Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Chicken Parmesan Casserole 2012 – New HD Version of the Most Popular Chicken Recipe on the Internet

On Thursday, February 21, 2008, we published a post called, “The End of Chicken Parmesan As You Know It,” offering an easy casserole version of this iconic Italian-American restaurant favorite. 

The title was hyperbolic, but inexplicably, the poorly lighted, lamely voiced, low-res video actually did go on to become the most popular chicken recipe video in the history of the Internet.

Thanks to YouTube, and social media sites like Pinterest, this alternative to the much, much messier and time-consuming chicken Parmesan went viral, and literally millions of people have watched and made this dish. So, with all the massive traffic visiting that old post, I felt the need to upload a nice, new version in HD.

Besides culinary vanity, I wanted to repost to address the concerns of a few that the cooking time wasn’t long enough. This recipe has generated more positive comments and emails than just about any recipe we’ve done. People LOVE this recipe, and seem to enjoying spreading the word with unbridled enthusiasm, so I found these occasional “doesn’t work” emails very mysterious.

Anyway, I’m happy to report that just like in the original recipe, 350 degrees F. for 35 minutes, plus a 10 minute rest, was plenty long enough to cook my fairly large chicken breasts. So, why did some people have a problem? Breast size and temperature.

I believe that most of the people that had issues were using just-thawed chicken that was still very, very cold inside. Of course, the optional quick sear in a pan as shown here will take care of that issue. Also, grocery store chicken breasts can range in size from 6-ounce up to 10-ounce, which obviously will have much different cooking times. So, the best thing to do is forget time, and simply use a thermometer.

I like to pull at around 155 degrees F. internal temp, and after a little rest, they are perfect. I would start checking at the 30-minute mark, and be sure to test in the middle of the thickest part of the breast. Besides cooking time, the rest of the recipe is ridiculously easy, and really does provide a very high-quality chicken Parmesan experience.

So, if you are one of the few people in the civilized world who has not given this recipe a try yet, I hope you like the new HD version, and give it a whirl soon. Enjoy!


Ingredients:
1 tbsp olive oil
2 cloves garlic, crushed, optional
hot red pepper flakes, to taste
6 boneless skinless chicken breasts
2 1/2 cups marinara sauce (more sauce is fine)
1/4 cup chopped basil, if available
8 oz mozzarella, shredded, divided
3 oz Parmigiano-Reggiano, grated fine, about 3/4 cup, divided
*by the way, the same amount of fake Parmesan will not taste the same, and the amount may need to be adjusted…go buy some real Parmigiano-Reggiano!
1 (5-oz) package garlic croutons

View the complete recipe

76 comments:

Monica said...

breast size and temperature lead to many problems!

Chef John said...

see how i set you up for that? ;)

Anonymous said...

Would Cutting up the chicken be ok? and could i use thighs instead?
thank you

Chef John said...

Of course! Anything works! Just adjust cooking time.

Anonymous said...

I like the original chicken parm bake recipe better. I must say its one of my favorites. I made it many times. I like the garlic on the bottom and the fact that there is no frying, less dishes to wash. I love garlic.

Deb said...

This dish is excellent and I've made it a few times after seeing it on Pinterest. One word of advice though is to make sure that the breasts are consistent in size. With breast sizes what they are these days, I cut them in half and sometimes pound them a little bit. Everyone loves the dish around here though!!

connieemeraldeyes said...

I watched both videos and the first one is just fine. I will try this recipe.

PJ said...

This was easy to prepare and tasted good, but not what we are used to from Foodwishes. Sorry Chef John, I give it only 8 yums out of 10.

Steve said...

Chef:

Oddly enough, I liked the first non-HD version of the video better.

I felt like I was watching a 3D, Surround Sound remake of "Casablanca" with Justin Bieber as Rick.

Okay, I'm kidding with that last bit, but still, why mess with a classic.

Eaton Beaver said...

Garlic and Herb..
I love them !
Reunited and it feels so good !!!

Anonymous said...

Chef, can you please tell me what that rectangular thingie is in the the right hand corner? I had a huge argument with my wife about it, she insisted its my computer, she actually left me- Adina please come home, I need to know where you put the remote.

Unknown said...

Chef John, you have made my relationship with my boyfriend 100% more amazing. We sit in bed watch all your videos and cook the next day. You and your fun, witty jokes definitely brighten our day. Thank you so much for the amazing recipes.

