How to butterfly a chicken breast

how to butterfly a chicken breast

Credit: Tara Donne Chicken breasts are lean, cheap, and oh-so-versatile, but their uneven shape poses an eternal cook issue. The narrow side overdone as the thick side finishes cooking. Butterflying—that is, splitting the chicken breast horizontally and opening it like a book—allows you to pound the meat evenly. (This way, split and pounded chicken breasts are called paillards.) Instead, you can stuff the butterfly chicken breast with something delicious and close it up to cook.

How to butterfly chicken breasts

Butterflying a chicken breast gives a uniform thickness, suitable for fast cooking. Using this simple three-step method for other meats, including lamb or pork. Butterflying is a very useful technique to establish a consistent thickness in a piece of meat to cook quicker and evenly. Here we used chicken, but for larger cuts like lamb or pork, make similar incisions along the joint to open it into one flat piece.
If you’ve mastered the technique, try our lemon chicken & couscous recipe, or chicken tikka burgers. Learn how to fly chicken breasts to make amazing stuffed chicken, cordon bleus and more. Every home cook can learn a few techniques to make spot-on chicken dinners. Learning how to carve a chicken is important, as is learning how to spatchcock. But many classic recipes like chicken cordon bleu chicken and chicken Kiev rely on one ability to get them right: butterflying a chicken breast. Maybe it’s tricky, but we’ll break it down for you!

how to butterfly a chicken breast

First, start the butterfly with a sharp knife. Place your hand over the boneless, skinless chicken breast, slice horizontally into the chicken, splitting it half. Stop half-inch from the opposite foot. When done, the chicken should be opened like a book so it’s flat. Cover with plastic wrap and use the flat side of a meat mallet to flatten to the desired thickness. If you master this technique, try our new ability with breast chicken recipes to make dinner awesome.

Try out this technique with these recipes.

How To Butterfly A Chicken Breast

To get the thin chicken bits, the breast is butterfied or sliced along its width, splitting the thick breast into a thinner top and bottom half. The two halves are usually related by not cutting all the way, making one, big, thin piece of meat. When sliced, the meat is unfolded to lie flat and pounded to a thickness of about 1/4 of an inch. A thin, even meat piece means cooking quickly and evenly.
By the time on both sides, the chicken breast should be cooked through. Directions Butterfly the chicken breasts by slicing them, width-wise, almost throughout. Unfold the breasts and pound them to around 1⁄4 inch thickness. Season with 1⁄2 tsp salt and 1⁄4 tsp pepper. Spread the flour on a plate and dredge the chicken breasts in flour. Heat butter in big skillet.
When the butter is warmed, add the chicken breasts and fry for 2-3 minutes on each side over medium-high heat until the chicken is cooked through. Remove the chicken and put on a serving plate. (Place the cooked chicken in a warm oven to keep the sauce warm.) Add the pan with white wine, lemon juice, 1⁄2 tsp salt and 1⁄4 tsp pepper. Scrape up any bits of chicken or flour sticking to the pan and boil the wine mixture until it has been reduced by about half, 4-5 minutes.
Remove the heat sauce and add capers. Pour over the chicken and top with fresh parsley. Serve chicken over your starch preference (if desired). Buttered pasta, mashed potatoes, polenta, rice are all nice choices.

Nando’s Peri-Peri Butterfly Chicken Breast Recipe

Jump to Recipe Print Recipe Nando’s Peri-Peri Butterfly Chicken Breast Recipe, one of the most delicious flavored chicken recipes. Why not make it at home, it’s super easy to make, and it’s like the real deal. Serve with fries and corn on the cob for Nando’s full experience. Nando’s was one of my first restaurants when I first came to the UK. I completely enjoyed the food there, and it’s been one of my favorite restaurants since.
You get amazing food at a pretty convenient price, and the service is always fantastic. The fabulous sauces and marinades that give the chicken dishes they serve a special flavor that is so Nando’s, are possibly their secret weapon in consistency. I can easily recognize Nando’s chicken style, and their famous peri-peri chicken is so popular.

