Chicken
Crispy Baked Chicken Parmesan

Chicken Parmesan is a weeknight classic for a reason. Each piece of chicken is wrapped in a layer of crunchy breadcrumbs, then covered in gooey, melted cheese, all immersed in a pool of deliciously tangy marinara sauce. It's all made with ingredients you probably have lying around in your kitchen right now. It's your night warrior that the whole family will love.

If you are an air fryer lover, you can also make delicious chicken parmigiana in the air fryer!

Because you will love this recipe

  • Use simple, everyday ingredients that are easy to find.
  • Two types of breadcrumbs to add even more crunch.
  • Ready in less than an hour, ideal for busy evenings.
An overhead view of a pan of baked chicken parmigiana topped with melted mozzarella.

Chicken Parmesan Recipe

Chicken parmigiana has a delicious contrast of textures, from the crunchiness of the breadcrumb coating to the softness of the melted mozzarella. The flavors are rich and comforting, combining the tanginess of marinara sauce with the savory depth of parmesan and the freshness of basil. The best chicken parmesan has the perfect deep-fried, breaded coating and is topped with marinara and fresh mozzarella for classic gooey comfort food perfection.

A collage image showing four different stages of the process of breading the chicken and preparing it for assembly in making chicken parmigiana.

Chicken options

We like to use skinless, boneless chicken breasts in our chicken parmesan recipe. Make sure you use thin chicken breasts. If the chicken you buy is plump and large, you can use a hammer to pound it until it is an even thickness.

Cheese options

Chicken parmigiana is usually made using a combination of mozzarella and parmesan. The mozzarella provides the gooey melted cheese factor, while the parmesan adds lots of extra flavor. Fresh mozzarella will give you a better texture than the block style. When it comes to parmesan, always opt for freshly grated parmesan as dried or pre-grated options generally contain preservatives mixed in that interfere with melting.

Are both types of breadcrumbs necessary?

This recipe calls for a combination of panko breadcrumbs and dried regular breadcrumbs. The combination of double breadcrumbs is a big part of what makes this Chicken Parmesan the best. We find it to be the perfect combination to provide the ultimate crunchy combination. Be sure to use Italian seasoned breadcrumbs. If using regular, you will need to add 1 1/2 teaspoons of Italian seasoning to the mix.

A collage image showing four different steps in the process of adding the breaded chicken to the baking dish.

Serving Tips

You can serve chicken parmigiana on a bed of cooked pasta of any size, we prefer spaghetti or linguine. Coat the dough with a drizzle of olive oil or melted butter to prevent it from sticking. Add another 1 to 2 cups of marinara to this recipe when serving over pasta so you have enough sauce to coat the pasta. Some of our favorite sides to serve it with include:

troubleshooting

  • Cheese that won't melt or brown: If the cheese isn't melting or browning toward the end of the cooking time, set the grill setting for a minute or two. Watch carefully to avoid burning yourself.
  • Drying the chicken: If you notice the chicken starting to dry out during cooking, cover the baking dish with aluminum foil to retain moisture in the meat.
  • Burning the cheese before the chicken is cooked: To prevent the cheese from burning if the chicken is not cooked, place a piece of foil over the surface halfway through cooking, removing it in the last few minutes for a final touch of colour.
  • The chicken is not cooked: Continue cooking it in the oven until it reaches the correct temperature.

For maximum crunchiness, wait to add the marinara sauce until just before serving. You will have to melt the mozzarella and parmesan directly on the fried chicken breast. Heat the marinara sauce before seasoning and serving.

An overhead view of a plate of chicken parmigiana ready to eat.

Make instructions in advance

Prepare the breaded chicken according to the recipe, stopping before the frying or baking step. Arrange the breaded chicken pieces on a baking tray covered with baking paper, making sure they do not touch each other. Freeze them on the baking sheet for about 1-2 hours or until firm. Once firm, transfer the chicken pieces to a freezer-safe bag or container, separating the layers with parchment paper to prevent them from sticking together. Label the container with the date and store it in the freezer for up to 2 months.

When it's ready to cook, you don't need to defrost it. Preheat the oven as indicated in the recipe, increase the cooking time slightly to take into account starting from frozen and cook until the chicken is cooked and the breading is golden and crunchy. In the last few minutes of cooking, add the marinara sauce and cheese, continuing until the cheese is melted and bubbling.

Instructions for storage and heating

Place the remaining chicken parmesan in an airtight container and store in the refrigerator. It will keep for 3 to 4 days. When you're ready to eat it, you can reheat it in the microwave in 30-second increments until heated through. You can also reheat it in the oven for even crispier results. Place the chicken parmigiana in a baking dish and cover with aluminum foil, then heat at 350 degrees F for 15 to 20 minutes.

More delicious chicken recipes

Watch the video below where Rachel will walk you through each step of this recipe. Sometimes it helps to have a visual idea and we always have you covered with our cooking program. You can find the complete collection of recipes on Youtube, Facebook Look, or ours Facebook pageor right here on our website with the corresponding recipes.

The best chicken parmesan

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