Baking chicken breast with extra virgin olive oil is a healthy and flavorful way to enjoy a lean protein. This recipe combines the richness of extra virgin olive oil with the tenderness of baked chicken breast, resulting in a delicious and nutritious dish that's perfect for any meal. Whether you're cooking for yourself or for a family dinner, this recipe is sure to impress!
Baked Chicken Breast Ingredients
- 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon dried herbs (such as thyme, rosemary, or oregano)
- Salt and pepper, to taste
Step 1: Preparing the Chicken Breast
- Preheat your oven to 400°F (200°C).
- Rinse the chicken breasts under cold water and pat them dry with paper towels.
- Season both sides of the chicken breasts with salt and pepper.
Step 2: Marinating
- In a small bowl, whisk together the extra virgin olive oil, minced garlic, and dried herbs.
- Place the seasoned chicken breasts in a resealable plastic bag or a shallow dish.
- Pour the extra virgin olive oil mixture over the chicken, making sure each breast is well coated.
- Seal the bag or cover the dish and let the chicken marinate in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes (or up to 4 hours for maximum flavor).
Step 3: Preparing the Baking Pan
- Lightly grease a baking pan or line it with parchment paper.
- Remove the chicken breasts from the marinade, allowing any excess oil to drip off.
- Place the chicken breasts in the prepared baking pan.
Step 4: Baking
- Bake the chicken breasts in the preheated oven for about 20-25 minutes or until they reach an internal temperature of 165°F (74°C).
- If desired, you can broil the chicken for an additional 2-3 minutes to achieve a golden brown crust.
- Once cooked, remove the chicken from the oven and let it rest for a few minutes before slicing.
- Serve the baked chicken breast with a side of roasted vegetables or a fresh salad.
- Pair it with a light and tangy vinaigrette for an extra burst of flavor.
- Slice the chicken and use it to top whole-grain pasta or a bed of quinoa for a complete meal.
Tips and Tricks
- To avoid dry chicken, make sure not to overcook it. Use a meat thermometer to check for doneness.
- Experiment with different herbs and spices in the marinade to create your own unique flavor combinations.
- For a touch of sweetness, add a drizzle of honey or a sprinkle of brown sugar to the marinade.
Frequently Asked Questions
What temperature should I preheat my oven to when baking chicken breasts with extra virgin olive oil?
A: Preheat your oven to 400°F (200°C) for baking chicken breasts with extra virgin olive oil.
How long does it take to bake chicken breasts with extra virgin olive oil?
A: It typically takes around 25-30 minutes to bake chicken breasts with extra virgin olive oil, or until the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 165°F (74°C) using a meat thermometer.
Can I use other herbs instead of thyme and rosemary when baking chicken breasts with extra virgin olive oil?
A: Yes, you can use other herbs to flavor your chicken, such as oregano, parsley, or basil. Adjust the amount of herbs to your taste preferences.
Can I marinate the chicken breasts with extra virgin olive oil before baking?
A: Yes, you can marinate the chicken breasts with extra virgin olive oil and herbs for at least 30 minutes or up to 4 hours in the refrigerator before baking to enhance the flavor.
Is it okay to use regular olive oil instead of extra virgin olive oil when baking chicken breasts?
A: Yes, you can use regular olive oil instead of extra virgin olive oil when baking chicken breasts. However, extra virgin olive oil has a stronger flavor and more antioxidants, so it's a healthier option.