Chicken Schnitzels with Capers and Lemon

Chicken Schnitzels with Capers and Lemon

Main Course 

Traditional Weiner Schnitzel, a breaded veal scallopini, is a classic dish served with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice. It can be made with chicken breast that is coated in Japanese Panko crumbs, which are now available in the Asian ingredients section of most supermarkets. They make an extra crunchy exterior that works so well with a quick brown butter sauce of capers, lemon juice and parsley. The same technique works equally well with traditional veal or turkey.

  • 4


  • Very easy



  • 4- six ounce chicken breast halves, skinless, boneless
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 3 large eggs, beaten
  • 1 1/2 cups panko crumbs
  • 6 tablespoons (3 ounces) unsalted butter
  • Canola oil
  • 2 teaspoons small capers, drained, rinsed and minced
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon chopped Italian parsley


Trim away any fat or sinew on the chicken breasts. If the small filet is still attached to the underside of the breast, remove by pulling it off. Cut away the sinew that runs through the filet. Set aside the filet.

To butterfly the chicken breasts, place a breast on a cutting surface, skin side up with the thickest side of the breast towards the knife. Carefully place your non-cutting hand over the chicken breast to hold it in place. Hold the knife so that the blade is horizontal to the cutting surface in the center of the breast. Draw the knife almost through the breast, splitting the breast horizontally, but leave the far side of the breast attached. Open up the breast like a book. Repeat with the remaining breasts.

Lay a large piece of cling film on the counter. Top with a butterflied chicken breast and then cover with a second piece of cling film. Pound the breast with a smooth surface meat pounder. Lift the cling film, rotate the breast 45 degrees, replace the cling film and pound again. The finished scallopini will be about 6-inches by 7-inches. Set aside and repeat with the remaining breasts and filets as well.

To cook the schnitzel, season both sides of the chicken pieces with salt and pepper. Spread the flour in a large dish.

Place the eggs in a baking pan large enough to fit the scallopini and spread the panko crumbs on another large dish.

Preheat the oven to 250°F. Line a baking sheet with paper towels. Place the butter in a small sauce pan.

Place 1/4-inch of canola oil in a large fry pan. Depending on the size of the pan, you may want to cut very large pieces of chicken in half before coating. It will be necessary to cook the chicken in a few batches.

Heat the oil over medium high heat. Quickly dip both sides of the chicken into flour, then egg and finally the panko. Immediately place into the oil.

As the bottom browns, tilt the pan and using a large spoon, baste the top of the schnitzels with the hot oil. This will begin to cook the top of the schnitzel and will shorten the cooking time once the piece is turned. When the first side is browned, turn the piece over. Adjust the heat as necessary. The total cooking time should be about 3 to 4 minutes.

Remove the schnitzels to the paper towel and place into the warm oven.

Continue to coat and cook the remaining pieces.

As you finish the last batch of chicken, place the sauce pan of butter over medium high heat. Let the butter bubble and cook until it is browned. It will be a nutty colour, however be careful not to let the butter burn. Add the capers, lemon and parsley to the butter. Stir for a few seconds. Arrange the chicken schnitzels on individual serving plates or a platter, then pour the hot browned butter over the schnitzels.

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