Chicken Parmesan Recipe (2024)

By Melissa Clark

Updated Jan. 23, 2024

Chicken Parmesan Recipe (1)

Total Time
1 hour 15 minutes
Read community notes

A classic Italian-American Parmesan — a casserole of fried, breaded meat or eggplant covered with tomato sauce and molten cheese — is all about balance. You need a bracing a tomato sauce to cut out the fried richness, while a milky, mild mozzarella rounds out the Parmesan’s tang. Baked until brown-edged and bubbling, it’s classic comfort food — hearty, gooey and satisfying. Although chicken or veal cutlets are the standard, boneless, skinless chicken thighs make a more flavorful alternative. Pork or turkey cutlets work nicely here, too. Serve with an assertively-dressed green salad and a loaf of crusty bread. Store leftover chicken Parmesan in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days, and wrapped tightly and frozen for up to 6 months.

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Yield:6 servings

  • 2pounds boneless, skinless chicken, turkey or pork cutlets (or use chicken thighs for even more flavor)
  • ½cup all-purpose flour
  • 3large eggs, beaten
  • 2 to 3cups panko bread crumbs, as needed
  • Kosher salt, as needed
  • Black pepper, as needed
  • Olive oil, for frying
  • 5cups Simple Tomato Sauce (see recipe)
  • 1cup finely grated Parmesan, preferably Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • ½pound fresh mozzarella, torn into bite-sized pieces

Ingredient Substitution Guide

Nutritional analysis per serving (6 servings)

1389 calories; 114 grams fat; 26 grams saturated fat; 0 grams trans fat; 68 grams monounsaturated fat; 14 grams polyunsaturated fat; 39 grams carbohydrates; 5 grams dietary fiber; 8 grams sugars; 55 grams protein; 1623 milligrams sodium

Note: The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.

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Chicken Parmesan Recipe (2)


Make the recipe with us

  1. Step


    Heat oven to 400 degrees. Place cutlets between two pieces of parchment or plastic wrap. Using a kitchen mallet or rolling pin, pound meat to even ¼-inch-thick slices.

  2. Step


    Place flour, eggs and panko into three wide, shallow bowls. Season meat generously with salt and pepper. Dip a piece in flour, then eggs, then coat with panko. Repeat until all the meat is coated.

  3. Step


    Fill a large skillet with ½-inch oil. Place over medium-high heat. When oil is hot, fry cutlets in batches, turning halfway through, until golden brown. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate.

  4. Step


    Spoon a thin layer of sauce over the bottom of a 9-by-13-inch baking pan. Sprinkle one-third of the Parmesan over sauce. Place half of the cutlets over the Parmesan and top with half the mozzarella pieces. Top with half the remaining sauce, sprinkle with another third of the Parmesan, and repeat layering, ending with a final layer of sauce and Parmesan.

  5. Step


    Transfer pan to oven and bake until cheese is golden and casserole is bubbling, about 40 minutes. Let cool a few minutes before serving.



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Cooking Notes

Larry G.

I do a simple one pan version:
Pan fry the cutlets.
Wipe the pan clean of the oil.
Place cutlets back in pan.
Place a thin slice of Prosciutto over each cutlet.
Place a slice of fresh mozzarella over each.
Place a dolop of tomato sauce over each.
Cover skillet and saute over low heat until cheese melts


I know people say this all of the time, but does anyone actually make this recipe as is!?! I looked at the notes and I can’t find a single one. Look, it’s super that you change it up, I’m sure it’s delicious, but I would like to hear from someone-anyone who actually makes the dish just as described!

Betsy R

I thought for quite awhile about how I could retain the crunch in this dish without frying. I used skinless boneless chicken thighs and salted and floured them, then sautéed. I deglazed the pan with vermouth and added that on top of the chicken nestled in a lot of sauce.Then came the Mozzarella & Parmesan. Then I took Panko and added herbs and olive oil and spread it over the top of the dish. It got all brown, crunchy and good! Excellent! No need to pound thinly or fry. Yum!


I have whipped up chicken parm on many occasions but decided to follow this recipe, which has you bake the chicken for 40 minutes in the sauce. For me, one of the best parts of chicken parm, or any parm, is the crunchy breading under the sauce and melted cheese, which you can get easily by frying your chicken, then topping with sauce and cheese and broiling. This recipe just produced really soggy chicken and a watery mess. Perhaps my mozzarella was the culprit, but it was disappointing.

