Slices of chicken get dredged in seasoned flour, sautéed in butter, and smothered in an addictively tangy lemon-butter pan sauce studded with salty capers. Lightly flouring the cutlets lets them brown quickly without overcooking and helps thicken the sauce.
2 large skinless, boneless chicken breasts
3 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 Tbsp. drained capers, coarsely chopped
4 Tbsp. unsalted butter, cut into pieces
2 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
Chopped parsley and lemon wedges (for serving)
Slice chicken breasts in half crosswise into 4 cutlets and lightly pound each piece between sheets of plastic wrap until an even thickness (about ½" thick or less). Season lightly with salt. Place flour in a medium shallow bowl. Working one at a time, place cutlets in bowl and toss to coat in flour. Knock off excess flour and transfer to a plate.
Heat 2 Tbsp. oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Working in batches if needed to avoid overcrowding the pan, cook cutlets, without moving them, until deeply browned underneath, about 2 minutes. Turn over and cook on the other side just until chicken is nearly cooked through, about 30 seconds. Transfer to a clean plate.
Add garlic and remaining 1 Tbsp. oil to the skillet and cook, stirring often and reducing heat if needed to keep garlic from scorching, until golden brown, about 2 minutes. Add wine and capers and cook, swirling pan and scraping up any browned bits stuck to the bottom of skillet, until liquid is almost completely evaporated, about 3 minutes. Add ½ cup water, followed by the butter. Swirl pan vigorously while butter melts to help it form an emulsion with water, about 1 minute.
Return chicken to skillet and simmer until chicken is cooked through and sauce is thick enough to coat a spoon, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat and stir lemon juice into sauce; season with salt. Transfer chicken and sauce to a platter and top with parsley; serve with lemon wedges.
Reviews SectionAbsolutely perfect! Simple. Elegant. Delicious.Made this for my Italian mother and Italian grandma for my mom’s birthday. They loved it so much!! My husband said it was the best thing he’d ever eaten. It was easy and absolutely delicious. I added artichoke hearts as per request of my mom. Thanks Chris!!!elizabethgtgrice9324Russellville, AR07/22/20This was delicious and so easy! This recipe is a definite keeper. I added the juice of two whole lemons and used chicken broth in place of the water. I served it over angel hair pasta. Try this recipe. You’ll be glad you did.Delicious!Outstanding flavor. Plenty of sauce which is nice. Made it exactly as directed.The sauce thickens up when you put the chicken in, so don't be afraid when it seems a little soupy at first. I used 3/4 of the butter and it tasted great! Really good recipe that I'll definitely come back to.AnonymousWashington, DC05/26/20I'm gluten-free and dairy free so I tried a few things and it definitely worked! In lieu of flour I used corn starch and used Miyoko's (fake but tastey) butter and it worked out really well. Morocco's genius knows no bounds. Yeah I said it. Wut?This is one of my all time favorite recipes. Easy enough for a Tuesday, nice enough for a Saturday. I make this at least once a month.AnonymousRaleigh, NC05/11/20Love this recipe!! We use it in our food prep for the week and it freezes well. We warm up in oven straight from the freezer and it tastes super fresh. Have made several times and it’s easy and fun. I’m a beginner level cook and long time food lover and this dish makes me feel fancy! 😻kittykattrashHouston05/09/20This recipe was so good! I definitely didn’t follow the cooking time, but it came out great just by basing the time off of the browning on the chicken and the consistency of the sauce. I didn’t use capers (because I didn’t have any), and I substituted the white wine with half white wine vinegar/half water (plus some sugar) instead. Would definitely make again.soybeanCalifornia05/01/20I've been loving many of Our site's versions of classic dishes like this, but this one didn't do it for me. The water at the end diluted all the goodness gained from deglazing and wine. And in other versions of this recipe I've done, the lemon juice goes in with the wine (or stock) and is part of the reduction, and so you get a really intense beautiful lemon flavor without all the sharp edges of adding it at the end. Finally I like to cook the chicken all the way through in the first step - with chicken sliced so thin, it's really not much more time, and you get more fond for your sauce.Absolutely delicious. Dredged the chicken in corn starch instead of flour (someone had a gluten intolerance), and was still great. Will be making again!nickpineauMontreal, QC12/31/19Just made this for dinner for the fam tonight and it was a hit. Preparation to table was only a little more than half an hour. Definitely going to keep this in the rotation. It was so easy and very tasty.AnonymousSan Jose, California 12/29/19I made this for my mom for her birthday and she absolutely loved it! Posted about it on Facebook and everything!! The only issue I had was that I felt they turned out a little soggy, but I’m pretty sure that was just user error, as I am a very inexperienced cook. I’ll make sure to troubleshoot that next time I try this! Thanks for the awesome recipe!Amill266Waterford, MI12/16/19Best plate I have ever tried (and cooked). Its just the perfect combination of tastes!! I went to the sky and returned in the first bite. God's food!! I agree with the coment above: I could drink this sauce every day for the rest of my life!!Chris Morocco you've done it again! Seriously so delicious. Just be sure to give the pan plenty of time to cool off before adding the garlic. I waited 5 minutes but my garlic still burned a bit when I added the wine. Even so, it was still amazing and will definitely make again (and will make sure to serve with some crusty bread for that sauce!!).AnonymousSan Diego09/26/19So easy, so yummy, tastes like childhood.AnonymousBrooklyn06/10/19Made it and it's so good! Best chicken piccata I've ever made. I used a vegan butter cause I'm super lactose intolerant, and it was still amazing. The sauce thickened just like I had used butter. Also used green olives cause I dislike capers.AnonymousNorthern Arizona06/09/19I'm dying to know if this sauce can be frozen--the capers are what give me pause. It's worth doing in larger batches and freezing for easy Piccata nights--defrost the sauce, dredge the chicken and saute, and voila, instant, fast, fantastic dinner. The sauce is simply amazing, and I cheated on it, too--didn't have a decent white so used Holland House (I know!) and REAL LEMON, too, not even actual lemons, and it was still fabulous. Can't wait to remake it with proper wine and fresh lemons. Will absolutely put this version into rotation for the summer--and I'm going to experiment with oversizing the sauce batches and freezing--it's that freaking good.Everything was perfect: the sauce, the chicken, and the salty capers. And the easy-to-follow directions led it to be an under-30 min dinner! This will definitely be a weeknight staple.AnonymousSanta Monica, CA05/08/19Amazing sauce!! 10/10 would recommend to anyone. We added some spinach fettuccine and it completed the meal!cel_estradaMelbourne, Florida 05/06/19I love the recipe! You say, “Slice chicken breasts in half crosswise”– I could use a little clarification in this and would appreciate guidance on techniques.Jamie1967Denver Colorado05/05/19Buttery lemon and so delicious! I added frozen peas when I return the chicken to the skillet and then served over toasted sourdough to soak up all the juices (plus one pan to wash up!)Definitely a keeper!I could straight up drink this sauce. Super quick and delicious dinner. Made some rice on the side to soak up all the garlic, lemon, caper goodness.AnonymousOak Park, IL 04/17/19