These super crunchy baked chicken breasts are made with 3 simple on-hand ingredients and no dredging station needed! They're great for a simple but flavorful dinner!
Somebody is going to revoke my Southerners club card for this confession, but here goes: I don’t really like fried chicken.
Pause. The room falls silent and there’s the distant sound of crickets…
OK, so maybe you’re thinking I just haven’t had really good fried chicken. And that may be true. I’ve certainly got plenty of options nearby — this is North Carolina, after all — and I could stand to give it another chance.
But honestly, I’m kinda good with staying away. I’m somewhat of a health nut, after all.
But chicken that’s super crispy, super tasty and super easy, without any of the frying mess and heavy brick-in-your-stomach feeling? I’m down for that.
This recipe couldn’t be easier.
You marinate your chicken in Italian dressing — I prefer homemade Italian dressing but store-bought is certainly fine too -- to infuse it with some herby flavor.
Then you'll coat it in Panko breadcrumbs, which are the secret for getting it extra crispy, and bake it.
No long line of bowls for a dredging station. Just a super big crunch factor.
Panko breadcrumbs are a must here.
If you haven’t used them before, then you may think it’s not possible to get crunchy baked chicken, but I assure you, it is.
Panko is a Japenese style of breadcrumbs made from bread that doesn’t have a crust. (It’s bread baked by electrical current, so it’s more or less electrocuted.)
This rather strange sounding method makes for airy, large flakes that don’t absorb as much grease and moisture, so it’s a lighter coating that stays more crispy.
It’s science, folks. 🤓
And like I said, it's the secret for getting a really crispy, crunchy coating on your baked chicken.
This chicken also stays super flavorful and juicy on the inside, thanks to the Italian dressing marinade that helps infuse some great flavor without a lot of work.
It’s easy, it’s crunchy, it’s healthy and it’s great any night of the week. 🙌
(If you are a cheesy fan, check out these crunchy baked cheesy chicken breasts. Or try this crunchy baked Ranch chicken. Both are so delicious!)
While the chicken is in the oven, fix up your sides and dinner is served!
What to serve with crunchy baked chicken:
- Baked quinoa Caprese casserole (you can bake it at 375 in the oven with the chicken for 30 minutes)
- Israeli couscous veggie salad or fast farro salad with veggies
- Steamed brown rice and green beans gremolata
- Simple farro salad and a citrus kale salad
- Or keep the sides really simple with fast baked potatoes and a spinach salad.
Whether or not you like regular fried chicken, I think you'll really enjoy this crispy baked version.
P.S. You may also want to check out my easy balsamic chicken, honey butter chicken and my slow cooker Mexican shredded chicken.
Or browse all of my easy chicken recipes for more inspiration!
Easy crunchy baked chicken
These super crunchy, flavorful chicken breasts are made with 3 simple ingredients - and no dredging station needed!
- 4 (6 oz.) boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 1 ½ cups Italian dressing
- 1 ½ cups Panko breadcrumbs
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- Marinate the chicken breasts in Italian dressing for at least 30 minutes and up to 2 hours.
- Preheat the oven to 375.
- Place Panko breadcrumbs in a shallow bowl and season with salt and pepper.
- Remove chicken from the marinade (discard the marinade). Coat both sides of chicken in Panko breadcrumbs, pressing to help it adhere.
- Place chicken breasts on a baking pan covered in aluminum foil - easy clean-up! Spray the tops of the chicken breasts with cooking spray. This helps it get browned and crisp.
- Bake at 375 for 30-40 minutes, until golden brown and chicken breasts are cooked through. Serve hot and enjoy!
Panko breadcrumbs are a must here! They bring the crunch in this baked chicken.
You can use homemade Italian dressing or store-bought.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 422Total Fat: 22gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 16gCholesterol: 26mgSodium: 1723mgCarbohydrates: 40gFiber: 2gSugar: 12gProtein: 15g
Lucy @ Bake Play Smile
This would be a total hit at our house!!! Aren't panko crumbs just the best! Thanks for linking up with Fabulous Foodie Fridays! Have a great weekend xx
They are little crumbly pieces of magic! Thanks for hosting such a yummy party, Lucy! XO