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How to Make the Juiciest Chicken Cutlets

Chicken cutlets on a plate with a salad

It's all about the thighs...

The breaded cutlet is made all over the world using a variety of meats, most commonly veal, pork, or chicken. The chicken cutlet is an iconic American dish, readily available in every region, mostly featuring breasts between the pan fried coating. But there's a secret to a most succulent chicken cutlet that uses the same coating but relies on an overlooked but, the thigh! Think about it: Chickens spend their days bouncing up and down on their thighs, while their breasts just hang out doing nothing. All that thigh work creates the type of meat that has flavor and texture, especially when seasoned, coated in bread crumbs and pan fried to perfection!

Go get it!

Breaded Chicken Cutlet 

How to Make the Juiciest Chicken Cutlets

How to Make the Juiciest Chicken Cutlets

Recipe by andrewappetito
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Course: Recipes


Prep time


Cooking time




  • 4 4 boneless chicken thighs (1 lb.), trimmed of fat and sinew

  • 1/2 cup 1/2 flour, sifted and seasoned with two tablespoons of fresh ground black pepper

  • 2 2 eggs, whipped

  • 1-1/4 cup 1-1/4 seasoned bread crumbs (fine or Panko)

  • 2/3 cup 2/3 finely grated Parmesan cheese

  • one one lemon, quartered

  • 1/2 cup 1/2 extra virgin olive oil

  • Kosher salt


  • Gently tenderize the trimmed thighs under plastic with a mallet — spread evenly on a platter, season both sides with Kosher salt.
  • Blend the bread crumbs and Parmesan evenly on a rimmed baking sheet.
  • Arrange a work station, from left to right, of the seasoned cutlets, the flour in a shallow bowl, the egg-wash in a shallow bowl, the bread crumb/Parmesan mixture, and a clean plate.
  • Dredge a cutlet in the flour, patting off the excess.
  • Dip in the egg wash, allowing excess to drip off.
  • Place in the baking sheet of bread crumbs/Parmesan, shaking pan. Flip the cutlet and press down into the mixture.
  • Place on the clean plate.
  • Repeat with the remaining three thighs.
  • Heat 1/4 cup of olive oil in a large saute pan over medium heat. When the oil begins to shiver, and before it begins to smoke, place two cutlets in the pan. Do not move them. Allow the cutlets to cook for 90 seconds to two minutes (until a dark brown crusts forms and the cutlet separates from the pan with nary a shake). Flip the cutlets and allow to cook 60–75 seconds without moving. Remove to a plate lined with the paper towels, squeeze a lemon wedge on each cutlet, sprinkle with salt.
  • Wipe out the pan, reheat and repeat the process.
  • Serve immediately with a zesty arugula and tomato salad.
  • Pair with any Italian medium-bodies red, preferably from Piedmont or Tuscany.

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