Looking for a fast and easy weeknight meal. This seared chicken not only cooks up in 15 minutes but cooks tender and juicy in its own glaze.
The Secret to Tender Chicken:
Is your chicken breast tough or rubbery? Then reduce your cooking time. All the warnings of raw or undercooked chicken leading to salmonella has scared us into overcooking our chicken. Overcooking is the leading causes of “rubbery” chicken. A good general rule to follow, cook chicken quickly with relatively high heat about 5-6 minutes per side. Since most boneless skinless breasts come in varying thickness it makes it difficult to cook them evenly. The best way to check for doneness is to insert a meat thermometer into the thickest center of the breast. Cook until the center reads 165°F. Then remove from heat and serve immediately.
Cook Sides Before the Chicken:
Most side dishes will take longer than the chicken. Start them first so they get done if not at the same time very close to the same time. Do not place the chicken in a warming oven. The chicken will dry out under too much warming. If you are not serving immediately wrap the chicken in foil to keep it warm. This will avoid overcooking and drying out.
Chicken Breast in a Garlic & Thyme Glaze
- 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 teaspoon butter
- 2 – 4 cloves garlic
- 2 – 3 sprigs fresh thyme
- ¼ – ½ cup water
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Salt and pepper the chicken and bring to room temperature. Do not worry about patting the chicken dry for this recipe. The extra moisture, usually the enemy of crispy chicken, will bring that extra flavor to the glaze.
- Heat the oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. When hot add the butter. Swirl the butter into the oil until melted.
- Add the chicken and position the garlic and thyme around the chicken. Cook chicken about 5 – 6 minutes per side or until center registers 165°F on an instant read thermometer. Remove from heat and wrap in foil to keep warm.
- Add the water to skillet and increase the heat to high. Bring to a boil. Remove the thyme stems and break down the garlic using a fork or the back of a spoon. Continue cooking on high until reduced to a thick gravy consistency, about 5 – 8 minutes. Serve over chicken.