Garlic Butter Chicken

This Baked Garlic Butter Chicken can be on the table in about thirty minutes. The family loves it and leftovers heat up well in the microwave on a reduced power. Chicken is such a versatile dish.  There are just so many ways to prepare it.  It is budget friendly compared to beef and fresh fish. I imagine that if your family is like mine than you can never get enough easy delicious chicken recipes.

How to make Garlic Butter Chicken

First salt and pepper both sides of the chicken breasts and place in casserole dish.  Grab a skillet and melt the butter.  Then add the garlic and cook until fragrant about one minute.  Move the skillet off the heat and let the butter mixture cool for a few minutes.  Pour it over the chicken and lightly sprinkle with crushed red pepper and dried parsley.  Bake for twenty minutes then remove from oven.  Top the chicken with Italian blend and mozzarella.  Place back in the oven and bake until the cheese is full melted.  Turn the broiler on the last minute of cooking and lightly brown the top.


How long should you bake chicken breast?
The cooking time will depend on the size of your chicken breast and also on the power of your oven. Some ovens have slight heat differences.

But according to USDA, a 4-oz. chicken breast should be bake at 350°F (177˚C) for 25 minutes or 30 minutes. But if the chicken breast is smaller then 4oz, bake it for about 20 minutes.

It’s important that you use a meat thermometer to check that the internal temperature, which is 165°F (74˚C). And remember to alwaysinsert the meat thermometer into the thickest part of the breast.

INGREDIENTS:

BRINE:
  • 4 chicken breasts (about 1 ½ pounds)
  • 4 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons EACH: kosher salt, sugar, AND low sodium soy sauce
  • ½ teaspoon EACH: onion powder AND thyme
  • ¼ teaspoon: garlic powder 

GARLIC BUTTER CHICKEN:
  • 1 cup low sodium chicken broth
  • 4 tablespoons cold butter (cut into small cubes)
  • 10 cloves garlic (4 minced, 6 whole)
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon chopped thyme (or ¼ dried)
  • ¼ – ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 – 1 ½ cups shredded mozzarella cheese
  • chopped parsley, for topping

DIRECTIONS:
  1. BRINE: Add the water, salt, sugar, and soy sauce to a medium bowl and stir until dissolved. Add the chicken breasts and allow them to marinate for as little as 15 minutes, or ideally 4-12 hours. Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 425ºF.
  2. SAUCE: In a saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the chicken broth, minced garlic, and allow the chicken broth to come to a boil, then lower the heat so it just simmers. Let simmer for 5 minutes. Add in 1 tablespoon of butter, remove the pan from heat and swirl so the butter starts to melt or use a whisk to melt the butter melt. Place back on the heat for a few seconds, remove and continue to swirl until butter melts. Repeat with the remaining butter. When the butter has completely melted and thickened the sauce, remove from the stove. Stir in the pepper, thyme, and red pepper flakes. 
  3. ASSEMBLE: Remove the chicken breasts from the brine and pat dry using a paper towel. Combine the remaining onion powder, thyme, and garlic powder in a small bowl and sprinkle over the chicken breasts evenly. Place the chicken breasts in an oven-safe baking dish. Carefully pour the prepared sauce around the chicken breasts and drop the 6 remaining whole garlic cloves into the broth.
  4. BAKE: Bake uncovered for 19-25 minutes or until the chicken is almost cooked through (it should register 165F on a thermometer.) Add the mozzarella cheese to the chicken breasts and broil just long enough for the cheese to melt. Top with chopped parsley (or basil) and serve warm with crusty bread, pasta, rice, or steamed veggies!

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