I hope that you’re enjoying all of these simple recipes while you wind down from the holiday hoopla! I’m starting to think that 5 Ingredient Recipes need to become regulars around here. The only thing better than amazing food is amazing food that is cheap and easy to make, after all.
This recipe is actually my mom’s– a recipe my family has been devouring for about 2 decades, and one that my cousins, aunts, and friends have begged for. With just 5 simple ingredients, this Breaded Lemon Chicken comes together to be crisp, tender, and bright. Thank you, Mom, for finally relenting and letting me share this with the world.
To make 5 Ingredient Breaded Lemon Chicken, you basically do what you would do for any breaded chicken cutlet– pound it thin, bread it, and fry it, except instead of using egg to get the breadcrumb to stick, you use lemon juice. Believe it or not, the lemon juice does a great job of keeping the breadcrumb intact, and the acid helps your chicken stay soft and juicy inside when you pan fry it. Not to mention, the citrus brings a whole new dimension of flavor to the chicken!
Give this recipe a go and it just might become your go-to work week dinner!
- 2 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- ⅓ cup lemon juice (fresh is best, but bottled is fine, too)
- 1½ cups seasoned breadcrumbs
- Vegetable oil, to pan fry
- Lemon pepper, to taste
- Parsley and/or lemon, to garnish (optional)
- Slice the chicken breasts in half horizontally, so that you get 4 thin chicken breast pieces. Put down about a foot of plastic wrap on the counter top and lay the chicken pieces on it. Cover with an additional piece of plastic wrap and use a meat mallet to evenly pound out the chicken breasts until about ¼" thick.
- Heat ¼" of vegetable oil in a large, high-walled pan over medium.
- In a shallow bowl, pour or squeeze in the lemon juice. In a separate shallow bowl, add in the breadcrumbs. Dip each chicken breast slice, one at a time, into the lemon juice and let sit for 2 minutes. Turn over and let sit for an additional 2 minutes. Transfer to the breadcrumbs and press gently to help the breadcrumbs adhere to each side. Set aside. Continue until all of the chicken is breaded.
- Add 2 of the breaded chicken breasts to the oil and sprinkle liberally with lemon pepper. You want to make sure there is ample room between the chicken breasts, because overcrowding the pan results in soggy chicken. Fry until dark golden brown on the bottom, about 4 minutes. Using tongs, carefully turn the chicken. Sprinkle with additional lemon pepper, and continue to pan fry for 4 more minutes. Transfer to a paper-towel lined sheet and repeat with remaining pieces of chicken.
- Garnish with a sprinkle of parsley and slices of lemon, and serve immediately.
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