A complete tutorial (with tips and secrets) on how to easily bake thin-sliced chicken breasts that are skinless and boneless. No more bland, rubbery baked chicken! Say hello to hands-free, no-mess cooking!
About the recipe
Finally, baked thin sliced chicken breasts with exciting flavors all over. That’s ACTUALLY tender and juicy and doesn’t require sauce or ketchup to make it taste good.
This recipe tells you everything you need to know about baking thin chicken breasts, how long to marinate, how long to bake, at what temperature, what rub to use and the “why” behind all that.
How many times have you tried to cook chicken breasts seasoned or marinated even for hours only to end up with disappointing results? We have all been there! Boneless, skinless chicken breasts are lean and healthy, but when it comes to cooking, they are quite tricky.
NO SKIN + NO BONES + NO FAT = RUBBERY FLESH
- you mince the chicken breast to make chicken mince kebabs or the easy minced chicken curry.
- season the mince, make meatballs and drop them into a creamy simmering curry as in chicken kofta curry
- or use it as a stuffing for eggs as in chicken keema with eggs.
I have tried and tested different rubs and marinades, set different timings and temperatures but the results were the same.
The rubs (with loads of sugar) make the chicken LOOK juicy and caramelized, but are ALWAYS bland on the inside. As for the marinades, it was the same result, even if I marinate overnight (with the exception of chicken tikka and green chicken kababs which use a yogurt marinade).
Bone-in, skin-on chicken legs (like the sheet pan lemon garlic chicken legs) turn out juicy when baked. The fat from the skin keeps them from drying out. But with chicken breasts, it’s a different story.
I HAD to come up with a healthy baked chicken breast recipe that gives soft and juicy chicken and also ticks all the boxes:
- quick and easy dinner after a long day.
- pop in the oven and relax; no flipping, basting, babysitting, etc, etc.
- minimal clean-up, so no frying and stove-top mess.
- less pans to wash (I told you, it’s been a long day).
- healthy low calorie chicken recipe. (after all, we’re going healthy-ever-after!)
Watch How To Bake Chicken Breasts
How to thinly slice chicken breast
Slicing the chicken breasts into thin halves helps them absorb the marinade better and faster.
- Slice the breasts horizontally to make them about 1/2 to 3/4 inch thick.
- Maintaining this thickness of chicken breasts is important because you are going to cook the chicken breasts covered, so there’s no way to check for doneness in the middle of cooking.
Easy keto chicken seasoning
(You can find the exact measurements and instructions in the printable recipe card at the end of this page.)
The key is to TENDERISE the thin chicken breasts with the marinade. Like the yogurt marinade for tandoori chicken. This marinade, or should we call it a wet rub, is the answer. This seasoning is halfway between a dry rub and a marinade.
A quick tip: If you have 20 minutes to spare, use this tenderizing technique I mentioned in the healthy sesame chicken recipe before marinating the chicken. It helps soften the chicken further.
The problem with dry rubs is that they don’t have an acidic component that tenderizes the chicken. So I tried adding lemon juice to a basic seasoning mix with garlic powder, onion powder, chili powder, paprika and rosemary.
Voila! You can see the results in the picture above.
But wait! There are a few more things you have to take care of.
- Take the spices in a small bowl.
- Add lemon juice.
- Add olive oil.
- Whisk until you get a homogenous mixture.
- Blot the thin sliced chicken breasts dry with kitchen towels. Mix in the marinade.
- Pierce the chicken breasts with a fork, so the marinade will be absorbed well.
How to bake thin sliced chicken breasts
How long to marinate chicken for baking?
Marinate thin-sliced chicken breasts for at least 15 minutes. Or if time permits marinate overnight in the fridge. Wait for the chicken to reach room temperature before cooking. There’s no need to refrigerate if you’re marinating for only 15 minutes.
How long to bake thin chicken breasts at 450°F?
Cooking chicken at high heat for a shorter time yields the best results. (This is unlike baking fish as in spicy baked mustard fish and salmon kabobs which are slow-cooked at low temperatures)
Preheat the oven to 450°F/ 230°C. Place the marinated chicken breasts in a baking tray lined with parchment paper (easy clean-up) and seal with aluminum foil.
Bake the chicken breasts in the oven for 12 minutes. If the sliced chicken is less than 1/2 an inch thick, you can reduce the cooking time by a couple of minutes.
That’s it, guys! Let the oven do the rest. Meanwhile, you have the luxury of time to check your emails, take a good shower or chop up a salad like how I did 🙂
The delicious rosemary-garlic flavor will be wafting through your kitchen in no time! Once done, remove the foil and let it rest for 5 minutes. Enjoy!
Ah yes, before I forget, this recipe gives you a BONUS as well! The pan juices can be drizzled as a dressing on the salad.
How do you bake chicken breast so it stays moist?
- Bring the chicken to room temperature before you start baking. This will ensure even cooking.
- Before marinating, blot or wipe the chicken slices dry with kitchen towels.
- Place the chicken slices flat on the pan at least an inch apart from each other.
- Let the chicken breasts rest for 5 to 10 minutes. This keeps them moist with all those flavorful juices.
- Let the chicken rest after opening the sealed foil. Or else, the steam from the chicken will condense and make them soggy.