how to butterfly a chicken breast

Butterflying is a good technique for quickly cooking a thick piece of beef. You can also butterfly a whole chicken, so it’s easy to do a chicken breast. Place the chicken breast on a wooden board or other slippery board. Place your whole palm on it, then run a sharp knife along the chicken breast side.

slice through the chicken breast

Fold it out and press to flatten, then tenderize the chicken breast even thinner

but not all the way through

You want the meat center cooked through with chicken. When the chicken breast is flatten, rub the marinade on both sides and relax. Grill on both sides for at least 2-3 minutes, until well-cooked. Once a butterfly chicken breast can be enough for 2 people, particularly a large one, so you can half it once it’s grilled. Seeking more grilled chicken ideas? My Grilled Chicken Sliders? Great as a healthy fast-food choice, and delicious too.
If you liked my NANDO’S STYLE BUTTERFLY CHICKEN BREAST or any other recipes on the blog, then don’t forget to rate the recipes and let me know how you got on in the comments below, I love listening to them! On INSTAGRAM FACEBOOK, and PINTEREST, you can also Add ME to see more delicious food and what I’m up to.

how to butterfly a chicken breast

When you butterfly your chicken, it cooks quicker and more uniformly. You can also use this process on some other poultry, such as turkey or duck, and you can even fly a pork tenderloin or other meat. Today, our butterflying system is safer and simpler than any other approaches, and the way my husband Jack learned how to culinary school.


Take out of the box some boneless, skinless chicken breast, and you’ll have one end thicker than the other. If you just cook the chicken, the plumper end will take longer to cook, and the thinner end will dry out. Butterflying is a culinary term where you cut the chicken so that before frying, the meat can have a flatter, more consistent thickness. Many (in fact most) other tutorials describe butterflying as simply slicing the breast horizontally, almost in half, then spreading the breast meat like a book (or butterfly – where the term originated). This approach works—but it can be tricky and even a little risky for the average home cook.
Second, you press the palm of your hand on the breast and then slice the breast in half horizontally. Unless the blade is perfectly balanced, you can end up with uneven halves. You may also unintentionally open your hand palm! Additionally, you can end up butterflying the thinner end of the breast as well as the thicker end – and that first negates the whole point of doing it.


Open the chicken breast. It should resemble a butterfly shape.

If a piece of boneless meat or poultry has uneven thickness, like a chicken breast or a lamb leg, it won’t cook evenly. Thinner parts overcook when thicker parts are finished. But you can do things by butterflying food. Butterflying means cutting it almost horizontally, but not completely in half, and then opening it like a book. This cut has two benefits: meat or poultry cook more evenly and quicker.

Slice the breast into two cutlets.

Ensure doneness with a meat thermometer.

Place your flat hand over the chicken breast and slice into one side. Start at the thicker end and finish at the thin point, without slicing backwards.

Watch how it’s done in the clip below:

@20@ Know the @21@ @22@ @23@ Knowing how to butterfly a chicken breast opens the door to a variety of quick breast chicken recipes. If you’re new to this simple technique, it’s a convenient way to open a chicken breast to create a uniform filet thickness that helps the meat piece to cook evenly and quickly. The also butterfly shape is ideal for any number of simple chicken recipes, from griddling, frying and barbecue to making a pocket to stuffing with tasty fillings like mozzarella and sun-dried tomatoes. @24@
1. Lay a boneless, skinless chicken filet on a cutting board with the smooth side down, cut off the small filet or tenderloin and remove.
2. Turn the breast over and slice the breast half wide, being careful not to cut to the other side (this will be filled from the middle of the butterfly chicken.) 3. Open the breast along the fold and flatten the butterfly. Pound a meat pounder to flatten as desired. @25@ Now you’ve got your easy butterfly chicken to make it into any number of fast and easy chicken recipes.

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