Classic Chicken Parmesan
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Breaded chicken cutlets in between layers of flavorful marinara sauce, topped with plenty of mozzarella and Parmesan cheese.
Serves: 4-6
For the Marinara Sauce:
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 onion, grated
  • 4 cloves garlic, grated
  • 1 28-ounce can of crushed tomatoes
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano flakes
  • ½ teaspoon dried basil flakes
  • ¼ teaspoon granulated sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes (or more, depending on your tastes - I used about ½ teaspoon)
  • the rind of your Parmesan cheese (optional)
For the Chicken Parmesan:
  • 3-4 large chicken breasts, sliced in half and/or pounded out, if needed
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup unseasoned breadcrumbs
  • 1½ cups Parmesan cheese, divided
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • ¾ pound (12 ounces) mozzarella cheese, sliced
  • chives or fresh basil (or both), for garnish
  1. First, make your marinara sauce. Use a box grater to grate your onion into your pot or pan. Add in the olive oil, turn cook over medium-high heat for 5 minutes, until some of the liquid has evaporated. Add in the grated garlic and cook for 1 more minute. Add in the crushed tomatoes, oregano, basil, sugar, red pepper flakes and your Parmesan cheese rind (this adds some salt and some cheesy flavor - I just grate my cheese ahead of time, then drop the remaining rind into the sauce. You can freeze used up Parmesan rinds to use for this purpose later on, too). Bring to a light boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook for 10 minutes or so. Remove from the heat and set aside.
  2. Now, prepare your chicken. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F. I used 3 large chicken breasts, which I sliced lengthwise in half to make 6 cutlets. You can do this if your chicken breasts are thick, or you can place them between two sheets of parchment or plastic wrap and pound them out with a rolling pin. You just don't want your meat to be so thick that it won't cook through.
  3. In one shallow pan, combine your breadcrumbs, ½ cup of Parmesan cheese, 1 teaspoon salt, ½ teaspoon black pepper and lemon zest. In another shallow pan, whisk together your two eggs. Heat your ¼ cup of olive oil over medium-high heat in a large, heavy bottomed pan, then dip your cutlets in the egg, followed by dredging them in the breadcrumb mixture, pressing down to get the breadcrumbs and cheese to stick. Place the chicken in your pan, and cook on each side, until golden (about 3-4 minutes per side).
  4. When the chicken is ready, spoon about 1 cup of marinara sauce in the bottom of a 9x13-inch casserole dish (enough to cover the bottom). Arrange the cooked chicken in the dish, then top with the remaining marinara sauce. Add the sliced mozzarella cheese on top of each chicken cutlet, then sprinkle with 1 cup of Parmesan cheese. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes or so, until the mozzarella and Parmesan are fully melted and bubbling. Sprinkle with sliced basil or chives and serve with salad or on top of pasta.
Recipe by The Crepes of Wrath at