This easy yogurt-marinated chicken recipe makes the most flavorful baked chicken ever. Tender, juicy, and coated with a crunchy golden crust, this simple chicken breasts recipe is a winning dinner idea!
Tender Yogurt-Marinated Chicken
I love no-fuss dinner ideas that deliver big on flavor. Don’t you? And that’s what this recipe is, friends! In fact, this yogurt-marinated chicken is exactly what you need on a busy weeknight when you want to have a delicious meal everyone will devour.
This recipe makes the most flavorful chicken breasts, thanks to my easy yogurt marinade with garlic and thyme! You can start with marinating the chicken breasts in the AM, then bread them and pop them in the oven when you get home after work. The end result is ultra-tender chicken that’s juicy on the inside yet perfectly crispy-crunchy on the outside.
Why You’ll Love This Easy Chicken Recipe
- Easy. Simple pantry ingredients, a baking pan, and an oven are all you’ll need to make these chicken breasts. There’s nothing complicated or fussy about this recipe!
- Perfect for meal prep. Since the chicken is marinated for hours, it’s the perfect make-ahead meal.
- Goes with many sides. These golden, baked chicken breasts go with so many sides: mashed cauliflower, roasted veggies, cucumber salad; you name it. I’ve shared some of my favorite ideas below.
What Does the Yogurt Marinade Do?
- The marinade takes just a few minutes to put together and does a couple of things to your chicken; the acidity of the yogurt helps to tenderize the meat, making it more tender and juicy. It also infuses the chicken with tangy flavor and moisture, resulting in succulent baked chicken.
- In addition to the yogurt marinade, we will pound the chicken before marinating it. This further tenderizes the meat by breaking down the muscle fibers. It also ensures that your chicken cooks evenly in less time.
How Long Should I Marinate the Chicken?
- I like to marinate chicken breasts anywhere from 2 to 6 hours, but even 1 hour is good enough.
How to Make Yogurt Marinated Chicken
Are you ready to make this easy chicken dinner? Here’s a quick overview. Be sure to scroll down to the recipe card for step-by-step instructions and the full ingredients list.
- Make the yogurt marinade. It comes together in a snap.
- Marinate the chicken. I recommend marinating it for a few hours, but as little as one hour works. You have to give the yogurt time to work its magic!
- Add the panko breading and bake. The chicken is done when light golden and when the juices run clear if you pierce it with a knife. It should register 165˚F with an instant-read thermometer.
This is a serious, melt-in-your-mouth chicken dinner. I can’t even begin to tell you how often this appears on our table. It goes with many different side dishes too, so you can serve leftovers again later in the week and just switch up what you serve with it.
What Goes With Yogurt Marinated Chicken?
- Salad. I love serving these chicken breasts with crunchy Green Goddess salad or Jennifer Aniston’s Bulgur Salad. Both of these salads are full of bright flavors and textures that perfectly complement the tender chicken.
- Veggies. These grilled veggies with halloumi are so incredibly good with chicken. You also can’t go wrong with crispy air fryer potatoes or creamy mashed turnips.
- Pasta. You can slice up these breaded chicken breasts and serve them on top of pasta! (Or serve the chicken with pasta on the side. Hey, you do you, boo!) I love this Mediterranean Baked Feta Pasta with chicken as well as this Creamy Garlic Butter Pasta with Spinach.
More Chicken Recipes
Looking for even more ways to cook up a fabulous chicken dinner? Here are more recipes to try:
- Air Fryer Chicken Tenders
- Buffalo Chicken Pasta
- Chicken Broccoli Pasta
- Easy Baked Chicken Breasts
- Chicken Taco Soup
Yogurt Marinated Chicken
- 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, (4 chicken breasts total)
- salt and fresh ground black pepper, to taste
- 6 cloves garlic, minced
- ½ cup plain yogurt
- ½ tablespoon fresh thyme leaves, or your favorite blend of fresh herbs
- ¼ cup panko crumbs
- Lightly pound chicken just enough to even it out; do not pound it thin.
- Place the chicken in a large bowl and season with salt and pepper; set aside.
- In a separate bowl, combine garlic, yogurt, and thyme; mix until combined.
- Pour the yogurt mixture over the chicken; mix around until the chicken is thoroughly coated.
- Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 4 to 6 hours.
- Preheat the oven to 375˚F.
- Grease a baking dish/pan with cooking spray.
- Remove the chicken from the bowl and shake off any excess; discard the yogurt mixture.
- Transfer the chicken breasts to the baking pan.
- Sprinkle panko bread crumbs over the chicken breasts.
- Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, or until chicken is done. Use an instant-read meat thermometer to check for doneness; chicken is cooked through when its internal temperature registers at 165˚F.
- Remove from oven and let stand for 5 to 8 minutes.
- Ideal for Meal Preparation: The long marinade time makes this chicken perfect for prepping meals ahead of time.
- Versatile Pairings: Pair these golden, baked chicken breasts with a variety of sides, be it mashed cauliflower, roasted vegetables, or a salad.
- To Store Leftovers in the Fridge: Let the chicken cool to room temperature, then transfer it to an airtight container and store it in the fridge for up to 4 days.
- To Freeze: Place the cooled chicken in an airtight, freezer-safe container and store it in the freezer for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge before reheating.
- To reheat: You can reheat your chicken in the microwave on a plate lined with a paper towel, which will help prevent moisture from building up below your chicken. I recommend reheating single servings in the microwave. You can also reheat your chicken in an oven preheated to 400F for 7 to 10 minutes or until warmed through.
Nutritional info is an estimate and provided as courtesy. Values may vary according to the ingredients and tools used. Please use your preferred nutritional calculator for more detailed info.