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Excellent Chicken Breast Recipes – The New York Times

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Excellent Chicken Breast Recipes – The New York Times
Excellent Chicken Breast Recipes – The New York Times

I’ve gotten a bunch of emails from readers lately asking why New York Times Cooking chicken recipes don’t often call for boneless, skinless breasts. “Why is it always chicken thighs? I don’t know anyone, except my sister, who prefers dark meat,” someone wrote, in a truly excellent email with a subject line that simply said “Again?”

We do tend to prefer chicken thighs here at NYT Cooking HQ, and we’ve been pushing our agenda in recipe after recipe. Boneless thighs are fattier, which makes them far juicier, more tender and more flavorful than breasts, and more difficult to overcook.

But chicken breasts have their selling points, and their fans. Use them right and they can feel generous and satisfying, even succulent. Their mildness can be an asset: Think of white meat as a plush mattress you can blanket with interesting flavors and textures.

So this week I’m paying tribute to the boneless, skinless chicken breast, with five recipes that use the cut to excellent effect.

Are you aghast and want your NYT Cooking chicken thighs? We’ve got you covered. Looking for dinner ideas that have nothing to do with chicken? Take a look at this collection of healthy weeknight recipes. And as always, reach out to me anytime at [email protected]. I read every note!

One last thing: Next week, we’re trying a little something new. Monday through Thursday, we’ll be sending you one easy, fast dinner recipe in the evening, our way to answer that 5 p.m. “What’s for dinner?” question. (You’ll still get your Five Weeknight Dishes newsletter on Tuesday!)

Frozen margaritas, Southern fried corn, whole roasted branzino, creamy asparagus pasta with peas and mint, perfect buttermilk pancakes, oven bacon.

This speedy recipe from Yasmin Fahr takes a few pantry ingredients — honey, soy and vinegar — and combines them with garlic and butter for a glossy, savory-sweet sauce. Personally, I’d double that sauce so I could also drizzle it over broccoli and rice on the side.

Reminiscent of Hainanese chicken rice, this streamlined dish from Sue Li delivers tender breast meat and a pleasingly prickly sauce made with lots of ginger, scallion and jalapeño. The chicken and rice cook together at a gentle simmer, which keeps the meat plump and juicy.

View this recipe.


Lemony, buttery and deeply loved, this is Italian American restaurant food you can handily make at home. Just follow Ali Slagle’s recipe to the letter.

Eric Kim’s recipe combines grated Cheddar cheese, crushed Ritz crackers and a base of sour cream and Dijon mustard to make a chicken dinner that kids go wild for. I’m inspired by the commenter who said they made the recipe with Cheez-Its instead, one of the greatest crackers known to humankind.

View this recipe.


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