How long to cook chicken breast in oven at 350

How long does it take to cook chicken breast in the oven at 350°F (175°C)? It generally takes approximately 30 minutes in the oven. However, baking time may vary depending on factors such as the type of oven, the use of aluminum foil, and the chicken itself. Is it fresh or frozen? Is it a whole chicken breast or thinner slices? Learn how to cook it in the oven at 350°F by following the instructions below.

The role of aluminum foil

If you wrap chicken breast in aluminum foil, the foil acts as a conductor of heat, promoting more even cooking. Additionally, it helps retain moisture, preventing the chicken from drying out. Therefore, by using foil, you can keep the chicken moist and tender.

However, pay attention to the method of wrapping the foil around the chicken breast. There are two features of aluminum foil: heat reflection and heat insulation. The foil can act as a barrier that reflects heat and a layer of insulation that helps retain heat on the foil. When you wrap a baking dish or pan with aluminum foil (left image), this can help distribute heat more evenly and increase the overall temperature inside the dish, preventing heat from escaping and promoting faster cooking. However, if you cover your chicken breast in foil (right image), aluminum foil only helps the chicken cook evenly with higher moisture, but the cooking time will take even longer due to the fact that the heat is reflected to the oven rather than concentrated on the chicken breast inside.

wrap aluminum foil to bake chicken breast
Left: wrapping baking tray/dish with aluminum foil helps cooking faster; Right: wrapping breast with aluminum foil helps the breast moist and tender.

How to know if the chicken breast is cooked?

To ensure that your chicken breast is cooked thoroughly and safe to eat, there are a few methods you can use:

  • Check the internal temperature: The most reliable way to determine if your chicken breast is cooked is by using a meat thermometer. Insert the thermometer into the thickest part of the chicken breast, without touching the bone. The chicken is considered cooked and safe to eat when the internal temperature reaches 165°F (74°C) or 160°F (71°C) for 14 seconds or remains at 155°F (64°C) for 45 seconds. For more information about the temperature and time combination to kill all Salmonella in chicken products, you can search for “Time-Temperature Combinations for Chicken Products to Achieve Lethality” on the USDA website.
  • Observe the color and texture: When fully cooked, the chicken breast should have a white, opaque appearance. If there are any traces of pinkness or rawness, it needs more cooking time. Additionally, the texture should be firm but still juicy. Overcooked chicken breast will be dry and tough.
  • Pierce and check the juices: If you don’t have a meat thermometer, you can pierce the thickest part of the chicken breast with a fork or a knife. The juices that come out should be clear, not pink or bloody. If the juices run clear, it indicates that the chicken is cooked.

Remember to let the chicken breast rest for a few minutes after removing it from the heat source. This allows the juices to redistribute and ensures a more flavorful and tender result.

Fresh chicken: how to cook chicken breast in oven at 350 (175°C)?

Full Fresh Chicken Breast

Full fresh chicken breast without foil:

  • In oven: 35 minutes

Typically, it requires 35 minutes to bake a chicken fillet weighing around 4-7 ounces. Larger amounts need a bit more time, around 5-10 minutes more.

  • In air fryer: 20 minutes

With the same amount, an air fryer can bake chicken breast in less time, around 20 minutes. It’s thanks to the operational mechanism of an air fryer, which combines convection and rapid air circulation.

How long to cook chicken breast in oven at 350

Full fresh chicken breast with foil covering the baking tray/dish:

When baking a full chicken breast in the oven at 350°F with a baking tray/dish covered by aluminum foil, the cooking time is typically reduced. Check the required minutes below.

  • In oven: 25 minutes
  • In air fryer: 15 minutes

Slices of Fresh Chicken Breast

It’s important to adjust the cooking time based on the thickness of the chicken breast slices to avoid undercooking or overcooking. Thinner slices may require less time in the oven, while thicker slices will need a longer cooking time to ensure they are cooked through.

The timing for baking chicken breast slices is shown below, with or without foil.

Slices of fresh chicken breast without foil:

+ In oven: 25 minutes

+ In air fryer: 15 minutes

Slices of fresh chicken breast with foil covering the baking tray/dish:

+ In oven: 20 minutes

+ In air fryer: 10 minutes

How long to cook chicken breast in oven at 350

Frozen chicken: How to cook chicken breast in oven at 350?

