Crispy Herbed Panko Chicken: crispy, juicy, and ultra-flavorful chicken that's ready in just 30 minutes!
This recipe was originally published on May 19, 2021. It was updated on May 18, 2022.
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Table of contents
- More about this baked panko chicken recipe:
- Panko chicken breast ingredients:
- Ingredient substitutions:
- How to make panko baked chicken:
- Recipe pro-tips:
- Save this Pinterest pin for later on Pinterest:
- Recipe FAQs:
- Serving suggestions:
- Making this chicken ahead of time:
- Recipe variations:
- Dietary adaptations:
- Storage directions:
- Reheating directions:
- Tools needed to make this recipe:
Given that chicken is such a popular protein, I'm on a mission this summer to provide you with more easy, impressive, juicy, and all-around DELISH chicken recipes!
The kind of no-fail chicken recipes that you feel confident about making for company but are also quick enough to whip up after a long day.
This crispy baked panko chicken is one of my favorite new recipes. It's juicy, flavorful, crispy, and so easy (no, really!) to make.
Instead of dredging the chicken in eggs and bread crumbs (so messy!) we'll be whipping up a seasoned mayonnaise mixture and then sprinkling herbed panko bread crumbs on top.
While baking, the panko gets nice and crispy while simultaneously sealing all the juices into the chicken. The result: tender and flavorful chicken breast every time!
But enough talking about this chicken. Let's get cooking!
More about this baked panko chicken recipe:
Panko chicken breast ingredients:
- Chicken cutlets - or, boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut in half horizontally
- Light mayonnaise - or reduced-fat mayo like Best Foods Olive Oil or Avocado Oil Mayonnaise
- Minced garlic
- Smooth Dijon mustard
- Panko bread crumbs - Japanese-style bread crumbs that are light and airy.
- Olive oil - extra virgin will provide the best flavor
- Dried thyme - the full dried leaves (not ground), are best
- Chicken - chicken tenders and boneless skinless chicken thighs can work in place of the chicken cutlets. If making panko chicken tenders, reduce the cooking time to 15-18 minutes, or until cooked through to 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Mayonnaise - traditional or full-fat mayonnaise can substitute for the reduced-fat mayo. The nutritional count of the recipe will be affected, however.
- Mustard - whole-grain Dijon mustard can replace the smooth mustard
- Herbs - dried poultry seasoning or rubbed sage can substitute for the dried thyme
How to make panko baked chicken:
Make the mayonnaise mixture and panko breading:
- Preheat the oven and spray a large baking sheet with non-stick cooking spray.
- Stir together the mayonnaise, minced garlic, salt, and Dijon mustard until combined in a small mixing bowl.
- In a medium mixing bowl, stir together the panko bread crumbs, salt, dried thyme, and olive oil together with a fork until the olive oil is evenly mixed into the bread crumbs.
Prepare the chicken:
- Place the chicken cutlets on the prepared baking sheet.
- Spread the mayonnaise mixture on the chicken until covered.
Crust the chicken with panko & bake:
- Sprinkle the panko bread crumb mixture evenly over the chicken.
- Bake the chicken until the chicken is cooked through and the bread crumbs are golden and crispy.
- Serve the chicken hot with optional lemon slices to garnish.
- Pre-heat the oven. This ensures that the oven is nice and hot. The chicken will cook the most evenly and the bread crumbs will crisp up the best in a preheated oven
- Use a baking sheet, not a dish. The chicken needs to be spread out on a large baking or cookie sheet for it to crisp up evenly, so don't use a baking dish and don't cover the baking sheet while baking
- Use panko breadcrumbs (not regular breadcrumbs). Panko bread crumbs are light and fluffy, so they crisp up beautifully for this recipe. Classic bread crumbs are heavier and don't crisp in the same way so we need to avoid them for the best results
- Don't skimp on the mayo. It adds loads of flavor as well as binds the bread crumbs to the chicken and is a very important ingredient for this recipe!
Save this Pinterest pin for later on Pinterest:
You can buy panko bread crumbs at most major grocery store chains here in the States. They also can usually be found at Whole Foods, Wal-Mart, or on Amazon.
There are different ways to get panko to stick to chicken. Some recipes dredge the chicken in flour and eggs first. In this recipe, however, we will get it to stick to the chicken by first brushing the chicken with a mayonnaise mixture.
You know that the chicken is done when the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit and the bread crumbs are golden and crispy.
Serve this panko breaded chicken breast with any of your favorite side dishes, like:
- Air Fryer Green Beans
- Scalloped Sweet Potatoes
- Garlic Angel Hair Pasta
- Roasted Broccoli
- Greek Penne Pasta Salad
- Garlic Smashed Air Fryer Potatoes
- Sautéed Zucchini and Yellow Squash
- Healthy Mashed Potatoes
- Crispy Air Fryer Brussels Sprouts
Making this chicken ahead of time:
To make this recipe ahead of time, prep the chicken, whisk together the mayonnaise mixture, and stir together all of the bread crumb mixture except for the olive oil. Cover and refrigerate the mayo and chicken (the bread crumbs are fine at room temperature) for up to 24 hours.
Right before baking spread the mayonnaise on the chicken and toss the olive oil with the breadcrumbs. Sprinkle the breadcrumbs on top of the mayonnaise and bake the chicken as directed.
- Lemon panko chicken: add in 1 teaspoon lemon zest along with the dried thyme and serve the chicken with lemon slices
- Italian panko chicken: substitute ¾ teaspoon dried Italian seasoning for the dried thyme, stir ¼ cup grated parmesan cheese in with the panko mixture, and serve the chicken with warmed marinara sauce to dip
- Gluten-free: to make this recipe gluten-free, substitute rice panko or gluten-free panko bread crumbs
- Refrigeration: leftovers keep covered in the refrigerator for 3-4 days.
- Freezing: leftovers do not freeze well
For best results, reheat the leftover panko crusted chicken breast in a toaster oven over medium-low heat or an oven at 300 degrees for 4-6 minutes, or until the bread crumbs have crisped and the chicken is heated through.
You can also reheat the chicken in a microwave over medium heat in 30-45 second intervals, or until heated through, but the bread crumbs will not re-crisp this way.
Tools needed to make this recipe:
More easy chicken recipes:
- Instant Pot Chicken and Potatoes
- Honey Garlic Lemon Pepper Chicken Thighs
- Air Fryer Chicken Bites
- Walnut Chicken with Brown Butter Sage Sauce
- Spicy Honey Chicken Marinade
- Sheet Pan Sausage & Veggies
- Curried Yogurt Marinated Chicken
- Healthy Orange Chicken
- Thai Green Chicken Curry
- Mexican Chicken Marinade
- Instant Pot Chicken Tacos
- Sheet Pan Mojo Chicken
If you made and liked this recipe, don't forget to rate the recipe and let me know how it went for you in the comments! It always makes my day to hear from you!