Don’t you love an easy weeknight dinner? This lightly breaded Homemade Chicken Parmesan Recipe is always on the menu when I have leftover marinara sauce.

Chicken Parmigiana is perfect for a quick, tasty weeknight meal! With a double dose of cheese and Homemade Marinara Sauce, it will instantly become a family favorite!

Homemade Chicken Parmesan - A terrific weeknight dinner of breaded chicken topped with cheese and marinara.

Why You Must Make

  • This baked chicken parmesan is one of those weeknight dinners I throw together at the last minute. As long as I have some leftover marinara in the fridge or freezer and some melty cheese, we’re good to go. The rest can be easily tweaked.
  • I often have a box of seasoned croutons in the pantry to make the kids’ favorite chicken nuggets, so that is a popular option for a lovely crust. Otherwise, some doctored-up breadcrumbs work well.
  • No sliced cheese? Use some shredded mozzarella. No time for homemade marinara? Your favorite store-bought marinara or spaghetti sauce will work in a pinch.

Ingredient Notes

  • Kitchen Staples – Olive oil, Butter
  • Marinara – Homemade or use a good quality store-bought version.
  • Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts – Pounded with a meat mallet to an even thickness
  • Seasoned Croutons – Crushed (may use your food processor) or 1 – 1½ cups breadcrumbs (Panko works well) seasoned with salt, basil, and thyme.
  • Parmesan Cheese – Use real Parmigiano Reggiano, not the green can on the grocer’s shelves.
  • Egg –  Mixed with 2 tablespoons milk or water
  • Provolone Cheese – Sliced
  • Mozzarella Cheese – May use fresh mozzarella or classic mozzarella slices
Chicken Parmesan A terrific weeknight dinner of breaded chicken topped with cheese and marinara.

Tips for Making Marinara

  • This marinara is SO darn easy to throw together, it’s worth cooking up a double batch to have a stash in your freezer.
  • Make sure to buy quality canned tomatoes (I’ve been loving Pomi—BPA and GMO-free, made from Italian tomatoes) as they are the main component of this recipe.
  • After cooking the onions and garlic, the rest of the ingredients are added; and after a half-hour of simmering, the marinara is ready to go.
  • I also make Spaghetti Pie with my leftover marinara. The hubby loves that entree, too! Or try your hand at Homemade Ricotta Gnocchi. I hope you will work this easy dish into your dinner repertoire.

Recipe Tips

  • Use two varieties of melty cheese for the yummiest, cheesiest chicken parm! I love pairing Mozzarella with Provolone.
  • If you don’t have time to make marinara, a good jarred version will work well. I love Simpson’s brand Marinara Sauce found at Whole Foods and Fresh Market. Its red, white, and green label has 5 plum tomatoes across the front.
  • Flatten your chicken with the flat side of a meat mallet. You want it to be of an even thickness so it will all be done cooking at the same time. Make sure to take your time so you don’t tear holes in the chicken.
  • Serve with a side of spaghetti for the classic presentation.
  • Leftovers can be sliced and served on top of a salad for a light entree.

How to Make

  1. Flatten your chicken using a meat mallet or even the flat bottom of a small skillet.
  2. Dip your chicken into an egg wash.
  3. Then dip your chicken into seasoned crumbs.
  4. Saute until browned, flip and brown the other side.
  5. Place the chicken in a casserole dish.
  6. Top each piece of chicken with cheese, then marinara sauce.
  7. Bake as directed.
Chicken Parmesan A terrific weeknight dinner of breaded chicken topped with cheese and marinara.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Long Can You Keep the Leftover Chicken Parmesan?

Leftovers can be kept for 3-4 days in an airtight container in the refrigerator. If you’d like to freeze, bread the chicken as directed, then freeze it in an airtight container for up to 2 months. Make sure your chicken does not sit out at room temperature for more than 2 hours to prevent a food-borne illness.

What Should You Serve with  Chicken Parmesan?

Serve Your Chicken Parmesan with a nice green salad, roasted vegetables, and garlic bread. Find an Italian dessert like tiramisu or Italian chocolate pudding if making for company or a special occasion.

What is Marinara?

Marinara is an Italian tomato sauce flavored with onions, garlic, and oregano. It’s used in pasta dishes, pizza, and meat dishes.

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Chicken Parmesan A terrific weeknight dinner of breaded chicken topped with cheese and marinara

Homemade Chicken Parmesan

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes
Yield 6 servings

A delicious weeknight dinner that always receives raves from my crew


For Marinara

  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 whole garlic cloves
  • 1 cup diced onion
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 53 ounces canned chopped tomatoes
  • Large pinch of sugar
  • 3 basil sprigs (or ½ teaspoon dried basil)
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste

For chicken

  • 6 boneless skinless chicken breasts, pounded with a meat mallet to an even thickness
  • Box of seasoned croutons, crushed or 1-1 ½ cups breadcrumbs (Panko works well) seasoned with salt, basil and thyme
  • ½ cup grated fresh Parmesan cheese
  • 1 egg mixed with 2 tablespoons milk or water
  • Olive oil
  • Butter
  • 2-6 slices of Provolone cheese (if your slices are thin, you will need the larger amount)
  • 2-6 slices Mozzarella cheese


  1. Make marinara: Heat olive oil and cook garlic cloves till slightly golden. Add onions and cook till soft. Add tomato paste and mix to combine and cook briefly.
  2. Carefully add tomatoes (oil will splatter), a large pinch of sugar, basil, oregano, salt and pepper. Simmer for about 30 minutes.
  3. Remove garlic cloves.
  4. Spray a large baking dish with nonstick spray and set aside. Preheat oven to 350º.
  5. Pound chicken into cutlets about ½-¾ inch thick. Set aside.
  6. In a pie tin, whisk the egg with water or milk.
  7. In another pin tin, mix breadcrumbs and Parmesan with ½ teaspoon salt, basil, and thyme for each cup (or mix crushed, seasoned croutons with Parmesan and omit the seasonings).
  8. Heat about 2 tablespoons olive oil and 2 tablespoons of butter in a large saucepan.
  9. Dip chicken first in egg wash, then in crumbs, pressing to help them adhere. Place into hot pan and cook on both sides till well browned.
  10. Remove to prepared pan.
  11. Top each piece of chicken with a half slice of provolone and a half slice of mozzarella (use a whole slice if your slices are thin. Cover chicken with 1 ½ cups marinara sauce or enough to top each piece.
  12. Bake for 20 minutes at 350° or till chicken is cooked through.


You may use a jar of good-quality marinara in lieu of the homemade marinara recipe.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:

1 chicken breast

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 671Total Fat: 38gSaturated Fat: 15gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 20gCholesterol: 205mgSodium: 29396mgCarbohydrates: 20gFiber: 4gSugar: 10gProtein: 63g


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Disclosure: Pomi supplied me with samples of their tomatoes. I was not compensated for writing this post and the opinions expressed herein are those of the author, and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Pomi.