Chicken Schnitzel Recipe (2024)

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Chicken schnitzel has always been a favorite in my family. When my kids were younger, schnitzel was a giant chicken nugget, to be grabbed in hand and dunked in lots of ketchup. Back then I don't think any of us realized the wide global reach and popularity of schnitzel.

Chicken Schnitzel Recipe (1)

The world Loves Schnitzel

Not every country calls it "schnitzel," but they all use a similar recipe:boneless, skinless, beef, chicken, pork, turkey or veal is tenderized by pounding it into a thin cutlet. It's then breaded and baked, sautéed or deep fried. It's crisp on the outside and tender within - totally irresistible any way you serve it!

In Italy they it "Chicken Milanese." A big, thin crispy sheet of chicken schnitzel that practically covers the plate is topped with an arugula and cherry tomato salad with lemony dressing.

The Japanese version is "Katzu." After the chicken is fried to golden-brown perfection, it's sliced into strips and served with a big scoop of steamed rice and a green vegetable.

Chicken schnitzel in Israel has a good amount of sesame seeds in the breading and is sometimes offered as a filling forshawarma.

Wiener Schnitzel is the famed Viennese version, made from veal.

Chicken Schnitzel Recipe (2)

For the ultimate comfort food fix, serve your chicken schnitzel straight up with buttered noodles - just like in the famous song "My Favorite Things" from "The Sound of Music."

"Cream colored ponies and crisp apple strudels
Doorbells and sleigh bells and schnitzel with noodles
Wild Geese that fly with the moon on their wings
These are a few of my favorite things!"

Chicken Schnitzel Recipe (3)


The first step of making good schnitzel is to pound the chicken until it's nice and thin. I don't have a mallet, but my rolling pin works really well. Putting the chicken into a large baggy for pounding, is a great way to keep chicken juices from spraying around your kitchen. Tip: don't zip the baggy or it might pop.

Chicken Schnitzel Recipe (4)

After the chicken cutlets are pounded to ⅓ - ¼ inch thickness, set up a dredging station with a plate of flour, a bowl of beaten eggs, and a plate of bread crumbs.

Chicken Schnitzel Recipe (5)

Coat each chicken cutlet lightly with flour.

Chicken Schnitzel Recipe (6)

Dunk into beaten eggs.

Then coat with crumbs. Your chicken schnitzel is now ready to cook.

Chicken Schnitzel Recipe (7)

You can bread all of your schnitzel ahead of time and keep it covered in the fridge for a few hours until you're ready to cook it.

Schnitzel is best served right after it's browned.

If you have leftovers, be sure to make a delicious "schnitzelwich" - schnitzel on a roll with lettuce and mayo or Russian dressing.

Chicken Schnitzel Recipe (8)

Cool mornings have started to mingle with the hot August afternoons here in New England. I can feel myself waffling between hanging on to the lazy days of summer and gearing up for a busy Fall. I've already started nagging my kids about getting ready for school. Soon our family will be in full swing of the new season - each of us diving head first into our various endeavors. Coming together around the family table for a good comforting dinner will feel better than ever!

Here's the chicken schnitzel recipe. If you try this recipe I hope you'll come back to leave a star rating and comment. I'd love to know what you think!


Chicken Schnitzel Recipe (9)

Chicken Schnitzel Recipe

★★★★★5 from 2 reviews
  • Author: Lisa
  • Total Time: 1 hour 20 mins
  • Yield: 6-8 1x
Print Recipe


Thin scallops of chicken, breaded and sautéed until golden brown on the outside, tender inside. Serve with buttered noodles and salad.



  • 6 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (about 2 ½ pounds)
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • ¾ cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2-3 cups panko bread crumbs
  • Vegetable oil, for frying
  • Optional Garnish
  • 1 lemon, cut into eights
  • Fresh grated parmesan cheese


  1. Pound the Chicken Place a chicken breast half inside a large plastic ziplock bag. Lay it on a flat surface. Pound evenly with a meat mallet or rolling pin until you have an evenly thin scallop, ⅓ to ¼ inch thick. Transfer scallop to a plate and repeat with remaining chicken breasts.
  2. Bread the Chicken Cover a large baking tray with foil or wax paper. Pour the flour onto a large plate. Crack the eggs into a large wide bowl and whisk. Pour the breadcrumbs onto a large plate. Season the chicken with salt and several grinds of fresh flack pepper. Lay a piece of chicken onto the flour plate. Turn it over to coat. Shake off excess flour. Then dunk the chicken into the eggs to coat. Let the excess drip off. Then press the piece of chicken into the crumbs. Turn to coat the other side. Lay the breaded chicken on the prepared tray. Repeat with remaining chicken.
  3. Cook Chicken In a large cast iron or non-stick skillet, heat 4 tablespoons oil over medium-high heat. (for speedier cooking, work with two skillets simultaneously). Add 1-2 pieces of breaded chicken to the skillet (or however many fit in a single layer.) Brown each piece for 2-3 minutes per side, until golden brown and cooked through. Transfer to a paper-towel-lined plate. Repeat with remaining chicken, adding more oil when needed. You need a good layer of oil over the bottom of your skillet to get a crisp crust.
  4. Serve with noodles or topped with arugula salad. Sprinkle with lemon juice and freshly grated parmesan cheese, if you like. Enjoy!
  • Prep Time: 1 hour
  • Cook Time: 20 mins
  • Category: Main Course
  • Method: Sauté
  • Cuisine: Global
Chicken Schnitzel Recipe (2024)


What is the best oil for cooking schnitzel? ›

Use a high-heat point oil.

