Just a few everyday ingredients make this easy Chicken Piccata quick to make and enjoy.
Having said that - because there are so few ingredients you will want to use the freshest, best available. Fresh lemons, fresh parsley are a must here.
And don't skip any ingredients - they all add up to a rich, buttery lemon sauce.
The traditional piccatta dish from Italy uses veal but in North American chicken is a common replacement. Other meats and fish can also be prepared in the piccata fashion using the lemon and butter sauce.
Because the cutlets are pounded thin they cook up really quickly. If you have a large skillet that will hold all 4 breasts at once you can be really quick. Otherwise you will have to work in batches but it still goes quickly.
Chicken Piccata makes me think of spring. In Italy lemons are a symbol of spring.
This is a great dish to usher out the heavy beefy, stewy dishes of winter. Don't get me wrong- they have their place. But a refreshing dish like this is a great kick off to spring dining.
Wine Pairing for Chicken Piccatta
I would acknowledge the Italian heritage here and serve it with a Soave Classico or Lugana. Pinot Grigio would work as well. Look for a light, crisp profile with citrus notes to marry with the sauce. A Saouvignon Blanc would also work.
Red wine is trickier to pair with lemon but the lemon may soften a high acid red so I would look for a Valpolicella or Barbera.
Easy Chicken Piccata
- 2 large skinless, boneless chicken breasts 6-8 oz each
- 4 tablespoon Extra virgin olive oil
- flour for dredging
- salt and pepper for seasoning
- 4 tablespoon butter
- 2 lemons 1 sliced, 1 juiced
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 3 Tbsps capers drained
- ½ cup dry white wine or substitute chicken broth
- ¼ cup parsley minced
- Warm oven to about 250° F.
- For large breasts slice the breast in halve horizontally. (So the 1 breast makes 2 portions half the thickness of the original breast.) Place chicken portions between double layers of plastic wrap and pound with a meat hammer to make a uniform cutlets about ¼" thick.
- Dredge each cutlet in flour and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
- Heat oil in a skillet. When hot fry the cutlets in a single layer 3-4 minutes per side. If you have to work in batches remove the seared breast to an oven proof plate while you sear the other cutlets. Place all cutlets on the plate and keep warm while you finish the sauce.
- Add the butter to the skillet. When hot add the lemon slices and allow them to brown. Add the garlic and stir for 1 minute. Add the wine and scrape up any brown bits stuck to the bottom of the skillet. Add the lemon juice and parsley. Add the chicken cutlets back to the pan and stir to coat with the sauce. Add the capers and allow cutlets and capers to heat through.
- Serve with rice or crusty bread to soak up the sauce.