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Chicken Parmesan

Covered in classic marinara and bubbly, creamy fresh mozzarella cheese, our chicken Parmesan recipe is simply the best.

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homemade chicken parmesan on a plate with marinara, basil and fresh mozzarella

The Easiest, Cheesiest, Best Chicken Parmesan Recipe In the Whole World

Easily one of the very most iconic, classic Italian-American dishes, chicken Parmesan is hearty, comforting, stick-to-your-ribs stuff and we love every last bite of it. So does everyone else around the table when we serve it, because it’s so very very lovable. Juicy chicken breast, slicked into thin, big cutlets and fried to perfection are coated in marinara sauce and topped with fresh mozzarella cheese, then baked to perfection. All that crisp crust and pooling melted cheese, salty Parm, sharp, bracing marinara—it’s impossible to get a bite from that pan of baked chicken parm that’s anything less than insanely delicious.

ingredients for chicken parmesan, marinara, panko, bread crumbs, flour, basil, mozzarella, eggs, salt, pepper, olive oil

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What Is the Difference Between Chicken Parmesan and Chicken Parmigiana?

Brace yourself for this one—they’re the same dish! Chicken Parmesan and chicken Parmigiana are just different names for the same exact recipe. And, with a name like “chicken Parmigiana”, you might assume that this recipe is Italian. While it has roots in Italy (in a way), chicken Parmesan is all-American. “Parmigiana” is an Italian word that means “in the style of Parma”, referring not to the cheese (which, BTW, is Parmigiano! Not Parmigiana) but to the city of Parma. Chicken Parmesan is an Italian-American riff on classic Italian eggplant Parm (melanzane alla Parmigiana), which is made in almost the exact same way as chicken Parmesan, but with eggplant instead of chicken. Now you’re pretty much an expert in the origins of chicken Parm! Enough learning, let’s eat!

eggs beaten, flour, panko and bread crumbs, and chicken breasts with salt and pepper
eggs beaten, flour, panko and bread crumbs, and chicken breasts with salt and pepper
2 breaded chicken filets in a skillet frying in olive oil
pan fried breaded chicken breast on a baking sheet

How Do You Make Chicken Parmesan From Scratch?

When you’re first learning how to make chicken Parmesan, the list of steps might look a little fussy. But after you’ve made it a few times—and you will make it more than once, because everyone will ask you to—it becomes something you can throw together without thinking. Inherently, chicken Parmesan is a really easy, simple recipe. The ingredients will be super familiar—the hardest thing is not eating all of the fresh mozzarella while you cook. If you want to use jarred marinara sauce, that is totally fine, but homemade is always better if you’ve got the time. We’ve got a 20-minute marinara sauce recipe here that happens to be just perfect in this chicken Parmesan recipe. Here’s how to make chicken Parmesan:

  1. Cut the chicken breasts into cutlets by carefully slicing them in half horizontally. You want them thin, so that they cook really evenly.

  2. Prep your dredging station. Line up three shallow dishes, pie plates, or even small baking pans: fill one with beaten egg, one with a combination of panko, bread crumbs & parmesan cheese, and one with flour.

  3. Season! Sprinkle the chicken cutlets with garlic powder, salt, pepper and Italian seasoning.

  4. Time to dredge! First flour , then egg, then Parmesan-panko-bread crumbs mixture.

  5. Fry the chicken breast filets in olive oil for two minutes per side. Work in batches so they get nice and crispy.

  6. Assemble! Put the chicken on a baking sheet, top each chicken piece with tomato sauce and fresh mozzarella.

  7. Bake the chicken Parmesan until the chicken is done and the cheese is melty and bubbly.

  8. Eat!

pan fried breaded chicken breast on a baking sheet with marinara
pan fried breaded chicken breast on a baking sheet iwht marinara and mozzarella
pan fried breaded chicken breast on a baking sheet baked with marinara and mozzarella
pan fried breaded chicken breast on a baking sheet baked with marinara and mozzarella and basil

The Best Chicken Parmesan Side Dishes

While you can serve chicken Parm over pasta—that’s classic, and always delicious—you can also serve it just on its own as a meaty, cheesy main dish with a few well-chosen sides. We love to serve this chicken Parmesan recipe with:

oven baked chicken parmesan with marinara, mozzarella, basil and red pepper flakes

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More Melty, Meaty, Italian Chicken Recipes to Try

homemade chicken parmesan on a plate with marinara, basil and fresh mozzarella
homemade chicken parmesan on a plate with marinara, basil and fresh mozzarella with a fork and knife

Bring on the Accolades!

