Discover the perfect balance of flavors with our oven-baked chicken breast recipe. Whether you’re a fan of white meat or prefer the richness of dark meat, this dish caters to both preferences, delivering juicy and tender chicken that will leave you craving for more.
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In the realm of food preferences, there are two types of foodies: those who relish oven-baked chicken breast and those who prefer dark meat. In our family, while I have a penchant for dark meat, my husband thoroughly enjoys white meat. To ensure harmony, I prepare delectable oven-baked chicken breasts for our meals, catering to his preference. This allows us to strike a perfect balance between our differing tastes.
With this recipe, though, it never feels like much of a compromise. The meat is so juicy, tender, and flavorful that even dark-meat lovers like me can get excited about it. Plus, it keeps in the refrigerator for a few days without drying out. Now that’s what I call a win!
What are the benefits of baking chicken breasts?
There are many ways to prepare and serve chicken, but baking is one of my favorite methods. Baking requires very little oil compared to frying, thus reducing fat and cholesterol and making it a smarter option for those trying to live healthier. It requires less constant attention than grilling and packs more flavor than poaching. Baking allows you to prepare your meat and then walk away and do other things while your oven does the work. It ensures the meat gets cooked evenly throughout, and when done properly, it keeps the chicken nice and moist for a fantastic meal.
How can I make sure chicken breast stays juicy?
The only natural way to ruin baked chicken is by overcooking it. If you want your chicken to be fully cooked but still nice and juicy, here are some points to keep in mind:
- Marinades and Sauces: Experiment with marinating the chicken breasts in flavorful sauces or marinades before baking. This can infuse the meat with moisture and additional taste.
- Resting Time: After removing the chicken from the oven, allow it to rest for a few minutes before slicing. This resting period allows the juices to redistribute within the meat, resulting in a more tender and juicy chicken breast.
- Slicing Technique: When slicing the chicken breasts, cut them against the grain. This helps to break up the muscle fibers and results in a more tender and succulent texture.
- Parchment Paper: Before baking, wrap the chicken breast in parchment paper. This creates a “packet” that helps seal moisture while allowing for even cooking. The parchment paper acts as a barrier, preventing the chicken from drying out during the baking process. Additionally, the paper helps distribute heat evenly around the chicken breast, contributing to a juicy and tender result.
To incorporate parchment paper into your cooking process, simply wrap the chicken breast securely, ensuring that the edges of the paper are sealed to trap moisture inside. Bake the chicken breast as directed, and enjoy the benefits of juicy and delicious results.
- As you approach the final two minutes of cooking (somewhere between 16-23 minutes, depending on the breast size), unwrap the parchment paper and turn on the broiler. This step helps to brown and crisp up the surface of the chicken, adding an appealing texture while maintaining moisture.
By incorporating these suggestions and using a cooking thermometer to monitor the internal temperature, you can ensure that your oven-baked chicken breast stays moist and delicious.
Should I bake chicken with or without the skin?
Whether to bake chicken with or without the skin is a matter of personal preference. Some enjoy the added flavor and texture of the skin, while others prefer to remove it for health reasons, particularly to watch their cholesterol intake. Ultimately, deciding to bake chicken with or without the skin depends on individual tastes and dietary considerations.
Can I prepare my oven-baked chicken ahead of time?
You can prepare the chicken beforehand if you have a busy schedule and want to enjoy oven-baked chicken in the evening without much prep time after work. In the morning, you can prepare the chicken and store it in the refrigerator for up to 12 hours. Before baking, make sure to bring the chicken to room temperature. This allows even more cooking and ensures the chicken retains its moisture and tenderness.
Preparing the chicken beforehand saves valuable time in the evening while enjoying a delicious and flavorful oven-baked chicken breast.
What can I serve with oven-baked chicken breast?
Oven-baked chicken breast is incredibly versatile and can be paired with various dishes to create a delightful meal. As someone focused on incorporating more fresh vegetables and fruits into my diet, I enjoy serving oven-baked chicken as a side to a hearty mid-day salad, such as a refreshing fattoush salad or vibrant Greek lemon rice.
Additionally, oven-baked chicken breast pairs wonderfully with roasted carrots, green beans, and sweet potatoes. Combining the tender chicken and the caramelized flavors of the roasted vegetables creates a satisfying and well-balanced meal. If you prefer something heartier, serving the chicken alongside creamy mashed potatoes is always a classic choice.
The options are endless when serving oven-baked chicken breast, so feel free to experiment and explore different flavors and side dishes to find your favorites.
Start by scrubbing the chicken breasts with salt and vinegar, then rinse them under cold water. Pat them dry with paper towels.
In a small bowl, mix together the minced garlic, olive oil, lemon juice (from the other half of the lemon), black pepper, salt, paprika, baharat, and crushed cardamom pods to form a paste.
Rub the paste all over the chicken breasts, ensuring they are well-coated.
Place the chicken breasts on top of the sliced lemons in the baking dish.
Bake in the preheated oven for approximately 25 minutes or until the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 157°F .
Pour any accumulated juices from the baking dish back onto the chicken breasts.
Garnish with fresh herbs, such as Italian parsley and dill, and serve.
Please Support The SiteHome Cooking is Easy!With These Minimalist Kitchen Essentials
|3 whole boneless chicken breasts|
|A few fresh twigs of thyme|
|1 lemon (½ sliced and the other half juiced)|
|2 cloves garlic (minced)|
|½ teaspoon black pepper|
|1 teaspoon salt|
|1 teaspoon paprika|
|1 teaspoon baharat|
|3 cardamoms (crushed)|
|2 tablespoons olive oil|
|¼ cup fresh herbs Italian parsley, dill|
Recipe Tips & Suggestions
How to store oven-baked chicken breast to keep it moist:
The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist's advice.
See our full nutrition disclosure here.
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