Weeknight Hero: Panko-Crusted Roast Chicken

As I hand over this genius
weeknight recipe, it’s hard not to think of my earliest magazine editor days, when I was expected to constantly pitch story ideas — food and otherwise — to my boss in the dreaded weekly “beat meetings.” I was just starting out and operated under the assumption that anything that was interesting to me was inherently interesting to the world at large, including, things like “how to use chopsticks” (I was in my late-20s and, suffice to say, a little behind the rest of the world) and a David Sedaris book I thought people should know about, a year after it was published and reviewed in every major newspaper and magazine. The feedback from my boss was almost always the same: Where’s the learning? What’s new here? (Besides that I had newly discovered it? Hmm.) I guess not a whole lot has changed in the intervening decades, because I’ve run a version of this crispy, herby mustardy chicken recipe before (initially inspired by the great Diana Henry), and at the height of its popularity the dinner appeared on our table weekly, but…BREAKING NEWS…while I was writing about it for Bon Appetit, the dish got even better, thanks to a pass through their magical test kitchen. What’s new here? you ask. Well, for starters, using panko, not regular breadcrumbs, gives it a pronounced, super-satisfying crunch, and adding carrots to the pan offers just the right destination for the chicken’s buttery juices. It’s a sheet pan chicken dinner that I’ve newly re-discovered, and I don’t think I’m wrong that here on DALS, that’s always welcome news? Head over to Bon Appetit for the recipe.

Photo by Bobbi Lin for Bon Appetit.


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Back when I was in college, my roommates and I would take turns cooking dinner every week. I remember one of our favorites was chicken breasts that were coated in a mixture of bread crumbs and an envelope of Good Seasons Italian Salad Dressing mix and then baked. I have no recollection of what we paired them with, but I have made a variation for my kids a time or twelve. 🙂 This seems like an evolution of that recipe with the dual improvement of bone-in chicken and panko! Classics are classics for a reason!


Per the recipe on Bon Appetit, ” Arrange skin side up a rimmed baking sheet and smear all over skin side of thighs.” Smear what all over the skin side???


The butter, mustard, thyme combo–that will be delicious with the Panko crust!


The butter – herb – mustard mixture.

Confession – I use boneless/ skinless thighs.


I get to feel ahead of the game here… I’ve been using panko since I started making this, petty much immediately after you posted it the first time.

I’ve made it so many times it is literally “that chicken” at our house, and last year my 9yo son found out it wasn’t actually your recipe – so he convinced my husband to buy me A Bird in Hand for Christmas.

In fact, I probably need to throw this down for next week’s Sunday dinner. Tomorrow’s is your tomtoey pork chops and kale.


Love this recipe – have been making the original on repeat since you posted. Always done with Panko, but excited to try it with the carrots!!