While it can be fun to spring an unfamiliar dish on your family from time to time, there’s no feeling quite like setting out to cook up a recipe that you just know from the get-go everyone is going to adore. The anticipation of those looks of glee that you know you’ll see when you put dinner on the table is such a good feeling. This chicken Parmesan recipe all but promises that you’ll have that feeling when you start cooking, and we hope that the looks (and thanks!) you get for your kitchen labors are everything you wish for and more. When you make it, let us know how you like it! Share a photo and tag us on Instagram using @themodernproper and #themodernproper so that we can see your stuff! Happy eating!

Chicken Parmesan

  • Serves: 6
  • Prep Time:  20 min
  • Cook Time:  25 min
  • Calories: 488

Ingredients

  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup Panko breadcrumbs
  • 1/3 cup bread crumbs (if using Italian skip the Italian seasoning)
  • 3/4 cup parmesan cheese, plus more for serving
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp sea salt salt
  • 1/2 tsp freshly cracked pepper
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 3 large chicken breasts halved horizontally to make 6 fillets
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 24oz jar of you favorite marinara sauce or make ours
  • 8 oz fresh mozzarella cheese, sliced into 12 thin pieces
  • 2 tbsp fresh basil, chopped
  • Red pepper flakes, optional

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 400° F.
  2. Grab three shallow bowls, or rimmed plates, large enough to fit the size of your chicken breast. In one bowl beat the eggs until smooth. In the second bowl, place the flour and in the third bowl, mix together the Panko, bread crumbs and the parmesan cheese until fully combined.
  3. In a small bowl mix together the garlic powder, sea salt salt, pepper and Italian seasoning. Season chicken filets on both sides with the seasoning. Dredge each filleted breast in the flour and gently shake off excess, then dip in the egg and let the excess drip off, then dredge on both sides in the bread crumbs, gently pressing to coat completely.
  4. Heat 1/4 of the oil in a 12” skillet over medium-high heat until smoking. Add 3 chicken breast fillets and cook until golden brown, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer to a baking sheet. Add remaining oil and heat until smoking. Repeat the process with remaining chicken and transfer to the baking sheet.
  5. Top each breast with 3-4 tablespoons of marinara sauce and 2 slices each of the mozzarella. Bake in the oven until the chicken is cooked through (chicken is done when the thickest part of the chicken reads 165°F with an instant read thermometer.) and the cheese is melted, about 10-14 minutes. Remove from the oven and garnish with basil, extra parmesan and red pepper flakes if desired.

Nutrition Info

  • Per Serving
  • Amount
  • Calories488
  • Protein30 g
  • Carbohydrates18 g
  • Total Fat33 g
  • Dietary Fiber1 g
  • Cholesterol137 mg
  • sodium442 mg
  • Total Sugars1 g

Chicken Parmesan

Questions & Reviews

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  • Brett Tajima

    Can you use chicken thighs instead of chicken breast?

    Sure, it will change the cook time so make sure it is 165F before eating.

  • Meeta

    Hi!! Can’t wait to try this :)

    Can I prep the chicken beforehand (like coat in the bread crumbs) and then cook in skillet and bake it when I’m ready to serve?

    I think you would lose the crispness of the breading. I would personally not make the chicken ahead of time.

  • Alex Shepard

    I love this recipe. I’ve made it many times and it never disappoints. It’s so easy and always turns out amazing.

    Thanks Alex, so happy to hear it's a favorite!

  • Damien salinas

    abosloutly stunning!!! i made this for the family and they were amased, I'm definitely planning to make this again. 10/10 would reccomend

    Thanks Damien! SO happy the whole family enjoyed!

  • T

    This was great!

    Thanks T!

  • Kay Chevalier

    My husband has made this recipe a few times and it comes out so good! I’d even say foolproof. Classic and delicious!

    Thank you Kay, we are so happy you both enjoy it! Love to hear it's being repeated!

  • Jenn

    This was a family favorite!

    Yay, that's so great to hear!