Simple Chicken Parmesan Recipe




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Looking for a simple and delicious dinner idea? You’ve come to the right place!

In this article, we’ll show you how to make a mouthwatering chicken parmesan that is sure to impress your family and friends.

With just a few ingredients and easy-to-follow steps, you’ll have a flavorful and satisfying meal on the table in no time.

So, grab your apron and get ready to become a culinary hero with this simple chicken parmesan recipe!

Key Takeaways

  • Chicken Parmesan can be made using chicken breasts, marinara sauce, bread crumbs, and Parmesan cheese.
  • The chicken can be seasoned and breaded before being pan-fried for a crispy crust.
  • The tomato sauce for Chicken Parmesan can be made by mixing diced tomatoes and can be seasoned with onions, garlic, and various herbs.
  • Chicken Parmesan is typically baked in the oven with mozzarella cheese and can be served with fresh basil or parsley for added flavor.

Gather the Ingredients

You’ll need chicken breasts, crushed tomatoes, panko bread crumbs, Parmesan cheese, and olive oil to make this delicious simple Chicken Parmesan recipe.

To start, let’s talk about ingredient substitutions for Chicken Parmesan. If you’re not a fan of chicken, you can try using pork or eggplant instead. For a gluten-free option, you can use almond flour or gluten-free bread crumbs.

Now, let’s move on to marinating the chicken for extra flavor. To enhance the taste, you can marinate the chicken in a mixture of garlic, herbs, and lemon juice for at least 30 minutes before cooking. If you want to add a twist to the traditional tomato sauce, try incorporating some sun-dried tomatoes or roasted red peppers for a burst of flavor. And if you’re looking for a healthier version, you can bake the chicken instead of frying it and use a lighter tomato sauce.

Lastly, creative ways to use leftover Chicken Parmesan include making sandwiches, topping salads, or even using it as a pizza topping. So get cooking and enjoy this classic dish with your own personal touch!

How to prepare chicken for chicken parmesan

To prepare the chicken for chicken parmesan, season it with salt and pepper, then dredge it in a mixture of flour and egg. This simple step is crucial in creating a flavorful and crispy chicken crust that will perfectly complement the rich tomato sauce and melted cheese in your dish.

If you want to add an extra layer of flavor to your chicken, consider marinating it before seasoning. Marinating techniques such as using a mixture of olive oil, herbs, and garlic can infuse the chicken with delicious flavors that will elevate your dish to the next level.

When it comes to breading the chicken for chicken parmesan, there are a few different ways you can go. Traditional breadcrumbs are a classic choice, but you can also use panko breadcrumbs for a lighter and crunchier crust. Another option is to use a combination of breadcrumbs and grated Parmesan cheese for added flavor.

Achieving a crispy chicken crust is all about the cooking method. It’s best to pan-fry the chicken in a hot skillet with a generous amount of oil. This will help create that golden-brown crust that’s so irresistible.

As for seasoning variations, you can get creative with your chicken parmesan. Add some dried oregano and garlic powder to the flour mixture for a more Italian-inspired flavor. Or, for a spicy twist, try adding some cayenne pepper or chili flakes to the mix.

While chicken parmesan traditionally uses mozzarella cheese, you can also experiment with different cheeses to switch things up. Provolone, fontina, or even a combination of cheeses can add a unique and delicious twist to your dish.

How to make the tomato sauce for the chicken parmesan

Now, grab a can of diced tomatoes and a jar of marinara sauce, and mix them together in a saucepan to create the perfect tomato sauce for your chicken parmesan.

Here are some tips and tricks to make your tomato sauce flavorful and delicious:

  1. Tomato sauce variations: Experiment with different types of tomatoes, such as San Marzano or cherry tomatoes, to add unique flavors to your sauce.
  2. Tips for making a flavorful tomato sauce: Saute onions and garlic in olive oil before adding the tomatoes to enhance the taste. Season with salt, pepper, and a pinch of sugar to balance the acidity.
  3. Homemade vs store-bought tomato sauce: While homemade sauce allows for customization, store-bought options can be convenient and still taste great. Choose high-quality brands for the best flavor.
  4. Adding herbs and spices to tomato sauce: Basil, oregano, thyme, and red pepper flakes are popular choices to enhance the taste. Experiment with different combinations to find your favorite.
  5. How to store leftover tomato sauce: Allow the sauce to cool completely before transferring it to an airtight container. Store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or freeze for future use.

With these tips, you’ll create a tomato sauce that will elevate your chicken parmesan to the next level. Enjoy!

How long do you bake chicken parmesan?

