Cut Calories, Not Flavor: Baked Chicken Parmesan

POPSUGAR Photography | Lizzie Fuhr
POPSUGAR Photography | Lizzie Fuhr

If your idea of comfort on a plate is an oversize portion of chicken parmesan, this guilt-free recipe needs to make an appearance in your kitchen. With a whopping 47 grams of protein per serving, this 357-calorie dinner will fuel your body with quality nutrition — and keep you from dialing in takeout for yet another night! From prep to plate, this recipe comes together in well under an hour, and even better, the leftovers you can take for lunch are just as tasty the next day.

Related: Viva Italiano! 14 Lightened-Up Italian Recipes

Baked Chicken Parmesan

Cook Time40 minutes
Yield4 servings

From Lizzie Fuhr, POPSUGAR Fitness


    • Cooking spray
    • 1 egg
    • 1/2 cup unseasoned panko bread crumbs
    • 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese, plus 4 teaspoons
    • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
    • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
    • 2 large chicken breasts (about 8 ounces each), cut in half
    • 1/4 cup marinara sauce, either homemade or store-bought
    • Fresh basil, for garnish


    1. Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Line a baking sheet with aluminum and spray lightly with cooking spray.

    2. Set out 2 shallow bowls or plates. In 1 bowl, crack your egg and whisk well. In the second bowl, combine the panko breadcrumbs, 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese, Italian seasoning, and red pepper flakes.

    3. Dip 1 piece of chicken into the egg wash, then the panko breadcrumb mixture, and toss well to coat. Place the chicken on the prepared baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining three chicken breast halves.

    4. Spray the breaded chicken lightly with cooking spray, and bake for 25 or 30 minutes, until coating is golden and the chicken breasts are just cooked through.

    5. Remove from the oven and spoon out a tablespoon of marinara sauce over the top of each piece, then sprinkle a teaspoon of parmesan on top of each piece. Place back in the oven for an additional 3 to 5 minutes, until the sauce is hot and cheese is bubbling.


    I served with a small helping of pasta, but this dish would be delicious on top of fresh arugula, sautéed spinach, or even on its own. If you don't want to make your own marinara sauce, look for a low-processed, low-sugar, store-bought jar, like Newman's Own.