Can you bake chicken breasts from frozen?
Frozen chicken breasts can easily be thawed. Rinse the frozen chicken breasts a couple of times and soak in a bowl of tap water mixed with salt (a rough estimate would be 1 teaspoon for every 200 grams/ 7 ounces of chicken breasts and the quantity of water should be roughly just enough to cover the chicken) for 15 to 20 minutes until they reach room temperature. Then proceed as per the recipe.
Do you cover boneless chicken breasts when baking?
This recipe requires you to seal the baking tray with aluminium foil. Covering the chicken helps keep the chicken moist when baking. The chicken sweats and cooks in its own juices which makes it flavorful. You may not get browned chicken slices like when you pan-sear them. They still turn out softer and juicier.
How many calories are there in baked chicken breasts?
There are 223 calories in one serving of this recipe.
Are baked chicken breasts healthy?
Baking is one of the best and healthiest ways to cook chicken breasts in the oven. This recipe helps you cook tender low-calorie chicken breasts with delicious Mediterranean flavors without using any saturated fat like butter or cream for cooking.
There! You’ve learned the secret to cooking the best thin sliced chicken breasts in the oven with very little effort and time.
A tip for more browning (the same tip I gave for baked tandoori chicken and chicken tikka) – dab a little butter on each of the chicken breasts before baking for that extra “browned” effect.
I didn’t use it here, though 🙂
Did you make red chilli pesto or roasted garlic pesto? Just drizzle some on these chicken breasts to make them even more flavorful.
What to pair with baked thin chicken breasts
Have a little more time and energy? Pair these chicken breasts with the Italian pasta salad, beetroot walnut feta salad, or beet orange salad.
You can also serve these baked chicken breasts with sides like roasted potatoes and broccoli or Italian potato croquettes.
Want to make your dinner as healthy as possible? Try the superfood salads like quinoa pumpkin salad and balsamic quinoa salad. They tastes amazing with these baked thin chicken breasts.
Craving creamy pasta as a side? Go for guilt-free mushroom zucchini pasta or veggie pasta with garlic sauce.
For spicy pasta by the side, try red chilli pesto pasta, 6-ingredient spaghetti arrabiata, or roasted garlic pesto pasta.
These thin chicken breasts can also be chopped and used in the creamy veggie chicken salad instead of seared chicken. Quicker and easier salad dinner for summer!
Want to make the easiest chicken curry? Try this low calorie 5-ingredient chicken curry! If you’re in the mood for rice noodles with chicken, make this Singapore fried bee hoon with chicken.
Looking for an easy recipe with chicken thighs? Go for lemon balsamic chicken or lemon coriander chicken.
More healthy chicken recipes
★★★★★Did you try this recipe? Please give a star rating in the comments below ★★★★★
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Hi! I’m Sheeba, welcome to Go Healthy ever after!
I have a passion for cooking delicious nourishing food that’s easy to cook with fresh natural ingredients free from additives or preservatives. The easy healthy recipes you find here will inspire you to cook with creativity.
33 thoughts on “Easy baked thin sliced chicken breasts (boneless)”
Chicken turned out beautiful bith times ive made it! Tender, juicy, full of flavor!
The 2nd time, I used smoked paprika, added 1/2 teaspoon Chipotle powder, and used lime juice instead of lemon.
Oh! Also, I marinated in my Food Saver container! Infuses the meat with soooooo much flavor!
Thank you, Samantha! Smoked paprika and chipotle sound delicious and warming 🙂 You seem to be a “spice” person like me!
I thought this recipe was delicious! The chicken was tender and tasty. My husband and I both enjoyed!
Thank you, Cheryle! I’m glad you both liked the recipe!
Fabulous! I marinated 4 thin chicken breasts in a Pyrex baking dish for a few hours in the fridge. The marinade is incredibly delicious. I baked them (in the marinade) at 450 for not quite 10 min. Moist, tasty, succulent. Served it with rice cooked in chicken stock and lima beans tossed with olive oil and lemon juice. Will definitely make this again (and again…).
Thanks, Renee! I’m so glad you loved the recipe 🙂
12 minutes, less then a 1/2 inch =RAW. Make sure you cook this chicken linger then this.
Thanks for stopping by! It’s unfortunate that the recipe didn’t turn out right for you.
I make these chicken breasts almost every week and it has always been cooked perfectly. Are you sure your oven settings are according to the recipe?
This is so nice. I like it and want to try in my home.
Thanks for visiting! Please let me know how it turned out. I’m sure you’ll like it 🙂
You say this recipe is for beginners, but I can’t find exact measurements for your spices…
Found it finally!!!! Sorry, but it looked like an ad with all these pop ups and extras everywhere.
The chicken was pretty disappointing. Sadly it was dry, despite following all directions and I found the lack of nice color you’d achieve it was pan seared rather than steamed in the foil was offputting.
Hi Amy, thank you for the feedback. Sorry to hear that the recipe did not turn out well for you.
The chicken becomes dry when overcooked. Please try to bake a couple of minutes less if your chicken slices are very thin.
As for the color, yes it may not get as browned as when pan-seared, but I can assure you it will look appetizing and turn out tender and juicy.
I sincerely hope you’ll try the recipe again with the new tips.