The best way to make chicken parmesan is to pan fry it and then put the breaded chicken into a baking dish. Top the chicken breasts with some sauce and then top them with mozzarella cheese before placing them into the oven to melt the cheese.

Serving Suggestions

You can creatively garnish your chicken parmesan with fresh basil or parsley for an aesthetically pleasing and flavorful touch. Here are some suggestions to elevate your chicken parmesan experience:

  1. Creative plating ideas: Arrange the chicken parmesan on a bed of spaghetti or zucchini noodles for a classic presentation. Alternatively, stack the chicken and top it with a dollop of marinara sauce and a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese for a more modern twist.
  2. Wine pairing options: Pair your chicken parmesan with a light-bodied red wine like Chianti or Pinot Noir. The acidity and fruity notes of these wines complement the rich flavors of the dish.
  3. Healthy side dish options: Serve your chicken parmesan with a side of roasted vegetables or a fresh salad. The vegetables add a pop of color and nutrients to your plate, while the salad provides a refreshing contrast to the hearty chicken.

For those seeking vegetarian alternatives to chicken parm, you can use breaded and baked eggplant or tofu as a substitute. Both options provide a similar texture and can be just as delicious.

Lastly, if you need to make a gluten-free version of chicken parmesan, simply replace regular breadcrumbs with gluten-free breadcrumbs or crushed gluten-free crackers. Be sure to check the labels to ensure they’re certified gluten-free.

Now that you have these ideas, go ahead and experiment to create a chicken parmesan dish that suits your taste and dietary preferences. Enjoy!

Why is it called chicken parm if you use mozzarella?

If you’re wondering why it’s called chicken parm if you use mozzarella, the answer lies in the traditional ingredients and flavors of the dish. Chicken Parmesan, or Chicken Parmigiana, originated in Italy and has been adapted by Italian-Americans to suit their taste preferences.

The dish typically consists of breaded and fried chicken cutlets topped with tomato sauce and cheese. While the traditional cheese used in Italy is Parmigiano-Reggiano, mozzarella has become the popular choice in America due to its mild, creamy flavor and ability to melt beautifully. However, if you’re looking for alternative cheeses for your chicken parm, you can experiment with provolone, fontina, or even a blend of different cheeses.

As for side dishes, a classic choice would be spaghetti or linguine with marinara sauce, but you can also serve it with a green salad or garlic bread for a delicious and satisfying meal.

What is the difference between chicken parmigiana and chicken parmesan?

Have you ever wondered what sets chicken parmigiana apart from chicken parmesan? Well, here are three key differences that make each dish unique:

  1. History: Chicken parmigiana originated in Southern Italy, while chicken parmesan is an Americanized version of the dish. The name ‘parmigiana’ comes from the Italian word for Parmesan cheese, which is a main ingredient in both recipes.
  2. Regional Variations: In Italy, chicken parmigiana is typically made with breaded chicken, tomato sauce, and mozzarella cheese. However, in America, chicken parmesan often includes additional ingredients like breadcrumbs, garlic, and herbs.
  3. Popular Toppings: While both dishes feature melted cheese on top, chicken parmigiana is often served with a simple tomato sauce, while chicken parmesan may be topped with marinara sauce or even spaghetti.

Overall, the difference between chicken parmigiana and chicken parmesan lies in their history, regional variations, and popular toppings. Whether you prefer the Italian classic or the American twist, both dishes have their own cultural significance and are beloved by many.

What do Italians call chicken parm?

Did you know that Italians call chicken parmigiana ‘pollo alla parmigiana’?

Chicken parmigiana, or chicken parm as it’s commonly known, is a beloved dish in both traditional Italian cuisine and Italian American cuisine. This classic dish consists of breaded and fried chicken cutlets topped with tomato sauce and melted cheese.

Italians have their own regional variations of this dish, with some using different types of cheese or adding additional ingredients like ham or mushrooms. In Italy, chicken parmigiana is often served with a side of pasta or a fresh green salad.

The dish has gained popularity in Italian American communities, where it’s often served with spaghetti and accompanied by garlic bread. Whether you call it chicken parmigiana or pollo alla parmigiana, this flavorful dish is sure to satisfy your craving for delicious Italian comfort food.

Is chicken parm fried or baked?

So, when it comes to chicken parm, you can either have it fried or baked, depending on your personal preference.

