Chicken Parmesan

Chicken parmesan is a quintessential Italian meal, but the cheesy-bready-saucy combination that makes this dish so irresistible can also pack an unhealthy punch. If you’re looking for a lighter option that will still impress your Italian food fanatics, try out this recipe that features chunky, homemade marinara sauce and pan-fried chicken cutlets.

This recipe is courtesy of Emily Paster, West of the Loop.Ready in55 m40 m(prepare time)15 m(cook time)6Servings675Calories Per ServingRelated Recipes1 Chicken Recipe, 5 MealsEasy Chicken Recipes for the SummerChicken Recipes for Busy Weeknights


For the sauce

  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 3 carrots, peeled and diced
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon basil, dried
  • 1 teaspoon oregano, dried
  • pinch of red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon tomato paste
  • 2 28 oz. cans of diced plum tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon sugar

For the chicken cutlets

  • 1 1/2 pound chicken breast cutlets, hand-filleted
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 egg
  • 2 cups Panko or dried bread crumbs
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 cup part-skim mozzarella cheese, grated
  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese, grated


For the sauce

Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a large Dutch oven or saucepan.

Add the onions and sauté until softened, about five minutes.

Add the carrots and the garlic.

Saute the vegetables over medium-low heat until tender and softened, about 10 minutes

Season with basil, oregano, red pepper flakes and salt and pepper and sauté an additional few minutes until the herbs are fragrant.

Add the tomato paste and stir to combine.

Add the canned tomatoes and sugar, stirring to combine, and raise the heat.

Bring tomato sauce to a boil, and then turn heat down and simmer until thickened, at least 30 minutes. Feel free to simmer the sauce on very low heat for longer if your schedule permits.

While the sauce is simmering, prepare the chicken cutlets.

For the chicken cutlets

Heat the olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over high heat.

Make an assembly line with two plates and a shallow soup bowl in the middle.

In the first plate, add the flour and season it well with salt and pepper.

Add the egg to the soup bowl with a splash of water and beat together.

Add half the bread crumbs to the third plate.

Pat the chicken cutlets dry with paper towels.

Dredge the first cutlet in the flour, coating both sides and shaking to remove any excess, then dip it in the egg mixture. Finally dredge the cutlet in the bread crumbs, pressing down slightly so that they adhere.

Turn it over and repeat with the other side.

Add the cutlet to the hot skillet, adjusting the heat to medium if necessary.

When the bottom is browned and crispy, which should only take a few minutes, flip the cutlet over to brown the other side.

Repeat the coating process with the remaining cutlets, adding more bread crumbs as necessary.

Once they are coated, add the cutlets to the skillet, but do not cook more than two or three cutlets at a time, depending on the size of the skillet. Work in batches as necessary, draining the cooked cutlets on paper towels.

Meanwhile, ladle sauce into a 2-quart baking dish to cover the bottom and preheat the oven to 450.

When the cutlets are browned and crispy on both sides, place them in the baking dish.

Cover with more sauce. (You may have sauce leftover, which is fine.)

Top with grated cheeses and bake fifteen minutes, until the cheese is melted and bubbling.

Serve over pasta or polenta, passing the extra sauce on the side.

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