Some of my favorite go-to recipes came from Pinterest, because of course they did. To see all my pinned recipes, head over to my Pinterest page!
Today's recipe is fast, easy, and perfect for two. If you need to feed more, just double the recipe.
- 2 chicken breasts
- 1/3 cup Ranch dressing
- 3/4 cup panko bread crumbs
- 1/4 cup parmesan cheese, shredded
- 1/8 cup parmesan cheese, grated
- 3/4 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp seasoned salt
- 1/4 tsp ground pepper
- cooking spray
A note on the ingredients: I try to buy thin chicken breasts because they cook faster and I'm usually in a hurry! Freshly shredded and grated parmesan cheese is obviously better, but I just use shredded cheese from a bag and grated cheese from the green can usually reserved for pizza. And the bread crumb to parmesan ratio can be adjusted according to your taste - if you want a crunchier chicken, add more bread crumbs! I just use Pam cooking spray, but you can substitute coconut oil spray or whatever your prefer.
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. To save yourself some time on cleaning up, line a baking sheet with tinfoil. Spray the non-stick spray on the foil, then set aside. Prepare the chicken - because I buy thin breasts to begin with, I don't usually tenderize mine. But if you have thicker breasts, then pound them to an even thickness so they will cook evenly. Place the chicken on a plate or bowl and pour the Ranch over them. Make sure they are completely soaking in the Ranch.
The original recipe* I used suggests marinating the chicken overnight. Since I'm often making this after work without much forethought, I never do that. I just prep the chicken first and throw it in a bowl or Ziploc bag of ranch to sit while I prep the rest of the meal. But if you are a meal planner, then maybe try marinating it and let me know how it turns out!
Once the chicken is covered in Ranch, prepare the bread crumb mix in a separate bowl.
You can then go one of two ways: dip the Ranch covered chicken in the bread crumb mix or you can just dump the bread crumb mix on top of the chicken! I've done it both ways, they end up working the same. But if you're trying to save yourself a mess and used a Ziploc bag to soak the Ranch, I'd just dump the mix right in there and shake it up. (Shake n Bake, and I helped!)
Either way, once each breast is fully covered in bread crumb yumminess, lay them on the foil lined baking sheet. If you have leftover mix, I usually go back over the chicken to make sure it is fully coated. Then spray a quick burst of cooking spray on top (somehow it makes the chicken a little crispier) and place in the oven for 20 to 25 minutes.
One reason I like this recipe so much that 20 minute baking time. You can get the main course prepared and in the oven first, and then you have 20 minutes to clean up the mess and get the sides ready. I usually serve with rice or mashed potatoes and a green vegetable like asparagus or green beans. Or mac and cheese if you're feeling daring :)
This is easily one of my favorite recipes. I will even eat the whole piece of chicken! If you know me and my eating habits, you know that says A LOT about something. So give this quick recipe a try and let me know what you think.
My recipe is based on one I found here; you'll notice some measurements and ingredients are different than the original. That's because I've played around with the recipe over time and found that I like doing it this way better. But since I did start with her recipe, I wanted to give credit where it is due!