Crumb-coated, shallow-fried chicken breasts are one of our favorite easy-to-make comfort foods and this recipe makes them even better by adding a light, flavorful glaze made with sautéed shallots, honey, fresh thyme, and a touch of cream.
Tips For Making Breaded Chicken Breasts
The secret to delicious homemade pan-fried chicken is to make sure it stays moist and tender. Here are a few tips that will get you pan-frying chicken to tender perfection.
- Prepare the chicken: If your chicken breasts still have the tenderloins attached, remove and reserve them for another use. One at a time, place the chicken breasts between two sheets of plastic wrap and gently pound them to a thickness of about 1/2 inch.
- Prepare the egg dip: Whisk egg and milk together in a pie plate or other shallow dish. The ratio is 1 tablespoon of milk to 1 large egg.
- Prepare the crumb coating: Combine the breadcrumbs with 1 teaspoon of salt and a few grinds of black pepper. Spread the mixture on a dinner plate or sheet of wax paper.
- Coat the chicken in crumbs: Working with one piece of chicken at a time, dip in the egg mixture and turn once or twice to coat. Allow the excess egg to drip off, then lay the chicken on the bed of crumbs and use your fingers to press gently into the mixture to be sure the crumbs adhere. Repeat on the other side.
- Fry the chicken: Coat the bottom of a large frying pan with about 1/8-inch of vegetable oil and heat over medium-high heat. Add a pinch of bread crumbs to the pan, and as soon as they begin to sizzle, the pan is preheated. Add the chicken in a single layer and fry until the crumb coating is golden brown and the interior of the chicken is no longer pink, 2 to 3 minutes per side.
- Watch the temperature: Every stove is different, and you don’t want your crumb coating to burn while the chicken cooks all the way through. Check the bottom of each piece after 1 minute in the pan, and if the crumbs already browning, the heat is too high. Carefully turn the chicken over and reduce the heat.
- Handle the chicken gently: Use a thin spatula to turn the chicken, and be careful so as not to damage the crumb coating.
- Check for doneness with a thermometer: Use an instant-read thermometer to check the chicken for doneness (165°F). This way, you won’t need to cut it and let the juices run out.
- Let the chicken stand before serving: Place cooked chicken on a paper towel-lined plate and gently blot to absorb the oil from frying. Let stand for 3 to 5 minutes before serving.
More Chicken Recipes
- Shallow Fried Chicken with Southern Tomato Gravy
- Mexican Chicken Caesar Salad
- Spice Breaded Chicken Tenders
- Southwest Spiced Chicken and Rice
Chicken Breasts with Shallots, Honey and Thyme
- 4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
- 1 large egg
- 1-1/2 tablespoons milk
- 1 cup dry breadcrumbs
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Olive oil
- 1 medium shallot, minced (about 2 tablespoons)
- 1-1/2 tablespoons honey
- 1 to 2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves, chopped
- 3 tablespoons cream or half-and-half
- If the chicken breasts have tenderloins attached, remove them and reserve for another use. Place the breasts between 2 sheets of plastic wrap and gently pound them to a uniform thickness of 1/2-inch.
- In a shallow dish (a pie plate works well), beat the egg together with the milk. Spread the breadcrumbs on a plate or sheet of wax paper and combine with 1 teaspoon of salt and a few grinds of black pepper. Dip each chicken breast in the egg, then coat with breadcrumbs.
- Heat about 1/8-inch of olive oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add the chicken in a single layer and fry until golden-brown and cooked through, 3 minutes per side. Transfer to a platter and set aside.
- Wipe the pan clean and add 1 tablespoon of oil. Reduce the heat to medium and add the shallots. Sauté the shallots until softened, 2 to 3 minutes, then whisk in the honey, thyme and cream.
- Return the chicken to the pan and carefully turn each piece several times until the breadcrumb coating has absorbed the sauce. Serve immediately.