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This easy lemon garlic chicken recipe is a quick skillet meal that makes a family-friendly dinner! The creamy sauce will have you hooked.

Lemon Garlic Chicken
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If there’s one recipe that’s a sure hit in our house, it’s creamy chicken skillets. And this one is an absolute family favorite: try this easy lemon garlic chicken recipe! For this quick skillet meal, you’ll coat the chicken in spices and pan fry it until tender and juicy, then top it with a quick pan sauce made with lemon, garlic and a little cream. It wows everyone, whether you’re cooking to impress or just whipping up a family-friendly dinner. This one is on repeat in our house!

Keep reading below the recipe for helpful tips, serving ideas, and more!

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Lemon Garlic Chicken

Lemon Garlic Chicken


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5 from 5 reviews

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 4 1x

Description

This easy lemon garlic chicken recipe is a quick skillet meal that makes a family-friendly dinner! The creamy sauce will have you hooked.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts or 4 cutlets (about 1 pound, organic if possible)*
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • ¾ cup heavy cream
  • ¼ cup milk
  • Zest of 1/2 lemon plus 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice, plus lemon slices for garnish
  • Fresh parsley, finely chopped, for garnish

Instructions

  1. Pat the chicken dry with a paper towel. If using breasts, slice them in half horizontally into 4 thin cutlets (if you bought cutlets, skip this step). Sprinkle the chicken on both sides with the salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, and oregano.
  2. Add the olive oil to a large skillet and heat over medium heat. Add the chicken and cook for 3 to 5 minutes per side, until browned on both sides. When the internal temperature is 165°F, or the center is no longer pink, remove to a plate.
  3. Melt the butter in the same pan over medium low heat. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds to 1 minute until the garlic is lightly browned and fragrant. Add the cream, milk, lemon zest, and lemon juice and simmer for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring and scraping, until thickened slightly. Return the chicken to the pan and warm each side for 1 minute. Serve immediately, with sauce spooned over. If desired, garnish with finely chopped fresh parsley and lemon slices.

Notes

*This recipe makes 4 modest servings, so if you’ve got very hungry eaters or more people to food, consider making 1.5 times or double the recipe. If so, use a very large skillet and pan-fry the chicken in batches. 

  • Category: Main dish
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Chicken
  • Diet: Gluten Free

What you need for lemon garlic chicken

This creamy lemon garlic chicken recipe is simple to put together in a skillet. The basic idea is to take chicken cutlets, season them and pan fry them for a few minutes, then make a simple creamy sauce with lemon and garlic. Here are the ingredients you’ll need:

  • Protein: Boneless skinless chicken cutlets or breasts
  • Spices: Oregano, onion powder, garlic powder, salt and pepper
  • Pantry: Olive oil, garlic
  • Dairy: Butter, milk, heavy cream
  • Fresh ingredients: Lemon, parsley (for garnish)
  • Equipment: Large skillet
  • Time: 25 minutes
Lemon Garlic chicken

A note on serving size

This recipe makes 4 modest servings, so if you’ve got very hungry eaters or more people to feed, consider making 1.5 times or double the recipe. If so, use a very large skillet and pan-fry the chicken in batches.

How to butterfly chicken

For this lemon garlic chicken, you’ll want to buy chicken breasts that are already butterflied into cutlets or butterfly it yourself. Why? Chicken breasts are often very thick, making them tricky to cook evenly. Slicing the chicken breast in half horizontally (butterflying it) makes thinner pieces that cook more evenly, are easier to eat, and are better seasoned.

You can buy a chicken breast already butterflied, which is marked on the package as butterflied or “cutlets”. If you buy regular chicken breasts, you can butterfly them yourself! Here’s what to do:

  • Place your hand over the top of the chicken breast.
  • Use a sharp knife to carefully slice the breast horizontally, leaving the edge intact so it can open up like a book (or butterfly!).
  • Unfold the chicken breast like a book, then for cutlets, cut along the fold to separate the two halves (each half is a cutlet). To make evenly thick chicken, you can cover the chicken with plastic wrap and lightly pound the chicken with a mallet or heavy pan to make it even (we did not do that for this recipe).

For step by step photos and more details, go to How to Butterfly a Chicken Breast.

How to butterfly a chicken breast

Buy organic chicken if possible

If you can, buy organic chicken for this lemon chicken recipe! Buying organic makes sure it’s the highest quality meat that was raised sustainably, and it is also free of chemicals and additives! It’s both the healthiest and tastiest option for eating. Per the USDA, organic chicken is raised in living conditions accommodating their natural behaviors, fed 100% organic feed and forage, and not administered antibiotics or hormones.

Lemon Garlic Chicken

Sides to make it a meal

This lemon garlic chicken makes a fast and easy dinner, paired with some easy side dish recipes! Here are some tasty side dishes for chicken that are simple to whip up:

Buy organic chicken if possible

When shopping for this lemon chicken recipe, try to buy organic chicken if possible. Organic makes sure that it is the highest quality meat that was raised sustainably. It is also free of chemicals and additives so it’s the healthiest option for eating (and it tastes better).

Per the USDA, organic chicken must be raised in living conditions that accommodate their natural behaviors (like grazing on pasture), be fed 100% organic feed and forage, and not be given antibiotics or hormones.

Lemon Garlic Chicken

More easy chicken recipes

Let us know in the comments below what you think of this chicken recipe. Our kids love it, and it always impresses at a dinner party! Here are a few more easy chicken recipes you’ll love:

This lemon garlic chicken recipe is…

Gluten-free.

About the authors

Sonja & Alex

Hi, we’re Alex and Sonja Overhiser, married cookbook authors, food bloggers, and recipe developers. We founded A Couple Cooks to share fresh, seasonal recipes for memorable kitchen moments! Our recipes are made by two real people and work every time.

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6 Comments

  1. Janet says:

    Excellent !! I made this last night and my husband and I agree…it was delicious. I used chicken tenders and served with Trader Joe’s Harvest Blend and baked asparagus. Thanks you for such an easy and tasty recipe.






  2. Karen Hill says:

    Excellent! My family loved it






  3. Greg says:

    Really easy and delicious. Def in my chicken rotation from now on!






  4. Florida says:

    Oops, forgot to rate it. Definitely 5 stars.






  5. Florida says:

    Excellent! Made it exactly as written (surprise!) and it’s delish. Served with a side of Basmati rice and green peas (because the broccoli went missing in the fridge). This is a keeper, thanks!

  6. Sabrina says:

    this works for me! Have been looking for some new chicken recipes lately and this will do, thank you!