Parmesan Crusted Chicken

4 servings
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes

Parmesan Crusted Chicken is a family-friendly weeknight meal with a crispy cheesy crust in 45 minutes! Super easy, super yummy!

If you enjoy this recipe, then you’ll love the other cheesy Main Courses like the decadent Creamy Garlic Parmesan Roasted Chicken, the delicious Baked Parmesan Artichoke Chicken, or the succulent Parmesan Crusted Pork Chops, just another one of our favorite dinners!

Parmesan Crusted Chicken bite on fork

Parmesan Crusted Chicken is an easier, healthier version of crispy chicken than Easy Chicken Parmesan since there is less breading on the chicken. Everyone loves easy-baked chicken recipes because they’re healthy, cook quickly, and are family-friendly and this recipe is no exception to that rule!

Generally, when working with breading you can either bake or fry. In this recipe with the addition of Parmesan cheese and olive oil, you’ll have enough fat in the breadcrumb mixture to help brown the breading. It’s a great recipe to impress guests and your family with. 

Below you’ll find fun variations for cooking your Parmesan Chicken in an air fryer for the perfect crispy crust, as well as optional added Italian seasoning. You can also add some fresh parsley to the top as a decorative garnish when you’re ready to serve. 

Since it’s an old Italian-inspired recipe, you’ll want to be sure to serve it with some other classic favorites. Serve this recipe one pasta with Homemade Garlic Bread and a side salad topped with Olive Garden Italian Dressing.

How to Make Parmesan Crusted Chicken

Making this chicken is so easy for your next weeknight dinner, and there’s hardly any cleanup needed. Plus, the cooking time is under an hour! With a few simple steps and a couple of shallow bowls and you’ll be serving a meal fit for royalty! Check it out!

  • Step One: Season room-temperature chicken with oil, salt, and pepper. The chicken needs to be thawed to room temperature before being coated to avoid the breading falling off when flipping.
  • Step Two: Press the chicken cutlets into breadcrumbs and Parmesan cheese.
  • Step Three: Place gently onto a baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes. When baking the chicken be sure to give each piece of chicken some space apart from the next piece of chicken. This prevents the chicken from steaming as it cooks, and helps the crust brown evenly.
  • Step Four: Carefully flip the chicken halfway through the cooking time (this is the hardest part of the recipe). Because there is breading, be careful while flipping to avoid any of the breading coming off when flipping. Enjoy when it’s golden brown! Buon appetito!

More Crispy Chicken Recipes

Frequently Asked Questions

What is parmesan cheese?

Parmesan is an Italian-style hard cheese that is made from cow’s milk. Actual Parmesan cheese should be aged for at least a year. 

Why is my breading falling off? 

Several factors influence the breading: chicken temperature, size of parmesan (shredded vs granulated), and of course the breading itself.

The chicken temperature should not be cool or cold. It should be coated only at room temperature. Additionally, if you’re using standard breadcrumbs and/or granulated parmesan (the kind with a green lid), you may want to dredge your chicken in an egg mixture made with one large egg that’s been whisked in a bowl. Coat the chicken pieces in the egg wash before breading in the parmesan mixture to help the breading adhere.

Can I bake it in a Dutch oven or cast iron skillet?

Absolutely! Instead of a baking sheet, you can use a cast iron skillet or Dutch oven which can be easily used in the oven. 

Key Ingredients in Parmesan Crusted Chicken

You can easily find all the ingredients for the recipe at your local grocery store if you don’t already have them in your home panty. Check it out! 

  • Chicken: Boneless, skinless chicken breast is the choice of meat for this recipe. Make sure the chicken pieces are even in thickness and about 6 ounces in weight. The easiest way to trim a standard skinless, boneless chicken breast is to remove the tenderloin under the breast if it hasn’t already been done. If you still need to cut down on the size of the chicken try trimming around the longest and widest side of the chicken.
  • Breadcrumbs: We use panko breadcrumbs in this recipe because they stay crispier longer than most breadcrumbs but you can use traditional breadcrumbs in their place if you’d like. If you’re using standard breadcrumbs you may want to dredge your chicken in one large egg before breading to help your breading adhere. Optionally, add some Italian seasoning for some more flavor! 
  • Cheese: We use Parmesan Cheese in this recipe because it is a hard cheese that doesn’t melt completely and easily. You don’t want to swap this cheese for a different one like mozzarella or cheddar but using a similar hard cheese like Romano cheese would work. If you use grated Parmesan cheese we recommend using an egg to dredge your chicken first to help the breading adhere first.

