Pan-Roasting Boneless Chicken Breasts: A No-Fail Technique

Pan-roasted boneless chicken breasts with tomato pan sauce

Pan-roasted boneless chicken breasts with tomato pan sauce

Aren’t those chicken breasts gorgeous? I often pan-roast bone-in chicken breasts using a combination of stovetop and oven cooking. But I tend to use other techniques for cooking boneless chicken breasts, such as pan-frying. Now I have found a foolproof technique for pan-roasting boneless chicken breasts with meaty, juicy results, and it has become my favorite method for cooking chicken.

This recipe works best with meaty, organic chicken breasts. They need to be thick, or they’ll cook too fast, and organic chicken tends to be more flavorful and juicy. Here is the technique:

  1. For two chicken breasts, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil and 1 tablespoon butter in a large skillet over high.
  2. Pat the chicken dry and season with salt, pepper and any other seasoning you prefer.
  3. Add the chicken to the pan and cook without disturbing until the bottom side is well browned, about 2-3 minutes. You may want to reduce the heat to medium-high if the chicken is browning too quickly.
  4. Flip the chicken using tongs and brown the other side for another 2 minutes.
  5. Reduce the heat to medium and cover the pan.
  6. Cook the chicken through, another 8-10 minutes, depending on the thickness. Flip once or twice while the chicken is cooking, but otherwise keep it covered.

Serve topped with a simple sauce. You can make a pan sauce in the same pan where you cooked the chicken. Pictured above is pan-roasted chicken with a simple pan sauce made from tomatoes, scallions and vinegar. I have also used salsa and compound butter with good results.

I always make one extra chicken breast and use it for sandwiches and salads. This is just a great method for cooking chicken!

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24 thoughts on “Pan-Roasting Boneless Chicken Breasts: A No-Fail Technique

  1. J. Rome 7 October 2008 at 11:42 pm

    This is a really good technique, I have had success with it multiple times. Chicken is moist and perfectly cooked each time. Thank you!

  2. [...] that I have since incorporated into my regular repertoire, such as cooking pasta risotto-style and pan-roasting boneless chicken breasts. Most of the recipes I tried from the book were very successful; the only failure I can think of [...]

  3. What’s Cooking in May « Simply Cooking 30 April 2009 at 10:21 am

    [...] cooking. I’ll make something early in the week, such as a vinaigrette, an herb puree or roasted chicken breasts. As the week goes on, I look for new ways I can use what I’ve already made, such as to build a [...]

  4. [...] wasn’t feeling too good, so I scrapped the recipe I had planned to make. Instead, I simply pan-roasted a chicken breast. Once the chicken was browned on both sides, I added a few wedges of cabbage to the pan and sprinkled [...]

  5. Another Chicken Dinner « Simply Cooking 26 February 2010 at 9:15 am

    [...] Pan-roasted chicken with a quick pan sauce [...]

  6. Nick 3 April 2010 at 6:02 pm

    Excellent recipe! I followed the directions and, as it says, the breasts were juicy and delicious. Thanks!

  7. Liza Dore 30 June 2010 at 7:51 pm

    this recipe worked perfectly for my family of 3! very moist. thanks

  8. [...] I have 3 or 4 techniques in my repertoire, depending on whether I’m cooking bone-in pieces, boneless breasts or [...]

  9. [...] grill, pan-fry (cutlets), pan-roast (boneless breasts) or roast (bone-in pieces); substitute shrimp or scallops for boneless [...]

  10. Jack 1 August 2010 at 7:52 pm

    Good recipe. The short cooking time and minimal ingredients are going to help this stick with me for awhile.

  11. [...] as lasagna (always popular), tomato sauce for pasta and roasted chicken breasts. Check out this new technique I found for pan-roasting boneless chicken breasts — fast, easy and great results ever time. [...]

  12. [...] Chicken marinated in a mixture of red wine, mustard, rosemary, basil and olive oil, and pan-roasted [...]

  13. John Hall 20 March 2011 at 2:46 pm

    We tested this recipe using a fresh pack of chicken from the store for lunch today. It worked GREAT! We used sea salt and black and red pepper on the chicken. Upon checking the temperature of the chicken, it was between 165 and 178, an excellent done temperature. THANKS so much!

  14. A Fall Salad | Simply Cooking 23 October 2011 at 3:20 pm

    [...] I came up with this salad last week. It’s lovely for this time of year. Serve with chicken breasts pan-roasted with onions. [...]

  15. Zeneha 18 January 2012 at 12:55 am

    I needed a refresher on this tonight, since I haven’t pan roasted chicken in a while. It came out great! Had 3 very thick chicken breast and they were incredibly juicy and succulent.

  16. cherfer 16 February 2012 at 8:00 pm

    why is my chicken coming out so tough when I make it this way?

  17. Shannon 16 February 2012 at 9:24 pm

    Are you putting a lid on the pan after you brown the chicken? Also, you may need to reduce the heat quite a bit. You want to have a moist environment in the pan, not too hot. You may also need more fat. Good luck!

  18. RLR at Mom's Magic 20 February 2012 at 12:40 pm

    Planning to give this a try as an alternative to poached chicken. I have lots of recipes that call for cooked chicken – and have a great slow-cooker recipe – but I’d like to be able to make cooked chicken that can be used for other purposes, too (salads, sandwiches, or just eaten plain). I find that poached chicken doesn’t really have another purpose.

  19. John Ryan 3 April 2012 at 9:23 am

    First time I have Really enjoyed chicken that I cooked myself. Thanks so much!

  20. John Ryan 3 April 2012 at 9:25 am

    Really enjoyed this method, thanks so much! It was so juicy, I just had some hot sauce with it. Best chicken in a long time!

  21. Bhavish 25 April 2012 at 6:01 am

    Execllent recipe!

    Anyone tried this with bone-in chicken breast or thigh? Works out just as well?

  22. Daniel Wozniak 29 April 2012 at 6:09 pm

    Wow, I do not consider myself a cook. I tried this out and it turned out so good I can’t believe it. In the past I usually grilled my chicken. Not sure what the point of grilling would be when this method gets you a super juicy piece of chicken.

  23. Pan Roasted Chicken | Honeymoon Kitchen 8 March 2013 at 12:22 am

    [...] Pan Roasted Chicken From Simply Cooking [...]

  24. yuvaraj 17 August 2013 at 2:55 am

    very excellent dishes

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