Herb Crusted Chicken is as tasty as it is pretty! Brush a mustard sauce over chicken breasts and press a Parmesan herb breading on top. It's an easy recipe for holidays and special occasions!
It's the same breading used on Herb Roasted Pork Tenderloin and is fantastic on salmon too.
How do I know? This was a very popular recipe at our Make Ahead Meal Kitchen. While you have everything out, go ahead and make a few servings to freeze for later. We'll show you how!
The fresh herbs in the breading definitely make for a beautiful presentation. But, dried herbs will work too.
How to Make Herb Crusted Chicken
I've provided tips and tricks for each step in the process below. Scroll down for the video, recipe and tips for customization, including make ahead and freeze instructions.
Make mustard sauce
Combine lemon juice, Dijon mustard and pepper in a small bowl. The mustard sauce is brushed over the chicken AND a small amount is added to the breading.
It's worth emphasizing that you set the bowl with the mustard sauce aside. A little bit of the mustard sauce, but not all of it, is added to the breading in the next step. The remaining sauce is spread over the chicken so that the breading has something to stick too!
Chop fresh herbs or use dried ones
Our go-to herb combination for Herb Crusted Chicken is parsley, basil and thyme, which complements Parmesan cheese nicely.
These also happen to be the herbs we can grow, for at least a little while. There are no green thumbs at my house!
If you happen to be out of parsley, leave it out or used dried. Or if you're a big fan of another herb, such as rosemary, use that instead of thyme. You actually don't have to add any herbs at all...but you will need to call it something else! 🙂
Make a Parmesan Herb Breading
To make the breading for Parmesan Herb Crusted Chicken, mix together breadcrumbs, cheese, olive oil and freshly chopped herbs in a new bowl.
Now, and stick with me here to avoid a super wet breading, spoon 2 Tablespoons of the mustard sauce from the bowl you set aside and add it to the breading bowl. You will have lots of lemon/Dijon mustard left over. Save it!
Use a fork to mix everything together until it's a nice crumbly mixture. It will be slightly wet, but should not have big clumps. You want it to look "pretty."
Press Herb Crust over the Chicken
Spoon one tablespoon of the lemon/Dijon mustard mixture (from the bowl you set aside) over each chicken breast. The entire surface of the chicken breast is coated. Don't worry about the bottom. Use a basting brush, if desired.
Next, lift our some breading and lightly "press it" over the chicken with your fingers, so it's not too thick, but not too thin either...but just right.
Bake the Parmesan Herb Crusted Chicken uncovered at 350 degrees F for about 30 minutes. Allow a baking thermometer to reach 165 degree F (check out the one in our store) for perfectly cooked chicken.
Variations for Parmesan Herb Crusted Chicken
If you want to:
Make it even healthier: Use whole wheat panko breadcrumbs.
Make it low-carb: Cut the amount of whole wheat breadcrumbs in half.
Make it gluten-free: Use gluten-free breadcrumbs.
Make it dairy free: Leave out the Parmesan cheese and substitute it with a dairy-free substitute or use nutritional yeast. I made it for my daughter this way and it got two thumbs up.
Make it ahead and freeze it: Prepare the recipe, but don't cook it. Freeze chicken in a pan or baking dish that can be covered and wrapped in plastic wrap. For best quality, eat within 2 months of freezing. When you are ready to serve, defrost overnight and cook according to instructions.
Make smaller portions: The ingredients will easily cover 6 chicken breasts that are about 4 ounces in size. You can cut the recipe ingredients in half. Or make the full recipe and freeze the amounts you don't want to eat right away.
Use another type of protein instead: This recipe is also terrific on a pork tenderloin or salmon. The ingredients will cover about 2 pounds of meat.
Video of How to Make Herb Crusted Chicken
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Herb Crusted Chicken Recipe
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- 1/4 cup Dijon mustard
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1/2 cup Panko breadcrumbs preferably whole wheat
- 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese grated
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil
- 1 Tablespoon parsley chopped
- 1/4 cup basil leaves cut in thin strips
- 1 teaspoon fresh thyme
- 24 ounces chicken breasts boneless, skinless
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Combine lemon juice, Dijon mustard and pepper in a small bowl and set aside.
- Combine breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese, olive oil, parsley, basil, thyme and 2 Tablespoons of the mustard mixture in a separate bowl. Using a fork, combine the ingredients to form a crumbly mixture.
- Place chicken in baking dish and brush remaining mustard mixture over the chicken.
- Using fingertips, press the breading over each chicken breast until completely covered. The bottom is not breaded.
- Bake uncovered for about 30 minutes or until chicken reaches a temperature of about 165 degrees F.