Perfect Baked Chicken Breasts
Perfect Baked Chicken Breasts are juicy, tasty, and so simple to make. With this easy chicken recipe, your dinners will always be delicious!
You may also like our juicy baked pork chops or our juice baked chicken thighs. Turn this into a meal with a creamy cucumber salad!
Perfect is a big word, but these baked chicken breasts live up their name. They are tender and juicy and ridiculously delicious.
They are a recipe that I've been making for a while now but never wrote it down. It's my go-to easy chicken recipe for when I need to get a healthy dinner on the table stat.
A few weeks ago, when my dad joined us for dinner, I served these baked chicken breasts. He loved them so much that he made me promise I would share the recipe here on the blog. So this recipe is for you, dad. And for all my favorite people who want to learn how to make juicy chicken breasts.
Why you'll love this baked chicken breast recipe
- Truly juicy chicken. That's right, you won't find any dried out chicken breasts here. (I've got a couple of tricks to make sure that doesn't happen.)
- Super flavorful. The simple rub is made from pantry staple spices and is so delicious.
- The ‘sauce' that you'll find at the bottom of the pan when you pull these chicken breasts out of the oven is insane. In the best way possible. Pour it over the chicken and anything else you're serving these with.
- From start to finish they will be ready to eat in about 20 minutes. And I've got some ideas for quick sides that you can pop in your oven and cook alongside the chicken so that everything is ready at the same time.
- Some baked chicken breast recipes call for sugar in the ingredients, which I think is silly. The paprika and butter in this recipe give this chicken the perfect amount of natural sweetness. No unhealthy sugar needed!
How long to bake chicken breasts
Knowing how long to bake your chicken breasts is one of the biggest tricks in making sure they are nice and juicy. Because chicken breasts are lean meat, they can overcook and dry out easily.
You want to cook your chicken breasts for 18 minutes at 425 degrees.
Cooking chicken breasts on high heat for a shorter amount of time will help keep them juicy and delicious.
We are always so scared of undercooking chicken (with good reason) that we tend to overcook it. I've tested the 18 minutes at 425 degrees trick many many times and it's always perfectly cooked.
If you want more reassurance, the best thing to do is pick up an instant-read meat thermometer. I love mine and use it all the time. As soon as the middle of the chicken breast reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit it is safe to eat.
How to bake chicken breast
Other than knowing how long to keep the chicken breasts in the oven, there are a couple of other tricks I have for making sure they live up to their title of being perfect.
- Pan size. Yes, size matters. For the juiciest chicken breasts, choose a baking dish that is just the right size for the number of chicken breasts you're cooking. You don't want too much room around them or the juices will evaporate and the chicken will become dry. (It's the same trick I use for making my Juicy Baked Pork Chops.)
- Use butter. Yes, butter. It creates a sauce that is so flavorful. I brown it first (which is really easy) then pour it over the chicken. While you can opt for oil if dairy isn't your thing, butter adds the most flavor.
- Add a little water. A couple of tablespoons will do. This helps prevent the chicken from drying out and makes sure that you have a little sauce to pour over once it's cooked.
Quick sides to serve with this oven baked chicken breast
To turn this into a truly quick and easy dinner recipe, you'll need a side that can be prepped once you put the chicken in the oven and only takes a few minutes to cook.
My favorites are quickly sauteed green beans (with a little garlic) or this Sauteed Asparagus with Garlic and Parmesan recipe. Here are a few others that I love:
- Sauteed Green Beans with Garlic (these are the green beans you see in some of the pictures)
- Miso Butter Roasted Radishes
- Spicy Honey Roasted Carrots
- Garlic Bacon Mushrooms
- The Best Greek Salad
- Perfect Basmati Rice
- Easy Cauliflower Rice
If you'd like potatoes with your dinner, try these Smoky Roast Potatoes. Pop them in the oven 25 minutes before the chicken so they have time to cook.
When the weather is hot, make sure to check out our Best Grilled Chicken Breast Recipe. It's the summer version of this one and it really is the best BBQ recipe!
And when you feel like switching things up, try our Juicy Baked Chicken Thighs or Juicy Baked Pork Chops!
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Easy Chicken Recipes
- Peanut Butter Chicken
- Asian Chicken Sheet Pan Dinner
- Grilled Chicken Cobb Salad with Warm Bacon Vinaigrette
- Saucy Peanut Chicken with Broccoli and Peppers
- Baked Sesame Ginger Chicken
- Healthy Baked Chicken Nuggets (paleo + gluten-free)
- Juicy Baked Chicken Thighs
Perfect Baked Chicken Breasts Recipe
If you love this recipe as much as we do, let us know with a 5-star rating!
