Believe it or not, this classic dish is actually easy to make and ready in less than 20-minutes! Make restaurant-quality Chicken Piccata in your own kitchen with just a few ingredients...
What is piccata?
The term "piccata" actually refers to the sauce that accompanies a thinly pounded piece of meat. The piccata sauce is typically a lemon, butter, caper sauce.
You've seen variations on Italian restaurant menus such as veal piccata, where the veal is thinly sliced and sauteed in piccata sauce--same concept here, but with poultry.
Why you'll love this recipe:
- Quick and easy - cooking time is about 5-minutes per breast
- Great flavor and texture - the flour coating isn't thick or overbearing...just right!
- Easy lemon piccata sauce
- Cost-efficient - one breast, cut in half makes two servings
Here's what you'll need:
This recipe is simple and uses simple ingredients: chicken breasts, flour, lemon, butter, capers, salt/pepper and white wine (optional.) Because chicken breasts are so large these days, I usually allow one breast per two people.
This recipe is a pretty quick dinner! You can buy a large breast and slice it in half lengthwise or use thin sliced cutlets from your butcher. Note: this recipe does not call for an egg and flour dredge...just a light coat of seasoned flour works!
Slice breast in half lengthwise; melt butter and oil in large skillet
Pound with a meat cleaver until it is ¼ inch thick; lightly salt and pepper
Dredge in flour...
Heat oil and butter to 316ºF; place coated breast in skillet; allow to cook 3-5 minutes on both sides (internal temperature of 165ºF)
Cook on 3-minutes before flipping...
The oil temperature should be around 310-316ºF. If you're chicken breast is really thin, it will cook to an internal temperature of 165ºF at about 3-minutes on each side. Thicker cutlets might take 5-minutes on each side.
Use tongs and lift the edge to see if it's browning, but don't move it for at least 3 minutes, otherwise, you run the risk of losing the flour coating.
Wine is optional - type of wine
The best wine to use for piccata sauce is a good, dry white wine such as Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Grigio, or Chardonnay. Definitely use a good wine (one that you'd drink)! Wine is optional, but it does add a bit of flavor.
This easy lemon chicken piccata dish pairs well with pasta, rice, potatoes and something green...broccoli, asparagus, Brussels sprouts or a Caesar salad.
To reheat, set oven to 325-350ºF and place cutlet on baking dish; bake uncovered for 15-20 minutes.
Pin It for Later!
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♥ If you make this recipe, please scroll down and leave a comment and rating below! Thank you!
- 1 large chicken breast skin-off; hand trimmed; cut in half lengthwise
- 2 tablespoons oil not olive oil; canola, vegetable, peanut or grapeseed (see notes)
- 1 stick butter
- 1 cup flour
- 2 teaspoons salt divided (1 tsp. for breasts; 1 tsp. for flour)
- 1 teaspoon black pepper divided (½tsp. for breasts; ½ tsp. for flour)
Lemon Sauce Ingredients
- ¼-½ cup fresh lemon juice (about 2 large lemons or 4-6 small lemons)
- 2 sticks butter
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons capers drained
- ¾ cup dry white wine (optional)
- Pat dry with paper towel
- Slice in half lengthwise
- Pound breasts to ¼ inch thick
- Lightly season breast halves with salt and pepper
- Place flour and remaining salt and pepper in a shallow bowl; combine well
- Using tongs, dredge each breast through the flour, coating thoroughly
- Preheat oven to 250ºF (do this if you are cooking the chicken in batches; keeps them warm while you're making the sauce) (see notes)
- In a heavy bottom skillet on medium to medium-high heat, add oil and 4 tablespoons of butter
- Bring oil/butter mixture to a temperature around 310-316ºF
- Place flour coated breast in hot skillet; allow to cook for 3 minutes (lift the edge of the breast after about 3 minutes to see if the center is browning; if not, continue to cook another 2 minutes) (see notes)
- Turn the breast half over and cook an additional 3 - 5 minutes or until the internal temperature reaches 165ºF
- Remove from skillet and place in warm oven, uncovered
Make the Sauce
- In a medium saucepan, melt butter
- Whisk in cornstarch and allow to cook for 1 minute; add lemon juice, wine (optional) and drained capers; taste for salt
- Plate chicken breasts and drizzle piccata sauce over the top
- If you're making more than two servings, you may need to add additional oil and butter in between each batch; if so, allow it to reach a high temperature before placing the next coated breast in the skillet.
- Everytime you add more butter/oil, the breast coating turns out darker than the first. If this makes you crazy, replace all the oil/butter between each batch.
- If you find your first breast is browning too fast, but it's not reaching an internal temperature of 165ºF, turn the heat down a little.
- The oil temperature should be around 310-316ºF. If you're chicken breast is really thin, it will cook to an internal temperature of 165ºF at about 3 minutes on each side. Thicker cutlets might take 5 minutes on each side.
- Use tongs and lift the edge to see if it's browning, but don't move it for at least 3 minutes, otherwise, you run the risk of losing the flour coating.