-Danielle

Anonymous said...

This looks great, after many years of visiting your site quite often, I had never seen this dish. Unfortunately, I'm doing Atkins, so no croutons... Once I'm off though, this is on the list. until then, I might try it with eggplant in place of the croutons, which completely loses the textural goodness, but should taste great. Thanks for the inspiration!

-Pyrofish

Chef John said...

Thanks!

Christine said...

Thanks Chef John! My hubby laughed himself silly while listening to your video on the making of this great dish! He's told me that you can be my new best friend!!

Chef John said...

Cool! ;)

Madonna said...

Great recipe. I am always amazed that you can show us how to cook in under six minutes. You're a genius.

My cooking improved when I bought a scale and a thermometer.

Maybe those people that had problems may need to check their oven - the temp may be off. It may be their dish may not retain the heat like the one you are using. Just a thought.

Anders said...

I made this today, and it was truly amazing. Those croutons with a crunchy, cheesy top, and deliciously mushy tomato/chicken bottom were amazing.

Joanna said...

Thank you Chef John for todays dinner idea. I've made marinara sauce and croutons by myself. Damn a lot of dishes to wash, but definitely worth it.

Rick B. said...

We make your chicken parmesan all the time and it is a favorite of ours! All our children like it too. We do cube the chicken up before we bake it and we have shared your recipe with many friends. Keep up the good work!

Anonymous said...

Chef John
I will try this recipe!!!I'd try it today "BUT" as you know what happens in upstate NY during lent"Fish Fry"..so my question. Will this recipe work with fish? Like Rochester has it's chicken french, a lot of restaurants in our area have a menu item called Fish Parmesan. They deep fry the fish first, to get a crust on it, then add the cheeses etc..
Thanks

Jenna said...

I've made this dish many times over since I first found the recipe here. I cut my raw chicken into chunks and toss them in the pan. Why? Makes it easier to serve IMHO. Always comes out fantastic! I've never had a problem with the chicken being underdone.

Stephen said...

I've been following you for a while now.Could you please make a video showing how to correctly sharpen a knife. I get confused when some people say I have a honing steel that just hones not sharpens, others say I have a sharpening steel that does. Frustrated I got a water stone, but everyone is telling me different ways how to sharpen it, with youtubers crying foul for damaging the knives. Help!

Juicer said...

Fabulous. My family will think I'm a great chef!!!

Andreea said...

This looks so delicious! Is there any way you can do a video on how to make French Macarons? (Macaroons) I would love to see your take on them.

Kath said...

i've made this three times and my only problem has been when i use hunt's sauce or not a "thicker" sauce and it gets VERY watery. i have to dump out the water and then the chicken gets SUPER dry. going to try again!

phertyl said...

I wish I could stand to listen to Chef John's videos because I do like his recipes - I just CAN'T STAND HIS VOICE!

ChefJohnsBiggestFan said...

Chef John's voice happens to be MY FAVORITE PART OF HIS VIDEOS! JEEZ that was not nice. HOw about when mama taught you that if you can't say nothin' nice then don't say nothin' at all? This recipe is very similar to the first one......i know you won't tell me what sauce that was if i asked you nicely would you? I know you will say it doesn't matter...but it looked thick n i wanna know.

Chef John said...

I believe it was Barilla! Thanks!!

Annie said...

Made it last night, it was great. R: Chef John's vboice: dont change a thing. I particulary like you saying Excetera and Vanella. Makes me smile every time.

Anonymous said...

That comment about Chef John's voice was uncalled for and rude. What the heck?? I think you have a very calm and relaxing voice. Don't listen to rude people, Chef John. What a jerk.

Kathleen said...

After trying this recipe last night I now count myself as a Chef John groupie! I watched both videos and merged the two, using the garlic and chilli flakes on the bottom and quick frying the breasts. I cut the breasts in half too to ensure I had no issues with cooking time. I also used some lovely marinara sauce I'd canned last summer and found a bag of croutons that were larger than shown but worked really well. Thanks Chef John.

Anonymous said...

I was just thinking what a fabulous idea this - along with your recent mint coating for lamb - is in terms of healthy eating. With most recipes, I struggle to remove the carbs, which tend to add something like crunch and variety. Instead of trying to eat a tasteless, high-fiber sandwich thin, or wrap a chicken breast in lettuce (not good), layer it in a casserole with croutons on top. Or a bread crumb coating. That has to save calories, I think.

