Carrie’s Experimental Kitchen

Chicken Francaise

Chicken Francaise made with boneless chicken that’s lightly floured and sauteéd in butter; then topped with a light, lemony sauce.
Chicken Francaise; which is tender chicken in a light, lemony sauce, is a definite crowd pleaser.

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Originally, I shared this recipe for Chicken Francaise five years ago and, like I mentioned a few posts back, I’ve been trying to make some of our old favorite recipes again and give them a photo makeover.

I made this recipe in February when my niece and her boyfriend came over for dinner. We don’t get to see them very often, but when we do, she always requests Chicken Francaise so I make sure to have extra in order for her to take some home.

Chicken Francaise

Chicken Francaise is a great meal to make ahead of time, especially when you are having guests. Almost the entire meal can be prepared  up to the day before so that you can actually sit and enjoy yourself.

Who wants to be stuck in the kitchen the whole time when you have guests?

Chicken Francaise made with boneless chicken that's lightly floured and sautéed in butter; then topped with a light, lemony sauce. Click to Tweet

You can choose between two types of chicken when making this dish. You can use whole boneless chicken breasts (if you are comfortable cutting them down to three or four 1/4-inch pieces by cutting them lengthwise) or you can opt for chicken tenders (the uncooked kind).

Which ever option you choose, you must then pound them down slightly with a meat mallet to make them uniform in size and thickness.

Chicken Francaise

How do you make Chicken Francaise?

You will need two separate bowls to coat the chicken. One for the flour; and a second for the egg wash; which is a combination of eggs, lemon juice, milk and parsley.

Dip each piece of chicken first into the flour; then into the egg mixture until all pieces are coated. In a large frying pan, melt butter and add oil. Cook chicken 2-3 minutes per side over medium heat until chicken is lightly browned.

Place cooked chicken directly into a baking dish and repeat until all of the chicken is cooked through. I like to use a combination of both oil and butter so the butter doesn’t burn at the higher heat during the cooking process.

Chicken Francaise

Next, it’s time to make the sauce. In a medium saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add lemon juice, white wine, chicken broth and parsley.

Bring the mixture to a boil and stir for approximately 5 minutes; then thicken the sauce with a mixture of cornstarch and water (or flour and water, your preference).

Pour the lemon sauce over your cooked chicken, slice fresh lemons in 1/4″ slices and place on top. Bake at 350°F for 30 minutes until hot and bubbly.

Classic recipe for Chicken Francaise..a definite crowd pleaser!

We love this recipe for Chicken Francaise, but it may seem like it’s a little labor intensive as it does contain a few more ingredients than I usually prepare my meals with, but believe it or not, this entire dish can be ready in 1 hour from start to finish.

I’ve even made it during the week by preparing everything the night before; then placing it in the oven after I got home for the 30 minutes.

I also like to make extra sauce as my family likes to pour it over cooked rice. ~Enjoy!

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3.64 from 44 votes
Chicken Francaise
Chicken Francaise
Prep Time
30 mins
Cook Time
30 mins
Total Time
1 hr

Chicken Francaise; which is tender chicken in a light, lemony sauce, is the perfect meal to feed a crowd. Make extra sauce, it's that good!