Air Fryer Parmesan Crusted Chicken

Making this recipe in the air fryer is super easy! Make sure the chicken is either butterflied or pounded thin with a meat mallet before you bread it. If it’s too thick, the crust will burn and the inside of the chicken won’t cook all the way through. 

  • Step One: Prepare the chicken according to the recipe. 
  • Step Two: Line the air fryer with tin foil and place the breaded chicken on the tray. Coat each piece with a layer of cooking spray. 
  • Step Three: Bake the breaded chicken at 380 degrees F for 15 minutes. Carefully flip the chicken over halfway through around the seven-minute mark to cook the other side. Be sure to also spray that side with cooking oil when you flip it! 

Can Parmesan Crusted Chicken Be Made Ahead of Time? 

Yes! You can make this recipe up to 3 days in advance and store it in an airtight container in the fridge. If it’s frozen, let it defrost in the fridge overnight. 

Once you’re ready and the chicken is thawed, heat it up again in the air fryer or oven at 300 degrees for 5-7 minutes to let the inside heat up without burning the outside. Depending on the strength of your appliances, be sure to check on the chicken every 3 minutes to avoid burning the crust.

Variations on Parmesan Crusted Chicken

  • Lemon Zest: This adds a fresh flavor and the lemon juice from the lemon can be squeezed over the dish after the cooking is done.
  • Garlic: Either fresh garlic or garlic powder would be an easy addition to this recipe.
  • Seasoning mixes: Cajun, creole, jerk, or other mixes like Italian seasoning add an easy new dimension of flavor.

What should I serve with Parmesan Crusted Chicken?

You can serve this recipe on busy weeknights with pasta, maybe some green beans, mashed potatoes, or a refreshing Beet Salad, and yummy Homemade Garlic Bread! Some marinara sauce would be a lovely addition as well.

More Easy Chicken Dinners

How to Store Parmesan Crusted Chicken

  • Serve: Serve it hot and don’t keep it out at room temperature for more than 2 hours. 
  • Store: Keep this in an air-tight container or shallow bowls covered with saran wrap in the fridge for up to 4 days. Reheat in the oven or air fryer to get the crust crispy again. 
  • Freeze: This will freeze nicely for up to 6 months. Keep wrapped in plastic wrap. Be sure to thaw in the fridge overnight and then reheat until the internal temperature of the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees F. 

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Parmesan Crusted Chicken

Parmesan Crusted Chicken is a family friendly weeknight meal with a crispy cheesy crust in 45 minutes! Super easy, super yummy!
Yield 4 servings
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Course Main Dish
Cuisine American
Author Sabrina Snyder


  • 4 chicken breasts (6 ounce pieces)
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 cup Parmesan Cheese , shredded (not granulated)
  • 1 cup panko breadcrumbs


  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  • Season the chicken with salt, pepper and olive oil, rubbing it on until evenly covered.
  • Mix the Parmesan cheese and breadcrumbs in a medium bowl before pressing the chicken into the mixture until well covered.
  • Add it to a baking pan and cooking for 30-35 minutes, very carefully flipping them over with a spatula halfway through cooking.

Optional Step

  • If you're using standard breadcrumbs and/or granulated parmesan (the kind with the green lid) for the crust, you may want to dredge your chicken in one large egg before breading to help the breading adhere.


Calories: 535kcal | Carbohydrates: 12g | Protein: 59g | Fat: 27g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 162mg | Sodium: 1063mg | Potassium: 889mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 265IU | Vitamin C: 2.7mg | Calcium: 335mg | Iron: 1.8mg
Keyword: Parmesan Crusted Chicken
Parmesan Crusted Chicken Pin 1

Photos used in a previous version of this post.

