Chicken Cutlets with Tomatoes to Rescue Your Weeknight Dinner Plan

I have a confession to make: sometimes I sit down to write an article and I have no idea where to start.

Vertical image of two plates with protein, tomatoes, and greens, with text on the top and bottom.

This usually happens with those uncomplicated recipes that are just so dang good. I don’t want to sound full of myself like, “Would you just LOOK at this amazingness I created?”

At the same time, I want to shout about (yes, I said shout!) how good this dish is, and how you need to make it immediately because you just have to experience it for yourself.

Then I sit here wondering, should I just write an outright ode to this dish and all its tasty elements? Because beyond that, I don’t have too much more to say…

This sounds terrible, and perhaps it’s just a bit of writer’s block that is plaguing me this week. However, I’ve decided to just be honest with you all.

Vertical image of a large plate with a bed of greens, and chicken and tomatoes on top.

Honestly, this dish is spectacular because it is so simple. There’s no fancy technique here. You don’t have to whip up a marinade or braise the meat for hours.

Everything that this recipe requires is simple, fresh, and totally approachable.

I don’t know about you, but this is the kind of recipe that I am always on the lookout for when it comes to weeknight dinners.

Generally, my husband doesn’t get home until 7:30 p.m. most nights because he has to close up his branch and then drive for 45 minutes. It’s the worst, because I feel like we miss out on so much time together.

On the other hand, this gives me some extra time to myself, to work, work out, do the dishes, and try to plan the dinner we are going to make together once he walks in the door.

Vertical close-up image of a plate with two poultry breasts topped with tomatoes over a bed of greens.

By the time he arrives, we are both starving and ready to dive into cooking a quick dish together.

When he and I worked on this dish the second time I made it that week, he was in awe of how easy it all was to prepare, and how quickly it came together.

These chicken cutlets with tomatoes spark something special when you take a bite. The chicken is moist and juicy, the tomatoes are fresh and bursting with flavor, and the peppery arugula is just the leafy veggie you want to balance it all out.

The sauce that the chicken and tomatoes cook in is savory, bright, and light, so it doesn’t weigh down the dish. Plus, making it gives you an excuse to pour yourself a glass of wine while you cook!

Please tell me I’m not the only one who does this whenever the opportunity arises? If there’s wine in the recipe that I’m making, that means I get a glass. It’s a win-win situation.

Vertical image of two plates with fresh vegetables, poultry, and rice.

This kind of reminds me of a Milanese dish with arugula, and tomatoes on top. It’s fresh and light, without leaving you feeling like you’re still hungry when you’re finished.

You can add the arugula to the skillet while the poultry finishes up so it can wilt, or you can serve the cooked dish over a fresh bed of the greens. Baby spinach works beautifully as well. The choice is up to you.

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Horizontal image of a plate with two poultry pieces with red and green vegetables next to silverware on a napkin.

Chicken Cutlets with Tomatoes


  • Author: Meghan Yager
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x

Description

A tasty, healthy dinner in less than 30 minutes? These chicken cutlets with tomatoes make it possible, and oh-so-flavorful as well.


Scale

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 8 boneless, skinless chicken cutlets
  • 8 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cups cherry or grape tomatoes, halved vertically
  • 8 fresh sage leaves
  • 1/3 cup white wine
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red chili flakes
  • 3 cups packed arugula or baby spinach (optional)

Instructions

  1. Place the cutlets between two pieces of plastic wrap. Pound them a bit, until they are a little flatter with a roughly uniform thickness.
  2. In a small bowl, stir together flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon black pepper.
  3. Lightly dust the chicken with the seasoned flour on both sides. Set aside.
  4. Heat the garlic with 4 tablespoons olive oil in a large nonstick frying pan over medium-high heat, stirring until fragrant. Add tomatoes and 1/2 teaspoon salt, and cook until they start to pucker, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes.
  5. Transfer the oil and tomatoes to a small bowl and set aside. Add remaining oil to the pan and heat until shimmering over medium-high heat.
  6. Add sage, and place chicken directly on top. Fry until golden and the sage is sticking to the chicken, about 5-7 minutes. Flip and cook on the other side until golden brown, about 5 minutes.
  7. Add wine and tomatoes. Let the sauce bubble up and reduce by a third. Add arugula or spinach now if you wish, to wilt. Cover and let cook for about 2-3 minutes, until tomatoes are warmed through.
  8. Sprinkle red pepper flakes on top. Serve immediately, with wilted greens, on a bed of lightly dressed fresh greens, or without greens.

