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Chicken with a German Twist, An Easy Craving Satiator: Chicken Schnitzel

June 17, 2012
Chicken Snitzel

I was lucky enough to travel to some really cool places growing up. What I remember more than the landmarks was the food. And Oh! was there food!  Germany was a great food country. Great bread, sweets and my absolute favorite, Schnitzel.

Schnitzel, the glory of the Schnellimbiss (fast food joint) across the German countryside. That’s how I remember it anyway. Thin veal cutlets, pounded even thinner, lightly breaded and fried up, served covered in exquisite mushroom gravy. Divine! About once a month I get a hankering for a nice schnitzel, so I make my own version. I’ve been tweaking it for about three years now and this is what I have come up with. It’s fast, easy and I’ve really streamlined my process. I give you the fruit of this endeavor below.

Now uber traditionally schnitzel is made from veal.  I know, I know – Boo hisss: veal. So it is also traditionally made with pork.  While I enjoy pork schnitzel in the states, nothing really compares to the un-aged meat you get in Germany.  So I’ve taken to using chicken for its speedy preparation and tenderness.


Unless it’s a last minute meal I generally only buy my meat in large family packs. I pack two gargantuan chicken breasts to a gallon bag and freeze as soon as I get them home. This way I can use the wiggle room between today and the sell by date when it’s thawed. For instance, if you’re three days away form the sell by date when you freeze the chicken, you can thaw it in the refrigerator for one to two days and cook it on the third day without fear of spoilage. If I get manager special meat that’s marked down on it sell by date I cook it right when I get it home and then eat or freeze the cooked results. Anywho, the point is I start this recipe with two large chicken breasts (two servings each easily) in a gallon ziptop bag.



  • Two large chicken breast or four 4oz portions in zip top bag
  • ½ cup flour
  • 1 large egg with 1 tablespoon water whisked in
  • ¼ cup panko bread crumbs
  • ¼ cup plain bread crumbs
  • Salt and pepper to taste, herbs if you wish
  • 2 Tablespoons butter
  • Fresh parsley for garnish


  • 1 cup chicken gravy with ½ cup mushrooms
Flour Chicken in Ziptop bag

Flour Chicken in Ziptop bag

Pound Chicken To A Quarter Inch Thickness

Pound Chicken To A Quarter Inch Thickness

Open your ziptop bag full of chicken and squeeze out all the air. Reseal and place the bag on a kitchen towel on the floor. Pound with a meat tenderizing mallet (flat side or you’ll bust your bag) or the

bottom of a heavy glass until the chicken is a quarter inch thick or a little less. Don’t pound the same spot more than twice or you’ll obliterate your chicken and have mush instead of a cutlet.

Set Up A Breading Station

Set Up A Breading Station

Now open your bag again and pour in flour. Reseal bag with some air and shake to coat chicken in flour. Set up your breading station containing, from right to left your bag of flour coated chicken, egg in a pie plate, panko and bread crumbs and any herbs you’re incorporating and ending with your skillet with 1 tablespoon of melted butter on medium high.

Turn on your skillet and begin breading the chicken. Shake off excess flour back into the bag. Coat your cutlet in egg then press into the bread crumbs. Make sure both sides are covered and place the chicken on a cutting board to rest for 5 minutes. This rest period lets the coating adhere to the chicken better.

Flip Chicken To Brown Other Side

Flip Chicken To Brown Other Side

Let Breaded Chicken Rest

Let Breaded Chicken Rest

Brown Chicken in Butter

Brown Chicken in Butter

Once your butter is melted and the pan is to temperature place two cutlets in the skillet. Brown on the first side for 3-5 minutes until nicely colored. Some juices will weep out the top side. Carefully flip your chicken to preserve the coating, I use tongs so they are easy to flip – at this point the cutlets are rigid. Let them cook for 3-5 more minutes and remove from the pan onto a cooling rack. This isn’t to cool them, more to drain any clinging fat so they don’t get soggy. Now cook the next batch of two in the second tablespoon of butter.  Carefully watch this set as the pan has continued to heat and it is easy to burn things in butter!

Prepare Your Favorite Gravy with Mushrooms

Prepare Your Favorite Gravy with Mushrooms

Prepare your favorite chicken gravy beforehand and have it warming on the stove as you fry these up. I always add mushrooms to my gravy.  When I make these with pork I use a brown gravy with mushrooms.

I think you’ll find that the panko gives these cutlets a nice extra crunch, even when reheated the next


This is by far my favorite go to Germanesque meal. I pair it with bratkartoffeln – German sautéed potatoes or new potatoes in a béchamel sauce, asparagus and a salad.

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