Make This Easy and Healthy Air Fryer Chicken Parmesan in 30 Minutes

Make This Easy and Healthy Air Fryer Chicken Parmesan in 30 Minutes

Crunchy, saucy, hearty, and cheesy, chicken Parmesan has a lot to offer. But the traditional recipe — drenched in flour, pan-fried, and covered in cheese — isn’t always the healthiest dinner option.

That’s why we created this air fryer chicken Parmesan recipe. It’s got everything you love about chicken parm, like crunchy breading, fresh herbs, and (of course) Parmesan cheese. But this version clocks in at less than 300 calories per serving.

For this healthier take on the comfort-food classic, we ditch the frying pan and use an air fryer to cook the chicken instead. Not only are air fryers easy to use, but they produce crunchy faux-fried chicken with significantly less fat. You’ll also avoid the soggy breading you might encounter when baking chicken breasts.

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chicken parmesan in air fryer | air fryer chicken parmesan

Air Fryer Chicken Parmesan Ingredients

  • ½ cup whole-grain Italian panko bread crumbs
  • 2 Tbsp. shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1 large egg
  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 4 (4-oz.) raw chicken breasts, boneless, skinless
  • ½ large onion
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • ¼ cup fresh flat leaf (Italian) parsley
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • ¼ cup + 2 Tbsp. tomato puree (approx. 6 oz.)
  • ¼ cup low-sodium organic vegetable broth
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh oregano
  • 2 oz. shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese (approx. ½ cup)

You’ll notice our ingredient list stays pretty true to traditional chicken Parm recipes, with one big difference: the amount of oil used to prepare the chicken.

Rather than pan-frying in a half-inch of oil, you’ll use nonstick cooking spray to evenly disperse a light layer of oil on both sides of the chicken. You’ll also use a tablespoon of olive oil to saute the onion and garlic for the sauce.

And since chicken Parmesan without the cheese would be a travesty, we’ve replaced the usual heaping helping of full-fat mozzarella with a two-ounce portion (about half a cup) of part skim.

For a pop of color and flavor, our air fryer chicken Parmesan recipe calls for fresh parsley and oregano. Looking for ways to cut down on prep time? Consider an herb stripper, which quickly separates the leafy portion of herbs from their stems.

To round out this quick and easy dinner recipe, consider serving it with whole-grain or legume-based pasta plus a side of roasted or steamed veggies. Just remember anything you add will alter the nutrition facts for your meal.

Looking for more ways to use your air fryer? Check out these healthy air fryer recipes.

plated chicken parmesan | air fryer chicken parmesan
5 from 2 votes
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Air Fryer Chicken Parmesan

Try this healthier take on chicken parmesan! It still has all of the crunchy, saucy, and cheesy goodness that you'd find in a traditional recipe.

Prep Time 4 minutes
Cook Time 26 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 294 kcal

Ingredients

  • ½ cup whole-grain Italian panko bread crumbs
  • 2 Tbsp. shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1 large egg
  • 4 (4-oz.) raw chicken breasts boneless, skinless
  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • ½ large onion
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • ¼ cup fresh flat leaf (Italian) parsley
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • ¼ cup + 2 Tbsp. tomato puree (approx. 6 oz.)
  • ¼ cup low-sodium organic vegetable broth
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh oregano
  • 2 oz. shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese

Instructions

  1. Preheat air-fryer to 350° F.

  2. Add bread crumbs and Parmesan cheese to a medium mixing bowl; stir to combine. Set aside.

  3. Add egg to a medium mixing bowl; lightly beat. Dip a chicken breast into egg; turn to coat. Dip egg-coated chicken breast in bread crumb mixture until evenly coated. Repeat with remaining chicken breasts. Lightly coat each breast on both sides with spray. Place in air fryer in a single layer. Cook for 6 minutes; flip. Cook for an additional 6 minutes. Set aside.

  4. While chicken cooks, finely chop onion, garlic, and parsley; set aside.

  5. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet.

  6. Add onion; cook, stirring occasionally, for 4 to 5 minutes, or until translucent. Add garlic; cook, stirring occasionally, for 1 minute, or until fragrant. Add tomato puree, broth, and oregano; stir to combine. Reduce heat to medium-low; cook, stirring occasionally, for 4 to 5 minutes, or until thickened.

  7. Spread 2 Tbsp. sauce on top of each chicken breast; top each with 2 Tbsp. mozzarella cheese. Cook in air-fryer for an additional 3 minutes. Top each with 1 Tbsp. parsley. Enjoy!

Recipe Notes

  • If your air fryer does not have a preheat mode, add 3 minutes to your first cook time to account for this.
  • To reheat your chicken Parmesan, preheat the air fryer and cook for about 10 minutes, or until heated through and crispy. If you froze your leftovers, let them thaw before reheating in the air fryer.

 

The Nutrition Facts box below provides estimated nutritional information for this recipe.

Nutrition Facts
Air Fryer Chicken Parmesan
Amount Per Serving
Calories 294 Calories from Fat 108
% Daily Value*
Fat 12g18%
Saturated Fat 4g25%
Cholesterol 140mg47%
Sodium 235mg10%
Carbohydrates 13g4%
Fiber 2g8%
Sugar 2g2%
Protein 34g68%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Photography by Anguel Dimov, AB Creative

Nicole McDermott

About

After graduating from Syracuse where Nicole studied magazine journalism and nutrition, she moved to New York City to write for the health and fitness site Greatist. She currently edits full time for Ghergich & Co. Nicole's work has appeared on TIME Healthland, Shape, USA Today, Men's Fitness, The Huffington Post, Refinery29 and Lifehacker, among others. Follow her on LinkedIn.

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