In the past two visits to the grocery store, when I bought chicken breast, I have been asked by the cashier how to prepare the meat (I couldn’t help but wonder if they secretly knew what I did for a living).

As simple as it may seem, there are definitely many things that can go wrong when it is not done properly during this process.

Furthermore, I don’t plan to waste your hard-earned money on stale, tasteless chicken breasts that don’t have much flavor.

Here is the complete guide on how to cook chicken breast in a pan that Apronese would recommend to you, as this recipe retains its deliciousness, flavor and softness so that the dish will remain delicious for a long time to come.

My Favorite Way to Cook Chicken Breasts Is Pan Seared

In the past few years, I have become fairly adept at cooking chicken breasts using this method.

In addition to being fast and easy to do, it also gives you a lot of tasty browning on the outside of the meat, which is something that is not possible with the gentle heat of the oven, which is something that is not possible with this method.

You can also make it taste like something new every time by changing the seasoning and making it taste like something new every time.

The past few weeks, I’ve been cooking chicken breasts at the beginning of each week, slicing them up, and storing them in the refrigerator to add to salads, pasta, sandwiches, and bowls.

I have an easy protein ready to add to any meal within a few minutes of preparing it. Here are some flexible recipes that are great for adding any protein, such as pan-seared chicken breasts.

If you want, you can add a couple of veggies on the side to make it a meal prep.

Bone-in Vs Boneless Chicken Breasts

In the following recipe, we will show you how to cook boneless chicken breasts, either with or without skin. Since bone-in chicken breasts require a longer cooking time, you should use the oven to ensure the breast cooks completely without burning.

To cook bone-in chicken breasts, I recommend following the steps outlined in my recipe for Herb Roasted Chicken Breast.

How Long the Best Time to Cook Chicken Breasts in a Skillet?

how to cook chicken breast in a pan

Depending on the thickness of the chicken breast, the amount of heat used, and the type of cookware, the amount of time needed to cook the chicken breast will vary.

The chicken breasts can be cooked for the right amount of time without having to guess. If you want to make sure that the chicken breast reaches 165°F internally, you should use an instant-read meat thermometer.

Breasts of Chicken That Are Thick

Chicken breasts that are thick take longer to cook than those that are thin, so I usually use a low heat (medium-low) and a long cooking time to allow them to cook thoroughly without burning.

My cooking method for boneless chicken breasts that are about one inch thick is to cook them for about 8 minutes on each side, at medium-low heat, for about 12 minutes total.

Chicken Breasts That Are Thin

It will take much less time to cook thin cut breasts, fillet your own chicken breasts, or pound chicken breasts down to ½ inches thick if you do the above.

If you want to achieve some browning on the outside with a shorter cooking time, then you’ll want to raise the heat to medium so that the sides can still attain some browning. In the case of thin breasts, I cook them for about 4-5 minutes on each side if they are thin.

Chicken Breasts: How to Season Them

For the chicken breasts in this recipe, I used a classic smoky seasoning that I used in a lot of my recipes, but there are so many other delicious options as well.

Alternatively, you can season the chicken breasts before they are pan-seared in the following ways:

side view of chicken breasts in a skillet

Chicken Breasts Seared in a Pan

Discover the secret to cooking tender, juicy, and flavorful boneless chicken breasts in a pan that are moist, juicy, and flavorful. Ideal for preparing meals in advance and for quick dinners.

Author: Beth

Prep Time: 5 minutes/ Cook Time: 15 minutes/ Total: 20 minutes

Servings: 4


  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (1.3 lbs. total) ($6.79)
  • 1 Tbsp cooking oil ($0.08)
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika ($0.05)
  • 2 tsp steak seasoning ($0.20)
  • 1/2 tsp sweet paprika ($0.05)
  • 1 Tbsp butter (optional) ($0.10)


  • The steak seasoning needs to be combined with the smoked paprika and then sweet paprika in a bowl. Be sure to liberally coat all sides of the chicken breasts with the seasoning.
  • A large skillet should be heated over medium-low (or medium if the breasts are thin-cut). Add the cooking oil and cook over medium-low. The oil should be swirled around the skillet once it is hot.
  • You will need approximately 8 minutes to cook the chicken breasts without flipping (5 minutes for thin-cut chicken breasts). The chicken should be flipped and cooked on the other side until well browned and cooked through (internal temperature of 165°F).
  • Butter can enhance the lusciousness of the chicken by adding a tablespoon to the skillet and allowing it to melt. After the butter melts, flip the chicken to coat it in the butter.
  • Before slicing and serving, transfer the chicken to a clean cutting board and allow it to rest for five minutes.


Serving: 1 serving ・ Calories: 229 kcal ・ Carbohydrates: 1 g ・ Protein: 31 g ・ Fat: 10 g ・ Sodium: 197 mg ・ Fiber: 1 g

The nutritional values shown here are only estimates. Please see our nutrition disclaimer.

close up side view of sliced chicken breasts

A Pan-Cooked Chicken Breast Recipe – Step by Step Photos

Seasoned chicken breasts on a cutting board

The first thing you should do is season the chicken breast liberally on both sides. I used a mix of 2 tsp steak seasoning, ½ tsp smoked paprika, and ½ tsp sweet paprika.

My steak seasoning already contains salt, so I didn’t need to add any more salt.

oil being added to the skillet

A large skillet should be sprayed with a tablespoon or so of your favorite cooking oil. I recommend that you heat the skillet over medium-low (or medium-heat if you’re going to cook thin cut breasts).

Cooked Chicken breasts in the skillet

Adding the chicken breasts to the skillet once the oil is hot, swirl it to coat the surface.

It is recommended that the chicken breasts be cooked for eight minutes without flipping (or five minutes if the breasts are thin). When the second side is well browned and cooked through, flip it once again.

Butter added to the skillet

A tablespoon of butter melted in the skillet will enhance the lusciousness of the chicken breasts. Next, flip them a couple of times to ensure they are well coated with butter.

As the butter melts, some of the flavor will be released from the bottom of the skillet, which further coats the chicken.

Sliced chicken breasts

Once the chicken has been cooked, transfer it to a clean cutting board and allow it to rest for five minutes before serving.

close up of cooked chicken breasts in the skillet

Remember to share your recipes with Apronese and everyone in the comments.