30-Minute Dinner/ Chicken Recipes/ Dinner/ meat

Lemon Butter Chicken

26 October 2021 | Last Updated: 4 November 2021 By Aleksandra

This lemon butter chicken is a simple 20-minute dish that tastes like from a good restaurant! You will need just a couple of ingredients to make these tender chicken fillets with a simple lemon butter pan sauce.

Chicken fillet is being poured with lemon butter sauce in a frying pan.

Below you will find information about the ingredients and how to make the recipe. Scroll down for a printable recipe card with measurements and detailed instructions.

Ingredients

Here’s what you need to make this delicious dish:

  • chicken – you will need 2 large chicken breasts that we will cut in half to get 4 thinner fillets, chicken tenders would also be great – you don’t have to prepare them in any way, just season and dredge in flour
  • chicken broth – the better the quality the better your sauce will taste
  • garlic – only fresh will work
  • flour – to thicken the sauce + to dredge the chicken (this will help make it even more tender)
  • butter – adds flavor, I used unsalted butter but salted can also be used, use European-style butter for best results (it’s cultured so it has more flavor)
  • clarified butter – it’s used to pan-fry the chicken, this is a special kind of butter that doesn’t burn while cooking but has all the butter flavor, you can purchase it or make homemade clarified butter (it’s very quick and simple, no special equipment is needed), if you don’t have it – substitute it with 1 tablespoon of regular butter and 1 tablespoon frying oil (it will help to prevent the butter from burning)
  • lemon juice – adds flavor and acidity to the sauce, use only freshly-squeezed!

You could also infuse the sauce with fresh herbs such as thyme or rosemary. Simply add them to the broth while it’s reducing.

Labeled ingredients for lemon butter chicken.

Step by step instructions

Cook the chicken:

Chicken breasts are being cut into fillets. Chicken fillets dredges in flour on a chopping board.

STEP 1: Place the chicken breasts on a chopping board and cut them horizontally in half (with your knife parallel to the chopping board). You should have 4 fillets. Pound them slightly in their thickest part until they are almost of even thickness (but don’t pound them too thin, like for breaded chicken cutlets).

If you have small chicken breasts, you don’t have to cut them in half, just pound them with a meat mallet into even thickness.

STEP 2: Season the chicken with salt and pepper on both sides, then dredge in flour until evenly coated on all sides, shake off excess flour.

Pan-fried chicken fillets in a pan. Butter and garlic in a pan.

STEP 3: Heat clarified butter in a big frying pan over high heat. When hot add the chicken. Cook until golden then turn over and cook on the other side until cooked through. You can cut through the thickest part of the fillets to see if the meat is white and the juices run clear. Transfer the chicken to a plate.

make the sauce:

STEP 4: Add 1 tablespoon of butter and garlic (pressed through a garlic press or finely minced). Stir until the butter is melted and the garlic is fragrant, about 30-60 seconds.

Broth is being added to a pan. Lemon butter sauce in a pan.

STEP 5: Whisk cold broth with flour until no lumps are visible. Add the broth with flour and lemon juice to the pan.

Make sure to scrape all the brown bits at the bottom of the pan – they provide great flavor.

STEP 6: Cook for about 3-4 minutes over medium heat until the sauce reduces its volume (about 1/3-1/2) and is thickened, whisking from time to time.

Season the sauce with ground black pepper and salt if necessary (it wasn’t necessary in my case because my broth was already salty).

Add the chicken pieces back to the pan to warm up, take the pan off the heat and sprinkle the chicken with chopped parsley.

Enjoy!

Storage

This dish can be easily reheated. The sauce will thicken so add a small amount of broth and whisk until combined and warmed up. Store it in the fridge for up to 3 days.

Serving suggestions

Top tips

  • Brown the chicken on both sides nicely – it will add lots of flavor.
  • Don’t skip dredging the chicken in flour – flour creates a tasty crust around the chicken and makes it more tender.
  • Cut your chicken in half and pound it into even thickness so it cooks evenly.
  • Scrape thoroughly all the brown bits from the bottom of the pan – that’s where the flavor is!
  • Acidity of lemons can vary so adjust the amount to your taste.
  • Use good quality chicken broth (preferably homemade) for a great-tasting sauce.
Pan-fried chicken fillets with lemon butter sauce topped with lemon slices in a frying pan.

Did you make this recipe? RATE THE RECIPE or tell me in the COMMENTS how you liked it! You can also add a photo of your dish. It would make me very happy and will help other readers. Thank you!!

Lemon Butter Chicken

This lemon butter chicken is a simple 20-minute dish that tastes like from a good restaurant! You will need just a couple of ingredients to make these tender chicken fillets with a simple lemon butter pan sauce.
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Pan-fried chicken fillet in a frying pan is being poured with lemon butter sauce.
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5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Calories 241kcal
Author Aleksandra

Ingredients

for the chicken:

  • 2 large chicken breasts
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 2 tablespoons clarified butter or 1 tablespoon regular butter and 1 tablespoon frying oil

for the lemon butter sauce:

  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 2 cloves garlic finely minced
  • 1 1/4 cups broth
  • 3/4 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 3/4 tablespoon flour
  • chopped parsley to sprinkle

Instructions

cook the chicken:

  • Place the chicken breasts on a chopping board and cut them horizontally in half (with your knife parallel to the chopping board). You should have 4 fillets. Pound them slightly in their thickest part until they are almost of even thickness (but don’t pound them too thin, like for breaded chicken cutlets).
  • Season the chicken with salt and pepper on both sides, then dredge in flour until evenly coated on all sides, shake off excess flour.
  • Heat clarified butter in a big frying pan over high heat. When hot add the chicken. Cook until golden then turn over and cook on the other side until cooked through. You can cut through the thickest part of the fillets to see if the meat is white and the juices run clear.
  • Transfer the chicken to a plate.

make the sauce:

  • Add 1 tablespoon of butter and garlic (pressed through a garlic press or finely minced). Stir until the butter is melted and the garlic is fragrant, about 30-60 seconds.
  • Whisk cold broth with flour until no lumps are visible. Add the broth with flour and lemon juice to the pan. Cook for about 3-4 minutes over medium heat until the sauce reduces its volume (about 1/3-1/2) and is thickened, whisking from time to time. Make sure to scrape all the brown bits at the bottom of the pan – they provide great flavor.
  • Season the sauce with ground black pepper and salt if necessary (it wasn’t necessary in my case because my broth was already salty).
  • Add the chicken pieces back to the pan to warm up, take the pan off the heat and sprinkle the chicken with chopped parsley.
  • Enjoy!

Notes

  • If you have small chicken breasts, you don’t have to cut them in half, just pound them with a meat mallet into even thickness.
  • This dish serves 4 moderately or 2 generously.
  • What to serve it with: I like it most with just boiled potatoes and green beans but other great options are: steamed or roasted broccoli/cauliflower, sauteed zucchini or asparagus, orzo pasta, mashed potatoes, cauliflower rice, coconut rice, roasted potatoes, mashed cauliflower.
  • Calories = 1 serving (1/4 of the recipe). This is only an estimate!
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
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