Cissy said...

I think Chef John's voice is sexy! I even have a little crush on him just from his voice -- the fabulous recipes don't hurt either :)

Amanda said...

Love your blog. I am so excited to try this recipe! Thanks for the video tutorial. I am featuring it as one of my recipes of the week on my blog www.asimplesouthernaffair.com I'll be back later this week to let you know how it turns out! best wishes- Amanda

Anonymous said...

Is there a way to make a printable recipe?

Anonymous said...

April 24,2012 I also would like a way to print this recipe, please let me know how.. Thank you

Anonymous said...

I found a printable copy of this recipe here... bhttp://allrecipes.com/recipe/the-best-parmesan-chicken-bake/Detail.aspx
I made it last night and it was wonderful. I made a couple of changes out of necessity - boneless skinless chicken thighs, dried basil, and homemade croutons. I also used homemade sauce. I browned the chicken as Chef John shows in the video and deglazed the pan with Marsala. Also, I sprinkled just a little sauce on top of the croutons before adding the cheese. I cooked this at 375 deg F for about 40 minutes and that seemed just right for the thighs to cook. I served this with little sauced rigatoni, sauteed green beans with garlic, and a salad. Next time I make this (with breast meat) I am going to try adding chopped green bell pepper to the casserole.

Anonymous said...

Hi Chef John,
I made this tonight and I think my oven temp may be off.The taste just wasn't there. I did use a meat therometer and it read 150.I will have to try it again.

Chef John said...

Sorry, but temperature has nothing to do with the taste! Check your seasonings. You probably needed more salt.

Julie said...

What brand of sauce did you use and what about the croutons?? I think that would make a HUGE difference.

Chef John said...

Sorry, don't remember, but think the croutons were Marie Calendar.

Anonymous said...

Made this last night and it was very tasty. Only problem was that the croutons were hard, not crunchy. I think I will crush them somewhat next time. What could I have done wrong? Thought this was pretty foolproof after watching the video...

Shahreen said...

What's the recipe for the tomato sauce you used? I want to make it rather than buy packaged tomato sauce. Thank you!

Anonymous said...

Hi. Made this last night for seven people. Really really easy, and tasty. Cooked for 40mins at 175C,with 5 mins rest. No problem with chicken not being cooked. Delicious!

I recently found your site, I'm in the UK (West Yorkshire), and love the down to earth comments and straightforward-ness for your cooking!

Also made your valentine chocolate pots - they were fab!

Anonymous said...

ALOHA Chef,
Gee, I sure hope you can help me. I am cooking for 80 people and would LOVE to serve your Chicken Parmesan recipe. I definitely do not know how to change the amounts, etc. Would you be able to scale the ingredients and give them to me? I also subscribe to your videos, and so look forward to them! Mahalo! Sandy :)

Tidbitcutie said...

ALOHA Chef,
Gee, I sure hope you can help me. I am cooking for 80 people and would LOVE to serve your Chicken Parmesan recipe. I definitely do not know how to change the amounts, etc. Would you be able to scale the ingredients and give them to me? I also subscribe to your videos, and so look forward to them! Mahalo! Sandy :)

Tidbitcutie said...

ALOHA Chef,
Gee, I sure hope you can help me. I am cooking for 80 people and would LOVE to serve your Chicken Parmesan recipe. I definitely do not know how to change the amounts, etc. Would you be able to scale the ingredients and give them to me? I also subscribe to your videos, and so look forward to them! Mahalo!

Chef John said...

That's easy! One pam makes 6 so make 14 pans for 84. Just multiply everything by 14.

Diego Manoel said...

A friend could not eat tomatoes, so I made this recipe using cream cheese and white sauce, but instead of croutons I just used fried grated potato.

Farah said...

Hello, I'm actually planning on making this for about 15 people so I'm wondering how many 9x13 pans I'll need? Also switching the chicken breast for chicken thighs, I'm thinking about using 4-5 pounds? Thanks! This recipe is great, I've made it a few time for my family already!

Ghislaine Schoffelmeer said...

So I actually AM making this in august, I bought everything I needed, but when I went to our garden to get some super-fresh basil and clean it, it turned out some snails had attacked my basil plant! D: All that was left was a bunch of green sticks. Just my luck!

Unknown said...

What about adding a layer of eggplant on top of the chicken for some extra veg. Would I have to salt, rinse, and precook to get rid of the bitterness?

