This Chicken Parmesan features juicy chicken breasts that are quickly fried and then baked, with an irresistible Italian breadcrumb and Parmesan breading. Finish it off with your favorite marinara sauce and some mozzarella for an easy weeknight dinner in under 45 minutes.
Easy Baked Chicken Parmesan
Chicken parmesan, made with juicy, crispy chicken, marinara sauce, and loads of gooey, melty, cheese is a dinner I’ll never get tired of. It’s just so easy and so tasty. Plus, it’s one thing I know the entire family will always be happy to eat and it’s good enough to serve guests too.
I’ve shared a few other chicken parm recipes on the blog, like my air fryer chicken parmesan, and the oh-so-easy one pot chicken parmesan pasta, but I wanted to share my classic chicken parmesan recipe too.
This is the more traditional way to make chicken parmesan, by first frying the chicken to get the crispy outside, and then baking it until the cheese is perfectly melted. And don’t forget the marinara! The end result is crispy on the outside, juicy on the inside chicken bursting with flavor.
From start to finish, this chicken parm can be on the table in just 45 minutes. Add some cooked spaghetti, some extra sauce, and a side salad, and you have an easy weeknight dinner everyone loves.
What’s The Difference Between Chicken Parmesan and Chicken Parmigiana?
Truthfully, there is no difference between chicken parmesan and chicken parmigiana. They’re simply different spellings of the same dish, with “parmigiana” being “more Italian” and what you’ll often find on the menu at Italian restaurants. (Note that despite the name, chicken parmigiana is an American dish inspired by Italian cuisine, not a dish that actually originated in Italy.)
Baked chicken parmesan is an easy dinner recipe made with just a handful of ingredients. Be sure to scroll down to the recipe box for the full measurements.
- Chicken – You’ll want boneless, skinless chicken breasts to make chicken parmesan.
- All-purpose flour
- Eggs – Lightly beaten for the egg wash.
- Seasonings – The only seasonings needed for the chicken parmesan breading are salt, pepper, and garlic salt since we are using seasoned breadcrumbs.
- Italian-style seasoned breadcrumbs – These add more flavor to the chicken. If you use unseasoned breadcrumbs, you’ll want to add spices to the breadcrumb mixture as well.
- Cheese – I use Parmesan cheese in the breading and mozzarella cheese on top of the chicken. Freshly grated and sliced cheese is best as it melts the best.
- Marinara sauce – I like to use my homemade marinara sauce but you can also use your favorite jar from the store.
- Optional garnish – I like to top my chicken parmigiana off with some fresh parsley or basil, a squeeze of fresh lemon juice, and some extra Parmesan.
- For serving – My favorite way to serve chicken parm is over pasta, with additional marinara sauce.
Cheese & Breading Options
A few thoughts on what cheese and breading is best for making chicken parmesan:
- Seasoned breadcrumbs are best. I always use Italian-style seasoned breadcrumbs as they provide a good crunch with lots of flavor. However, if you want super crunchy chicken parmesan, you can add Panko breadcrumbs as well. If you choose to use unseasoned breadcrumbs, stir in some Italian seasoning for flavor.
- What cheese is best for chicken parmesan? As implied by name, you’ll definitely want parmesan cheese in this dish! I use freshly grated parmesan cheese in the breading. Avoid the pre-grated kind in the can as it will not melt properly or add as much flavor. Mozzarella cheese is the best option for melting on top. Both shredded and sliced mozzarella work. Use fresh mozzarella to take it up a notch!
How to Make Chicken Parmesan
You’ll need just 45 minutes to get this easy chicken dinner on the table – even though it’s made from scratch. Perfect for a busy weeknight dinner.
- Prepare the chicken breasts. Place the chicken breasts between plastic wrap or parchment paper. Flatten them to 1/2 inch thickness with a rolling pin or flat kitchen mallet. Season with salt and pepper.
- Prepare the breading mixtures. Add flour to one bowl, lightly beaten eggs to another, and mix the breadcrumb and Parmesan cheese in another.
- Dredge the chicken. Dip each chicken breast in flour, then in the egg, and finally into the breadcrumb mixture.
- Fry the chicken. Cook the chicken for 4 to 5 minutes in the olive oil over medium heat.
- Bake. Transfer the partially cooked chicken to a baking sheet. Top with marinara sauce, mozzarella cheese, and more Parmesan. Add basil or parsley if desired. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until the cheese is bubbling and melted.
- Enjoy. Serve over pasta if desired and enjoy!
Tips for Success
Here are a few tips for making the best chicken parmesan.
- Be sure to flatten the chicken. Pounding the chicken is a step you won’t want to skip, as it helps to ensure that the chicken cooks fully and evenly. Thicker pieces of chicken may end up overdone on the outside by the time the inside is fully cooked.
- Don’t over-fry the chicken. The chicken needs to be cooked for just a few minutes on each side. The goal is to give the outside a nice, crispy texture and begin to cook the chicken. It does not need to be fully cooked as it will finish cooking in the oven.
- How do I know when chicken parmigiana is done? You’ll know this dish is done when the cheese is melted and bubbly. The chicken should reach an internal temperature of 160F, which you can check with an instant-read thermometer.
What Do You Eat Chicken Parmesan With?
Chicken parmesan is typically served over spaghetti noodles, though any type of pasta will work. For a fun twist, try spaghetti stuffed garlic bread.
How to Store & Reheat Leftovers
Store leftover chicken parmesan in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days. Reheat in the microwave until hot or warm it up on the oven. Cover with foil if reheating in the oven to prevent the cheese from burning.
More Easy Chicken Recipes:
- Melt in Your Mouth Chicken
- Green Chile Chicken Enchilada Casserole
- Garlic Butter Mushroom Stuffed Chicken
- Santa Fe Chicken Foil Packets
- 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
- ½ cup all‐purpose flour
- salt and pepper
- 2 large eggs lightly beaten
- 1 tsp garlic salt
- 1 cup Italian‐style seasoned breadcrumbs
- ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 cups marinara sauce
- 8 oz mozzarella cheese sliced or 1 cup shredded
- Optional garnish: chopped fresh parsley or basil; squeeze of fresh lemon juice; extra Parmesan cheese
- Optional for serving: cooked pasta and additional marinara sauce
- Preheat an oven to 400 degrees and spray a baking sheet with cooking spray.
- Put the chicken breasts between two pieces of saran wrap or parchment paper and using a rolling pin or flat kitchen mallet flatten it to ½ inch thickness then season them with salt and pepper.
- In three shallow baking dishes or bowls, add the flour to one, eggs to one (and beat until combined), the bread crumbs and Parmesan cheese to the other (and mix).
- Dredge the chicken in the flour, then the egg and then press it into the bread crumb mixture.
- Add the olive oil to a cast iron skillet on medium high heat and cook the chicken for 4‐5 minutes on each side until golden brown (it'll be raw inside still).
- Add the chicken to a baking sheet, add the marinara sauce and then top with mozzarella slices and about 2 tablespoons parmesan cheese. Sprinkle with basil or parsley (if desired) and cook for 15‐20 minutes or until cheese is bubbling and melted, and the chicken is completely cooked through.