Simple Baked Chicken Cutlets

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Simple baked chicken cutlets are ready in under 30 minutes and only use 5 ingredients for a healthier take on the classic dish.

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Easy baked chicken cutlets are a healthier way to make your favorite breaded chicken recipes and you only need five ingredients and 30 minutes for an incredible meal! 

Sometimes I love complex recipes with lots of ingredients and steps and sometimes I like simple recipes I can mix up in lots of ways. This simple chicken cutlet recipe is one of those “keep up your sleeve” recipes that you can whip together in less than 30 minutes and everyone loves it! What's not to like about crispy, baked chicken?

These chicken cutlets are also super versatile. I have been known to add crushed nuts, shredded coconut, herbs, and different spices to change up the base flavors.

In terms of meal ideas, the options almost never end. Serve it on its own with a salad and baked fries. Make a quick chicken Parmesan by adding sauce and mozzarella. Add it to a green salad for some crunch and protein. Make amazing crispy chicken sandwiches with some coleslaw and hearty bread. Or simply dip them in your favorite sauce, honey mustard anyone?

This is also one of those meals that I can make for my family and everyone is happy. My husband's favorite meal of all time is chicken milanesa, so he'll accept this as a healthier substitute. Plus every kid that I know loves breaded chicken. Everyone can add their own sauce.

Crispy chicken cutlets sliced and served with salad.

What You'll Need

Everything you need to make this tasty chicken recipe at home,

  • Chicken breast cutlets: The easiest option is boneless, skinless chicken breast cutlets since they are already sliced down into thinner pieces. You 
  • Seasoned breadcrumbs: By using seasoned breadcrumbs, there is no need to add dried herbs or seasoning to the breadcrumbs. If you are starting with plain breadcrumbs, add Italian seasoning. Regular or Panko breadcrumbs will work. 
  • Parmesan cheese: Grated Parmesan will blend seamlessly into the breadcrumbs since they are similar in size. Grated works as well. The cheese adds flavor, salt, and also helps with crispiness.
  • Garlic powder: Amp us the flavor with garlic powder. Leave this out or adjust the amount if you aren't a fan of garlic.
  • Egg whites: Egg whites or whole eggs can be used to coat the chicken. The eggs serve to bind the breadcrumbs to the chicken. 
  • Cooking spray: To get the breading golden brown and crunchy, spray the breaded chicken with cooking spray. Another option is to brush the breaded chicken with olive oil or to add 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil or melted butter to the breading mixture.  The extra fat helps things get super crisp.

How to Make Breaded Chicken Cutlets

Follow these steps to make deliciously crunchy chicken at home.

  1. Pound the chicken to uniform thickness: One of the most important things to ensure these chicken cutlets out nice and crispy is starting with thin chicken breasts. Store-bought cutlets may still need to be pounded slightly until about 1/4-1/2 inch thick. Larger chicken breasts will need to be sliced horizontally and then pounded out. Make sure to pound the chicken to a uniform thickness so it cooks in the same amount of time. 
  2. Make the breading: Use a shallow dish to combine the breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese, and garlic powder. Add fresh parsley, dried herbs, or another seasoning you like to amp up the flavor. Both Panko breadcrumbs and standard breadcrumbs work. 
  3. Bread the chicken: Start by dipping the chicken into the egg wash and then pressing it into the breadcrumb mixture on both sides. For extra crispy chicken, dip the chicken into flour before dipping it in the egg wash. 
  4. Bake it: Bake the chicken on a baking sheet in a single layer. Thin chicken breasts take about 15 minutes to bake at 400 degrees.

Chicken cutlets served with salad and dipping sauce on a plate.

Tips for Baking Crispy Chicken

Here are three expert tips for making extra crispy chicken cutlets every time! 

  • Before baking the chicken cutlets, spray them with cooking spray or olive oil spray on both sides. For even more crispiness, add one tablespoon of olive oil right into the breading mixture.
  • Place the chicken on a wire rack on a baking sheet to ensure the chicken isn't soggy on one side.
  • Turn the oven up to broil for the last 1-2 minutes of cooking to get the tops nicely browned and crunchy.