Chef John said...

i would grill or fry first. many salt, but i don't usually. tastes okay!

Anonymous said...

can you give me a wine pairing suggestion? Thanks!

Jolie Bourgeois said...

I made this last night for the first time, and hubby declared it a keeper, adding that it has a real restaurant taste. He's pretty honest with his reviews so I was pretty pleased. Thanks for sharing!

BestRateGuys.com said...

Made this for supper and we all loved it! What a great recipe! Thanks Chef John!
-Paul

Howard Moon said...

Chef John,
I'm wondering, would it be better to crunch the croutons somewhat so they crumble more? I've made it only as croutons and find that you can end up with bites with no breading whatsoever.

Chef John said...

Of course! It's your dinner, adapt as you see fit :) Enjoy!

Mow123 said...

Hi Chef John. Don't cringe, but I didn't have croutons so I used Chicken Stove Top Stuffing. (Dry) It was really good. Thanks for the recipe. I'm a new fan. : )

Mow123 said...

Chef John.
Tried this recipe for dinner tonight. I didn't have croutons, so I used Chicken Stove Top Stuffing. (dry) It worked really well. I'm a new fan. : )

Rebecca Fletcher said...

So, it's on my list for my next weekly meal plan. I just need to know: How is it as leftovers? Is it going to keep well or should I plan it for just one meal?

Atanas Kitanov said...

Hello, Chef John,

Can you recommend me a side dish with which to serve these recepy.

Anonymous said...

Made this last night, & followed exactly as shown....did NOT care for this recipe at all ! Will NOT ever make again.
Sorry.....

Kim Asher said...

Love this recipe! Big hit with the family!! Thank you

Kim Asher said...

Made this over the weekend and my entire family loved it!! Thanks will definitely make again!!

philogaia said...

I was interested in Pyrofish's comment about doing Atkin's. I have moved from just gluten-free to grain free (boy did that do my waistline some good!) but I still want to make this dish and I do want some texture. I have had good luck with making a crumble of ground almonds, coconut flour, parmo cheese and melted butter. I think that may work for this. Eggplant also sounds good which also gives me the idea of a layer of spinach. What might be nice is to cut the breasts in half lengthwise and pound them a little. Then use the veg as a layer in between. Wait, did I just make a simple dish complicated?

Jackie said...

I made this last night, and it was delicious! DH said it was a keeper, and I agree!!! Thank you for the recipe.
Use homemade sauce & croutons if you want a lower sodium count.
It is not your typical chicken parm, but it's really tasty and a bit different. Love that it is so easy too! Thanks again!

philogaia said...

I actually remembered to come back and report on the results of my experiment replacing the croutons to make the dish grain-free. I chopped some roasted almonds in the blender just roughly, about a cup for the 9x11 pan I was using. Then I added about 1/4 cup of coconut flour, some salt, and some melted butter just enough to create the lumpy texture. While this doesn't have the crunchy/soft effect of the croutons it it really delicious and makes this dish accessible to those who aren't doing grains.

KATERINA MAFIOSA said...

Chef John,

I made this a few months ago, the first time my daughters LOVED it. I took some to work and shared with my co workers. The 2nd time i made it for my best friend, because it was SOOO easy. while i was making it for her, i noticed you had a revised video/recipie. let me tell you that the first one (original) was faster, easier and less room for error...Thank you for a wonderful lesson in learning how to do something a bit different with chicken...

mdb139 said...

My wife made this for the family last week. Turned out great! I'm not sure that we'd want to give up the real chicken parmessan, but this was hard to beat in terms of a quick dish that can be prepared in advance, and had a relatively easy clean up!

Mainly, I'm just hoping my wife decides to try more of your recipes, as I've been doing!

Thanks Chef John, we really do love your recipes and videos!

ShoresinNC said...

If I assemble this for someone to cook another time, how long can it stay uncooked? Or I am wondering if I should bake it then they can reheat when they want it? Thoughts?

Chef John said...

Probably okay the night before.

Aly Casilla said...

I had to try this, but instead of Parm I used Asiago Cheese (Did not have parmesano on hand) I also used a Pomodoro sauce.

Best dinner of the week. Yummy!!!

Gracias Chef!

acidpunk said...

parmesan cheese sucks and is not Italian

Bret Hess said...

My fiancee and I tweaked this recipe by swapping an Alfredo sauce for the red sauce and adding ham to make a chicken cordon bleu version. So much easier than making actual CCB.