Cut parmesan crusted chicken in pan
Pan with Parmesan Crusted Chicken
Sliced Parmesan Crusted Chicken
Crusted Parmesan Chicken in pan

About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a professionally trained Private Chef of over 10 years with ServSafe Manager certification in food safety. She creates all the recipes here on Dinner, then Dessert, fueled in no small part by her love for bacon.

Sabrina Snyder is a professionally trained personal and private chef of over 10 years who is the creator and developer of all the recipes on Dinner, then Dessert.

She is also the author of the cookbook Dinner, then Dessert – Satisfying Meals Using Only 3, 5 or 7 Ingredients, published by Harper Collins.

She started Dinner, then Dessert as a business in her office as a lunch service for her coworkers who admired her lunches before going to culinary school and becoming a full time personal chef and private chef.

As a personal chef Sabrina would cook for families one day a week and cook their entire week of dinners. All grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning was done along with instructions on reheating. As a private chef she cooked for private parties and cooked in family homes in the evenings for families on a nightly basis after working as a personal chef during the day.

Sabrina has been certified as a ServSafe Manager since 2007 and was a longstanding member of the USPCA Personal Chef Association including being on the board of the Washington DC Chapter of Chefs in the US Personal Chef Association when they won Chapter of the year.

As a member of the community of food website creators Sabrina Snyder has spoken at many conferences regarding her experiences as a food writer including the Indulge Food Conference, Everything Food Conference, Haven Food Conference and IACP Annual Food Professionals Conference.

Sabrina lives with her family in sunny California.

Dinner, then Dessert, Inc. owns the copyright on all images and text and does not allow for its original recipes and pictures to be reproduced anywhere other than at this site unless authorization is given. If you enjoyed the recipe and would like to publish it on your own site, please re-write it in your own words, and link back to my site and recipe page. Read my disclosure and copyright policy. This post may contain affiliate links.


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  1. This is so quick and easy! I can’t wait to make it when I get back from vacation! It’s gonna be a hit w the roommates! Honest!

  2. I made these for dinner tonight. I used a mini stainless steel cookie sheet and made them in an air fryer. I did dip them in egg before breading, and used a Canola Spray before putting in the air fryer. I used a nylon mini spatula to turn. No breading issues at all. They turned out golden with all the breading. Absolutely delicious, another one of your keepers. Thank you for so many delicious recipes.

  3. As a possible helpful tip to prevent the breading coming off when flipping the chicken, what I do when I’m baking chicken or fish with breading is to line a baking sheet with foil, then top it with a cooling rack. Spray the cooling rack generously with cooking spray. Then place the chicken or fish fillets on the rack, spray one side generously with spray, then gently flip them over and spray the other side. Then bake at a high temperature, like 450 degrees. That way, you don’t have to flip the fillets because the heat goes all around them and they get crispy on both sides.

  4. I followed the directions but all of the breading came apart and fell off the chicken, mostly when they were flipped, what went wrong?

    1. What went wrong is breading for chicken is supposed to have a binding ingredient like egg. For that reason this recipe gets a 1 star? Because exactly the same thing happened to me.

      1. Omg! Tjis was divine! It will be made at my home at least on e a weel! I uaed thin chicken breast cutlets. I used olive oil- then breaded them and had no problem! I did however cook mine in the air fryer and i did use tongs to gently flip them . Delicious!

  5. I don’t know about you but I skip the 8 pages of back story before recipes. When the chicken turned out white as a ghost even after extra cooking time, a higher cooking temo, and finally blowing with broil, all of the breading on the bottom was soggy and fell off. I went back and skimmed the recipe and story and only there, in a foot note does it mention the egg dredge. Just put that part in the dang recipe! Right before press into parmesan and panko DREDGE IN EGG. Thank you for coming to my Ted talk.

  6. I absolutely love this recipe! Mine came out perfect! I did make some slight adjustments… I baked mine on baking sheet lined with foil and sprayed with cooking spray. I used panko bread crumbs (with Italian seasonings) but I also coated my chicken breasts in egg before coating it in my shredded Parmesan cheese and bread crumb mixture. It came out perfect and crispy and I didn’t lose any of my breading!