Here are three things to consider about this delicious dish:

  1. Is chicken parmigiana a traditional Italian dish? Yes, it is! While its exact origins are debated, chicken parmigiana is a beloved Italian-American creation that has become a staple in Italian cuisine.
  2. Can you use any other cheese for chicken parm? Traditionally, chicken parm is made with mozzarella cheese, but you can experiment with other types like provolone or even a combination of cheeses to add different flavors and textures.
  3. Can you make chicken parm without breadcrumbs? Absolutely! While breadcrumbs provide a crispy coating, you can substitute them with crushed crackers, panko, or even grated Parmesan cheese for a gluten-free version.

So, whether you prefer it fried or baked, with mozzarella or your preferred cheese, and with breadcrumbs or a creative substitute, chicken parm can be customized to suit your taste. And while it may not be the healthiest option due to frying and cheese, it can still be enjoyed in moderation. You can even make it with grilled chicken for a lighter twist on the classic dish.

Do people in Italy eat chicken parm?

You frequently hear that people in Italy often enjoy chicken parm as a delicious and popular dish. But do Italians actually prefer chicken parmigiana over chicken parmesan?

The answer is yes! Chicken parmigiana, or pollo alla parmigiana in Italian, is a beloved dish in Italy. Traditionally served as a breaded and fried chicken cutlet topped with tomato sauce and melted cheese, chicken parmigiana is a classic comfort food. However, there are variations of this dish across different regions of Italy.

In some regions, the chicken is baked instead of fried, while in others, different types of cheese may be used. Despite these variations, chicken parmigiana remains a staple in Italian cuisine and is enjoyed by people all over the world.

Is chicken parm breaded in Italy?

Chicken parm is indeed breaded in Italy. It’s a classic Italian dish that has been enjoyed for generations.

Why is my chicken parmesan tough?

If you overcook the chicken, your chicken parmesan can end up tough and chewy. Cooking time is crucial to achieving the perfect chicken tenderness in your dish. One of the most common mistakes is leaving the chicken in the oven for too long, resulting in a dry and tough texture. To avoid this, make sure to monitor the cooking time and remove the chicken from the oven as soon as it reaches the recommended internal temperature.

Another factor that affects the chicken’s tenderness is the breadcrumb coating. Make sure to coat the chicken evenly and not press the breadcrumbs too firmly, as this can lead to a dense and tough crust.

Lastly, the choice of cheese is important. Opt for a cheese that melts well, such as mozzarella or provolone, to ensure a gooey and delicious topping for your chicken parmesan.

Why is my chicken parm watery?

Adding too much sauce to your chicken parm can make it watery and dilute the flavors of the dish. To prevent this common mistake and achieve a perfectly balanced chicken parm, here are some helpful tips:

  1. Use a slotted spoon: When serving your chicken parm, use a slotted spoon to scoop up just the right amount of sauce. This way, you can control the sauce-to-chicken ratio and avoid an overly watery dish.
  2. Try alternative cheeses: Instead of using mozzarella alone, experiment with different cheeses like provolone or fontina. These cheeses have a lower moisture content and melt beautifully, giving your chicken parm a rich and gooey texture without the excess liquid.
  3. Reheat with care: When reheating leftover chicken parm, avoid using the microwave, as it can make the coating soggy. Instead, use a toaster oven or a regular oven to maintain the crispy coating while heating it through.

What is parmesan chicken made of?

To make parmesan chicken, you’ll need chicken breasts, breadcrumbs, grated parmesan cheese, and a blend of herbs and spices. This classic Italian dish isn’t only delicious but also easy to prepare.

Start by flattening the chicken breasts to ensure even cooking. Then, dip each piece in a mixture of breadcrumbs, grated parmesan cheese, and your favorite herbs and spices.

Next, cook the chicken in a skillet until golden brown and crispy. While the chicken is cooking, you can prepare a flavorful tomato sauce by simmering tomatoes, onions, garlic, and herbs together.

Once the chicken is cooked, top it with the tomato sauce and some additional parmesan cheese. Serve it over pasta or with a side of garlic bread for a complete and satisfying meal.

If you’re feeling adventurous, you can also try different variations of chicken parmesan recipes, such as substituting the breadcrumbs for crushed cornflakes or using mozzarella cheese instead of parmesan.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I Use a Different Type of Cheese Instead of Mozzarella for Chicken Parmesan?

You can definitely use a different type of cheese instead of mozzarella for chicken parmesan. Try experimenting with cheeses like provolone, cheddar, or even a combination of different cheeses for a unique twist on this classic dish.

Can I Use Pre-Made Tomato Sauce for Chicken Parmesan?

Yes, you can use pre-made tomato sauce for chicken parmesan. It’s a convenient alternative to homemade sauce. To enhance the flavor, add herbs and spices. Some popular pre-made sauce brands include Rao’s and Classico. Homemade sauce offers customization, but pre-made saves time.

