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Garlic Parmesan Chicken with Lemon Rice

48 Reviews

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!


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

Simple Garlic Parmesan Chicken with Lemon Rice

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


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

For the Rice:

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


  • 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.
  •  In a large skillet that has a fitting lid, melt just 2 tablespoons of butter over medium-high heat.
  • 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.
  • Add the broth and lemon juice and zest along with the salt and pepper and bring to a boil.
  • 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.


You can keep this chicken and rice dish in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
Nutrition Facts
Simple Garlic Parmesan Chicken with Lemon Rice
Amount Per Serving (1 g)
Calories 717 Calories from Fat 198
% Daily Value*
Fat 22g34%
Saturated Fat 11g69%
Trans Fat 1g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 6g
Cholesterol 147mg49%
Sodium 1509mg66%
Potassium 1174mg34%
Carbohydrates 79g26%
Fiber 5g21%
Sugar 1g1%
Protein 49g98%
Vitamin A 946IU19%
Vitamin C 37mg45%
Calcium 243mg24%
Iron 4mg22%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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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Healthy Habits That Help Me!

About the authors

carrian feik cheney oh sweet basil

Cade and Carrian have three children and love to spend time together whether it’s vacationing or snuggled up on the couch for a good movie.

And this family especially loves to eat.

They love everything from the keep you fit and healthy to the get out your sweat pants indulgent and everything in between.

But most of all, they love the memories made, shared and treasured and it’s all thanks to a meal shared together with loved ones.

Leave a comment

Recipe Rating


  • Looks good. Trying it now, but I’m confused what to do with the zest of the Lemon. I don’t see where to add it in the recipe.

    • Reply
    • Hi Jenny! I’m so sorry about that! It should go in at the same time as the lemon juice. I have updated the recipe card and post. Thank you for bringing that to my attention!

      • Reply
  • We haven’t tried this yet but will be making it tonight. Looks delicious! I’m wondering about the sodium content because it seems so high for a “healthy” recipe. Could that be a typo maybe? Love your recipes. Thanks for sharing them.

    • Reply
    • Hi Dorothea! Yes, the nutritional info is correct, but you could reduce the sodium by using low sodium broth. Enjoy!!

      • Reply
  • Absolutely delicious! 😍

    Thank you for sharing.

    • Reply
    • One of my very favorites! Thank you so much Tina! So glad you enjoyed it too!

      • Reply
  • Have you tried just browning the chicken breast and then cooking both the chicken and the rice together in the oven covered?

    • Reply
    • I’ve found that the chicken cooks so much faster than the brown rice which makes doing that difficult. If you used white rice I bet it would work.

      • Reply
  • This is the first recipe of yours that I’ve tried and can say with 1,000% certainty I’ll be back for more! I’m always trying to find ways to cook new recipes with things I always have on hand and this was absolutely delicious. Smelled AMAZING while it was cooking and was even better finished. Husband gave it a 10/10 and scarfed down well more than a serving 😉 I added some broccoli about half way through the rice cooking portion so it could soak in the broth and it turned out perfectly. Thanks so much for sharing!

    • Reply
    • Thank you so much Abby! This make my day! This dish is so simple, nothing fancy, but we absolutely love it. I love the idea of adding broccoli!

      • Reply
  • Made this in my InstantPot. Coating the chicken in the cheese, garlic, spice mix, and then sauteing it in the IP. I then cooked it in the IP. Removed the chicken once done and cooked the rice.

    • Reply
    • Thanks for the great tips!

      • Reply
  • Yum! My husband said “fantastic, definitely make again.”

    • Reply
    • This is what we love to hear! Thank you Christina!

      • Reply
  • This was so yummy! My whole family loved it! 

    • Reply
    • Thank you Sara! I love finding a new recipe the whole family loves!

      • Reply
  • I fixed this the other night, using the exhaust fan over the stove, and I just had to tell you… My husband was across the street talking to a neighbor, and she said, “WHERE is that smell coming from?!” And he said, “I don’t know, but I hope it’s my house!” And then a lady, walking by with her dog, said, “You can smell it all the way up the street! WHAT is that!?” So I came out and called him in to dinner, and he told me all this.
    We both absolutely loved this recipe! It is 11 freestyle points, for anyone on Weight Watchers, at 6 generous servings per recipe (instead of the suggested 4), and worth every point! It was outstanding and my ten-year-old granddaughter scarfed it down. The only thing I did differently was add the juices from the chicken that had accumulated on the plate after it rested, back into the rice and stirred it in. It was amazing the second day, too. Thanks so much for the recipe! Destined to become a family heirloom, and good enough for company.

    • Reply
    • Thank you Laura!! This totally made our day! We have added the WW info you included into the original post. Thank you again for the feedback! Sooooo glad you love it as much as we do!

      • Reply
  • On the nutritional information, the calories for one chicken breast are listed as 31. Obviously this is a typo but I’m wondering not only about the calories for the chicken but for the rice as well. Thank you!

    • Reply
    • Dang! We are having so many issues with our nutrition calculator. Thank you! I’ll look into it.

      • Reply
  • I just made this in my new Curtis Stone skillet. OMG it is the best thing I’ve ever cooked!!! I was really skeptical about brown rice because I’ve never been a fan. Til now! 

    • Reply
    • Yippee!! That is great news! Brown rice is amazing when it’s done right! Thanks for taking time to leave a comment!

      • Reply
  • When do add the lemon zest?

    • Reply
    • Hi Holly! Same time you add the lemon juice. I’ve fixed the instructions. Thank you so much!

      • Reply
    • Looks great! I was wondering if you rinse the rice before you toast it? I’ve always rinsed rice before boiling it, but I have noticed some cooks don’t rinse before toasting. Thanks!

      • Reply
      • I personally don’t, but I definitely know people who do! I think you are fine either way!

  • This was SO GOOD!!! I’ve been a fan of yours for a long time, and your recipes never disappoint.  The chicken was tender and flavorful, and the rice was also really good. Thanks for a healthy and tasty recipe!

    • Reply
    • Awwww…thank you so much Kay! So happy you loved it as much as we do!

      • Reply
  • This is really great! Thanks for sharing

    • Reply
    • Thanks Adam! Enjoy!

      • Reply
  • Can.u use no boil rice? U put it in microwave in bowl of water 10 mins. After cooked could you brown it? (White rice)

    • Reply
    • I have never used no boil rice, but I bet it would work great. I would just use the broth and lemon juice to cook it in rather than water so you keep all the yummy flavor. And yes, I would brown it afterward a little bit so it gets some of the chicken flavor in it too. Let us know how it goes!

      • Reply
    • I can’t figure out what I did wrong because it’s such a simple recipe. My rice came out too hard, so I had to add more chicken broth, an additional cup and a half, and cook it for an additional 20 minutes. I used regular brown rice and it was covered. Any ideas what could have gone wrong?

      • Reply
      • Hmmmm…if you’re measurements of the rice and liquids were right, it should have been just right. So sorry for the frustration!

Healthy Habits That Help Me!