Chicken Pizzaiola: the rich Italian main dish you’ll love

Total time: 25 Min
Difficulty: Low
Serves: 4 people
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Sometimes you crave all kinds of food and cannot decide on what to eat. Pizza, pasta, chicken parmesan? If that’s the case, then why not try this Chicken Pizzaiola? Chicken Pizzaiola is an easy Italian main dish recipe that consists of chicken simmered in a rich tomato sauce flavored with basil and topped with mozzarella.

The dish is rich in flavor, with juicy, tender chicken pieces. It’s a quick dish to make and is a delicious way to cook chicken breast. To make it, you only need a handful of ingredients: a chicken breasts, spring onion, extra virgin olive oil, tomato sauce, oregano, and basil. Want a dinner that reminds you of? Then make this delicious chicken pizzaiola tonight!

What Is Chicken Pizzaiola?

The term pizzaiola means pizza-style in Italian, so this dish would be called pollo alla pizzaiola, which means chicken prepared pizza-style. It’s similar to another well-known dish called steak pizzaiola (called carne alla pizzaiola). It is slightly different from Chicken Parmesan, in that mozzarella is used instead of parmesan, and pizzaiola is made without breadcrumbs.

Classic New York pizzaiola may contain bell peppers and mushrooms, but you will find variations of this recipe all over the world with some even containing pepperoni or potatoes.

Chicken Pizzaiola Ingredients

Chicken breast – because the chicken is slowly simmered in the sauce, it doesn’t dry out easily in this recipe, you can use rump steak or a cheaper alternative like cubed steak.

Tomato sauce – make your own, or use store-bought tomato sauce.

Olive oil – extra virgin olive oil.

Herbs – dried oregano (or substitute with fresh oregano) and fresh basil.

How To Make Chicken Pizzaiola

Start by preparing the chicken breast. If you’re using larger chicken breasts, slice them horizontally to make them thinner. Now make the sauce. Cook the spring onion until fragrant (about 30 seconds to a minute). Add the tomato sauce, water, salt, and oregano. Let the sauce simmer for about 5 minutes.

Now add the chicken breast. Place the chicken breast pieces on top, then cover with some of the sauce. Cook until the chicken breast is cooked through. Top with mozzarella, close the lid, and cook until the cheese has melted. Season with basil and serve!


You can substitute chicken thighs for chicken breast.

Add more veggies like bell peppers and mushrooms to make this a full meal.

Add ½ cup of red wine to the tomato sauce if you prefer.

You can also cook Chicken Pizzaiola in a slow cooker. Simply season the chicken breast, and add it to the slow cooker together with the tomato sauce and seasoning. Cook on low for 6 hours. Flip it a few times during cooking time to make sure the sauce covers all sides of the chicken breast.

What To Serve With Chicken Pizzaiola

Because the Chicken Pizzaiola is so saucy, you can serve it over pasta, mashed potatoes, polenta or grits, or rice. You can also serve it with roasted veggies and fresh bread. Use leftovers for chicken sub sandwiches.

How To Store Chicken Pizzaiola

Chicken Pizzaiola leftovers can be stored in the fridge for up to 3 days. Reheat it in the microwave or stovetop until warmed through.

Can You Freeze Chicken Pizzaiola?

Yes, you can freeze Chicken Pizzaiola. Thaw the dish overnight in the fridge, then reheat before serving.

More Italian Main Dishes You'll Like

Chicken breast
4 slices
Spring onion
Extra virgin olive oil
Tomato sauce
300 g
mozzarella, diced
200 g


Add the drizzle of olive oil into the pan and brown the finely chopped spring onion.

Add the tomato sauce.

Add the water, salt, and oregano.

Put the lid on and cook the sauce for 5 minutes.

Add the chicken breasts on top of the sauce.

Cover them with the sauce continue with cooking.

Top the chicken slices with the diced mozzarella.

Put the lid on again, and cook for the time necessary to melt the cheese.

Add the basil leaves on top.

Serve and enjoy!

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