- 2 tablespoons paprika
- 1 tablespoon EACH: onion powder and garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon EACH: chili powder, oregano, salt, and pepper
- 2 tablespoons butter, sub oil if you don't eat dairy – see notes
- 4 boneless chicken breasts
- Preheat your oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
- In a small bowl, mix together the paprika, onion powder, garlic powder, chili powder, oregano, salt, and pepper.2 tablespoons paprika, 1 tablespoon EACH: onion powder and garlic powder, 1 teaspoon EACH: chili powder, oregano, salt, and pepper
- Heat an ovenproof pan over high heat. Once it's hot, add the butter and let it melt then immediately remove it from the heat. The butter will brown almost instantly over high heat.2 tablespoons butter
- Place the chicken breasts in a bowl and pour the browned butter over the top. Sprinkle the spices evenly over both sides of the chicken. Place the chicken and any butter (it will solidify) into the pan you used to brown the butter. Add 2 tablespoons of water to the pan.4 boneless chicken breasts
- Bake the chicken uncovered for 18 minutes, or until the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees. (Use an instant-read meat thermometer to check this.) Let the chicken breasts rest for 5 minutes. Spoon the juices from the bottom of the pan over the chicken and serve.
Easy and delicious. I always brine the breasts for 30 minutes before prepping and putting them in the oven.
The most perfect and delicious chicken I’ve ever made! I love how easy this was to make and less mess and cleanup than cooking it on the stovetop. Hubby was raving about how tasty and juicy the chicken came out. Thank you for this wonderful recipe that I’ll be using for the rest of my life!
Can I use margarine instead of butter?
While we haven’t tried it, I’m sure it will work just fine.
This recipe is the BEST of every single recipe I have EVER tried for getting tender chicken breasts. THANK YOU SOOOOOOO MUCH! I have done everything-from soaking them in buttermilk to air-frying- NOTHING worked. I want to print the recipe and laminate it. Oh my goodness! The TIPS were also helpful. I never knew that you use a smaller pan if you only have a few pieces of chicken. I still cannot believe it! One chicken breast was 1.5 inches thick- AND IT WAS TENDER THROUGHOUT! I always sprinkled the seasons on separately. It worked to already have the mixture prepared. The best tip was the explanation to use a higher temperature to cook the breasts. No wonder mine were always tough and dried out. I thought a slower cook would give more flavor. Thanks again for completely changing my life!!!
I made this today, and the chicken breast came out sooooo juicy and tender! 🤤
My whole family loved it!!
Thank you for this amazing recipe, I recommend everyone to try it <3
OMG!!! This recipe is so good!!! Baked chicken thigh and served it on top of a rose cream cheese spaghetti and all my guests loved it!!! It is a go to recipe from now on.
The chicken came out juicy as stated with a lot of flavor!
Pretty darn good and super easy !
Is it ok to flip the chicken halfway?
No need to flip the chicken!
I use the high temp and small baking pan, but my chicken is marinated with small amt of olive oil and spices to my choosing. Works great!! I never knew about the high temp cooking method before! So grateful this was here!!
Too little salt and too much paprika. At least the chicken is cooked through and juicy
Sounds delicious and plan to make tonight! We are doing the whole30 diet, so if I use ghee instead of butter, should I add more salt?
It will probably be ok without adding more salt. You can always add a little flaky sea salt at the table if you think it needs it. 🙂
Strange. My chicken was not even close to cooked at 18min. Maybe something wrong with my oven?
Your oven temp might be lower – it’s common for temperature to vary. Also, chicken breasts do vary widely in size and it yours were large they will take longer to bake.
I tried this recipe about 2 weeks ago to prepare chicken breast for a casserole. I make tasty chicken in the oven ALL the time, but I’ve never used browned butter (usually EVO)- the butter makes it even better! The breasts turned out SO perfectly moist, I’ve used this recipe about 5 times since then (swapping “rotisserie chicken” for this recipe). I’ve subbed the chili & paprika with curry & turmeric with excellent results, too. We all LOVE it, especially my husband & picky 3 year old. So thankful I stumbled across this! Thank you!!!! I’m excited to try more of your recipes ♥️
425 for 18 minutes and my chicken was still raw in the middle :/ it barely hit 120°
Cooking at elevation can affect how long things take to cook (we cook at sea level). Also, chicken breasts vary considerably in size. That’s why we recommend double checking with a thermometer. 🙂
I am at the 500 ft elevation and it takes about 20-25 minutes depending on size. Checking the temp is key. Even when i use my grandmother ‘s thermometer, it still works great! 🙂
If you are using a baking dish to put it in the oven do you still add water to it before putting it in the oven?
Yes! It helps to keep the chicken breasts juicy. 🙂
Very flavorful and tender! My husband loved it! Needed a new chicken breast recipe. Thank you.
Super recipes! I really liked the baked chicken breasts.
