Chicken Parmesan, also known as Chicken Parmigiana or simply Chicken Parm, is a classic Italian-American dish consisting of breaded chicken cutlets topped with tomato sauce and melted cheese.
This mouth-watering dish has become a staple in many restaurants and households around the world due to its delicious, comforting and versatile nature.
The origin of Chicken Parmesan can be traced back to Italy, where it was made with eggplant, in the early 19th century. After arriving in the United States, Italian immigrants began cooking it with chicken instead of eggplant which eventually became the popular version seen today.
The popularity of Chicken Parmesan can be attributed to its simplicity, affordability, and versatility. It can be served as a main course, sandwich or appetizer and can be accompanied by pasta, salad, or vegetables.
With its crispy breaded exterior, tender chicken, and delicious melted cheese and tomato sauce, Chicken Parmesan is a favorite among adults and children alike. Its irresistible flavors and ease of preparation have made it a go-to dish for anyone looking for a comforting and satisfying meal.
Here is why you might love this recipe:
1. Full of Flavor: The chicken is breaded and fried to perfection, and then topped with tomato sauce, melted mozzarella cheese, and Parmesan cheese, creating a mouthwatering combination of textures and flavors.
2. Easy to Prepare: This recipe is straightforward and easy to follow, making it ideal for both seasoned and novice cooks.
3. Versatile Dish: Chicken Parmesan can be served as a main course with pasta or vegetables, or as a sandwich filling or appetizer, making it a versatile and adaptable dish for any occasion.
Chicken Parmesan Recipe
- 4 chicken breasts
- 1 cup (126.8 g) all-purpose flour
- 2 eggs beaten
- 1 cup (109.6 g) breadcrumbs Italian seasoned
- 1/2 cup (50.7 g) grated parmesan cheese
- 1/2 teaspoon (0.5 teaspoon) garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon (0.5 teaspoon) dried basil
- 1/2 teaspoon (0.5 teaspoon) dried oregano
- 1/8 teaspoon (0.1 teaspoon) salt to taste
- 1/8 teaspoon (0.1 teaspoon) black pepper to taste
- 1/4 cup (54.8 g) extra virgin olive oil
- 2 cups (497.1 g) marinara sauce
- 1 cup (113.6 g) shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1 teaspoon basil leaves for garnish (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 400°F.
- Place the flour in a shallow bowl.
- Beat the eggs in another shallow bowl.
- Mix together the breadcrumbs, grated Parmesan cheese, garlic powder, dried basil, dried oregano, salt, and pepper in a third shallow bowl.
- Coat each chicken breast in the flour, shaking off any excess.
- Dip each chicken breast into the beaten eggs, then into the breadcrumb mixture, pressing down to coat both sides.
- Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
- Add the chicken breasts and cook for 3-4 minutes on each side until golden brown.
- Transfer the chicken to a baking dish.
- Spoon the marinara sauce over the chicken breasts and sprinkle the shredded mozzarella cheese on top.
- Bake the chicken Parmesan for 20-25 minutes or until the cheese is melted and bubbly.
- Garnish with fresh basil leaves (optional).
- Serve hot and enjoy!
Data source: USDA
|Boneless, skinless chicken breasts||Protein source and main ingredient for the dish, usually chicken meat which is very lean.||Turkey, tofu or seitan|
|All-purpose flour||Helps to coat the chicken breasts and create a crispy texture.||Whole wheat flour, almond flour, or cornstarch|
|Eggs||Used as a binding agent for the breadcrumbs.||Vegan substitutes such as aquafaba or flax eggs|
|Italian seasoned breadcrumbs||Adds flavor and crispy texture.||Panko breadcrumbs or homemade breadcrumbs|
|Parmesan cheese||Adds a nutty flavor to the breading mixture.||Nutritional yeast, Pecorino Romano, or Asiago cheese|
|Garlic powder||Adds flavor to the breading mixture.||Minced garlic, chopped onions, or garlic salt|
|Dried basil||Adds an aromatic flavor to the chicken.||Fresh basil leaves, dried thyme or rosemary|
|Dried oregano||Adds a slightly sweet and earthy flavor.||Fresh oregano or dried thyme|
|Salt and pepper||Enhances the flavor of the dish.||Seasoned salt or seasoned pepper|
|Olive oil||Used to fry and brown the chicken.||Sunflower oil, canola oil, or vegetable oil|
|Marinara sauce||Tomato-based sauce used as a base for the dish.||Tomato sauce, salsa, or homemade marinara sauce|
|Shredded mozzarella cheese||Melts and adds creaminess to the dish.||Vegan cheese, cheddar cheese, or provolone cheese|
|Fresh basil leaves||Adds a fresh aroma and flavor to the dish.||Parsley, cilantro or mint leaves|
Some information about the potential health benefits of some of the ingredients.
Chicken: Chicken is a good source of protein, which is necessary for building and repairing body tissues. It also contains vitamins B6 and B12, which help maintain brain function, promote a healthy nervous system, and support immune function.
Tomatoes: Tomatoes are rich in antioxidants, including lycopene, which may help protect against certain types of cancer. They also contain vitamins A and C, which support immune function and vision, respectively.
Garlic: Garlic may have antibacterial and antiviral properties that can help protect against infection. It may also have cholesterol-lowering effects and be beneficial for heart health.