Course: Main Entree
Servings: 10
Author: Carrie's Experimental Kitchen
  • 6- 6oz. Boneless Chicken Breasts (or 30 Chicken Tenders, uncooked)
  • 4 tbsp. Butter
  • 1/2 c. Canola Oil
  • 3 Large Eggs
  • 2 tbsp . Lemon Juice
  • 2 tbsp . Milk
  • 1 tbsp . Parsley
  • 1 c . All-Purpose Flour
For the Lemon Sauce
  • 1 Stick Butter
  • 1/4 c . Lemon Juice
  • 3/4 c . White Wine
  • 3 c . Low Sodium Chicken Broth
  • 1 tsp . Parsley
  • 1 tbsp . Cornstarch
  • 1 Lemon
  • Salt and Pepper, to taste
For the Chicken Francaise
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. You will need two separate bowls to coat the chicken; one for the flour and one for the egg wash-eggs, lemon juice, milk and parsley; whisk all together
  3. Dip each piece of chicken first into the flour and then into the egg mixture until all pieces are coated.
  4. In a large frying pan, melt butter and oil. Cook chicken 2-3 minutes per side over medium heat until chicken is lightly browned.
  5. Place cooked chicken directly in your baking dish and repeat until all of the chicken is cooked through. (If you need to, you can add 2 Tbsp. butter and 1/4 Cup Canola oil if the oil mixture in the pan has been depleted by cooking).
  6. Pour the lemon sauce over your cooked chicken. Slice lemons in 1/4" slices and put on top. Bake for 30 minutes.
For the Lemon Sauce
  1. In a medium saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat.
  2. Add lemon juice and white wine.
  3. Add 2 3/4 cups of chicken broth (reserving 1/4 cup) and parsley. Bring to a boil and stir for approximately 5 minutes.
  4. In a measuring cup, add remaining 1/4 cup of chicken broth and 1 1/2 Tbsp cornstarch and stir together until the cornstarch is dissolved. Add the cornstarch mixture to the saucepan and stir constantly until sauce gets slightly thickened.

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Chicken Francaise made with boneless chicken that's lightly floured and sauteéd in butter; then topped with a light, lemony sauce. 

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  1. Jeanne Coulombe
    June 1, 2016 at 6:30 am - Reply

    This looks like a great recipe going to try this . Thanks

  2. seem b
    June 2, 2016 at 12:34 am - Reply

    Looks so delicious ..
    I can’t wait to try this out

  3. Dayra Velasco
    September 19, 2016 at 7:58 pm - Reply

    So I found your recipe on pinterest and I made it tonight. It was AMAZING!!! Thank you so much for the recipe definitely a keeper 🙂

  4. Ashley
    October 24, 2016 at 9:11 am - Reply

    This sounds amazing! If I made it the night before do you let it sit over night in the fridge with the sauce poured over? Or do you wait to combine sauce before baking? Thank you so much!!

    • Carrie's Experimental Kitchen
      October 24, 2016 at 5:34 pm - Reply

      Hi Ashley, you can make it the night before with the sauce poured over it. I’ve even made it then put it in the freezer if I was making it for a large party. Enjoy!

  5. Jessica
    January 27, 2017 at 1:24 pm - Reply

    What kind of white wine did you use?

  6. Mary
    March 15, 2017 at 9:40 am - Reply

    I am excited to make this for dinner!

  7. Shraddha
    July 21, 2017 at 4:55 pm - Reply

    Hi, did you serve this with pasta? Which type? Thanks.

  8. Christine
    July 26, 2017 at 7:32 pm - Reply

    I am wondering if you have ever tried freezing this recipe? Particularly the cooked tenders – then perhaps adding the sauce once thawed?

    • Carrie's Experimental Kitchen
      July 28, 2017 at 6:13 am - Reply

      You can do that and I’ve even made the entire recipe including the sauce and froze that too. It helps when making a lot for a party. I just defrosted in the refrigerator and cooked when I was ready to serve.

  9. stephanie
    August 23, 2017 at 6:52 pm - Reply

    Do you cook it before freezing or just prepare it up to cooking? smells and looks really good!

  10. Natalie
    December 17, 2017 at 7:13 pm - Reply

    If preparing the day before, do you have to freeze it or can you leave it prepared in the fridge overnight?

    • Carrie's Experimental Kitchen
      December 17, 2017 at 9:50 pm - Reply

      You can leave it in the refrigerator overnight.

      • Natalie
        December 20, 2017 at 1:45 pm - Reply

        Thank you! I did a trial run the other day for my family and it turned out fabulous!!! So tasty! I can’t wait to make this for Christmas! Thank you!!!

        • Carrie's Experimental Kitchen
          December 20, 2017 at 2:24 pm - Reply

          You’re welcome Natalie I’m so glad everyone enjoyed it! I think this is the first time in years that I’m actually not making this dish for Christmas eve. Merry Christmas to you and your family!

