I make a mean Chicken Parm. I really do.
It takes some effort though…pounding the chicken, coating it with just the right blend of breadcrumbs, cheese and spices, sautéing it gently, layering it up with tasty sauce and more cheese and baking it till it’s bubbly but not dry.
Not the kind of thing you can do very quickly, but the effort is most certainly worth it.
I mentioned a couple weeks ago that I’m posting a series of slow cooker recipes to help out my sister who recently got her first crock pot. When I saw this recipe, I thought of her right away because I know that she likes chicken parm, but I also know that her busy schedule wouldn’t leave her much time to make it the usual way.
I found this recipe to be easy and it tasted great! You don’t get the crunch of the bread crumb coating like you do with traditional chicken parm, but all the flavors are there and I think it’s a great substitute for when you don’t have time for the real thing.
A few things to note about this recipe:
1. It was difficult to photograph (as are most slow cooker recipes). I didn’t want it to just look like mush on a plate so I included the sides we ate with it to mix things up a bit.
2. The original recipe says you can cook it for 3 hours on high (which is what I did since I was home that day) or 5-6 hours on low (which would allow you to leave the house but isn’t long enough to span a full work day).
3. You may want to invest in a timer like this one which runs about $7 and can be set to turn your crock pot on a few hours before you get home for work.
4. The full cooking time left the chicken a little too dry for my liking. I reduced both the high and low cook times in the recipe below which I think will yield chicken that is cooked through but still moist.
All of that out of the way, here’s the recipe which has all of the flavors of the real thing without all the hassle!
- 4 boneless, skinless chicken breast (or 2 extra large chicken breasts cut in half)
- ½ cup plain bread crumbs
- ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 tsp. Italian seasoning
- ¼ tsp. ground black pepper
- ¼ tsp. kosher salt
- 1 Tbs. olive oil
- 1 egg, beaten
- 6 slices mozzarella cheese (or more to evenly cover all the chicken)
- 1 jar of your favorite marinara sauce
- Drizzle 1 tablespoon olive oil over the bottom of the crock pot and spread it around to evenly coat the entire bottom surface.
- In a medium bowl, beat egg.
- On a large plate, mix the bread crumbs, spices, and grated Parmesan cheese all together.
- Dip chicken in beaten egg and then toss into bread crumb mixture to coat completely on both sides.
- Place chicken breasts on bottom of crock pot. Place a layer of mozzarella slices on top of breaded chicken breasts. Cover cheese layered chicken with entire jar of sauce.
- Place lid of crock pot securely on and turn heat to LOW for 4.5 hours or HIGH for 2.5 hours. Serve over cooked pasta of your choice.