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Baked chicken breasts turn out perfectly tender and juicy with an easy homemade seasoning. Prepare them as part of your meal prep routine or as an easy weeknight dinner.

oven baked chicken breast sliced on a white plate with parsley.

This simple chicken recipe is a weekly staple in our home. The chicken turns out flavorful and can be paired with several different meals, including pasta, salads, and roasted veggies

Leftovers can be added to soup, tacos, lunch bowls, and more, so feel free to double it!

Ingredients You’ll Need

chicken breasts and seasonings labeled on white surface.

Just 4 easy pantry spices bring out a big flavor in these juicy chicken breasts. Add any extra herbs you like, such as oregano, thyme, or sage.

There’s no marinade required for this recipe, so you can cook the chicken breasts right away. Just rub them with olive oil and a few seasonings, then they are ready to bake.

As an alternative, you can use store-bought or homemade poultry seasoning, for more of a Thanksgiving flavor. (Don’t forget to season with salt in this case, too, as most poultry seasoning does not contain it.) 

You can also use Italian seasoning or taco seasoning, depending on what you plan on serving the chicken with.

How to Bake Chicken Breasts

Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Before cooking chicken breast let it rest at room temperature for 15 minutes. This will promote more even cooking. If you don’t have time to do this, it will still turn out okay. (I’ve done this in a hurry! The results just aren’t quite as evenly cooked throughout.)

Drizzle the extra virgin olive oil on a small rimmed baking sheet, or into a glass baking dish. Place the boneless skinless chicken breasts on the pan, and rub both sides of the chicken with the oil, so they are well coated.

chicken breasts oiled on rimmed baking sheet.

In a small bowl, combine the salt, black pepper, garlic powder, and paprika. Stir well, so the seasonings are evenly mixed.

Sprinkle half of the seasoning over the chicken breasts on the pan. Rub the seasoning into the top of the chicken, then flip them over and season the other side with the remaining seasoning. Rub well, so the seasoning evenly coats the chicken.

spices mixed together in small glass bowl.

Place the pan in the oven to cook for 20 minutes, then remove the chicken and test it for doneness with a meat thermometer. It may not be done yet unless you’re using very thin or small chicken breasts, but it’s always best to check since no one wants overcooked chicken.

If your chicken breasts are thicker, closer to 1 1/2 inches thick, they will most likely need 2 to 6 more minutes, for a total cooking time of 22 to 26 minutes.

Pro Tip: When cooking chicken, be sure to use an instant-read thermometer. The USDA recommends chicken be cooked to an internal temperature of 165ºF, but the chicken will continue to cook as it rests on the pan once you pull it out of the oven. So, you can take it out of the oven when the temperature is 160ºF (test in the thickest part of the chicken breast) and the chicken will continue to cook for the next 5 to 10 minutes as it rests. You can cover the chicken with foil during this time, but I don’t usually do that and it’s still cooked to perfection.

cooked chicken breasts on pan checked with thermometer.

Once the chicken has rested on the pan, it’s ready to slice and serve. Enjoy it as a main course served with your favorite side (like potato salad!) or try it as a topping for a salad or quinoa bowl.

Leftover cooked chicken can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for 3 to 4 days. The leftovers can be used to make a delicious chicken salad later!

chicken breast served on italian salad.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do you cover chicken breast when baking?

No, it’s not necessary to cover chicken when it bakes. It will be perfectly juicy inside, as long as you let it rest after cooking to let the juices distribute evenly.

What other seasonings work well for chicken?

For a little more flavor, try adding a 1/4 teaspoon of chili powder, onion powder, or smoked paprika, depending on what you plan on serving the chicken with.

How can I ensure the chicken cooks evenly?

Pounding the chicken into an even thickness will make it cook faster and more evenly. Use a meat mallet or rolling pin to pound the chicken around the thickest part, until it flattens out into an even thickness. (Cover the chicken with plastic wrap or parchment paper to avoid splatter.) 

Will this method work for bone-in chicken breasts? 

