Lighten up that Chicken Parm!

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Our favorite Italian restaurant has a delicious chicken Parmesan dish that is a killer. I shudder to think of its fat grams and carb count! The chicken breast is a huge portion, breaded and fried, and topped with ooey, gooey cheese served with spaghetti made from semolina flour (low fiber).  In typical Hasty Tasty Meals fashion, I made it my mission to prepare a figure-friendly (or at least a figure-friendlier!) version. It isn’t too labor-intensive, either.

Tip: Use a sturdy freezer storage bag for the marinade.


Chicken Parmesan for Two


2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (3-4 oz. each)
1 28-oz can crushed Italian tomatoes
3 oz. dried whole wheat pasta
2 Tbsp. prepared pesto sauce
½ cup lowfat shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided
(Optional) two sprigs of fresh basil for garnish

*Marinade: 1 Tbsp. wine vinegar, 1 tsp. Dijon mustard, 1 Tbsp. dried Italian seasonings, 1 Tbsp. olive oil, and 1 tsp. minced garlic


  • Marinate the chicken breasts for at least an hour (overnight works, too) in an Italian herb dressing (either bottled or my recipe*).
  • Cook pasta according to directions on package to al dente. Do not overcook.
  • Preheat a 10″ covered skillet on medium. Add chicken breasts, cover, and cook until done (use a meat thermometer if in doubt). Turn off heat but leave chicken in the covered skillet.
  • Meanwhile, in a 2-quart pan, heat the Italian crushed tomatoes just to a simmer. Remove from heat and immediately stir in the prepared pesto.
  • Spoon some of the tomato sauce over each cooked chicken breast, just to cover. Toss remaining sauce with the cooked pasta and divide between two plates to serve.
  • Top each chicken breast with the two cheeses, replace cover on skillet, and allow cheese to melt (3-4 minutes).
  • Serve each chicken breast on top the spaghetti, garnish with a sprig of fresh basil (optional), and enjoy.

Those of you who have a copy of Chef Cheri’s Hasty Tasty Meals also have a quick and easy pressure cooker chicken Parmesan recipe, but this recipe is for those who are apprehensive about pressure cooking. ☺

1 Comment

Filed under chicken, Healthful Eating, Pesto, Recipes

One response to “Lighten up that Chicken Parm!

  1. These marinated chicken breasts needed only 15 minutes to cook, but they were at most 4 ounces each. Allow more time if your portions are larger.

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