Amy C

I love this recipe, but I prepare the breaded cutlets this way: I toast the panko crumbs on a sheet pan alone with about a tbsp of olive oil sprinkled over them and some salt and pepper added at 300 until golden. Watch the crumbs carefully because they can burn easily. Then I put the toasted crumbs in a dish to cool a bit and proceed with the breading process as directed here. Bake the cutlets on a cookie cooling rack at 400 for about 10-15 minutes. Much less fat and mess but still super crunchy


They key is using thighs, not breasts and using really good cheeses.


I did something completly different and it turned out the same.

It's a recipe, commenters who change it with stuff, change it into something else - that's a DIFFERENT recipe!


Lighthouse makes a freeze dried basil in glass jars that is very shelf stable and remarkably like fresh basil when used in sauces.


My guess is she pretty much designed this casserole "straight outta NYC". Exactly the way a New York Italian-American restaurant would - a PERFECT balance of sauce and cheese and meat with not one of those elements having overpowering flavor. We, actually, wound up using probably six cups of sauce and a pound of mozzarella - but hey, more saucy, melty cheese never hurt any parmesan that I know of.


Might help your readers to know to beat the eggs before dipping.

Pat Brownlie

One of the best chicken parmesan recipes I've ever tried. I used chicken thighs since we like dark meat instead of white. Using panko is so much better than other "bread" crumbs for crispiness and the Simple Tomato Sauce is great!


Didn't have time to make the sauce, so I used Rao's tomato sauce, and my husband still licked his plate clean. Really does melt in your mouth. I followed everything else and it turned out delicious.


Just enough till "the brown starts to crawl around the edges" (my mother's direction for fried chicken). Actually, that was about 3 minutes for the first side, 2 for the second. The crust is a light brown and holds up after baking.

Lee Schilling

I like your recipe, as is, with the exception that I prefer the fresh mozzarella to be on the top layer of the dish, an on occasion for finishing under a broiler for an ever so slight browning of the cheese. The other exception would be that in the summer when tomatoes are at there best I use FRESH tomato's skinned and seeded. Finally I also feel a fresh garlic bread is a tremendous compliment if not a necessity.


Yes, I definitely make this by baking instead of frying and it is delicious and much less fat.


Made this exactly as written. It was delicious, but better the second day when the panko had absorbed the sauce. Delicious!


DIVINE. I’ve made this many times and it’s always solid. Not sure what I did differently this evening, but this time, it was incredible. So what was different? I made a half recipe and only did one layer. I used chicken breasts (I usually use thighs), sliced in half lengthwise to make cutlets, regular marinara sauce, and Pecorino instead of parmesan. But essentially the recipe to the letter. Just an excellent meal (and the leftovers will be hoagies for lunch today).


Hi, can I make this two days ahead of time? Should I cook the whole thing and then just re-heat or assemble and then cook? Thanks in advance

husband who likes to cook

Easy recipe as is…even easier with 32 oz of store marinara sauce. Steam some broccoli for a vegetable and call it a day.


This is divine. I wouldn't change a thing. Serve with crusty bread because the cheesy sauce is too good to waste.


Made this exactly as is with chicken thighs and it was clearly the best chicken Parmesan I’ve ever had - everyone at the dinner table agreed. Love Melissa Clark’s recipes!

what i did

Two chicken breasts that I sliced in halfUsed one mozzarella ballMade sauce as recipe statedCould have used a little more salt or some basil


This was pretty good but I simply do not understand why you would cover up the crispy goodness of the cutlets with sauce and then put in the oven for 40 minutes. What is the point.


“Dad, make that again!” High praise. Fantastico,


Also - rather than layer, spread it across multiple pans. Less soggy/messy.


Made this almost exactly as described. Absolutely delicious.For the tomato sauce, I used Trader Joe’s marinara. Scattered fresh basil leaves on top before serving.


Clarification: By “hot sauce” I meant warm tomato sauce


I made this exactly according to the recipe. The flavors were good, but I was disappointed the breading was mushy - no crispness at all. I then tried a second time with some modifications - I cooked the cutlets as directed until fully done, then put mozzarella on the cutlets and broiled until the cheese was starting to brown. Then I topped the cheese with a small amount of hot sauce and a bit of extra basil. Making it this way resulted in crispy chicken and the same great flavors.


I inadvertently used about half the tomato sauce and it came out really just kind of perfect. Everybody loved it.


We made this recently, although with a slightly different tomato sauce recipe, and with plain bread crumbs, not panko (I've never used panko). I also did not layer the chicken pieces - I laid them in one layer. It was good, but I found the breading added a lot of bulk, and tended to fall off the chicken too easily. Next time, I think I will omit the bread crumbs altogether, and just dip the chicken in flour and egg.

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Chicken Parmesan Recipe (2024)
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