This Parmesan Mozzarella Chicken Bake is made with your favorite marinara or spaghetti sauce with a couple of seasonings thrown in for good measure!
“I sure am going to miss the both of you. You two take good care of yourselves ok?” My mom replied as she gave Husband Man and I a hug.
The tears I witnessed coming down her face made this day bittersweet for both of us.
I had been waiting for this day for what seemed like forever. Finally, after a little over a decade for me and at least 4 years for him, hubby and I would be leaving this dusty old military town behind us.
He received orders to his first duty station as an Airmen, which just happened to be over at Barksdale Air Force Base in Louisiana.
I can’t even explain the multitude of feelings I had that day. I found myself excited about this new adventure but also sad.
Parmesan Mozzarella Chicken Bake
I was sad to be leaving the place where I experienced my first kiss, my first heart break, and my first paying job.
It was the place where I learned how to drive and learned all those important life lessons that teens have to face. It was the place where, after a bad day at school or work, I could come home to two loving and supportive parents.
It was my home.
And now, I was leaving it to make another home, in a place that seemed far, far away. It felt like we were trading one southern state for another, which didn’t seem right. I felt like a trader.
As we crossed the North Carolina/South Carolina border, I settled down in the passenger’s seat and took out a cookbook that I had purchased a few weeks prior. I tried to keep from crying as I turned each page, studying the details of each page.
My eyes focused on this recipe, Parmesan Mozzarella Chicken Bake. I promised myself I would make it when we arrived at Barksdale and when I did, I would think of my first home all the way in Fayetteville, North Carolina.
This recipe has been in our family since then.
How crazy it is to know that I picked this recipe out in a car ride from North Carolina to Louisiana! Every time I make it, I think of that exciting chapter in my life. I wouldn’t trade it for the world and I wouldn’t trade this recipe either!
Parmesan Mozzarella Chicken Bake
This Parmesan Mozzarella Chicken Bake is made with your favorite marinara or spaghetti suace with a couple of seasonings thrown in for good measure!
- 5 chicken breasts (boneless, skinless, thinly sliced)
- 1/2 cup Italian style panko bread crumbs
- 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan Cheese
- 1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- 6 Tablespoons melted butter
- 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- 24 ounce jar of spaghetti or marinara sauce of your choice
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a casserole dish with non-stick cooking spray.
Spread the entire jar of spaghetti/marinara sauce on the bottom of the casserole dish.
In a small bowl, combine the panko crumbs, Parmesan Cheese, oregano, paprika, and pepper. Mix weill.
Dip one chicken breast into the melted butter, making sure it is fully coated.
Dip it again in the panko crumb mixture, making sure it is fully coated.
Place the chicken breast on top of the spaghetti sauce inside the casserole dish. Repeat steps 4 and 5 with the rest of the breasts. Sprinkle any left over panko crumbs on top of each breast in the casserole dish.
Bake for 45 minutes.
Sprinkle the shredded mozzarella cheese on top of the chicken and bake for another 10 to 15 minutes, until the cheese is melted and the chicken is tender and no longer pink inside.
Can serve each breast with a side of spaghetti noodles if preferred.
Taken from the cookbook, Sweet Pickin's: A Collection of Favorite Recipes from the Junior League of Fayetteville, North Carolina
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