When baking frozen chicken breast, it is important to allow for additional cooking time compared to thawed chicken breast. The low temperature of frozen chicken causes it to solidify, making it harder for the heat to penetrate and cook the meat. As a result, the cooking process takes longer than it would with thawed chicken.

Here is a timing guideline for baking frozen chicken breast:

Full Frozen Chicken Breast

Full frozen chicken breast without foil:

+ In oven: 50 minutes

+ In air fryer: 30 minutes

Full frozen chicken breast with foil covering the baking tray/dish:

+ In oven: 40 minutes

+ In air fryer: 25 minutes

Slices of Frozen Chicken Breast

Slices of frozen chicken breast without foil:

+ In oven: 35-40 minutes

+ In air fryer:25 minutes

Slices of frozen chicken breast with foil covering the baking tray/dish:

+ In oven: 35 minutes

+ In air fryer: 20-22 minutes

How to get juicy chicken breast?

Before delving into the techniques, let’s discuss what makes meat juicy. The answer lies in the fat and water content of the cut. Chicken breast typically contains 75% water, around 20% protein, and approximately 1-3% fat, whereas chicken thigh contains 70% water, approximately 15% protein, and 10% fat. Because chicken breast has a higher water content, it is more prone to drying out during the cooking process than the chicken thigh. Additionally, due to the shape of the chicken breast, heat often distributes unevenly. Consequently, while the center of the chicken breast may reach a safe temperature, the outer parts may already be much drier due to higher temperatures.

Therefore, it’s crucial to flatten the chicken breast to ensure even cooking. Additionally, consider removing the chicken breast from the heat slightly earlier when the internal temperature reaches 160°F (71°C) or even 155°F (64°C), as most of the chicken breast has already been heated to a much higher temperature. Then, the residual heat will continue to cook the chicken breast. These approaches are applicable to any cooking method for chicken breast, not just baking.

Furthermore, to keep chicken breast moist when baking, there are several techniques you can employ:

Marinate the chicken: Prior to baking, marinating the chicken breast for a few hours will help it retain moisture. Place the chicken in a large Ziploc bag or container and let it marinate in your preferred marinade for 2 to 3 hours.

Utilize foil: Wrapping the chicken breast in foil during baking helps trap the natural juices, preventing them from evaporating and keeping the chicken moist. The foil acts as a barrier, allowing the chicken to cook in its own moisture. Ensure the foil is tightly sealed around the chicken to retain the juices.

Optimal baking temperature: Set your oven to 350°F when baking chicken breast. This temperature allows for better control over the cooking process and helps retain the chicken’s moisture, ensuring that the chicken cooks evenly without drying out.

By incorporating these methods, you can enhance the moisture and tenderness of the chicken breast during the baking process. A combination of perfectly baked chicken breast and vegetables such as asparagus, potato, sweet potato, and more will make for a wonderful meal!

How long to cook chicken breast in oven at 350

How long to cook chicken breast in oven at 350?

Yield: 4-7 oz
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Active Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Difficulty: Easy

Baking time may vary depending on factors, including types of ovens, utilization of aluminum foil and the features of your chicken breast

Materials

  • 4-7 ounces chicken breast
  • Seasoning or marinated spices

Tools

  • Oven or air fryer

Instructions

  • After seasoning/ marinating, follow this timing guideline for baking chicken breast in oven at 350F:

Fresh Bone-in or Boneless skinless chicken breast:

Full breast without foil:

  • In oven: 35 minutes
  • In air fryer: 20 minutes

Full breast with foil:

  • An easy method is to lay an aluminum foil over a plate, then put the chicken breast on and season it (left image - setting 1) - it helps to cook faster. Wrapping breast with aluminum foil (right image - setting 2) helps the breast moist and tender but cooking time will be longer. The cooking time below applies for setting 1. wrap aluminum foil to bake chicken breast
  • In oven: 25 minutes
  • In air fryer: 15 minutes

Slices without foil:

  • In oven: 25 minutes
  • In air fryer: 15 minutes

Slices with foil:

  • In oven: 20 minutes
  • In air fryer: 10 minutes

Frozen Bone-in or boneless skinless chicken breastFull breast

Full Breast without foil:

  • In oven: 50 minutes
  • In air fryer: 30 minutes

Full Breast with foil:

  • In oven: 40 minutes
  • In air fryer: 25 minutes

Slices without foil:

  • In oven: 35-40 minutes
  • In air fryer:25 minutes

Slices with foil:

  • In oven: 35 minutes
  • In air fryer: 20-22 minutes

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