dinner Featured gluten-free meat paleo

How to Cook Chicken On The Stove

January 31, 2022

Don’t have a BBQ or grill? No problem! This tutorial will show you How To Cook Chicken on the stove, grill marks and all! Perfect for small homes without a backyard grill or in a college dorm-room where you want that BBQ chicken taste grilled on the stove top.

White plate with five seasoned chicken breasts with grill marks.

I only have a few how-to recipes and this is one that definitely needs a permanent spot on the site! Whether you don’t have a grill, don’t want to go out in the freezing cold to grill or are just looking for a simple (and delicious!) chicken recipe, this is for you!

My #1 tip for people who are looking to get creative in the kitchen and make healthy, easy and delicious food is to fully stock your spice cabinet. If you’re curious to see which spices I think are essential to have, check out this post on how to stock and organize your spice cabinet. It’s truly a life-saver.

So let’s not make this any longer than it needs to be and instead jump into my absolute MUSTS when it comes to cooking chicken on the stove.

Watch me make Stovetop Chicken Breast in this step-by-step video!

Tips for How to Cook Chicken on the Stove

1. Use quality chicken – I think this is a given, but it still surprises me how many people reach for the poorest quality meat. Of course, I respect whatever is feasible for you but if you actually want the nutritional benefits from meat and want something that doesn’t taste like cardboard, reach for organic and free-range chicken. All poultry is antibiotic and hormone-free so even though a lot of packaging says this, they have to be.

2. Dry chicken very well – Always dry your chicken to the best of your ability. Use paper towel or a dish towel (for a more environmentally-friendly option but throw into the washing machine immediately after use!) to dry it completely. You don’t want the breast to be wet at all. Doing this will result in a crispier skin or if you’re using skinless chicken, crispier “grill”marks!

3. Use a spice rub – I prefer to spice my chicken with a dry rub mix. Simply Organic makes fantastic spice-blends that you can use or feel free to get experimental and mix a bunch of spices yourself. Also, don’t skimp on salt. It’s necessary to bring out the flavor. Below I’ve included which blends I like to use.

4. Bring to room temperature – I take my my chicken breasts out of the fridge and let them sit for 1 hour before cooking them. This will help cut down the cooking time and make sure the chicken cooks evenly. I know people are scared to leave poultry out, but trust me on this. Leave on your counter for 45-60 minutes before cooking.

5. Use a large cast-iron skillet or grill pan – this is an absolute must! It is the only way you can get BBQ-style stove top chicken. This is the one I prefer and while it can be a pain to clean, it is the only thing that comes close to an indoor grill!

Graphic of how to cook stove-top chicken breast. Collage includes drying raw chicken, seasoning chicken, grilling chicken and the final product plated.

How Long To Cook Chicken on Stove? 

This will depend on how big or thick your chicken breasts are. But generally you will want to cook them for 5-8 minutes per side or once chicken has reached an internal temperature of 165 degrees F. You can use a meat thermometer to get the correct internal temperature.

Cut into chicken to ensure it is entirely white inside with no pink. If you can see pink, place it back on the stove and check again after 1 minute. You’ll want your stove to be on high heat so chicken breasts get a nice sear on each side.

Allow the chicken to sit for 2-5 minutes before cutting into them.

What to Serve with Stove Top Chicken 

Chicken on the stove is all well and good except you need something to pair it with! Here are some THM staple sides to fill out your meal:


The Perfect Stove-Top Chicken Breast

  • Author: Davida @ The Healthy Maven
  • Prep Time: 1 hour
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
  • Yield: approx 2-4 1x
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Grill


  • 2 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts (810 oz each)

Southwestern Chicken Breasts:

  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 tsp southwest seasoning
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper

Tuscan Chicken Breasts:

  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 tsp tuscan seasoning
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper

Curried Chicken Breasts:

  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 2 tsp curry powder
  • 1/2 tsp coriander powder
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper


  1. Dry chicken very well. Use paper towel or dishtowel if preferred.
  2. In a small bowl combine seasoning blend for preferred flavor.
  3. Coat chicken with seasoning and use hands to ensure it is rubbed in completely on all sides.
  4. Allow chicken to sit out on counter for 45-60 minutes.
  5. Place cast-iron grill pan on stove top over high heat and coat with olive oil or oil of choice. *turn on hood vent immediately
  6. Once cast-iron grill pan is smoking, place chicken breasts on top of pan and cook for 6 minutes.
  7. Flip and cook for 5 minutes on the other side.
  8. If your chicken breasts are bigger, you may need closer to 8 minutes or smaller closer to 5 minutes per side.
  9. Remove from heat and allow chicken to cool for 5 minutes before serving.

Keywords: stove top chicken, how long to cook chicken on stove, chicken on stove top

Seasoned chicken breasts cooking on a cast iron grill pan.

Like This Post? Here are a few others you might enjoy:


Join 20,000+ members of the THM Community to get access to exclusive recipes, healthy lifestyle tips and behind-the-scenes news from our team!

Powered by ConvertKit
  • Reply
    September 18, 2018 at 9:17 am

    Hi Davida,
    I always experiment with the spices I use when I grill. I’m glad you shared yours, will definitely give this a try. 🙂 And speaking of bacteria, I was taught not to wash the chicken or else bacteria will be all over the sink. hehe However when I do so sometimes, I flush the area with hot/boiling water 😉
    Thanks for sharing this recipe.