Yes, you can cook bone-in chicken breasts using the same method, but they will take longer to cook. Plan on adding 5-10 minutes to the cooking time, and be sure to check the internal temperature before serving.

Wondering what pairs well with oven-baked chicken breasts? Try serving them with Instant Pot mashed potatoes, cooked rice drizzled with pesto dressing, or over an Italian Salad.

cabbage salad served with chicken on top.

Oven Baked Chicken Breasts

5 from 6 votes
Baked Chicken Breasts turn out perfectly tender and juicy every time! No marinade time is required, so they are ready to serve in less than 30 minutes.
prep10 mins cook20 mins total30 mins


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 ½ pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts (about 1 to 1.5 inches thick)
  • ¾ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon paprika
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper


  • Preheat the oven to 400ºF and drizzle the olive oil onto a rimmed baking sheet. Add the chicken breasts to the pan and flip them over so both sides of the chicken are coated in the olive oil.
  • In a small bowl, combine the salt, garlic powder, paprika, and pepper. Stir well to mix, then sprinkle half of the mixture over the top of the breasts. Rub the spices into the chicken, then flip them over and sprinkle the remaining half of the spices evenly over the other side of the chicken and rub them into each breast.
  • Place the pan in the oven to bake for 20 minutes at 400ºF. When the timer goes off, test the chicken for doneness using a meat thermometer. Small chicken breasts could be done cooking at this time, but most chicken breasts will need a few more minutes depending on their thickness. (1-inch breasts will be done in roughly 20 minutes and 1.5-inch breasts will be done in closer to 25 minutes total.) The internal temperature should reach at least 160ºF before removing the chicken from the oven. Flip the breasts over and continue to cook for 3 to 5 more minutes, or until they reach that internal temperature.
  • Let the chicken breasts rest on the pan for 5 to 10 minutes after removing them from the oven. They will continue to cook and reach the safe internal temperature of 165ºF. Then they are ready to slice and serve. Leftover chicken can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for 3 to 4 days.


Nutrition information is for roughly a 4 ounce serving of chicken. This information is automatically calculated, and is just an estimate, not a guarantee.
*Note: For more even cooking, pound the chicken breasts into an even thickness before cooking. You can do this with a meat mallet or rolling pin. Chicken that is roughly 1-inch thick will cook in about 20 minutes total.


Calories: 151kcal | Carbohydrates: 0.2g | Protein: 24g | Fat: 5g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 0.01g | Cholesterol: 73mg | Sodium: 422mg | Potassium: 424mg | Fiber: 0.1g | Sugar: 0.01g | Vitamin A: 76IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 7mg | Iron: 0.5mg
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: baked chicken breasts

If you try this baked chicken breast recipe, please leave a comment and star rating below letting me know how you like it!

Megan Gilmore leaning on her white countertop.

Megan Gilmore

Hi, I’m Megan. A former fast food junkie turned best-selling cookbook author. I create healthy recipes made with simple ingredients to make your life easier.

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  1. Just made this for the first time. I added onion flakes. I have copper bake pans so food cooks faster, plus I had 2-3 very this cutlets so I baked for 10 minutes, checked and then left 3 cutlets in for another 5 minutes.
    Juicy, flavorful and absolutely delicious.
    Thank you for yet another favorite.

  2. I’ve been cooking a long time (I’m in my 60s) and sad to say I’ve never mastered the juicy chicken breast. I’ve tended to stick with chicken thighs, which are pretty hard to ruin. Just tried this method and it worked perfectly! As promised, it was so tasty and juicy. I will be using this method from now on!

  3. Super duper! The seasoning is awesome and the chicken came out perfectly cooked. The whole family loved it.

  4. This cooking method was perfect. The chicken was juicy and seasoned to perfection! Love how simple this is. Great for adding to salads and/or rice!

    1. My home oven is electric, so that’s how I tested this recipe. I have heard that a gas oven provides a more moist heat, but I don’t think it would affect the actual cook time.