Mozzarella cheese: Mozzarella cheese is a good source of calcium and protein, but it is also high in saturated fat and sodium. Moderation is key when consuming cheese.
Overall, this Chicken Parmesan recipe can be a good source of protein, vitamins, and antioxidants, but it is important to balance it with other healthy foods and to consume it in moderation.
Chicken Parmesan, like many cooked dishes, can last up to 3-4 days in the fridge when stored properly. It’s important to allow the chicken to cool down to room temperature before storing it in an airtight container or plastic wrap. It’s best to keep it on the top shelf of your refrigerator, where the temperature is the coldest. This will help reduce the risk of bacteria growth.
If you want to make your Chicken Parmesan ahead of time, you can also freeze it for later use. To do this, you should wait for it to cool down to room temperature first. Then, wrap it in plastic wrap tightly or store it in an airtight container or freezer bag. You can keep the dish in the freezer for 2-3 months.
When it’s time to defrost your frozen Chicken Parmesan, remove it from the freezer and transfer it to your refrigerator the night before you want to use it. You can also place it in a bowl of cold water to defrost it more quickly. Make sure it’s completely defrosted before reheating it; you can use an instant-read thermometer to check that the internal temperature of the chicken is over 165°F.
To reheat it, place it in the oven or microwave until it’s warm and heated through. If you’re using a microwave, make sure to cover it with a lid, plastic wrap, or paper towel to prevent it from drying out. Serve your Chicken Parmesan right away and enjoy!
Here are some general tips below to save money while making a Chicken Parmesan recipe.
1. Buy Ingredients in Bulk – When possible, buy ingredients like chicken breasts, canned tomatoes, cheese, and pasta in bulk to take advantage of discounts.
2. Use Cheaper Cuts of Chicken – Cut the cost of chicken by choosing cheaper cuts such as chicken thighs or chicken legs, instead of chicken breasts.
3. Cook From Scratch – Using homemade tomato sauce and making your breadcrumbs from stale bread can save money.
4. Shop Sales and Discounts – Look out for discounts and sales at your grocery store, to find good deals on ingredients you need.
5. Make a Double Recipe – While making this recipe, try doubling the ingredients and making an extra portion, that you can freeze for later and save the cost of the ingredients.
6. Plan Your Meals- Plan your meals for the week and prepare a shopping list accordingly, it will help you to avoid buying unnecessary items and reduce waste.
7. Substitute Ingredients – Substitute expensive ingredients with cheaper alternatives. For example, use mozzarella cheese instead of Parmesan cheese, use spaghetti instead of linguine.
8. Portion Control – Serve appropriate portions, so there is no waste of food, and it will help you to save money on groceries.
Following these tips may help to save money while making delicious Chicken Parmesan recipe.
Time Saving TIps
1. Use pre-made bread crumbs.
2. Instead of making your own tomato sauce, use store-bought marinara sauce.
3. Use pre-cooked chicken breasts or rotisserie chicken for faster preparation.
4. Skip breading the chicken and use pre-made chicken patties or strips.
5. Cook the chicken in a skillet instead of baking it in the oven.
6. Use pre-shredded mozzarella cheese.
7. To save time, cook the pasta while the chicken is cooking.
8. Use a disposable aluminum pan for easy cleanup.
1. Veal Parmesan: Swap out the chicken for thinly sliced veal cutlets and follow the same preparation and coating steps. Cook for slightly less time as veal is more delicate than chicken.
2. Eggplant Parmesan: Instead of using chicken or veal, cut eggplant into thin slices, dip in egg and breadcrumbs, and fry until golden brown. Layer with tomato sauce and mozzarella cheese and bake until bubbly.
3. Pesto Chicken Parmesan: Add some basil pesto to the breadcrumb mixture and brush it onto the chicken before baking. Top with fresh mozzarella and a dollop of pesto before serving.
4. Gluten-Free Chicken Parmesan: Use gluten-free breadcrumbs or almond flour instead of regular breadcrumbs to coat the chicken.
5. Low-carb Chicken Parmesan: Instead of breadcrumbs, use crushed pork rinds or almond flour for the coating. Serve with zucchini noodles or riced cauliflower instead of pasta.
6. Spicy Chicken Parmesan: Add red pepper flakes to the breadcrumb mixture or toss the cooked chicken with some hot sauce before topping with cheese and baking.
7. Grilled Chicken Parmesan: Grill chicken breast until almost cooked through, then top with sauce and cheese and finish in the oven until bubbly.
8. Slow Cooker Chicken Parmesan: Coat the chicken in the breadcrumb mixture and brown in a skillet. Layer in the slow cooker with sauce and mozzarella cheese and cook on low for 4-6 hours.
What To Serve With
There are several options for serving with Chicken Parmesan, some of which include:
1. Spaghetti or other types of pasta: This is a classic pairing that complements the chicken parmesan well.
2. Garlic bread or rolls: These provide a carb-heavy side that balances out the protein-rich chicken.
3. Salad: A simple green salad or a Caesar salad can add some freshness to the meal and provide some variety in terms of texture.
4. Roasted vegetables: Roasting vegetables such as zucchini, broccoli, or eggplant can provide a healthy and tasty side dish.
5. Mashed potatoes: For a heartier meal, mashed potatoes can provide a comforting side dish that complements the chicken and its tomato-based sauce.
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