  7. Unfortunately, this recipe was rubbish. The bottoms were soggy and somehow also stuck to the pan? After the first cutlet, the breading barely stuck. Lots of opportunities for improvement. I’m thinking that next time I will try an egg wash or something else. I rarely leave negative reviews, but this is for those who may be reading this and thinking “that doesn’t seem like it will turn out” – I say trust your gut.

      1. Ugh I am reading all this as mine is in the oven cooking. It sounded like such an easy delicious recipe. We will see how mine turn out.

  8. I had similar results as some. The breading stuck, but the Parmesan didn’t. The parm got crispy and when I flipped it all fell off. I added parm to it after cooking.

    1. Next time you make it, try letting the chicken rest on a cookie sheet at room temperature for 30 minutes once breaded. That might help the breading adhere to the chicken more. Hope this helps!

  9. I don’t know what I did wrong – but it didn’t crisp up AT all. The coating was dry and falling off. I followed directions to a T. ?

    1. If it fell off the chicken wasn’t moist enough for the breading. Were the chicken breasts coated in enough oil? Or maybe were they too large and in the cooking time it just got too dry? This recipe calls for shredded Parmesan vs the grated type. The moisture difference between the two is significant too and the shredded variety melts vs the grated variety which doesn’t. Would love to troubleshoot!

    2. I made this too and it also did not look like the pictures. I realized that if you look at her photos, the chicken was pan fried on the stove, not the oven.

        1. You should add in your recipe that you bake yours in a cast iron pan. I did not read the reviews first even though I was confused that you didn’t say to sear it in a pan first and now I have a lot of wasted chicken.

      1. I was excited to try this because my son is allergic to eggs. I followed the instructions exactly. I used shredded parm and Pablo and the entire 1/4 cup of olive oil. When I noticed browning wasn’t happening I sprayed the chicken with olive oil cooking spray. It still didn’t get brown. I finally drizzled it with olive oil right out of the bottle. Still didn’t work. Not sure where I went wrong.

        1. How long did you let the chicken sit to brown? It does take a good amount of time and adding the oil keeps the chicken moist and wouldn’t help it brown.

  10. This was very good, but I also did not get the same crisp on the outside. I broiled it a bit at the end, but that only crisped the very top. What kind of baking pan do you recommend? I tried it with an 8″ x 11″ glass dish, but perhaps the sides were too high? There was at least an inch between each piece of chicken. Please help! 🙂

  11. I really want to love this. I’ve tried it twice but it doesn’t seem to be coming out as beautifully crispy as pictured.

  12. This was another hit recipe! Everyone in my family absolutely loved this one. I haven’t found one recipe on your site that people have complained, and more times than not they are heaping complements my way. Thanks again!

  13. Yet another hit! Every time I make one of your recipes I get such high praise. I can’t thank you enough – I love this site. Keep on passing along winners like this.

  14. I made this for last night’s dinner. I was disappointed it did not turn out crispy. The only change I made was I used parmesan in a ready shake container. Could that have my downfall? It had great taste just not crispy.

    1. Oh no! It sounds like you need to keep a bit more space in between your chicken pieces while baking. If it’s too close, it will steam vs getting it crispy. Hope this helps for next time.

      1. Mine also didn’t turn out melted crispy like the picture. They were very spaced out and I used fresh Parmesan cheese that I grated finely. ????? Is there a certain kind of breadcrumbs that should be used? They seemed more dry / breadcrumb than crispy cheese.

  15. Do you think this would work as a keto recipe by leaving out the breadcrumbs and just using Parmesan cheese to coat the chicken?

  16. This chicken was soooo good!!!! I couldn’t stop cutting off just another little piece! Thank you!

    1. The tenderloin, is a strip of breast meat, that is part of the breast but that is not really connected so that it can be separated. I hope you enjoy the recipe.

  17. Hi Sabrina. Can you use Parmesan cheese that is in the grocery store in the prefab kind?

    1. The chicken isn’t fried before placing it in the oven sorry for the confusion. I used a baking dish. 🙂

      1. I thought it was pan fried also by the looks of the picture. The oil drippings around it even look like it was pan fried. The chicken looks oily as if it was fried. Looks gooood though 🙂 Glad you clarified.