresh herbs are totally optional – use what you have on hand or leave them out.
Parmesan Crusted Chicken
- ½ cup all purpose flour
- 2 eggs
- ⅔ cup seasoned Italian bread crumbs (I use Progresso)
- ⅓ cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh herbs, such as thyme, parsley, chives or rosemary
- 3-4 boneless skinless chicken breasts (about 1½ pounds), pounded ¼”-thick (see note)
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- ¼ cup olive oil
- Lemon wedges, for serving
- Set up three large shallow bowls in an assembly line. Put the flour in the first bowl; beat the eggs in the second bowl; and mix the bread crumbs, Parmesan cheese, salt, pepper, and chopped fresh herbs in the third bowl.
- Season chicken breasts with salt and pepper. Dredge the first chicken breast in the flour and shake off the excess until just a light coating remains. Next, dip the chicken in the egg mixture and turn to coat evenly, letting any excess egg drip off. Finally, dredge the chicken in the bread crumb mixture, turning a few times to coat well. Set breaded chicken on a plate and repeat until all of the chicken breasts are breaded.
- Heat the oil in a large sauté pan over medium heat. When the oil is hot, add the chicken breasts to the pan and cook for 2 to 3 minutes until the first side is golden brown. Flip and continue cooking until done, 2 to 3 minutes longer. Serve immediately with lemon wedges.
- Note: If chicken breasts are large (8 or more ounces), it’s best to cut them in half once they are pounded out. Alternatively, you can cut them in half horizontally before pounding.