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close up shot of chicken parmas fresh out the oven garnished with basil
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5 from 5 votes

Baked Chicken Parmesan

This chicken parmesan is smothered in an easy marinara sauce, topped with fresh mozzarella and packed with plenty of fresh basil. It's also completely baked in the oven!
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time45 mins
Total Time1 hr 5 mins
Course: Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine: American, Italian
Servings: 4
Calories: 700kcal
Cost: £2.50 / $3

Equipment

  • Large Pan & Wooden Spoon
  • Large Baking Tray & Wire Rack
  • 3 Shallow Dishes (for dredging)
  • Cling Film & Rolling Pin or Mallet (for pounding chicken)
  • Sharp Knife & Chopping Board
  • Fine Cheese Grater
  • Spatula/Turner
  • Small Pot (for chicken seasoning)

Ingredients

Marinara Sauce

  • 1x 25oz/700g jar of Tomato Passata (pureed/strained tomatoes in US - see notes)
  • 6-8 large Basil Leaves, finely diced (plus extra to serve)
  • 2 cloves of Garlic, minced/finely diced
  • 1 medium Onion, finely diced
  • 1 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1/2 tsp Dried Oregano
  • Salt & Black Pepper, to taste
  • Sugar (optional)

Chicken

  • 4x 7oz/200g Chicken Breasts, brought close to room temp
  • 1 1/4cups / 75g Panko Breadcrumbs (see notes)
  • 2/3 cup / 50g freshly grated Parmesan, plus 4 pinches extra to top chicken
  • 1/3 cup / 70g Flour
  • 8 wedges of Fresh Mozzarella (approx 7oz/200g)
  • 2 medium Eggs, beaten
  • 1 heaped tbsp Butter
  • 1 tsp EACH: Salt, Garlic Powder
  • 3/4 tsp Dried Oregano
  • 1/2 tsp Black Pepper

Instructions

  • Breadcrumbs: In a large pan over medium heat melt in 1 heaped tbsp butter. Add Panko breadcrumbs and coat in the butter. Continue to toast the breadcrumbs, using a wooden spoon to move them about frequently, until nice and golden. Pour in 1 of your shallow dishes and leave to cool.
  • Marinara Sauce: In the same pan over medium heat warm 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil. Add in onion and fry until it begins to soften and just begins to pick up colour. Add garlic and fry another 1-2mins. Pour in passata and shake the jar out with a splash of water. Add in basil, oregano and seasoning to taste. Depending on the quality of your tomatoes you may need to add a pinch of sugar to balance out the acidity. Leave on a gentle simmer for 20mins, or until nicely thickened.
  • Pound Chicken: Lay cling film over chicken breast and pinch around it (just so no juices escape). Pound until they're around 1/4-1/2" thick. You want them as thin as you can get them without the breast breaking apart. Slice off any stray pieces around the edges.
  • Coat Chicken: In a small pot combine 1 tsp salt & garlic powder, 3/4 tsp oregano and 1/2 tsp black pepper. Pour half in a shallow dish with your flour and the other half in a shallow dish with breadcrumbs and parmesan. One by one coat a breast in the seasoned flour, then into egg, then into the seasoned breadcrumb/parmesan mixture. Really make sure you completely coat the chicken at each stage, namely the last stage. Place on a lightly oiled wired rack above a baking tray. Repeat with remaining breasts.
  • Bake (see notes for frying): Bake in the oven at 425F/220C for 10-12mins until the chicken begins to crisp, take out and carefully flip. Rotate tray and place back in the oven for another 5-10mins or until the chicken is golden crispy. At this point it should just be cooked through.
  • Top Chicken: Take chicken off wire rack and place on the tray. Spread over a good dollop or sauce, top with two wedges of mozzarella each, then sprinkle with parmesan. Place back under the grill and broil on high until the cheese goes golden and gooey.
  • Serve: sprinkle over fresh basil and serve over spaghetti or with chips/fries and side salad!

Video

Notes

a) Passata - Passata is readily available nearly everywhere in the UK, but if for whatever reason you don't have it you can just sub 2x 14oz/400g cans of chopped plum tomatoes. In all cases try and go for a good quality brand or it may taste slightly sour. If this is the case just add a few pinches of sugar to balance out the acidity in the sauce. The longer you simmer the deeper the flavour.
b) Panko - Panko breadcrumbs are great because they're big and airy, meaning when they're cooked they come out nice and crispy. Toasting them in butter means they'll turn out extra crispy (plus you get some of the gorgeous buttery flavour). I definitely recommend this step. You'll find Panko breadcrumbs in most stores, probably in the Asian section, but if you don't have them just sub regular dried breadcrumbs (try and find large breadcrumbs, not the dusty variety). I recommend weighing them (75g/2.6oz) because different sizes will produce difference cup sizes.
c) Frying - I prefer shallow frying, but you can get away with using 3-4tbsp oil. I recommend 1 cup veg oil (higher smoking point than olive oil) and heat up until a breadcrumb rapidly sizzles, approx 356F/180C. Fry chicken breasts 1-2 at a time for 3-4mins each side until golden and crispy. Place on baking tray, top with marinara etc etc.
d) Make Ahead - I don't recommend making the whole thing in advance, because the sauce makes the chicken soggy if left for a while, but you could do these steps in advance:
  • Toast Breadcrumbs (store in airtight container at room temp 1-2days)
  • Pound Chicken (tightly cover in the fridge overnight then bring to room temp before needed)
  • Marinara Sauce (allow to completely cool then tightly cover in the fridge for 4-5days)
e) Calories - per chicken parmesan. Slightly overestimate as not all the ingredients are picked up during dredging.

Nutrition

Calories: 700kcal | Carbohydrates: 34.87g | Protein: 69.59g | Fat: 30.29g | Saturated Fat: 13.167g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2.896g | Monounsaturated Fat: 10.082g | Trans Fat: 0.133g | Cholesterol: 287mg | Sodium: 1447mg | Potassium: 1287mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 7.67g | Vitamin A: 2245IU | Vitamin C: 26.6mg | Calcium: 488mg | Iron: 3.62mg