How to cook frozen chicken breast in oven

When its time to make dinner, but your chicken is frozen solid you probably find yourself wondering can I cook frozen chicken?.

I have great news, you absolutely can bake frozen chicken and still have a flavorful, juicy chicken dinner tonight. In this post, Im sharing everything you need to know about baking frozen chicken breasts or thighs so they turn out perfectly every single time.

Chicken is a kid-favorite protein that can be cooked up in a variety of different ways. While I love grilling and pan-searing chicken, baking is often my go-to method since by simply adding a veggie or two to the pan, it transforms into an epic sheet pan dinner.

Ideally, chicken is always defrosted and ready to cook when it comes time to make dinner, but realistically that doesnt always happen. Sometimes, were left with a solid block of chicken and no ideas for dinner.

If that sounds like you, read on, Ill take you step-by-step on how to pull of dinner tonight without ordering takeout.

Can you Bake Frozen Chicken?

When it comes to cooking chicken into delicious, family-pleasing meals, Ive learned quite a few tips and tricks over the years, including how to bake frozen chicken straight from the freezer, no thawing required.

While you can bake and pan-fry frozen chicken, its important to know that chicken should never be cooked in a microwave or slow cooker straight from the freezer. These methods keep the raw, frozen chicken above 40F for longer than the recommended 1 hour. Making it an ideal environment for bacteria to breed and contaminate the food.

three chicken breasts in lemon marinade in a zip bagthree chicken breasts in lemon marinade in a zip bag

How to Cook Frozen Chicken in the Oven

To cook frozen chicken in the oven you will need a sheet pan, chicken breasts or thighs, and your choice of seasonings, marinade, or sauce. Heres what to do:

Prep
Preheat the oven to 350F. Grease a large baking dish or sheet pan with olive oil or cooking spray.

Place the chicken breasts, thighs, or whichever cut you are using on the baking sheet in a single layer.

Add flavor
Now is when you would season the frozen chicken with your choice of spices or marinade. You can also baste the chicken with BBQ sauce or teriyaki sauce but be sure to add it in the final 15 minutes of cooking so it doesnt burn or runoff.

four baked chicken breasts on a baking sheetfour baked chicken breasts on a baking sheet

Cook
Bake, as directed, adding 50% of the recipes original cook time to the total time or until the chicken, reaches an internal temperature of 165F for white meat or 175F for dark meat cuts.

Rest
Remove the chicken from the oven and allow to rest for 5 minutes before serving.

Want to watch how its done? Check out this video and Ill walk you through everything so you can see the whole process.

https://youtu.be/TivirVyJD1YVideo cant be loaded because JavaScript is disabled: How to Cook Frozen Chicken Safely | Stove & Oven Methods (https://youtu.be/TivirVyJD1Y)

Following a Recipe with Frozen Chicken

When cooking with frozen chicken, expect the cook time to increase by 50% of the original cook time. For instance, if the recipe called for 30 minutes, plan for 45 minutes. However, this can vary based on the size of the chicken cuts.

Taking the extra step to pre-slice, cut, orbutterfly the chickenahead of time can help reduce the cook time. The chicken will cook faster and evenly compared to a whole frozen 8-ounce chicken breast.

sliced chicken breast on a cutting boar with a baking sheet in the backgroundsliced chicken breast on a cutting boar with a baking sheet in the background

What Temperature

An oven temperature of 375 and an internal temperature of 165F are ideal for perfectly cooked frozen chicken.

Its just enough heat to cook the chicken evenly and low enough so that you can cook vegetables and other ingredients at the same time.

However, you can go as low as 350F and as high as 400F, just be sure to use the meat thermometer to check for doneness. Below is a chart to help you gauge the time it will take your chicken to cook based on oven temperature:

SizeOven TempCook Timesmall 4-6 oz350F / 175C32-45 minutestraditional 8 oz375F / 190C37-45 minutestraditional 8 oz400F / 200 Capprox 30 minutesPrint

Baked Frozen Chicken

baked chicken breast on a cutting boardbaked chicken breast on a cutting board
Print Recipe

How to bake frozen chicken in the oven so it turns out flavorful and juicy.

  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 45 minutes
  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Gluten Free

Ingredients

Scale 1x2x3x
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs, frozen

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 375F and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the olive oil, seasonings, salt and black pepper.
  3. Add the chicken to the baking sheet in a single layer and drizzle the marinade over the tops of the chicken, making sure to coat each piece.
  4. Bake for 35 to 45 minutes, flipping halfway through or until the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165F for white meat or 175F for dark meat.

Equipment

chicken ebook displayed on an ipad and phone screenchicken ebook displayed on an ipad and phone screen

Chicken. Its Whats for Dinner

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meat thermometermeat thermometer

Meat Thermometer

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Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 4 ounces chicken
  • Calories: 199
  • Sugar: 0g
  • Sodium: 632.8mg
  • Fat: 10.1g
  • Saturated Fat: 1.7g
  • Trans Fat: 0g
  • Carbohydrates: 0.8g
  • Fiber: 0.4g
  • Protein: 25.6g
  • Cholesterol: 8.27mg

Keywords: baked chicken, how to bake frozen chicken

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