Blackened Chicken Cutlets

A lot of folks have noticed that I shed a few pounds (and thank you for noticing!). I dropped 40 big ones since January of this year (2023). It’s now April 1st and I have a recipe to share that helped get me there: my blackened chicken cutlets. I can assure you, it’s no April Fool’s Day joke how quick and easy they are to make (not to mention how flavorful). I’m talking the juiciest, most amazing tasting chicken ever that is restaurant-quality. It’s keto, paleo, gluten-free, dairy-free and is super good for you, while being rich in protein! Eat this chicken as is or top it over salads, rice, pastas or anything your heart desires. Also tastes great cold after being refrigerated.

blackened chicken

Mix The Spices

Begin by taking a large plate and transforming it into a palette of spices: smoked paprika, Italian seasoning, seasoned salt, garlic power, onion powder, and pepper. (You can also totally sub a salt-free seasoning such as Mrs. Dash for the seasoned salt and make it spicier by adding some cayenne – see Jeff’s Tips in the recipe card below)
Swirl up those spices with a fork…
…until they’re all combined. And then shale the plate so the spices are in an even layer (although this looks like Pac-Man when I did it and I had to snap a photo).
Speaking of Pac-Man, those spices are about to coat our chicken cutlets! Make sure you use chicken cutlets, which are simply thinly sliced chicken breasts. They’re about 1/4-inch thick and you can either get them that way in the market or slice a thicker breast into 1/4-inch fillets.

Dredge The Chicken

Dredge (aka coat) each cutlet on each side so it’s coated in the seasoning blend. Don’t overdo it. Just a light coating is enough.

Prepare The Oil

Add some olive oil to a sauté pan (I prefer to use this type of pan as it has a higher wall than a traditional sauce/frying pan, which helps control splatter). Use just enough that will coat the bottom after swirling it around.
Turn the stove to medium-high and heat until the oil becomes thin like water and shimmers, about 3 minutes.

Cook The Chicken

In batches, add the chicken cutlets. Cook on each side for just a few minutes.
Then, flip the chicken. Look at that crusted, blackened seasoning! Cook on the other side for another few minutes, or until the chicken is fully cooked.

Make Sure It’s Fully Cooked

To ensure your chicken is fully cooked, cut the thickest pieces down the middle.
If it’s totally white, has no traces of pink and is 165°, you’re good to go!
Repeat the cooking process with any remaining chicken. And THAT’S IT! You’re done!

The Taste Test

Give a beautiful, blackened cutlet some love.
And, I mean. Come ON… Just look at that juicy chicky!
And throw those hands up because this is truly one of the fastest, easiest, tastiest and healthiest meals ever! It helped me slim down while feeling I was eating restaurant-quality chicken – a win-win. Goes great over pasta, rice, or veggies!
How To Make Blackened Chicken Cutlets
Yield: 6

Blackened Chicken Cutlets

Blackened Chicken Cutlets

A lot of folks have noticed that I shed a few pounds (and thank you for noticing!). I dropped 40 big ones since January of this year (2023). It's now April 1st and I have a recipe to share that helped get me there: my blackened chicken cutlets. I can assure you, it's no April Fool's Day joke how quick and easy it is to make these and how flavorful they are to taste. I'm talking the juiciest, most amazing tasting chicken ever that is restaurant-quality. It's keto, paleo, gluten-free, dairy-free and is super good for you, while being rich in protein! Eat this chicken as is or top it over salads, rice, pastas or anything your heart desires!

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes

Ingredients

The Seasoning

The Chicken

  • 1 1/2 - 2 pounds chicken breasts, sliced into 1/4-inch cutlets (sometimes the market labels the package as "thinly sliced" - see Jeff's Tips)
  • 3-4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

Instructions

  1. On a large plate, add all the seasonings and combine together with a fork in a swirling fashion. Then, shake the plate so the mixed seasoning is in one even layer.
  2. Take the chicken and dredge (coat) it on both sides. Don't do it excessively, a light dusting on each side will do. (NOTE: It may be easiest to do this using 3 stations of plates in this order: station 1 with the raw chicken cutlets, station 2 with the seasoning for dredging, station 3 for the dredged chicken).
  3. Add the oil to a sauté pan (the higher walls of this pan will help contain any splatter). We want to add just enough oil so it coats the bottom of the pan after swirling the pan around. Once the oil becomes thin like water and shimmers (about 3 minutes), in batches, add the seasoned cutlets and cook on each side for 1 1/2 - 3 minutes, until the seasonings have blackened a bit and the chicken is fully cooked (see Jeff's Tips).
  4. When you sense the chicken may be done, slice the thickest cutlet in each batch down the center to ensure that there are no traces of pink, that it's fully white and at 165° (which you can determine with a thermometer).
  5. Enjoy on its own or over veggies, salads, pasta, or rice!

Jeffrey's Tips

If you find you need more seasoning, simply make more! You an also make it ahead of time and just store it in a container for whenever the mood strikes. If that's the case, I'd suggest quadrupling it.

The seasoning also goes great on shrimp, steak and fish!

If you only have thicker chicken breasts available to you (or in your freezer from that Costco run), simply slice them into 1/4-inch fillets (making sure they're thawed first, if frozen). The idea here is for the chicken to not be too thick so it cooks quickly and evenly.

In place of the seasoned salt, you can also use Tony Chachere’s Creole seasoning (for some zest) or Mrs. Dash (for sodium free).

This goes without saying, but the thinner the cutlet, the quicker the cook time on each side.

This chicken works great for up to 3 days after cooking it. Just place in an air-tight container and pop in the fridge. Tastes delicious cold as well!

Reader Interactions

Comments

  1. Laurice Robinet

    I’m curious–is there any reason why this can’t be done on saute in the IP? If it can, should it be the low or normal setting?

  2. Doris Harris

    I tried Blackening seasoning and didn’t care for it. Does the store bought seasoning taste different?

  3. Dawn Jessen

    I caught you live today for the first time in a long time 💚 Congratulations on the new book coming out April 11th also congratulations on your 40 pound weight loss. I want to be your new b f f and learn how you did it and do it myself way wait overdue you look fantastic 💚

  4. Dawn Jessen

    I caught you live today for the first time in a long time 💚 Congratulations on the new book coming out April 11th also congratulations on your 40 pound weight loss. I want to be your new BFF and learn how you did it and do it myself way over due for me, you look fantastic 💚

  5. Diane

    once cooked, can these be frozen? ideas how to reheat? with my life, batch cook and freeze is almost a necessity.

    • Gina

      Yes!! I love this chicken. I make several at a time, then slice them into strips and put in snack size baggies and put in the freezer. When I’m packing my salad for lunch at work, I grab a baggie out of the freezer and throw it in my lunchbox. By the time I’m ready to eat, the chicken is thawed and I put it on my salad. I haven’t tried reheating it yet as it is great cold on salads and in wraps.

  6. Christine

    Have you considered trying this in an air fryer? Very curious if that’d be do-able to cut down on 1) mess/cleanup and 2) less oil.

    • Christine

      Update, I’ve made this the last 4 weeks in the air fryer. Preheat at 380 for 10 minutes. Spry cutlets very lightly with olive oil spray and cook cutlets for 10 minutes in air fryer turning them over after 6 minutes. I love how easy and clean this is!

  7. Catmax

    I made these in the air fryer – 390 for 10 minutes – did not use any oil, and they turned out fantastic!! Will be my new go to for lunches and quick salads. Thanks Jeff for another winner!!

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