Who says healthy eating can’t be good, mouth-watering meals? This recipe is so delicious and ridiculously quick and easy to make. As an extra time saver, cook the chicken breasts ahead of time, then layer all the ingredients when ready to cook.
The recipe calls for organic tomato sauce. It’s a little more expensive, but there again it isn’t overly processed, doesn’t have all of the additives and preservatives and is better for you. Get the salt-free version if you can and add your own. You can make your own red sauce, which takes a little more time but is well worth the effort. You can freeze the leftovers and use in a variety of dishes. I’m researching and experimenting on red sauces, stay tuned!
You’ll also note that the recipe uses fresh cheeses vs. pre-sliced and pre-shredded. You know the saying by now, fresh is best! However, the main reason I use fresh cheese is because I don’t care to eat wood. Yep, you read right, it’s not a mistake, wood. Read the ingredient list on pre-sliced and pre-shredded cheeses. See cellulose on there? Know what that is? Yep, wood pulp. It’s used as a filler to bulk up the item and cut back on the real stuff. When you get fresh cheese, you’re getting all cheese!
- 4 chicken breasts
- 1 egg, beaten
- 1 cup plain, whole wheat panko crumbs
- Extra virgin olive oil
- 2 cups organic tomato sauce with basil and oregano
- 4 slices fresh mozzarella
- ¼ cup freshly grated parmesan
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Fresh basil for garnish (optional)
- Chopped cherry tomatoes (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Pound chicken breasts with a meat mallet to an even thinness; season with salt and pepper.
- Dredge each breast in the egg, then roll in the panko crumbs. Set aside.
- Heat the olive oil over medium-high heat in a large skillet. Swirl the heated oil to coat the bottom of the skillet.
- Lower the heat to medium and cook the chicken four minutes on one side. Flip and cook three – four minutes on the second side or until just barely pink in the middle. You’ll be cooking it the rest of the way in the over, you don’t want to completely cook at this point.
- Place the cooked chicken in an oven-proof baking dish. Pour over the tomato sauce, top each breast with a slice of mozzarella, then sprinkle with parmesan.
- Bake approximately 20 minutes or until cheese is melted and sauce is bubbling.
- Plate each breast and top with freshly chopped cherry tomatoes and basil. Optional, but it makes it really pretty!
Option: You can quickly saute’ peppers, onions and mushrooms and add to the red sauce. You’ve just elevated the recipe to a cheesy cacciatore and added good-for-you vegetables!