Like most people I have a favorite dish at most restaurants and at Longhorn Steakhouse, it’s the Garlic Parmesan Crusted Chicken. I’m slightly obsessed with this dish and think I could eat it multiple times a week if I dared.
Of course, like any favorite food, whether it’s to save money or to just enjoy it whenever you want, that includes trying to make it at home. I’ve tried tons of recipes over the last couple years and none of them were exactly right. Even the supposedly copycat ones on Pinterest were just lacking something that I couldn’t quite put my finger on.
Maybe it’s just me and my tastebuds.
Maybe it’s my inner-perfectionist being a bratty-diva.
Whatever the problem, I think I have finally aced the taste test because this turned out pretty perfect in my opinion.
It’s definitely going to be added to my regular repertoire because everyone that has tried it, has loved it. And in case some of you have had a similar experience, or just want to try something new, I wanted to share the final results with you. Bon appétit!
Be sure to let me know if you tried my take on this steakhouse favorite. Let me know what you think about other similar copycat recipes or go ahead and link your recommendations for me to try in the comments below.
*Note: This is not a true Rita-original in the sense that it is a combination of two different recipes from Pinterest, some serious tweaking, a bit of trial and error, and is a Longhorn copycat after all.
**Included below are two different methods of making this dish. One requires grilling the chicken prior to adding toppings and finishing it off under the broiler, while the second is all done in the oven. I prefer the first method, even if it’s more time consuming and leaves an extra dish or two for me to wash, but I have used the second for the sheer convenience factor.
GARLIC PARMESAN CRUSTED CHICKEN, A LONGHORN COPYCAT RECIPE
PREP TIME: 20 mins for mixing ingredients plus actual marination time
COOK TIME: 15 mins if grilled, or 40 mins if baked, plus 3 mins under the broiler
TOTAL TIME: 40 mins if grilled/broiled or 65 mins baked/broiled
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
Provolone cheese slices
FOR THE CHICKEN MARINADE:
1/2 C olive or vegetable oil
1/2 C Ranch dressing
3 T Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon vinegar
1 teaspoon lemon juice
2 cloves, minced OR 3 t garlic, minced OR 2 t chopped OR 2 times 1/8 teaspoonful of garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
FOR THE RANCH SPREAD LAYER:
1/4 C Ranch dressing
1/4 C shredded Parmesan cheese
FOR THE PARMESAN CRUMB TOPPING:
1/2 C Panko breadcrumbs
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/3 C shredded Parmesan cheese
3 T melted butter
Put the chicken in a bowl. *Since I try to keep a couple different marinated chicken bags ready to go in my freezer, I use a large ziplock freezer bag instead of a bowl. I save myself some time and hassle on down the road by dividing up some frozen chicken breasts into ziplock bags, making double or triple the amount of marinade at a time and freezing the extras. That way I can pull a bag of pre-marinated chicken from the freezer, thaw it overnight/during the day in the fridge and cook it for dinner without a lot of pre-planning involved.
Gather the ingredients for the marinade and mix them together in a small bowl. Pour over the chicken. Allow this mixture to soak in for 2-3 hours or, my personal preference, overnight.
Now you have a choice to make.
Grill the marinated chicken for 12-15 mins (in a skillet or on an indoor countertop grill) until chicken is done, then set it aside. ^As stated above, this is my personal preference.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Lay the chicken on a sheet pan and bake for about 16 minutes. Turn the chicken over and bake an additional 15-20 minutes or until the internal temperature is 165 degrees. *There’s nothing wrong with doing it this way and I have done so on busy/lazy days to save myself time and/or effort.
Either way, while the chicken is cooking, you need to gather the remaining ingredients and two small bowls.
Mix together the sauce layer (Ranch dressing and Parmesan cheese) in one bowl.
Mix together the Parmesan crumb topping ingredients in the second bowl. Now you are looking for an evenly moistened crumb topping so stir until the butter has been completely absorbed into the bread crumbs and other dry ingredients.
When the chicken is done, preheat the broiler and set the oven rack at 6-8 inches from the top.
If you grilled the chicken instead of baking it, you will now transfer it to an oven safe casserole dish. *I use a square, or rectangular, glass baking dish which helps with storing the leftovers.
Spread the sauce mixture over each piece of chicken. Should be about one tablespoon of ranch spread per each average size chicken breast.
Lay a slice of Provolone cheese over the sauce layer.
Sprinkle or spoon the Parmesan crumb topping ingredients over the top of the Provolone.
Broil a couple of minutes to melt the cheeses and brown the top. Watch it closely so it doesn’t burn.