Italian food. its been on my mind lately.
i really wanted something heavy like a big pan of cheesy lasagna but this nipped that craving right in the bud. it's lean, it's fit, it's crispy, it's savory, and it's good.
making your own bread crumbs is super simple and recommended. pick your fave bread! for my recommendations, keep scrollin'!
perfect. no frying needed! i had planned to sear the chicken on both sides in my cast iron skillet (before putting them into the oven to finish) cause i wanted that crispy, crunchy exterior, but omitting that step still produced the same results. SCORE.
i used Classico all natural, fire roasted tomato & garlic sauce (or you can make your own marinara... uh huh, keep scrollin'),
and topped the breasts with a heaping tbsp of sauce, a few spinach leaves, and a big slice of mozzarella almond cheese.
i know chicken parm is usually paired with some variety of pasta, but i had a big, unbaked spaghetti squash sitting on my counter i needed to use.
tender, Italian juiciness. recipe time :)
fit n' crispy chicken parm
the stuff: breadcrumbs
- 4 slices whole wheat/grain bread (see what i used below)
- 1 tsp Italian seasoning
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp onion powder
- 1/4 cup light parmesan cheese (optional for a dairy-free dish)
the stuff: chicken
- 4 large boneless & skinless chicken breasts
- homemade marinara
- 1-2 tbsp melted dairy-free buttery spread (see what i used below)
- 1-2 cups shredded cheese of your choice! (see what i used below)
- 1/4 cup Coconut Aminos
- 1 tbsp Weber Kickn' Chicken seasoning blend
do this: breadcrumbs
- toast slices of bread until crispy, not burnt but no longer soft and chewy.
- break them up into pieces by hand and toss them into your food processor.
- add the onion powder, garlic powder, optional parmesan cheese, and Italian seasonings.
- blend until you achieve a breadcrumb-like consistency and set to the side.
do this: chicken - preheat oven to 400 degrees now!
- pound and flatten thawed chicken breasts (under a towel, in plastic wrap, in a plastic bag, etc) with your mallet until about 1/2 in thick.
- MARINATE the chicken breasts (overnight for best results) in the aminos and weber seasoning in a plastic baggie.
- make an assembly line with 3 shallow pans. 1: melted buttery spread 2: breadcrumbs 3: baking pan (coated with no stick cooking spray) that will go into the oven.
- take each chicken breast and dip/press them into the buttery spread, then the breadcrumb mixture coating both sides evenly.
- finally, place them neatly into your baking pan, flat. if they are touching it's ok but don't overcrowd your pan.
- place pan(s) into the oven and cook for 20 minutes on one side; flip, and cook for an additional 10 minutes.
- once done, remove pan from oven and set oven to HIGH broil. spoon marinara over the center of the breasts (how much is up to you) then top with shredded cheese.
- place pan back in oven close to the broiler heat and once the cheese is completely melted and bubbly, remove the pan from the oven for the last time and top with fresh basil.
Sara Lee whole wheat 45 calories & delightful bread + mozzarella almond cheese,
Rudi's multigrain gluten-free sandwich bread + Daiya dairy-free shredded mozzarella,
or my fave, the 80/20 version: Rudi's multigrain sandwich bread + shredded monterey jack!