If there’s one thing my daughter will eat on a regular basis, it’s chicken. Well, chicken or fruit. But let’s stick with chicken breast recipes for now. Chicken breast recipes are great ones to try for your toddlers because they’re often meals the entire family can enjoy. Easy chicken breast recipes can turn into great family dinner ideas, which in turn become extra easy lunch ideas for the next day. I’ve recently gotten my daughter, who is almost three now, to try a variety of different chicken dishes, and even turkey. It’s no longer just “chicken and fries, AGAIN” as she likes to say.
So what are some easy chicken breast recipes for kids worth trying at home? Here are a few of my favorites that work well for my daughter and myself and my husband as well. You can even customize some of them to different family members’ unique tastes and preferences.
Homemade Breaded Chicken Breast Cutlets
In our house we call it chicken parm. I like to get thin-sliced fat free boneless and skinless chicken breast and go from there. Here are my simple steps – this is my own chicken breast cutlet recipe:
Thin-sliced boneless, skinless chicken breast
Breadcrumbs or Panko
- Rinse each of the chicken breast cutlets and set aside to dry if needed.
- If necessary, trim fat. If desired, cut chicken pieces into strips or nuggets.
- Pour a half-cup or so of flour onto a plate.
- Crack an egg into a bowl and beat lightly.
- Pour about a cup to a cup and a half of breadcrumbs or Panko into a bowl.
- Coat the bottom of a stir fry pan or shallow frying pan with olive oil and turn onto medium heat.
- Place the chicken breast into the flour and flip over until it is lightly but evenly coated.
- Dip completely in the egg to coat on both sides.
- Toss in the breadcrumbs to cover chicken breast completely.
- Set aside until oil is up to temperature. You will know when a piece of breadcrumb dropped in sizzles.
- Once the oil in the pan is ready, drop in one or two breaded chicken cutlets without overcrowding the pan.
- Cook several minutes per side, until golden brown. You can usually see the chicken has started to turn white instead of pink on the side facing down.
- Flip over and cook the other side; remove when golden brown.
- Serve with red sauce for chicken parm. Add spaghetti or other noodles and dinner rolls or crescent rolls. Alternatively, (for older kids and adults), serve the breaded chicken cutlets with sauce and cheese on Amoroso or other Italian club rolls.
- Before breading and frying, cut chicken breast into nugget sized pieces, strips, or tiny pieces for popcorn chicken. Proceed with recipes as above.
- Purchase chicken tenderloins and make your own homemade chicken tenders.
- Cut into pieces and serve with barbecue sauce and fries with ketchup for little ones.
- Serve with buffalo sauce for dads and others loving a little more spice.
Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup
Whenever someone gets sick in our home, I always try to make a big batch of homemade chicken noodle soup. I’ve recently learned that it freezes and thaws successfully, too! It’s wonderful to have on hand when you or someone you love is battling a bug, and it’s even more fun when you incorporate cute or fun noodles like alphabet pasta into the recipe. As far as chicken breast recipes go, this is a must-have for any kitchen. This is my own personal recipe.
Canned chicken broth (I usually use 2 large cans and keep a spare on hand.)
- Coat the bottom of a stir fry pan or frying pan with olive oil and bring up to medium heat.
- Cube the chicken breast.
- Dice the carrots and celery, amount to taste. Set aside.
- Pour the chicken broth into a big pot and turn onto medium-low.
- When pan is warm enough, toss in the chicken and cook until white all the way through, a few minutes. Strain and set aside when done.
- Simmer the carrots and celery pieces in the same pan you used for the chicken, in the remaining oil and juices. Turn off heat and set aside when tender.
- Bring the broth up to medium or medium high and toss in a cup or two of the noodles. Cook until tender, test as needed.
- When noodles are done, toss the chicken into the pot.
- Next, add the veggies to the soup. I usually throw in a little of the olive oil and chicken juice mixture as well.
- Keep warm and serve!
Tips and Variations:
- Have a second large can of chicken broth on hand. I find that the chicken, noodles, and veggies last longer than the broth, especially when someone is sick.
- Add corn, potatoes, or other ingredients if your family likes more complex chicken breast recipes.
- Be careful not to overcook the pasta.
- Freeze in screw-top plastic disposable containers for instant comfort when illness hits without warning.