I typically prefer to use olive oil over canola oil because it's healthier (see this article), but I hardly ever use it and it's fine in moderation! Plus it's worth it for me for this one because it really helps give this schnitzel that perfect crispy crunchy outer coating!

What is chicken schnitzel made of? ›

For the uninitiated, chicken schnitzel is merely a chicken breast pounded thin, breaded, and fried. It's one of those foods that you can't help but love, which is probably why it's so prolific—versions of the recipe can be found in cultures around the world.

How do you know when chicken schnitzel is cooked? ›

Drizzle more olive oil over each piece. Bake in the preheated oven for 5 to 6 minutes. Flip chicken and continue baking until no longer pink in the center and the breading is lightly browned, 5 to 6 minutes more. An instant-read thermometer inserted into the center should read at least 165 degrees F (74 degrees C).

How do you keep schnitzels crispy? ›

The best way to keep fried foods crispy? Just place them on a cooling rack set over a baking sheet. If you're frying multiple batches, throw the whole setup into a low oven to keep everything warm as you keep frying and adding to the rack.

Is it better to cook schnitzel in oil or butter? ›

For the best flavor, that fat can be clarified butter (or better: browned, then clarified butter), but I am loath to clarify two pounds of butter for a single meal. Store-bought lard is a good option, but vegetable oils like peanut, canola or rice bran will also work.

Do you cook schnitzel on high or low heat? ›

Pour enough oil to come 2cm up the side of the frying pan and heat over medium-high heat. Getting the temperature right is an important step.

What is a chicken schnitzel called in America? ›

schnitzel, a thin meat cutlet, pounded until tender and then breaded and fried, that is a culinary staple in German-speaking countries and communities. The Americanized version of the dish is chicken-fried steak.

Why do Jews eat schnitzel? ›

The schnitzel tradition was brought from Europe to Israel by Ashkenazi Jews. During the early years of the state of Israel, veal was not obtainable, and chicken or turkey proved to be inexpensive and tasty substitutes. Packaged schnitzels are widely available in the frozen food section of most supermarkets.

What is the difference between chicken schnitzel and breaded chicken? ›

Chicken schnitzel is a breaded chicken filet, so if you get down to the nitty-gritty, they're the same thing. How you serve it, meaning garnishes and accompaniments, is what turns a breaded filet into a schnitzel.

What is the white stuff coming out of my chicken schnitzel? ›

The white stuff coming out of chicken as it cooks is simply extra protein that dissolves in water and is forced out of the meat by heat. Food scientist Topher McNeil, PhD, explains, “The [chicken] muscles themselves actually contract and squeeze out the liquid that's in between muscle cells.”

Why is my chicken schnitzel rubbery? ›

Overcooking might play a role in your chicken's tire-like texture. Leaving chicken in a pan, oven, or grill for just a little too long can suck the moisture right out and leave you with a dry, rubbery bird. Without moisture, the protein fibers in the chicken become elastic.

Why is my chicken schnitzel tough? ›

When pan-frying, the breading won't have enough time to achieve that desirable golden brown color before the chicken is fully cooked. This will result in undercooked breading or overcooked (tough) chicken.

Why does the breading fall off my schnitzel? ›

You don't start dry

The first step to breading chicken is crucial: Make sure the chicken is completely dry before starting the dredging process. Using a paper towel, pat the meat dry on all sides. Excess moisture will cause the flour to get soggy, meaning it will not adhere properly to the chicken.

Can you overcook schnitzel? ›

The true key to keeping our Chicken Schnitzel juicy is two things: 1) don't pound the chicken, and 2) don't overcook it! If you pound out your chicken super thin, the moisture in the meat will evaporate as it cooks.

What are the tips for cooking schnitzel? ›

Use a deep, straight-sided skillet or cast iron pan to fry, which will keep splatter to a minimum. Heat the oil until it shimmers or quivers in the skillet, and the schnitzel will only take a few minutes per side to reach golden crispy perfection.

What type of oil should you use when shallow frying a chicken schnitzel? ›

Use oils that have a high smoke point such as peanut, canola, vegetable, sunflower, rice bran and extra-light olive oil. Shallow-fry in batches.

Can you use vegetable oil to fry schnitzel? ›

Heat 1/2 to 1 inch of vegetable oil in a heavy skillet to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). You can also use a deep fryer. Put chicken slices in the egg mixture and knead until fully coated. Press chicken in the bread crumbs until evenly coated.

What oil should I use for breaded chicken? ›

You want to use an oil that is labeled “virgin” or simply “olive oil”. You do not want to be using extra virgin olive oil here. You can also use any other neutral flavored oil you like. Just make sure it is one that can take high heat since you're essentially frying in it.

What is the best oil for pan-frying breaded chicken? ›

If you're allergic to peanuts or just not a fan of the taste of peanut oil, Marcus likes canola oil. “Canola oil is the best all-around oil to use for frying chicken,” she says. “It has a high smoke point and will not impact the flavor of the chicken the way coconut, peanut or avocado oil will.”


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