Italian food. its been on my mind lately.
i really wanted something heavy like a big pan of cheesy lasagna but this nipped that craving right in the bud. it’s lean, it’s fit, it’s crispy, it’s savory, and it’s good.
making your own bread crumbs is super simple and recommended. i used some toasted Sara Lee 45 Calories & Delightful bread for mine.
perfect. no frying needed! i had planned to sear the chicken on both sides in my cast iron skillet (before putting them into the oven to finish) cause i wanted that crispy, crunchy exterior, but omitting that step still produced the same results. SCORE.
i used Classico all natural, fire roasted tomato & garlic sauce,
and topped the breasts with a heaping tbsp of sauce, a few spinach leaves, and a big slice of mozzarella almond cheese.
i know chicken parm is usually paired with some variety of pasta, but i had a big, unbaked spaghetti squash sitting on my counter i needed to use.
tender, Italian juiciness. recipe time 🙂
fit n’ crispy chicken parm
the stuff: breadcrumbs
- 4 slices Sara Lee 45 Calories & Delightful wheat bread, toasted (can use gluten-free bread)
- 1 tsp Italian seasoning
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp onion powder
- 1/4 cup light parmesan cheese (optional for a dairy-free dish)
the stuff: chicken
- 4 large boneless & skinless chicken breasts (pounded and flattened)
- 1/2 jar of all natural Classico Fire Roasted Tomato & Garlic sauce
- 1-2 tbsp Earth Balance Organic Whipped Buttery Spread
- 3 oz Lisanatti Mozzarella Almond Cheese
- 1 cup fresh spinach leaves
- 1/2 tsp cracked black pepper
- 1 tbsp Bragg Liquid Aminos
do this: breadcrumbs
- toast slices of bread until crispy, not burnt but no longer soft and chewy.
- break them up into pieces by hand and toss them into your food processor.
- add the onion powder, garlic powder, parmesan cheese, and Italian seasonings.
- blend until you achieve a breadcrumb-like consistency and set to the side.
do this: chicken – preheat oven to 400 degrees now!
- pound and flatten thawed chicken breasts (under a towel, in plastic wrap, in a plastic bag, etc) with your mallet until about 1/2 in thick.
- place them into a large bowl and pour the liquid aminos and melted whipped butter spread over the top, coating evenly.
- spread out the breadcrumb mixture onto a large, flat plate.
- spray your baking pan with no stick cooking spray and set it on your work station.
- take each chicken breast and dip/press them into the breadcrumb mixture coating both sides evenly.
- place them neatly into your pan, flat. if they are touching it’s ok but don’t overcrowd your pan.
- sprinkle cracked black pepper onto the breasts.
- place pan(s) into the oven and cook for 20 minutes on one side; flip, and cook for an additional 10 minutes.
- remove chicken from oven (make sure they are done in the center) and remove the breasts from the pan.
- pour tomato sauce into your pan, covering the bottom completely.
- place chicken breasts back into pan on top of sauce.
- top them each with 1-2 tbsp more of sauce, a few leaves of spinach, as well your cheese (you can shred it too, your call.)
- place back in the oven for an additional 10 minutes or until your cheese is all bubbly and melty!
fyi, there was a little over 1/4 cup of unused breadcrumbs left.
per 4 oz serving of chicken: 240 cals, 7g fat, 12g carbs, 2 g fiber, 31 g protein