LET’S COOK: 30 Minute Chicken Parmesan

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chicken parm homemade pasta recipe

What’s Up, Hungry People

Tonight we make Chicken Parmesan with a homemade tomato sauce in about thirty minutes from start to finish. Join me and let’s cook!

My garden has been producing tomatoes like bonkers, so I decided to make a simple tomato sauce from scratch using fresh Roma and Beefsteak tomatoes. If you don’t have fresh tomatoes handy, canned diced tomatoes work just as well.

Panko is better than regular breadcrumbs for Chicken Parmesan, but if you can’t find panko or prefer plain breadcrumbs instead, those can definitely be substituted. For a healthier Chicken Parmesan, leave out the breading altogether.

What recipe would you like to cook with me? Let me know in the comments!

Here’s What You Need

  • Fresh tomatoes: Used to create a rich, homemade tomato sauce.
  • Canned diced tomatoes: A convenient alternative to fresh tomatoes for the sauce.
  • Panko breadcrumbs: Provides a lighter, crunchier texture for coating the chicken.
  • Plain breadcrumbs: An alternative to Panko, offering a traditional breading option.
  • Chicken breasts: The main protein, serves as the foundation for the dish.
  • Eggs: Helps the breadcrumbs adhere to the chicken.
  • Flour: Used for the initial coating on the chicken to ensure proper breading.

Let’s Cook

Preparing Your Ingredients

First things first, Hungry People! Let’s get all our ingredients ready. Grab those tomatoes—whether they’re fresh off the vine or straight out of a can—and chop them up. We’re going for a rustic, hearty sauce here. Now, whisk your egg until it’s nice and smooth, and set it aside.

For the chicken, you’ll want to place it between two pieces of plastic wrap and gently pound it to about a half-inch thickness. This not only helps it cook evenly but also makes it tender. Oh, and don’t forget to preheat your oven to 425°F—this chicken’s not going to cook itself!

Breading the Chicken

Now, let’s bread that chicken! Mix your Panko—or plain breadcrumbs if that’s your style—with some seasoning in a dish. In a separate dish, blend the flour and a little salt. Dip each chicken piece first in the flour, shake off the excess, then dunk it into your whisked egg, and finally, coat it generously in the breadcrumb mixture. We’re building layers of flavor and texture here, so make sure each piece is well-covered.

Cooking the Chicken

Heat up a few tablespoons of oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. When it’s sizzling hot, add your breaded chicken. We’re looking for a golden, crispy exterior, so about 3-4 minutes on each side should do the trick. Once they’re done, set those golden beauties aside on a plate.

Making the Sauce

In the same skillet, add a bit more oil, then toss in your onions. Give them a few minutes to get soft and translucent—this is where they start to sweeten up. Next, stir in the garlic until it’s just fragrant; we don’t want any burnt garlic here. Add the peppers and let them soften up before pouring in all those tomatoes you prepped earlier. Let the mix simmer and reduce down until it’s nice and thick, just the way a good sauce should be.

Bringing It All Together

Stir in your herbs and seasonings, then lower the heat and add your tomato sauce to blend everything together. Drop in that tomato paste to thicken it up and let it simmer softly. While the sauce does its magic, slice up your mozzarella—nice and thick slices, please—and boil some pasta until it’s just right.

Now, layer that chicken back into the sauce in the skillet, top each piece with a slice of mozzarella, and slide the whole skillet into the oven. Let it bake until the cheese is bubbly and begging to be eaten. If you’re feeling a little extra, hit it with the broiler for a minute or two to get that top perfectly golden and bubbly.

Tips for Perfect Chicken Parmesan

  • Choose the Right Tomatoes: For the best sauce, use a mix of Roma and Beefsteak tomatoes for a balance of flavor and texture. If using canned tomatoes, opt for those that are low in sodium and have no added flavors to maintain the natural taste of your sauce.
  • Achieving the Perfect Crust: When breading your chicken, ensure each piece is evenly coated with flour, dipped thoroughly in egg, and generously covered with breadcrumbs. Press the breadcrumbs gently onto the chicken to set the crust.
  • Cooking the Chicken: Heat your oil over medium-high heat before adding the chicken. The oil should sizzle when the chicken hits the pan, indicating it’s hot enough to start cooking. Avoid overcrowding the pan to ensure each piece cooks evenly and gets a nice golden crust.
  • Simmering the Sauce: Let your tomato sauce simmer until it thickens to your desired consistency. Stir occasionally to prevent the bottom from burning and to help the flavors meld better.
  • Healthier Alternatives: For a lighter version of Chicken Parmesan, skip the breading and simply season the chicken with salt, pepper, and herbs before grilling or baking. This reduces calories while still providing a satisfying meal.

What recipe would you like to cook with me? Let me know in the comments!

chicken parm thumb

LET’S COOK: 30 Minute Chicken Parmesan

The Starving Chef
This Chicken Parmesan features a homemade tomato sauce and crispy panko coating, perfect for a delicious dinner.
No ratings yet
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine Quick & Easy
Servings 4

Ingredients
  

Instructions
 

  • Prep all your vegetables: chop the tomatoes, onions, and peppers; mince the garlic. Whisk the egg in a small bowl. Place the chicken between plastic wrap and use a meat mallet to flatten to about ½ inch thick, then cut into quarters. Preheat the oven to 425°F.
  • In a small bowl, combine the panko breadcrumbs and chopped parsley. In another small bowl, mix the flour with salt to taste. Dredge the chicken in the flour, then dip into the whisked egg, shaking off the excess before coating completely with the panko mixture. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
  • Heat 2-3 tablespoons of vegetable oil over medium-high heat. Place the panko-crusted chicken in the hot oil and sear on both sides until cooked through, about 3-4 minutes per side. Remove the chicken from the pan and set aside. Wipe the skillet clean.
  • Add a tablespoon of vegetable oil to the skillet. Add the onions and sauté for 2-3 minutes, until tender. Then add the garlic and cook until fragrant. Stir in the peppers and cook for 3-4 minutes, until softened.
  • Pour in the diced tomatoes and stir as they release their moisture. Let as much of the moisture evaporate as you can – when cooked sufficiently, it should be mostly dry when a spoon is scraped down the center of the skillet.
  • Season the tomato mixture with oregano, thyme, garlic powder, and onion powder. Season with salt and pepper, as desired. Reduce the heat to barely a simmer and pour in the tomato sauce. Stir well to combine and heat through, then add the tomato paste to thicken the sauce. Simmer for about 10 minutes on medium-low heat.
  • Bring a pot of water to a boil. Cook the pasta according to the instructions on the box. Cut the mozzarella into ½ inch thick slices.
  • Add the chicken to the sauce and place a slice of mozzarella on top of each piece. Place in the oven and cook until the mozzarella is bubbly and melted. Optionally, broil until browning and bubbled.
  • Serve the chicken and sauce on a bed of noodles or alongside a simple Caesar salad. Enjoy!
Keyword chicken, Parmesan, pasta
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