- For my own toddler, I find that letting her have the fillers of the soup works better than giving her a whole bowl of soup. Feel free to just let your little ones snack on the noodles and chicken chunks! (More power to you if you can get them to eat carrots and celery!)
Simple Chicken Stir-Fry
I’ve been making stir-fry chicken breast recipes for years before my daughter was born. It’s something I just sort of made up when we bought our house and moved in and I found myself cooking every night. It doesn’t have any distinct Asian influences or “zing” of flavor to it – really a pretty basic recipe anyone could enjoy. Chicken stir-fry is a relatively simple and quick dish to make. You can vary this dish into several different chicken breast recipes to suit your liking, but here’s how I make it:
Italian seasoning grinder
Green beans, broccoli or other veggies
- Coat the bottom of a stir-fry pan with olive oil.
- Add a pat of butter for flavor and consistency.
- Bring up to low heat slowly.
- Toss in a teaspoon or two of minced garlic, according to taste. Simmer until golden.
- Slice the chicken breast into thin strips that could be eaten in one bite.
- Make rice according to package instructions when timing seems right.
- When garlic is golden, add the chicken breast to stir-fry pan.
- Cover with lid and cook until chicken is white all the way through, stirring as needed.
- Wash and prepare veggies according to preference, trim green beans, etc.
- Toss veggies into pan when chicken is fully cooked.
- Increase heat just a bit and steam veggies on top of chicken for three to five minutes. Check for doneness.
- Strain rice and put into bowls.
- Serve chicken breast stir-fry right on top of rice with a little of the pan juices if desired.
Easy Chicken Breast Recipes from Leftover Chicken
Sometimes creativity or energy levels wane throughout the week, and especially on Monday, so it helps to have some ready-made chicken breast on hand for easy recipes. Here are a few easy chicken breast recipes and suggestions you can try with your own toddlers or even the whole family.
For this simple recipe, you need flour tortillas, cheese (I like cheddar jack or mozzarella, but whatever your family prefers!), and leftover chicken breast. You can add in other things like mushrooms, onions, peppers, or beans if your kids will eat them, but we are fairly plain-Jane in my house so I’ll stick to the basics. This is one of the simplest chicken breast recipes and it only takes moments to make!
- Spray some cooking oil on a frying pan and bring it to medium-low to medium heat.
- Place one tortilla down and sprinkle on some cheese and some chunked, precooked chicken breast.
- We usually add bacon as well – up to you!
- Add some more cheese and then place the second tortilla on top.
- Allow to cook for a minute or two and flip. The tortilla that was touching the pan should now have light golden markings.
- Allow the second side to cook a minute or two and remove from heat.
- Cut with kitchen shears or a knife and serve!
Mac & Cheese Chicken Casserole
This leftover chicken breast recipe is simpler than it sounds. It also works really well when you have leftover macaroni and cheese from the box. If not, it only takes 10 minutes or so to make. Here’s how:
- Make up boxed macaroni and cheese according to the directions.
- Once done, add cubed chicken pieces or strained, canned chicken breast.
- Toss in leftover corn if you have it, or make some corn up quickly to add. (When time is of the essence, I just use SteamFresh frozen corn that we heat up in the microwave.)
- Mix it all together on the lowest stovetop setting.
- Remove from heat and serve.
Chicken Pizza Bagels
Making personal pizzas is great fun for the whole family, no matter if you use real pizza dough, refrigerated dough, bagels, or French bread. Pizza bagels allow you to create fun chicken breast recipes that your kids will love. Here’s a quick and easy recipe for leftover chicken breast pizza bagels.
- Put a few plain bagel halves on a baking sheet lined with foil.
- Add red sauce to each of the bagels.
- Top each bagel with mozzarella cheese.
- Add already-cooked cubed or shredded chicken breast as a topping.
- Add other toppings like bacon or pineapple (etc.) if desired.
- Bake at about 350 degrees until the cheese melts and pizza bagels look done.
These chicken breast recipes should give you a few ideas for simple meals as well as more involved meals for your family throughout the week. Chicken breast is a healthy dinner entrée, so be sure to include it in your family’s diet if it’s a good fit for you. If you have additional suggestions for toddler friendly chicken breast recipes or kid friendly recipes for leftover chicken, please share in our comments below!