Lemon Chicken is a delightful recipe that delivers on all fronts—tangy, savory, and supremely comforting. Lemon chicken is simple to make, with few ingredients and steps involved. This makes it an accessible choice for novice cooks, busy weeknight dinners, or when you want a satisfying meal without too much fuss.
The star ingredient of lemon chicken is, undoubtedly, the lemon. This citrus fruit adds a tangy freshness that uplifts the dish and cuts through the richness of the chicken. The acid from the lemon juice also helps to tenderize the meat, making it juicier and more flavorful.
Lemon chicken is wonderfully versatile. It pairs well with a variety of side dishes, whether you're in the mood for a comforting bowl of pasta, a simple salad, roasted vegetables, or some fluffy rice.
Chicken is a good source of lean protein, and when combined with lemon, it becomes a nutritionally balanced dish. Lemon is high in vitamin C and other antioxidants, adding a healthful aspect to the meal.
- Chicken breasts
- Lemon juice
- Italian seasoning
- Garlic powder
Keep scrolling to find a full, printable recipe with a detailed ingredient list.
- Prep the Chicken: Start by cutting each chicken breast in half horizontally to create thinner slices. This is done by placing your hand on top of the chicken breast and slicing horizontally into the chicken, taking care not to cut all the way through. This will help the chicken to cook evenly and quickly. After you've cut the chicken, pat each piece dry with a paper towel. This step helps remove any excess moisture from the chicken, which allows it to brown more effectively during cooking.
- Dredging the Chicken: Next, take each chicken piece and dip it into the flour. Ensure that the entire surface of the chicken breast is lightly coated in flour. This step not only helps to give the chicken a crisp, golden exterior when it cooks but also assists in thickening the sauce later.
- Cooking the Chicken: In a medium-sized pan, melt half of the butter over medium heat. You'll know the butter is completely melted when it's all liquid and starts to foam a bit. Add the chicken pieces to the pan, making sure they are not overcrowded, which could lead to steaming instead of browning. Cook the chicken for about 5 minutes on each side, or until it is golden brown and cooked all the way through. The internal temperature of the chicken should reach 165°F when measured with a food thermometer.
- Adding the Flavors: To the same pan, add your spices—Italian seasoning, garlic powder, and minced onion. Also, pour in the lemon juice and add the remaining butter. Stir these together, forming a sauce, and continue cooking the chicken for another 3-4 minutes. This allows the chicken to absorb the flavors of the spices and the tangy lemon juice, enhancing its taste.
- Simmering: After adding all these elements, reduce the heat to low and place the lemon slices in the pan. You can put them directly on the chicken pieces or intersperse them in the pan. Let the chicken continue to cook for about 4 more minutes. This step imparts more lemon flavor to the dish and allows the chicken to fully imbibe the buttery, lemony sauce.
- Serving: Now, your dish is ready to be enjoyed! Transfer the chicken pieces to a serving platter or individual plates. The dish can be garnished with fresh herbs like parsley or basil for a pop of color and extra flavor.
Frequently Asked Questions
Absolutely, bone-in chicken pieces can be used in this recipe. Keep in mind that bone-in chicken may take longer to cook, so adjust your cooking times accordingly.
If you find the sauce too thin, you can create a slurry with a teaspoon of cornstarch mixed with a little cold water. Stir this into the sauce and simmer for a few minutes until the sauce thickens.
Store any leftover lemon chicken in an airtight container in the refrigerator. It should be consumed within 3-4 days. To reheat, you can use a microwave or a skillet on the stove over medium heat.
Lemon chicken is versatile and pairs well with many sides. You could serve it with steamed rice, mashed potatoes, pasta, or a fresh salad. Steamed vegetables or a side of bread also work great.
If you’ve tried this Lemon Chicken recipe or any other recipe on Bless This Mess, then don’t forget to rate the recipe and leave me a comment below! I would love to hear about your experience making it. And if you snapped some pictures of it, share it with me on Instagram so I can repost on my stories.
- 2 large chicken breasts
- ¼ cup salted butter divided
- ¼ cup flour
- ¼ cup lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon minced onion
- 1 large lemon sliced
- Cut each chicken breast in half horizontally and pat each piece dry with a paper towel.
- Dip each chicken breast in the flour, ensuring the entire surface is lightly coated.
- Melt half of the butter in a medium sized pan. Once the butter is completely melted, add the chicken and cook for about 5 minutes per side, or until cooked all the way through.
- Add the spices, lemon juice, and remaining butter. Continue cooking the chicken for 3-4 minutes, allowing the meat to absorb the lemon juice.
- Reduce the heat to low and add the lemon slices. Allow the chicken to cook for 4 more minutes.
- Serve and enjoy!
- The lemon slices are optional, but they add a little extra lemon flavor the the chicken and add an aesthetic look to the dish.
- This chicken is great topped with fresh parsley in addition to lemon slices.
- Make sure your chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees before serving it.
- Coating the chicken in flour helps give the chicken a beautiful golden brown color.
- If using unsalted butter, add a teaspoon of salt to the flour.
- For some extra lemon flavor, you can top your chicken with some lemon zest.
Not only is this lemon chicken easy to whip up with just a few pantry staples, but it also promises a taste that's beautifully balanced and refreshingly light. So next time life gives you lemons, make lemon chicken. You won't be disappointed!