No parmesan here. This easy chicken marinara can be made in the oven. It’s a little bit healthy but still plenty crispy, made with a mix of cornflake and Panko breadcrumbs. Makes 4 – 8 servings.
Why I love this chicken marinara recipe
Chicken parmesan has always been one of my husband’s favorite meals. It was his favorite pre-game meal when he was playing hockey and it’s what I usually make for Valentine’s Day or other special occasions.
But, we’re obviously skipping the parmesan now, so I make this chicken marinara instead. I like to bake it in the oven rather than frying it in oil on the stove, to make it a little bit healthier.
Most of the time we serve it with pasta, but it’s really great with my favorite spaghetti squash, too. Either way, it gets topped with my easy marinara sauce, and vegan mozzarella cheese (if we have it).
Here’s what you’ll need to make it:
How to make crispy chicken marinara
Before starting, preheat your oven to 400˚F and make a batch of your favorite marinara sauce. Or, open your favorite jar, whichever you prefer.
Pound your chicken breasts. Using a meat mallet (or similar instrument, like the bottom of a small saucepan ), pound the chicken until it becomes uniformly thick. It should be no thicker than 1 inch.
Be sure to cover the chicken with wax paper or place it in a plastic bag to prevent germs from spreading.
Dip and bread the chicken. In a shallow bowl, whisk the egg with a tablespoons or two of water. In a separate bowl, mix together the cornflake crumbs, Panko, garlic, parsley, and salt & pepper.
Dip each chicken breast into the egg and then into the breading mixture to coat, pressing breadcrumbs as needed to make them stick.
Bake your chicken. Transfer breaded chicken to a baking sheet . Spray with olive oil or cooking spray (optional). Bake the chicken for about 20 minutes, or until the internal temperature reaches 165˚F.
Top with marinara. Remove from oven and top with marinara sauce and a slice of dairy free cheese (or regular if you’re not dairy free). Return the pan to the oven and allow the chicken to cook for about 2 – 5 more minutes, or until cheese is melted.
FAQs and tips for baked chicken marinara
How do I get the crispiest breaded chicken?
My favorite way to get super crispy breaded chicken is to start with the right breadcrumbs. I always use Panko – since we can’t use traditional breadcrumbs anyway. I’ve started adding cornflake crumbs to my mixture because they’re super crispy and beautifully golden brown.
I like to spray my breaded chicken with a nice coating of olive oil or whatever cooking spray I have on hand to help it get nice and brown and crispy.
More dairy free Italian recipes:
- Minestrone soup
- Italian chopped salad
- Baked Italian meatballs
- Authentic bolognese sauce
- Dairy free pesto
More chicken recipes you’ll love:
- Coconut milk chicken
- Buffalo chicken meatballs
- Asian chicken wraps
- Tequila lime chicken
- Kung pao chicken
- Ground chicken tacos
No parmesan here. This easy chicken marinara can be made in the oven. It’s a little bit healthy but still plenty crispy, made with a mix of cornflake and Panko breadcrumbs.
- 1/2 cup cornflake crumbs
- 1/4 cup Panko breadcrumbs
- 2 teaspoons dried parsley
- 1/2 teaspoon granulated garlic
- 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt + 1 pinch
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 large egg
- 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, pounded to 1″ thickness
- 1 cup marinara sauce (store bought or homemade)
- Preheat oven to 400˚F.
- Using a meat mallet, pound the chicken to a 1 inch thickness.
- In a shallow bowl, whisk the egg with 1 – 2 tablespoons of water. In a separate bowl, mix together the cornflake crumbs, Panko, garlic, parsley, and salt & pepper.
- Dip the chicken into the egg mixture, followed by the breading mixture until completely coated on both sides.
- Transfer breaded chicken to a baking sheet . Spray with olive oil or cooking spray (optional).
- Bake the chicken for about 20 minutes, or until the internal temperature reaches 165˚F.
- Remove from oven and top with marinara sauce and a slice of cheese (vegan or optional). Return pan to the oven and cook for an additional 2 minutes to melt cheese.
Last Updated on January 17, 2021 by Melissa Belanger