This Chicken Milanese recipe is the perfect quick dinner. A deliciously breaded chicken cutlet, topped with a light citrusy arugula salad, and freshly shaved parmesan. A light and delicious chicken dinner.
Chicken Milanese is one of those classic Italian dishes that should always be in your back pocket. Milanese style refers to a thin cut of meat (can be chicken, veal, beef), lightly breaded, and shallow fried in oil. They can be made quickly and paired with so many sides. My favorite way to enjoy chicken milanese is with a bright arugula salad piled on top.
The most important part to making chicken milanese is that thin piece of protein. You can buy chicken cutlets at the store, or you can butterfly chicken breasts in half. Using a meat mallet, lightly pound the cutlet to ¼ inch thick and uniform throughout. To avoid getting chicken everywhere, I like to cover the chicken with a plastic wrap when pounding it.
You can use bread crumbs on their own, but I like to make a mixture of half bread crumbs and half panko for an extra crunch. You can find the already seasoned Italian breadcrumbs, if you can’t then add some herbs to the mixture.
I like to step up a breading station with the breadcrumb mixture, 3 beaten eggs, and all purpose flour. I lightly seasoned the chicken cutlets with some kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper. You are going to dip each side of the cutlet into the flour first (give it a light shake to remove excess), then into the egg mixture, then into the breading. Lightly press the breading onto the chicken to ensure all parts are coated.
In a frying safe skillet, I like to use my cast iron or dutch oven, pour in oil. do not use olive oil, due to it’s low smoke point it can burn when exposed to high heat. Since we are shallow frying, only put enough oil so the top of the cutlet is still exposed. You can always add more oil as you go.
I cook the cutlets on each side for 2-3 minutes. Keep an eye so you do not burn the breading. I learned when cooking with hot oil, always place the items going away from you so that if oil splashes, it goes away from you. I also utilize a splatter screen, which keeps the stovetop clean and yourself safe from popping oil.
Remove the cutlet and place on paper towel to help drain any excess oil. Continue with the other cutlets, replenishing the oil if needed.
The salad on top is quick and simple. I used arugula, lemon, olive oil, kosher salt, and freshly ground black pepper. This is supposed to be a bright note on top of the chicken milanese and you can play around with the ratio’s if you want it more lemony.
I used the juice of half a lemon, a few tbsp of olive oil, then tossed. I always under dress the salad because you can always add, but you cant remove.
Chicken Milanese Dish
Place the chicken milanese on the plate, add the salad on top, then I like to shave fresh parmesan cheese over the top.
When storing the dish, I place the chicken milanese in a separate container. I would advise on not dressing the arugula until you’re ready to eat it. If left in the fridge, it can wilt overnight.
I hope you enjoy this chicken milanese, a delicious and easy dinner!
Looking for other chicken dishes?
- Chicken Saltimbocca
- Tuscan Chicken with Tortellini
- Tarragon Chicken
- Garlic Roasted Chicken
- Chicken Pot Pie
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- 4 chicken cutlets, pounded to ¼ inch thickness
- 1 cup Italian bread crumbs
- 1 cup Italian Panko bread crumbs
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 3 large eggs, beaten
- Oil for shallow frying, canola or vegetable (see note #1)
- Kosher Salt
- 4 cups fresh arugula
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- Juice of half a lemon
- Freshly shaved parmesan
- Kosher Salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Using a meat mallet/tenderizer, place chicken cutlet under a plastic sheet and pound the chicken uniformly thin without ripping through. Season with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. Repeat with all cutlets.
- Set up three bowls: one with the all purpose flour, one with beaten eggs, and one with the breadcrumb mixture. Place each side of the chicken cutlet into the flour, coating it entirely, give it a shake to allow any excess to fall. Next dip both sides into the egg wash, followed by into the bread crumbs. Gently press the breadcrumbs into the chicken and coat entirely. Repeat with each cutlet.
- In a large cast iron skillet, heat ½ inch of oil over medium high heat (see note#2) . When the oil is hot, carefully lay the cutlet inside. Depending on size you may need to do one at a time. Fry each side for 2-3 minutes until browned. Carefully flip away from you to avoid oil splashing. Remove from skillet and place on a paper towel lined plate for excess oil to drain. Repeat.
- In a large bowl combine the arugula, olive oil, fresh lemon juice, salt and freshly ground black pepper. Toss using tongs until arugula is fully coated. Adjust olive oil and lemon juice if necessary.
- Place chicken cutlet on a plate, then pile the arugula on top, finish with freshly shaved parmesan over the top.
- Due to the high heat involved in frying, I do not use extra virgin olive oil to fry due to it's low smoke point. You can use any high smoke point oil.
- If your oil is getting too hot and the breadcrumbs start to brown too quickly or burn, lower the heat. If necessary you can add more oil for additional cutlets if it is getting too low.
- Chicken cutlets can be stored in the refrigerator or freezer. I advise not dressing the salad until you're going to eat, it will wilt overnight in the fridge.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 428