Mix it Up! Recipe Ideas for Chicken Cutlets

  • Tropical: Replace 1/4 cup of breadcrumbs with 1/4 cup of shredded coconut for a sweet tropical flavor.
  • Cheesy: Replace 1/4 cup of breadcrumbs with 1/4 cup extra Parmesan cheese for a cheesier take.
  • Nutty: Replace 1/4 cup of breadcrumbs with 1/4 cup finely chopped nuts (almonds, walnuts, pecans, peanuts) for a crunchy, nutty twist.
  • Herbs: Replace the parsley with fresh thyme, cilantro, basil, rosemary, or oregano and consider squeezing lemon juice over the chicken before breading.
  • Add more flavor: Replace the eggs with whole grain mustard, honey mustard, barbecue sauce, buffalo sauce, or any other favorite condiment.

Here are some tools and products I use to prepare this recipe:

  • Baking sheet: There are so many options out there but I have been using this brand for years and find they hold up really well.
  • Meat Mallet: Pounding out your chicken can be a bit of a pain without the right tools. I use this meat mallet and place the chicken breast between two pieces of plastic wrap on a cutting board. You can also buy chicken that is already cut into cutlets if you can find it.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some of the most common questions about making oven baked chicken cutlets.

Chicken cutlets bake in15-20 minutes at 400 degrees. The exact cooking time will depend on the thickness of the chicken. It should have an internal temperature of 165 degrees. 

This recipe works with regular chicken breasts or chicken cutlets. Cutlets are simply easier since they have already been trimmed and sliced into thinner pieces. No pounding necessary!

If you are starting with a larger chicken breast, start by trimming the chicken. Then slice horizontally to create two thinner pieces. Place those pieces between plastic wrap and lightly pound them into a thinner cutlet. 

The best way to keep baked chicken crispy is to lightly spray the chicken with cooking spray or olive oil spray before baking. For extra crispy chicken, brush the chicken with olive oil or melted butter. You can also use a wire rack to help the chicken stay crisp on both sides. 

Breaded chicken cutlets should be reheated in the oven, toaster oven, or hot skillet. All of these methods ensure the chicken stays crispy. Avoid reheating in the microwave since it will make the breading soggy.

The Recipe
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Simple Baked Chicken Cutlets

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    • 1.5 lbs boneless skinless chicken breast cutlets
    • 3/4 cup seasoned breadcrumbs (if plain add seasoning)
    • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan
    • 1.5 tsp garlic powder
    • 2 egg whites, whisked
    • Salt and pepper

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    (Hide Photos)

    Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.


    Lightly pound the chicken breast cutlets to a uniform thickness, about 1/4 -1/2 inch thick. I like mine on the thin side, but any thickness will work as long as they are similar so they cook evenly. For larger breasts, you will need to slice them horizontally before pounding out.


    Season chicken with salt and pepper.


    Mix together the breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese, and garlic powder. Set out in a shallow dish.


    Dip the chicken into the egg, letting excess drip off. Then dredge in the breadcrumbs. Set on a prepared baking sheet. Repeat with remaining chicken.


    Bake for 15-20 minutes (depending on thickness) minutes, flipping halfway through until chicken is golden brown and cooked through. For nicely browned chicken cutlets, spray them with cooking spray or olive oil spray.

    Nutritional Facts
    Serving Size: 1 cutlet
    Amount Per Serving
    Calories 312
    Calories from Fat 28
    % Daily Value *
    Total Fat 5g
    Saturated Fat 2g
    Monounsaturated Fat 0g
    Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
    Cholesterol 5mg
    Sodium 442mg
    Total Carbohydrate 17g
    Dietary Fiber 1g
    Sugars 1g
    Protein 47g

    * Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

    The Nutritional Values provided are estimates only and may vary based on the preparation method.

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    About the authorMeet Kristen McCaffrey
    Hi, I’m the cookbook author, recipe developer, and food enthusiast behind Slender Kitchen. I am obsessed with making healthy food that is easy to prepare and absolutely delicious. Meal planning is my secret weapon and I hope I can make meal time easier for you with our tried and tested recipes and foolproof meal plans. Learn More
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    1 Comment
    On Simple Baked Chicken Cutlets
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    J. Plummer
    December 30, 2015 - 20:29
    Add a Rating:
    This was so easy and came out great! I didn't have fresh parsley but added a little cayenne pepper instead to give a little kick. Very flexible and simple recipe when you don't have a lot of prep time.
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