Who has time to pound out chicken and fuss with pan frying on a weeknight? I don't know about you, but by the time I have worked all day, I am looking for an easy recipe that doesn't take too much brain power to make! I don't even know how you moms out there do it! I am hoping that you just sort of learn how to juggle it all, right? Don't tell me if I am wrong, that is what I am hanging on to.
This Easy Chicken Parmesan is, well, easy, and much healthier than restaurant versions. Restaurant chicken parmesan can set you back over 1000 calories. It is usually loaded with too much breading, pan fried in oil, and is sitting on top of a monster-load of pasta. Noodles, sauce, and cheese are a great combination but it can easily turn into too much of a good thing, especially for the waistline!
Easy Chicken Parmesan cuts back on the breading, is baked vs fried, and is topped with moderate amounts of sauce and cheese. When I eat chicken parmesan, I want to taste the chicken, not the breading! I use the chicken breast as is, and don't fuss around with pounding it out, like many recipes recommend. Not only does it save time but the meat stays juicier. There is nothing worse that eating a hockey puck for dinner, just ask my husband.
We prefer to use swiss cheese over mozzarella. Swiss is fairly mild, but has more of a nuttier flavor. Now, I am just going to go ahead and admit that I used jarred sauce for this recipe. I hope you all didn't just pass out on me. I know, I know, it is shameful but who doesn't do it from time to time? If you say no, you are a liar. Plus, this is EASY Chicken Parmesan and let's face it, jars are easier!
Easy Chicken Parmesan
1 lb of chicken breast (4 pieces)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 cup of Italian-seasoned bread crumbs
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
1/8 cup dried basil
1 cup of pasta sauce
4-8 slices of swiss cheese
1. Mix bread crumbs, parmesan cheese, and basil in a large dish. Rub chicken breast evenly
with olive oil. Dip each piece of chicken into bread crumb mixture, making sure each
piece is evenly coated. Put chicken breast into a greased/sprayed baking dish.
(You may have breadcrumbs leftover.)
2. Bake chicken, uncovered, for 30-45 minutes at 400 degrees until the internal temperature
is 165 degrees. When chicken is cooked, remove from oven. Turn oven to broil. Top each
piece of chicken with 1/4 cup of sauce and 1-2 pieces of cheese. Put back in oven for 3-5
minutes or until cheese is browned and bubbly.
3. Serve chicken parmesan with a sauteed green or a small side of pasta, topped with fresh
grated parmesan cheese.
We sauteed kale in olive oil, garlic, salt, and pepper to go alongside the chicken parmesan. Cody was open to trying the kale (he liked it) but chose to have his chicken parmesan with a side of pasta. I woofed down the kale but may or may not have had a few bites of his pasta while he wasn't looking.
Don't get too hung up on my measurements. They are loose. You may end up using more or less sauce depending on the size of your chicken breasts. You can adjust the amount or type of cheese. If you want to fancy it up, use a homemade sauce and top with fresh basil. Don't be afraid to experiment. Practice makes perfect. If you mess up something, don't beat yourself up. You will know what to do different next time!
Cody and I have been making chicken parmesan this way for a long time. It is one of our "tried and true" recipes. We have made it for friends, for family, and just for us. Everybody has always enjoyed it, jarred sauce or not.