  11. Mary
    December 19, 2017 at 1:02 pm - Reply

    I have a question, I want to make this for Christmas and intend on prepping the day before. I will need to have the oven on 400 (for another dish) instead of 350. Would the cook (warming) time be the same at the higher temp? I need to double the recipe. Do you think double the sauce is enough (I don’t want it to dry out at the higher temp) or should I triple the sauce? Thanks in advance!

    • Carrie's Experimental Kitchen
      December 19, 2017 at 3:54 pm - Reply

      If you double the sauce you should be fine. In essence, the chicken is probably going to be cooked most of the way if not all the way done during the frying process. You can heat up the chicken in the 400 degree oven, but it will take a shorter amount of time. Enjoy!

  12. Denise
    December 22, 2017 at 8:12 pm - Reply

    This looks so yummy!!! Just wondering how you divided the 6 chicken breasts. I’ll be serving 10 people and I really don’t like using chicken tenders because of the tendons.

    • Carrie's Experimental Kitchen
      December 22, 2017 at 9:46 pm - Reply

      If you cut the chicken breasts horizontally you should be able to get 3-4 pieces out of it. I then pound it so that they’re uniform in thickness. Enjoy!

  13. Donna
    January 8, 2018 at 5:48 pm - Reply

    I have making this but using white cooking wine which I find is why I probably dont like my sauce. I was told Pinot Grigio or an unoaked Chardonnay?? Also I always make the entire foil pan for a party par cook it and then defrost the day before a party. When you freeze do you par cook or cook first or just fry the cutlets pour the sauce in the pan and freeze. I was told not to freeze but I am having a huge party and cant do it all that the day before. I am sure it is better fresh cooked which I will do for personal dinners. Also some say fry garlic in the pan then strain some dont suggestions for a nice sauce, some also add cornstarch or roll the butter in flour to thicken

    • Carrie's Experimental Kitchen
      January 9, 2018 at 8:27 am - Reply

      I generally use Chardonnay since that’s what I have in the house. The cooking wines tend to be very acidic. When I’m freezing (which I’ve done numerous times), I just fry the cutlets and add the sauce before freezing. Then I defrost and cook and it’s been fine. I wouldn’t use corn starch to thicken the sauce if you’re going to freeze it because it congeals and doesn’t hold the smooth consistency you get with flour and butter. Everyone has their own way of making a recipe, that’s what makes them great by adding your own ideas. I like the actual pieces of garlic in the sauce, but if you don’t, you can certainly cook it; then strain it out.

  14. Amanda k Gunthorp
    January 29, 2018 at 10:48 am - Reply

    Just wanted to thank you for this recipe! I am in charge of funeral dinners at our church. I was blessed with enough donated money to purchase chicken breasts instead of “whatever was on sale”. I got them home and then panicked slightly because I didn’t know how I would keep 30 servings of breast moist! I searched “chicken breast for a crowd” and found your recipe! I did not take the time to pound the pieces into even thickness but fried the thick pieces first and then placed them in my electric roaster while I prepared the rest and the sauce. The chicken and sauce was in that roaster for a couple hours before the dinner was served and it still received many compliments and thanks! So, I thank you on behalf of the dinner guests! Our church now has a new recipe to add to the arsenal!!

    • Carrie's Experimental Kitchen
      January 29, 2018 at 2:58 pm - Reply

      I’m so glad you found and enjoyed the recipe Amanda. It’s one of my favorites as well because it holds up really well (and even taste great as leftovers!). 🙂

  15. Melissa
    February 1, 2018 at 1:25 am - Reply

    If I’m making the night before for a party- can I cook it all the night before and then just heat up the day of the party? What do you suggest is the easiest when having a party?

    • Carrie's Experimental Kitchen
      February 1, 2018 at 8:11 am - Reply

      I recommend preparing it with the sauce and all then refrigerate it overnight. Cook it right before you are ready to serve. Enjoy!

  16. Melissa
    February 1, 2018 at 5:04 pm - Reply

    Thanks! In preparing do you mean breaking and frying it and then just cooking it fully the next day?