  • Reply
    mohit kumar
    July 31, 2018 at 5:42 am

    Thanks a lot for the recipe.
    Going to make this in the upcoming days.

  • Reply
    May 9, 2018 at 2:40 am

    I made this for Easter dinner with green beans and potato salad…simply delicious, thank you for sharing.

  • Reply
    Alyssa | Flaxseeds & Fairytales
    February 8, 2018 at 5:30 pm

    I make grilled chicken on the stove top at least once a week and agree that a cast iron grill pan is the way to go! They are tough to clean, but the results are so worth it. The only catch is that it cooks so fast that my chicken burns on the outside sometimes. I’ll have to try out your time recommendations and see if it works better. Great tip on turning on the hood vent– it’s a must! Thanks for sharing, Davida!

  • Reply
    February 8, 2018 at 5:29 pm

    I make grilled chicken on the stove top at least once a week and agree that a cast iron grill pan is the way to go! They are tough to clean, but the results are so worth it. The only catch is that it cooks so fast that my chicken burns on the outside sometimes. I’ll have to try out your time recommendations and see if it works better. Great tip on turning on the hood vent– it’s a must! Thanks for sharing, Davida!

  • Reply
    February 4, 2018 at 3:39 pm

    I am looking for some nice recipes. I want to try this as soon as possible ? And i think that it is important to have a good lifestyle. I wish to lose some weight and eat tasty food at the same time. For example i am trying recipes from this book http://bit.ly/loseWeightWithGoodFood and i am satisfied so far.

  • Reply
    Jess B
    January 24, 2018 at 3:40 pm

    Such a simple thing to cook and yet I always seem to have trouble getting the timing right! Thanks for the instructions!

    On another random note, the stove top griddle make me start thinking about registering (I’m recently engaged and feel so overwhelmed about what to register for). Over the years we’ve really accumulated a lot of cheap, random kitchen items (one of our plates literally broke in half last night!) and I really want to find some good quality items that will last us a long time. Given your upcoming wedding, have you registered yet and do you have any suggestions on items you love/ think should be in everyone’s kitchen? I’m mostly stumped on what brands have good bakeware/ cookware items. Any suggestions you have would be great! Thanks 🙂

  • Reply
    fitness and health club
    January 24, 2018 at 1:29 am

    Oh, my you are an angel I will going to cook this tonight, whatever bacteria you talking about hahahahha i will cook this tonight!

  • Reply
    January 15, 2018 at 10:30 pm

    Microbiologist here! The worst thing you can do is wash your chicken, its gets the bacteria everywhere and you’re more likely to get sick! I don’t know where you read to wash it, but anyone who knows anything about bacteria will tell you don’t do it! Its actually quite dangerous. As long as the chicken is cooked properly it won’t make you sick, the bacteria dies when its heated. And to be honest, unless you are giving your chicken a thorough scrubbing, you’re not washing off all the bacteria anyway! Doesnt matter what kind of chicken, it’ll all have bacteria on it! Although to be honest you are more likely to get sick from vegetables. I don’t eat alfalfa sprouts for this reason!

    • Reply
      Davida @ The Healthy Maven
      January 16, 2018 at 9:55 am

      Thanks, Alyssa! Much appreciated. I never knew that – I was always taught to wash it so that’s super helpful. I’ll update the post now. Either way, when it comes to taste, it’s important to make sure it’s very dry before seasoning and cooking. Thanks for the super helpful feedback!

  • Reply
    Amanda @ Anchored to Sunshine
    January 13, 2018 at 9:31 am

    Having one of those grill pans is key! I always cook chicken on the stove top but forget to pull out my grill pan. It seriously makes the chicken taste so much more flavorful.

  • Reply
    dixya @food, pleasure, and health
    January 12, 2018 at 11:14 am

    i used to own a stovetop grill and i misplaced it..i miss that grill pan a lot, maybe its time for a new one. chicken breast looks so much palatable with the grill marks on.

  • Reply
    January 12, 2018 at 11:03 am

    I’ll have to try this method. I haven’t mastered the art of stovetop chicken breasts. Although, I’m a bit confused about the washing step… From everything I’ve read about chicken, that’s supposed to be a big no-no for sanitary reasons.

    • Reply
      Davida @ The Healthy Maven
      January 12, 2018 at 4:41 pm

      Hi Jennifer! Not sure what you mean about sanitary reasons since you definitely want to be washing and drying. Would you mind clarifying?

      • Reply
        January 12, 2018 at 4:50 pm

        I guess it sounds counterintuitive doesn’t it? Many food safety recommendations state that chicken shouldn’t be washed before cooking. The big reason is that no matter how careful we are, the bacteria on the chicken can splash into the sink and onto counters as it’s being washed. They also say that any bacteria on the chicken will be destroyed if it’s cooked properly. I don’t think washing it actually cleans it or “sanitizes” it, for lack of a better term.

        • Reply
          Davida @ The Healthy Maven
          January 12, 2018 at 10:51 pm

          got it! That’s interesting! I’ve heard the total opposite of the need to clean it in order to prevent contamination. But who knows, this safety stuff is always changing. At the end of the day whether you wash it or not will be a total preference thing, but for certain it needs to be dried completely when it comes to cooking chicken that tastes great 🙂 Thanks for sharing this with me. So fascinating!

Leave a Reply

Recipe rating


Sign-up for a free weekly meal plan straight to your inbox.