Can I Use Boneless Chicken Breast Instead of Chicken Thighs for Chicken Parmesan?

Yes, you can definitely use boneless chicken breast instead of chicken thighs for chicken Parmesan. It’s a great alternative if you prefer white meat. Just make sure to adjust cooking time.

Can I Freeze Chicken Parmesan Leftovers?

Yes, you can freeze chicken Parmesan leftovers! To do so, let it cool completely, then transfer to an airtight container or freezer bag. Label it with the date and freeze for up to 3 months. When reheating, bake it in the oven for best results.

Can I Make Chicken Parmesan Without Breading the Chicken?

Yes, you can make chicken parmesan without breading the chicken. Try alternative cooking methods like grilling or pan-searing for a healthier version. You can also experiment with flavor variations or even make a vegetarian chicken parmesan. Serve it with pasta or a side salad for a delicious meal.


In conclusion, this simple chicken parmesan recipe is a delicious and satisfying dish that can be easily prepared at home. By following the step-by-step directions, you can create a flavorful tomato sauce and perfectly cooked chicken, resulting in a mouthwatering meal.

Whether you’re serving it with pasta or a side salad, chicken parmesan is a classic Italian dish that’s sure to impress your family and friends.

So why wait? Give this recipe a try and enjoy a taste of Italy in your own kitchen.

What Kind of Store Bought Sauce Can I Use for Chicken Parmesan

Simple Chicken Parmesan

Tender chicken breasts, breaded and pan-fried to a golden crisp, then smothered in a rich tomato sauce and melted mozzarella and parmesan cheese. This classic Italian dish is both hearty and flavorful, perfect for a family dinner or a special occasion.
Prep Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian
Servings 6
Calories 1135 kcal


Marinara Sauce

  • 3 tbsp olive oil extra virgin
  • 1 small yellow onion, minced
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 (28 oz.) can crushed tomatoes
  • 2 large sprigs of basil
  • Kosher Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper


  • 1 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 cups finely grated parmesan, divided
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 large eggs
  • 6 1/4" thick boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella
  • 1 cup vegetable or canola oil
  • chopped fresh basil to garnish



  • In a medium-sized saucepan on medium heat, 3 tbsp olive oil. Introduce the 1 small yellow onion, and 6 cloves garlic,, mixing them together, then lower the heat. Let it simmer with the lid on, giving it an occasional stir, for 10 minutes. Remove the lid and continue to cook, stirring now and then, until the onion becomes clear, soft, and aromatic, roughly an additional 5 minutes.
  • Mix in the 1 (28 oz.) can crushed tomatoes and 2 large sprigs of basil. Allow it to come to a boil, then lower the heat to medium-low. Let it simmer, stirring from time to time, until it has a slightly thicker consistency and the flavors have combined, roughly 30 minutes. Season with Kosher Salt and Freshly ground black pepper. Remove the basil.


  • In one shallow dish, mix together 1 cup panko bread crumbs, 1 tsp garlic powder, and 1 cup of2 cups finely grated parmesan,. In a separate dish, place the 3/4 cup all-purpose flour. In a third dish, whisk the 2 large eggs with 1 tablespoon of water.
  • Pat 6 1/4" thick boneless, skinless chicken breasts dry and season it with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. First, coat it lightly with flour, ensuring any excess is shaken off. Next, dip it in the egg, and finally, press it gently into the panko mixture to ensure it sticks.
  • In a small bowl, mix together the 1 cup shredded mozzarella and the remaining 1 cup Parmesan. 
  • Warm up the broiler. On medium heat, use a large, sturdy pot to heat the 1 cup vegetable or canola oil until a deep-fry or instant-read thermometer shows 350°. It's fine if there's slight smoke. Position a wire rack on a baking tray.
  • Cook the chicken in batches, frying each piece until it turns a golden hue on one side, which should take approximately 1 minute. Turn the chicken over and fry the other side until it's similarly golden. You'll notice the frying sound intensifying slightly, indicating the moisture is evaporating from the chicken; this should take about another minute. Once done, place the chicken on the designated rack. Continue this process with the rest of the chicken pieces. Afterward, drizzle marinara sauce over the chicken and garnish with the cheese blend.
  • Place under the broiler and monitor closely until the cheese has melted and developed brown patches, approximately 2 minutes.
  • Serve one chicken breast per plate. Top with chopped fresh basil to garnish. Serve with spaghetti and remaining sauce.

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Hi, I’m John.

A food blogger and the creator of Ultimate Grub. I’m a chef by trade and have been executive chef for numerous restaurants serving everything from fresh seafood to southern comfort food. Learn more..