  17. Michelle
    February 11, 2018 at 4:28 pm - Reply

    (1) Can I make extra sauce on the side day before and refrigerate with pan prepared chicken and just microwave it ( extra sauce only) to warm it up to pour over the chicken after chicken cooked in oven right before guests start arriving?

    (2 )Also, if I use tenders and pound them thin and prepare the day before serving to crowd (12 women arriving different times) will I lessen my cooking time of 30 minutes? Not sure if pan fried tenders are pretty much cooked and don’t want to dry them out and have mini rubber chickens.

    (3) Will this stay if women are arriving at different times if I put out in a foil tin over a sturno ? I noticed I only have pinot grigio and flour- should I buy chardonnay and cornstarch? Taking a chance as I am serving this in 24 hours- any help is appreciated. Thank you.

    • Carrie's Experimental Kitchen
      February 11, 2018 at 7:20 pm - Reply

      Hi Michelle!

      1. Yes, you can make extra sauce to put on top. The more sauce the better (tastes great on top of rice too!)
      2. Thirty minutes is fine. I’ve made them both ways (using chicken tenderloins and thin chicken breasts and the 30 minutes is just to get the sauce hot and finish off any part of the chicken that didn’t get completely cooked in the pan. If you feel it’s done ahead of time, you can take it out of the oven.
      3. I guess my answer would depend on the time frame the women are arriving. The chicken should be fine over a sterno for 1-2 hours. If it’s longer than that, I recommend cooking them in separate pans and spreading out the cooking time. Pinot is fine, I usually use whichever white wine I have opened. you can also use flour instead of cornstarch, but just make sure you get all of the lumps out before adding it to the sauce and only add it a little bit at a time to make sure it doesn’t get too thick. I hope you and your friends enjoy the recipe!

  18. Hartigan Bill
    February 16, 2018 at 2:50 pm - Reply

    Outstanding signature recipe! Thank you.

  19. Julie
    March 3, 2018 at 11:31 pm - Reply

    Add capers and you have chicken piccata. 🙂 This recipe sounds delish. I’d probably add a little Dijon to it, also. Going to make it tomorrow for Sunday dinner.

  20. Janice
    November 17, 2018 at 6:29 pm - Reply

    This meal looks wonderful. It is exactly what I am looking for to make for Christmas. The only problem is I can’t use wine. Can I make the sauce without wine? If so, would I have to add more lemon juice or chicken broth? Thank you.

    • Carrie's Experimental Kitchen
      November 18, 2018 at 7:42 am - Reply

      Thanks Janice, it’s one of our favorites around the holidays as well. Yes, you can substitute chicken broth for the wine. I think the lemon juice amount will be fine, but once you taste the sauce, you can always squeeze in a bit more if you like more of a lemony flavor. Enjoy and Merry Christmas!

  21. Eric
    December 14, 2018 at 3:15 pm - Reply

    “your preference” not “you’re preference”

    • Carrie's Experimental Kitchen
      December 14, 2018 at 3:49 pm - Reply

      Thank you so much for pointing out my error Eric, I truly appreciate that and it’s been corrected. With over 1000 posts on my site, I’m glad I don’t make that mistake often! (It’s a little bit of a pet peeve of mine!). Happy Holidays!

  22. Camille
    April 10, 2019 at 10:33 am - Reply

    Have made this without adding flour or cornstarch to sauce and liked it. Would like to cook the day before serving but wondered how best to reheat without coating getting soggy? Thanks so much.

    • Carrie's Experimental Kitchen
      April 10, 2019 at 6:41 pm - Reply

      I’ve made this as is, frozen, defrosted and cooked it without the chicken tasting soggy; however, if you prefer you can fry the chicken and make the sauce separate; then just add the sauce when you’re ready to reheat. The chicken is basically done so cooking the dish isn’t necessarily to make sure it’s cooked through; but rather to infuse the flavor of the lemon sauce with the chicken. I hope this helps. Enjoy!

  23. Katie
    April 29, 2019 at 11:19 am - Reply

    Hi! Hoping to make this for a large party. How long does it take to defrost if it has been frozen for a few days? Don’t want to serve cold chicken. Thanks so much!

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