Juicy, flavorful chicken coated in parmesan cheese, flavorful spices and of course, lots of garlic! You’re sure to love this Garlic Parmesan Chicken with Lemon Rice!

a cast iron pan full of simple garlic parmesan chicken with lemon rice

One-Skillet Garlic Parmesan Chicken and Rice

I was talking on the phone with my mom while making this garlic parmesan chicken, and when I took the first sampling I was blown away. I kept saying in her ear, “my goodness, this is so yummy! It’s so much better than any other brown rice, Mom! It’s so much more vibrant and flavorful! And ohhhhh the chicken is perfect!”

Empty Nesters

The poor thing just kept saying, oh I wish I could just come to dinner at your house! And it’s not because I’m some fantastic cook, it’s because she lives in another state and after cooking for five kids for so many years she’s ready to not cook dinner every night. Maybe you feel that way too after just five years of cooking for kids!

Cooking Healthy for a Family

It’s one thing to try to eat healthy for yourself, but throw in cooking healthy for a family, or healthy dinner ideas for kids, and that’s a whole new ball game. The meal has to be something simple enough that kids won’t freak out, but still packing in the flavor and calories you need to maintain a healthy diet.

Our simple garlic parmesan chicken was my search for just that. A healthy dinner recipe that kids will eat, but adults won’t feel like is just boring, bland chicken either.

a cast iron pan full of simple garlic butter chicken with lemon rice

Garlic Parmesan Chicken and Rice Ingredients

Both the garlic butter chicken and the homemade lemon rice are simple to make and require no special ingredients. Here’s everything we used in this easy chicken dinner:

  • Chicken breasts
  • Grated Parmesan
  • Garlic
  • Smoked paprika
  • Italian seasoning
  • Unsalted butter
  • Fresh parsley
  • Brown rice
  • Chicken broth
  • Lemon

Can I Use White Rice Instead of Brown?

Yes, you can switch the brown rice to white rice if that’s all that you have or all that your family eats. Just note that white rice typically cooks much quicker than brown rice, so you’ll need to adjust your cook times.

a cast iron pan full of simple garlic parmesan chicken with lemon rice

How to Make Garlic Parmesan Chicken and Rice

I know the following instructions look like a lot, but that’s just because I like to give you as many tips and tricks as possible! But I pinkly promise this one-skillet garlic parmesan chicken is easy to make.

Here’s how I made the garlic butter chicken and the lemon rice:

  1. In a dish, mix together parmesan cheese, seasonings, and minced garlic (we recommend mincing it with a Kuhn Rikon garlic press).
  2. Melt the butter in a skillet and cook the chicken until done.
  3. After cooking your chicken, set it aside on a plate and tent with foil. We don’t want to continue cooking the chicken, so don’t wrap the foil or that heat will be trapped and you’ll end up cooking the chicken a little further.
  4. Next, make the lemon rice. In the same skillet, warm more garlic and butter and then toss in the rice.
  5. Add the rice, broth, salt, and lemon juice and zest and bring to a boil.
  6. Put a lid on the dish and turn the heat to medium-low to maintain a simmer.
  7. Allow the rice to cook for 45 minutes and then add the chicken back in and place the lid back on to re-warm the chicken.
  8. Serve with fresh parsley and parmesan cheese!

Tip: Check out our post on how to cook chicken in a pan if you haven’t done that in the past. It’s a super quick and easy method to use so that you’ll never have to cut through the middle of your chicken again.

a cast iron pan full of simple garlic butter chicken with lemon rice

Can I Use Chicken Thighs Instead of Breasts?

You likely can, but keep in mind that chicken thighs may take more or less time to cook than chicken breasts.

How to Reheat Garlic Parmesan Chicken and Rice

This garlic butter chicken and rice actually reheats pretty well in the microwave, although reheating the mixture on the stove over low heat really is best. Rice and chicken both dry out quite easily, which is why reheating it over the stove works so well.

a cast iron pan full of simple garlic butter parmesan chicken with lemon rice

Tips for Making Garlic Parmesan Chicken

For chicken and rice recipes like this one, you’d typically make the chicken and rice separately since rice takes so much longer to cook than the chicken does. However, there’s a reason we chose to use just one skillet for this chicken dinner recipe. When you cook chicken in the pan, something called a fond is created, and that’s pretty much gold in the cooking world.

