A fail-proof recipe for juicy, tender, flavorful chicken breasts? This is it! We tinkered with a few variations before landing on this perfected version. It’s easy, reliable, umami-filled, and pairs well with just about anything!
How to Bake Chicken Breasts
If you’re looking to bake chicken breasts that are juicy and flavorful, we have a few secrets to share with you:
- Marinate – to infuse flavor
- Sear on the stovetop – to lock in moisture
- Bake to an internal temperature of 165 Fahrenheit – to ensure food safety and avoid under/overcooking
- Rest – this minimizes the amount of juices that spill out when cutting
We start this quick and easy recipe with a 4-ingredient marinade made with oil, coconut aminos, lemon juice, and maple syrup. It’s umami-forward with a little sweetness and brightness to balance it out.
Whisk the marinade ingredients, then add in the boneless skinless chicken breasts and let them marinate. After just 15 minutes (a.k.a. just the right amount of time to prep sides like salad, rice, or roasted asparagus), it’s time to start cooking.
We start the chicken breasts on the stovetop because the higher heat helps lock in moisture and creates a golden brown crust.
We then transfer to the oven, helping them cook fully through the center. An oven thermometer is your best friend for making sure it’s cooked enough to ensure food safety without overcooking (which will make it dry). The leftover marinade cooks with the chicken, creating a sauce that would make even dry chicken taste good!
We hope you LOVE these seared baked chicken breasts. They’re:
Quick & easy
Made with pantry staples
& Seriously amazing!
These chicken breasts are a super versatile protein-boost for Garlic & Herb Sweet Potato Nourish Bowls, Easy Penne Arrabbiata, and beyond! They also go well with simple sides like mashed potatoes, rice, roasted vegetables, and salad. The possibilities are endless!
More Flavorful Entrée Ideas
If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo @minimalistbaker on Instagram. Cheers, friends!
Servings 4 (~3-oz. cooked servings)
- 1 Tbsp olive or avocado oil (plus more for oiling pan)
- 2 Tbsp coconut aminos (we like Big Tree brand)
- 1 Tbsp lemon juice
- 1 tsp maple syrup
- 2 (~8 oz. each) boneless skinless chicken breasts (pasture raised, organic when possible)
Preheat oven to 425 F (218 C).
In a wide and shallow bowl or dish, combine the oil, coconut aminos, lemon juice, and maple syrup. Whisk until cohesive and smooth. Place the chicken breasts in the marinade and flip them a few times to coat. Set aside to marinate for 15 minutes, flipping at the halfway point to marinate evenly.
Heat a large oven-safe skillet (we like cast iron or stainless steel) over medium-high heat. Add ~1 tsp oil (just enough to coat the skillet). Once the oil is hot and shimmering, add the chicken breasts to the pan. The pan should be hot enough that they sizzle nicely! Let them sear for 2-3 minutes, then flip and sear for another 2 minutes on the second side. Flip once more, turn off the heat, then pour the remaining marinade over the chicken breasts.
Carefully transfer the skillet to the preheated oven and bake for 10-18 minutes (flipping at the halfway point for even caramelization), or until the internal temperature of the chicken breasts reaches 165 F and they are slightly smaller in size. An oven thermometer is highly recommended as the bake time will vary based on the size of the chicken breasts (~10-12 minutes for 5-6 ounce breasts, ~12-14 minutes for 7-8 ounce breasts, and ~14-18 minutes for 8-10 ounce breasts).
Remove from the oven and let rest for 5-10 minutes, then slice and serve drizzled with any extra sauce from the pan.
Leftover chicken breasts will keep in the refrigerator for 3-4 days or in the freezer for up to 1 month. Reheat in a 350 F (176 C) oven for 10 minutes or until warmed through.
*Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated with 8-ounce chicken breasts.
Serving: 1 (three-ounce serving) Calories: 110 Carbohydrates: 2.9 g Protein: 12.8 g Fat: 4.9 g Saturated Fat: 0.8 g Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.6 g Monounsaturated Fat: 2.9 g Trans Fat: 0 g Cholesterol: 41 mg Sodium: 161 mg Potassium: 221 mg Fiber: 0 g Sugar: 2.6 g Vitamin A: 17 IU Vitamin C: 1.7 mg Calcium: 4.7 mg Iron: 0.2 mg