This seems like a stupid question, but I don’t have an oven proof skillet, other than my cast iron skillets. Would that be ok to use?
A cast iron skillet is perfect for this recipe!
Thus baked chicken was delicious and juicy! I loved as written. My said it was very good, but would prefer “regular seasonings”, which it him would be Just salt, pepper, onion and garlic powder. cooked it again his way, and still delicious! so easy and good, definitely a keeper recipe. I
Made this tonight with coconut milk rice and it was sooooo delicious. Girlfriend loved it too. Easy to follow. A good weeknight recipe.
What time would you recommend for thin sliced breast?
Do you mean that you have a raw chicken breast that is thinly sliced? If so, it won’t take long. Maybe better cooked in a pan where you can keep a closer eye on the temperature. 🙂
Wow! Juicy and delicious. Next time I will cut the salt in half, but honestly, this was one of the easiest and most delicious baked chicken recipes we’ve ever had.
This was easy to make, quick in the oven and really delicious. Just two tablespoons of browned butter gave this dish a nice flavor without adding a ton of fat. Very moist and tender. I really appreciated the note about the right size pan. I’ll be making this again! Thanks!
I use this cooking method almost every time I cook boneless full breast. I love the seasoning recipe too but I mix it up a bit. Thank you so much for sharing all the important details.
You’re so welcome!!
I have followed some other recipes only to end disappointed with dry chicken, but not for this recipe! I followed the directions and ended up with super moist chicken, like none I have tried before. My family loved it. The spices were an incredible combination of deliciousness. I served it with Jazmine rice and a salad. I am so glad I found you.
I will be making this again and again.
That is wonderful!
This was delicious -I used smoked paprika as it was all I had and it gave the chicken a nice slightly smoky flavor. My husband accidentally bought extra thin sliced chicken breasts, so I felt like I should stuff them & cook them jelly roll style. I seasoned both sides and then wrapped it around cream cheese and homemade pico & topped w bacon. I also made a few using just the recipe. Both were delicious and the family really enjoyed it. My husband said it was tasted like something you could order at a restaurant! I’ll definitely save this recipe. The seasoning rub made a lot so I was able to same some in a jar for next time, which will make it super easy to make again!! Thanks for sharing this recipe!!
So happy that you and your husband loved the recipe!
Perfect! Juicy, moist, and flavorful chicken breast! And only 18 minutes!!! I added onions to the butter vase and the flavor was immaculate! 10 out 10!
As moist and tasty as promised. I doubled the spices to keep enough for another meal. Bet it would be great on wings too. Thank you.
You’re very welcome!
Absolutely PERFECT! Tried with bone-in breast and wing. So juicy!
Absolutely PERFECT! Tried with bone-in breast with wing. So juicy!
I made this recipe at my daughter’s house for family dinner. I timesed 2 the spices and timesed 3 the chicken. As each person tried it, he or she asked how I made it. They loved it. Fortunately, the recipe is short, as I had to repeat the telling about 8 times. We also offered some to the man laying carpet in the basement. He even came and asked how I made it, saying it was the best chicken breast he had ever had.
Awww thanks for coming back to share your experience with the recipe! Made my day!
Thanks for a great quick and easy meal! Super moist chicken. I am sure to make this again soon!
You’re very welcome!
This recipe was easy, quick & delicious!!! 5 stars
Thanks, Jean! So happy that you enjoyed it!
It came out perfectly at 18 minutes. I was concerned because of the thickness of the breast. The amount of salt needs to be adjusted if you’re not using salted butter. This was really good I definitely would recommend and cook it again!!
That’s great, Sherelene! Thank you for the comment!
One of the best chicken breast recipes I ever made.
Thank you for letting us know you loved the recipe!
This is the recipe I made for dinner tonight!!! It’s healthy, tasty and easy to make. BTW: your food photography is absolutely stunning!
Made these last weekend for a crowd, were a hit!
That’s so great to hear!
Finally a juicy chicken recipe that’s healthy and easy to make!
Yes! We love easy + healthy recipes, too. 🙂
These chicken breasts are marvelous. I also love the juice on the bottom that the chicken makes.
Your recipe looks amazing. I rarely bake chicken breasts because I never know if they’ll come out well, but your photos are making me want to try this for sure.
I hope that you loved them as much as we do!
This Chicken Breast is perfectly baked! Super moist on the inside and a beautiful crust on the outside.
Thanks, Shanika! So happy to hear that you enjoyed the recipe!
Wow this chicken is amazing! It’s my go to dinner.
That’s so awesome to hear! Yay!
I absolutely love adding browned butter! The chicken is incredible and just cooked to perfection!
I’m so happy to hear that you love the recipe!
I haven’t even made this yet and I am so impressed. I don’t think I have ever read that many fantastic views. I think I would trust any recipe that you posted