  • Category: Chicken
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Poultry

Keywords: chicken, cutlet, tomato, garlic, white wine

Cooking By the Numbers…

Step 1 – Mince Garlic, Halve Tomatoes, And Measure Remaining Ingredients

Horizontal image of uncooked poultry, fresh vegetables, and seasonings in various sized bowls on a gray surface.

Peel and mince four cloves of garlic.

Halve enough cherry or grape tomatoes with a chef’s knife on a cutting board until you have two cups total.

Measure out all of the remaining ingredients as listed on the ingredients list.

Step 2 – Dredge Cutlets

Horizontal image of dredged poultry slices on a black cutting board.

Pound the cutlets to an even thickness between two pieces of plastic wrap.

Add the all-purpose flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper to a small bowl, and stir to combine.

Dredge the chicken to coat it with the seasoned flour on both sides, and shake off the excess. Set aside.

Step 3 – Cook Tomatoes

Horizontal image of sliced grape tomatoes cooking in an oiled pan.

Add the garlic and half of the olive oil to a large nonstick frying pan. Place over medium-high heat, and stir occasionally for 30 seconds to 1 minute, until the garlic is fragrant.

Stir in the tomatoes and the remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt. Cook until they start to pucker, about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Remove from the heat and transfer everything to a small bowl. Set aside.

Step 4 – Cook Cutlets

Horizontal image of seared poultry pieces topped with fresh herbs in a pan.

Add the remaining oil to the pan and return it to medium-high heat until the oil is shimmering.

Carefully place the sage leaves in the skillet so they are flat and are not touching or overlapping with each other, then place the chicken directly on top of the leaves. You may need to work in batches, depending on the size of your skillet.

Fry until the underside of each cutlet is golden and the sage leaves stick to the chicken, for about 5 to 7 minutes.

Try not to turn the chicken too many times to check on it while it’s cooking. It took about 5 minutes until mine were browned on the bottom.

Flip them over, and continue to cook until the other side is golden and the chicken is cooked through, for about 5 more minutes.

Step 5 – Finish Dish

Horizontal image of a pan with poultry topped with herbs and tomatoes in a light liquid.

Add the tomatoes and oil back to the pan, and add the wine. Let the liquid bubble and evaporate by about a third.

Cover and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, until everything is warmed through. If you would like, add the arugula or spinach during the last few minutes of cooking to let it wilt. Otherwise, you can serve the chicken over a bed of lightly dressed fresh greens.

Horizontal image of a plate with greens topped with poultry and tomatoes.

Sprinkle red pepper flakes on top and serve.

What Should I Serve with This Dish?

If you choose to serve your chicken over a bed of spinach or arugula, this makes an excellent light meal on its own.

However, when I add the greens to wilt at the end of cooking, I like to opt for white or brown rice on the side. You can also serve quinoa or another grain that you prefer.

Horizontal image of a plate with two poultry pieces with red and green vegetables next to silverware on a napkin.

Roasted or mashed potatoes, as well as any variety of dinner roll are also fantastic options for when you want a meal that’s a little heartier. I’m loving our easy garlic knots right now!

For more chicken dinners that are anything but boring, try these recipes next:

What will you serve alongside this light and flavorful entree? Tell us in the comments below. And when you try the recipe, be sure to come back and rate it.

Photos by Meghan Yager, © Ask the Experts, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. See our TOS for more details. Originally published by Shanna Mallon on January 4, 2010. Last updated: September 2, 2020 at 10:02 am.

Nutritional information derived from a database of known generic and branded foods and ingredients and was not compiled by a registered dietitian or submitted for lab testing. It should be viewed as an approximation.

About Meghan Yager

Meghan Yager is a food addict turned food and travel writer with a love for creating uncomplicated, gourmet recipes and devouring anything the world serves up. As the author of the food and travel blog Cake 'n Knife, Meghan focuses on unique foodie experiences from around the world to right at home in your own kitchen.

Chicken Cutlets with Tomatoes to Rescue Your Weeknight Dinner Plan

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