Chicken Paillard



Chicken Paillard

Chicken Paillard | Chicken Paillard |

Paillard (“pie-yard”) is a fancy French name for a flattened piece of meat.  This recipe uses chicken that is pounded flat with a mallet and quickly cooked.  Chicken paillard cooks in a matter of minutes but flattening the chicken takes a little time, especially if your not used to it.  This is a great recipe for a dinner party because you can prepare the raw chicken in advance and cook fast for dinner.  Make it healthy and add a quick salad to the top of the chicken, well, because it looks amazing.

  • Author: beckie
  • Prep Time: 30 Minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 Minutes
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 4
  • Category: Main Dish
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: French


  • 4 small (~ 2 lb) chicken breasts
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 lemon, zested
  • 2 lemons, 1 juiced and 1 wedged as a garnish (4 wedges)
  • 10 sprigs thyme, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup parsley, finely chopped
  • salt
  • black pepper


  • In a small bowl, mix together: olive oil, lemon zest, 1 lemon juiced, thyme, and parsley.
  • Lay out a piece of plastic wrap on a cutting board.  Put a butterflied (see notes below) chicken breast on the plastic and top the breast with another piece of plastic.  Start pounding with a meat mallet until very thin, careful not to tear the meat (pound confidently but gently!).  Season each side with salt and pepper and herb mixture.  Set on a plate and cover with a piece of plastic wrap.  Repeat with each breast.  The plastic wrap keeps the chicken breast from sticking to each other.
  • Bring a large non stick skillet to medium high heat.  Add a touch of olive oil and add the chicken.  If the chicken starts to really smoke, turn your burner down to medium.  Cook ~ 2-3 minutes per side or until chicken is cooked through and has a nice golden color.  If your pan starts to accumulate burned herbs, then you may need to wipe out between breasts or every other breast.
  • Top with your favorite salad and dressing.  Pictured is an Arugula salad with cherry tomatoes, red onions, and a lemon vinaigrette.  Add salt to taste and garnish with a lemon wedge.  Happy eating!  Beckie


  • “Butterfly” your chicken breast by nearly cutting it in half in thickness, but stop at the edge so it’s still held together like a book.  This will save you time when you start flattening the chicken.  Check out my Feta Chicken recipe video for how to butterfly.
  • Use any herb you like in place of the parsley and thyme. I use chives a lot (that’s what’s pictured).
  • Want some gravy?  Make a quick pan sauce, by adding 2 Tbsp butter to the pan drippings and whisk in 2 Tbsp flour.  Stir and cook for a couple minutes to make a light roux.  Slowly whisk in 2 cups chicken broth (adding it slow avoids clumping).  Bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally, until thickened (~ 7-10 minutes).

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Keywords: Chicken, Chicken Breast, Paillard, Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Keto, Low Carb, Whole 30, Paleo

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Chicken Paillard

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