What is fond? Friends, fond is your new best friend. It’s the little caramelized bits of butter, garlic, seasoning etc that stick to the bottom of the pan. Think about it, you’ve seen it before, those little browned bits stuck on the bottom of the pan.

This sounds really simple, but those bits of fond add essential flavor to the rice in this recipe. You go from a well seasoned recipe to a packed with flavor recipe and I always want all the goodness.

So see, you want to use one pan so that the bits from the chicken end up helping to flavor the rice as well. Don’t worry, it won’t make the dish taste all the same, it will just add a depth to the lemon rice!


Simple Garlic Parmesan Chicken with Lemon Rice

4.30 from 48 votes
Servings: 4
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes


Juicy, flavorful chicken coated in parmesan cheese, flavorful spices and of course, lots of garlic! You're sure to love this Garlic Parmesan Chicken with Lemon Rice!


  • 1/2 Cup Parmesan, fresh, finely grated
  • 2 Cloves Garlic, large, minced
  • 1 teaspoon Smoked Paprika
  • 1 teaspoon  Italian Seasoning
  • 3 Large Chicken Breasts, boneless, skinless
  • Salt and Pepper, to taste
  • 4 Tablespoons Butter, unsalted, divided
  • 2 Tablespoons Parsley, fresh, chopped

For the Rice:

  • 2 Cups Brown Rice
  • 2 Cloves Garlic, minced
  • 4 Cups Chicken Broth
  • 1 Lemon, juiced
  • Zest of 1 Lemon
  • 1/4 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon Pepper


  • In a pie dish or pan, combine the parmesan cheese, grated garlic, paprika, and Italian seasoning. Season the chicken with salt and pepper on each side; dredge in the parmesan mixture; shake off excess and set aside.
    1/2 Cup Parmesan, 2 Cloves Garlic, 1 teaspoon Smoked Paprika, 1 teaspoon  Italian Seasoning, 3 Large Chicken Breasts, Salt and Pepper
  •  In a large skillet that has a fitting lid, melt just 2 tablespoons of butter over medium-high heat.
    4 Tablespoons Butter
  • Cook chicken until golden on each side and cooked through – about 4-6 minutes for each side, depending on the thickness of your chicken. Transfer to a plate.
  • Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter and 2 additional cloves of garlic. Quickly add the rice and stir continuously for 1 minute.
    4 Tablespoons Butter, 2 Cloves Garlic, 2 Cups Brown Rice
  • Add the broth and lemon juice and zest along with the salt and pepper and bring to a boil.
    4 Cups Chicken Broth, 1 Lemon, Zest of 1 Lemon, 1/4 teaspoon Salt, 1/4 teaspoon Pepper
  • Turn the heat to medium low and place the lid on the skillet. Cook until fluffy and no liquid remains, about 40-45 minutes.
  • Remove from the heat and fluff with a fork.
  • Add the chicken back in and cover with the lid. Place over the heat and re-warm the chicken.
  • Serve with fresh parmesan and parsley.
    2 Tablespoons Parsley


You can keep this chicken and rice dish in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.


Serving: 1gCalories: 717kcalCarbohydrates: 79gProtein: 49gFat: 22gSaturated Fat: 11gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 147mgSodium: 1509mgPotassium: 1174mgFiber: 5gSugar: 1gVitamin A: 946IUVitamin C: 37mgCalcium: 243mgIron: 4mg
Author: Sweet Basil
Course: Mom's Best 100 Easy Chicken Recipes
Cuisine: American

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Juicy, flavorful chicken coated in parmesan cheese, flavorful spices and of course, lots of garlic! You're sure to love this Garlic Parmesan Chicken with Lemon Rice!


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