Crispy Baked Chicken Breast
Mouthwatering crispy baked chicken breast, ready in under 30 minutes!
With a crunchy panko coating and juicy, tender chicken, this dish is a delicious and easy weeknight meal to serve with your favorite sides.
This easy oven-baked breaded chicken has quickly become a reader favorite around here. I’m not surprised, because it’s truly scrumptious!
Using panko breadcrumbs gives you a crispy, golden chicken without the need for deep-frying.
And the best part? You can make this ahead and freeze it for a convenient dinner on busy weeknights.
Why you’ll love this panko breaded chicken breast
- Golden, crispy texture: the crunchiness will satisfy your taste buds and leave you wanting more.
- A healthier alternative: traditional fried chicken can be high in calories and unhealthy fats. This recipe provides a healthier alternative that doesn’t compromise on flavor.
- Quick and simple: this baked fried chicken is perfect for busy weeknights when you’re short on time in the kitchen.
- Freezer-friendly: prepare a batch in advance and store it in the freezer for convenient and hassle-free meal prep.
- Serve with sides like mashed cauliflower, pasta salad, sweet potato fries, or Hasselback potatoes.
- Pair with air-fried broccoli, roasted Brussels sprouts, or grilled vegetables.
- Make a chicken sandwich using a homemade bun.
- Create chicken strips for dipping in sauces like honey mustard, BBQ, or ranch.
- Turn it into a mouthwatering chicken parmesan by topping it with marinara sauce and mozzarella cheese, then bake until the cheese is melted and bubbly.
- Add chopped chicken to salads for extra flavor and protein.
Ingredients & substitutions
Here are some helpful notes about the key ingredients for this chicken recipe:
- Chicken breast: boneless, skinless chicken breasts cut lengthwise work best for quick and crispy results. You can also use boneless, skinless thighs or chicken tenders, but cooking time will vary depending on their size and thickness.
- Egg: it helps the breadcrumbs stick to the chicken. You can use mayonnaise as an egg substitute.
- Panko breadcrumbs: these breadcrumbs have a coarser texture than regular breadcrumbs, giving the chicken a unique crunch. Find panko breadcrumbs in the grocery store’s breadcrumb section, Asian food aisle, or online.
- Seasoning: the recipe calls for paprika, grated lemon zest, salt, and pepper, but feel free to experiment with other herbs and spices like red pepper flakes, dried parsley, oregano, garlic powder, onion powder, or rosemary for different flavors.
- Cooking spray: coat the chicken with olive oil cooking spray or any neutral oil spray before baking.
See the recipe card below for a detailed ingredient list and step-by-step instructions.
How to make crispy baked chicken breast
Tips for success
- Cut the chicken evenly: this is a must! Use thin chicken breasts for even cooking and to prevent excess moisture.
- Use kitchen tongs to handle the breaded chicken, making the process easier and keeping your fingers clean.
- Don’t overcrowd the baking sheet; otherwise, the chicken will steam instead of fry, and the coating will become soggy.
- Check for doneness: use an instant-read thermometer to make sure the chicken reaches 165°F (75°C) inside. If you don’t have a thermometer, cut the chicken and check for white, fully cooked meat to avoid any risk of salmonella.
- Avoid overcooking the chicken to prevent dry and tough meat.
Storage & reheating instructions
To store: place any leftover chicken in an airtight container and store it in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. It’s best to enjoy the chicken freshly baked.
To reheat: for crispy results, reheat the leftover chicken in the oven at 350°F (175°C) for about 10 minutes until it’s heated through. Alternatively, you can use an air fryer at 400°F (205°C) for 3-5 minutes for similar results.
To freeze: place the unbaked chicken breasts on a plate and freeze them for at least 2 hours or until they are solid. Then, transfer them to a large ziplock bag and store them in the freezer for up to 3 months. When you are ready to bake, add an extra 5-10 minutes to the baking time.
Frequently Asked Questions
1- Pat the chicken dry before breading it.
2- When breading the chicken, shake off any excess flour, egg, and breadcrumbs.
3- Don’t overcrowd the baking sheet. Overcrowding can cause the breading to become soggy and fall off.
Yes, you can prepare the breaded chicken ahead of time, but it’s best to bake it just before serving to ensure maximum crispiness.
To prepare ahead, bread the chicken as directed in the recipe and refrigerate it on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Cover the chicken with plastic wrap and store it in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours. When you’re ready to bake, remove the chicken from the refrigerator, let it sit at room temperature for 15-20 minutes, and then bake it as directed in the recipe.
You can use mayonnaise as an egg replacement.
To make this recipe gluten-free, you can substitute the all-purpose flour with a gluten-free flour blend and use gluten-free panko breadcrumbs.
Have you tried this crispy chicken breast yet? Share your feedback or variations in the comments below. If you have any questions, feel free to ask – we’re here to help!
How To Make It: Baked Breaded Chicken Breast
- 1 lb (500 g) boneless, skinless chicken breast cut lengthwise
- ¾ cup (90 g) all-purpose flour
- 1 egg beaten
- 1 cup (80 g) panko breadcrumbs
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- zest of 1 lemon grated
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- oil spray
- 2 tablespoons fresh parsley leaves finely chopped
- lemon slices or lemon wedges
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C).
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Bread the chicken
- In a shallow dish, combine the flour, paprika, lemon zest, salt, and pepper. In another shallow dish, beat the egg. In a third shallow dish, place the panko breadcrumbs.
- Working one at a time, coat the chicken breasts in flour, dip them into eggs, and then dredge them in panko, pressing to coat.Shake off any excess after each step.
- Place the chicken on the prepared baking sheet and spray with oil on both sides.
- Bake the chicken for 10 minutes, then turn each piece over and continue baking for an additional 12 minutes, or until the chicken is fully cooked and has a slightly golden color. Baking times vary depending on the size and thickness of the chicken breasts.
Garnish and serve
- Garnish the crispy baked chicken breasts with a slice of lemon and chopped parsley, if desired.
- Chicken: you can also make this recipe with chicken tenders or with boneless, skinless thighs.
- Panko breadcrumbs: panko is usually found in the Asian section of supermarkets.
- Storage: leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-4 days or frozen for up to 3 months.
- Reheating leftovers: I recommend re-warming in a 300F oven for about 10 minutes, until crispy again.
- Scaling the recipe: you can easily double or triple the recipe. Just adjust the number of servings in the recipe card, and the ingredient amounts will change accordingly.