Chicken marinara is an easy recipe that everyone will love–even your picky kids! It’s got chicken and a delicious tomato based sauce that is guaranteed to please!
Baked Chicken Marinara Recipe
Chicken marinara is a classic dish that everyone loves! This version uses a homemade tomato based sauce to go along with the chicken. It is then topped with shredded mozzarella to give it the perfect texture.
Why You’ll Love this Homemade Chicken Marinara:
- Beginner cook friendly: It’s so easy to make! Even newer cooks can whip up this easy chicken recipe.
- Fresh ingredients: You use fresh ingredients that are full of flavor for this dish.
- Quick dinner: This dinner comes together quick and is perfect for busy weeknights.
How to make Chicken Marinara from scratch
Be sure to see the recipe card below for full ingredients & instructions!
- Coat the chicken in 1 tbsp olive oil and the seasonings.
- Cook the chicken for about 4 minutes on each side.
- In the same skillet, saute garlic about 1 minute. Add in tomatoes, oregano, and salt, and mash the tomatoes with the back of a spoon while simmering. Add in the basil sprigs, cover, and simmer for 10 minutes.
- Add the chicken back into the skillet, spooning sauce onto the chicken.
- Top with mozzarella and bake for 7-10 minutes.
What type of Chicken do I need for this recipe?
It’s easiest to use boneless skinless chicken breasts. However, you can use boneless skinless chicken thighs if you prefer that cut. You just may have to increase the cooking time a little bit to reach 165°F.
Can I use premade Sauce?
Feeling exhausted after a long day of working and/or taking care of the kids, and want to skip the extra step of making your own sauce? You can do that, for sure. Just use around 3 cups of your favorite marinara sauce.
What Cheese do you add on top?
Mozzarella is the cheese that you add to the top of your chicken. You can use shredded mozzarella or slice it fresh from a mozzarella ball. You can also use provolone, Gouda or your favorite white cheese here as well.
Recipe Tips and Notes
- Make sure to pat the chicken dry before coating them in olive oil and seasonings so that they stick.
- You can use fresh or shredded mozzarella on top of your chicken.
- Serve over pasta noodles or enjoy just the chicken and the sauce.
This recipe uses fresh ingredients to make a delicious sauce for the chicken. It’s a quick dinner that everyone will love!
More Italian chicken recipes we love
If you’ve made this recipe, please be sure to let us know by leaving a star rating or a comment below. Enjoy!
Baked Chicken Marinara Recipe
For the chicken:
- 4 boneless chicken breasts
- 2 tablespoons olive oil divided
- 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- Salt and pepper
- ¾ cup shredded mozzarella or more to taste
- Basil ribbons to garnish
For the marinara sauce:
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 28 ounces peeled whole tomatoes 1 can
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3 sprigs of fresh basil
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Pat the chicken dry and rub both sides with 1 tablespoon olive oil, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper.
- Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add in the chicken and cook until both sides are golden, about 4 minutes per side. Set aside on a plate.
- To the same skillet, add in 2 tablespoons olive oil, garlic, and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add in the tomatoes, oregano and salt. Simmer, mashing the tomatoes with the back of a spoon. Add in the basil sprigs, cover, and simmer for 10 minutes.
- Remove the basil and add the chicken back to the sauce, spooning some of the sauce over each breast. Top with mozzarella and bake until the cheese is melted and the chicken reads 165 degrees, about 7-10 minutes.
- Instead of making your own marinara sauce, use a 3 ½ cups of your favorite marinara sauce.
- You can also use boneless skinless chicken thighs. Increase oven cooking time, if needed, to reach 165 degrees.