Chicken Parmigiana

10 May

This is my interpretation of the Italian classic, baked – not fried, inspired by my friend Janet. I tweaked it to our tastes and I was wowed bite after bite. Give it a try!

Time: 30 min prep, 30 min cook            Serves: 4  


  • 4 small boneless skinless chicken breasts pounded to even thickness OR 2 large b/s chicken breasts sliced in half horizontally
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 28 oz can diced tomatoes with liquid
  • 1 8 oz. can tomato sauce
  • pinch red pepper flakes
  • 2 fresh bay leaves
  • salt to taste
  • fresh ground pepper to taste
  • 1/4 tsp. dried thyme
  • 2 tbsp fresh oregano, roughly chopped + a bit for garnish
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup Panko bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese + 1/4 cup
  • 1 cup shredded cheese – I used Sargento’s 6 Italian Cheese Blend but any similar blend or simply mozzarella will work just as well.

How to make it

  • Heat 1 tbsp oil over medium-high heat. Add onions  and bay leaves. Cook, stirring occasionally, until soft and beginning to turn golden, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and red pepper flakes. Cook an additional 1-2 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Add tomatoes, tomato sauce, thyme and salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a light boil and reduce to simmer, uncovered, for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Meanwhile, beat egg in a small bowl and season lightly with salt and pepper.
  • Preheat oven to 350F.
  • In a pie plate or similar, combine bread crumbs and 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese. Dip chicken pieces into egg, then into the crumb mixture. Set aside. Repeat with all chicken breasts.
  • Heat 1 tbsp oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add chicken and cook on each side for about 3-4 minutes, until golden brown. Transfer to a baking dish.
  • Pour 2/3 of the tomato sauce mixture over the chicken. Sprinkle the shredded cheese on top and then spoon on the rest of the tomato mixture. Sprinkle with the 1/3 cup of Parmesan and garnish with oregano.
  • Bake, uncovered, for about 30 minutes until hot and bubbling.
  • I served this with whole wheat spaghetti, spooning some extra sauce onto the pasta, along with roasted asparagus. It would make a delicious sandwich.

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