Home » Recipes » Main Dish » Sous Vide Chicken Breast Recipe with Lemon

Sous Vide Chicken Breast Recipe with Lemon

This sous vide chicken breast recipe is an easy way to cook juicy and tender chicken. Flavored with lemon and herbs this is a delicious chicken breast recipe the entire family will enjoy. Sous vide cooking gives you a perfectly cooked chicken breast every time.

chicken breast on a white plate with rosemary and lemon
As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Read my disclosure policy.

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone.

I have had a sous vide cooker for over a year now and I have enjoyed using it to learn how to cook in a very different way. My family loves sous vide lamb chops and sous vide beef tenderloin, but one of my favorite things to make with my sous vide is chicken breast. The chicken it comes out moist and tender and is never over cooked. This sous vide chicken breast recipe is one that my whole family enjoys.

This post is long, which might make you think sous vide cooking is complicated. But it is not complicated at all, it is just a different way of cooking. Since it is so different there is a lot of stuff to explain. But don’t let that scare you off, sous vide cooking is easy and almost fool proof.

What is Sous Vide Cooking?

“Sous vide” literally means “under vacuum” in French. In sous vide cooking food is sealed in an airtight container and then submerged in a temperature controlled water bath. The precisely controlled temperature of the water bath means that food is heated gradually until the food reaches the same temperature as the water. This makes it possible to cook meals to exactly the desired temperature so that the food is never over done.

Why Use Sous Vide for Chicken Breast?

Chicken breasts are kind of tricky to cook well using conventional methods like pan frying or roasting. It is very easy to overcook them, which results in dry, stringy chicken. The difference between juicy chicken breast and overdone chicken breast can be a matter of just one or two additional minutes of cooking.

With sous vide, on the other hand, you almost can’t mess up the chicken breast. The chicken will cook to the temperature that you set for the water bath, no more, no less. So if you set the water bath to 145 F, as in this recipe, the temperature of the chicken breast will reach 145 F, but it can’t get any higher.

I have definitely served stringy, dry chicken to my family on more than one occasion before I had a sous vide cooker. Now when I am done cooking my chicken breast will be 145 F in the center and 145 F at the edges. I can get consistent and predictable results every time!

And sous vide cooking is easy too – you simply bag the chicken, put it in the water bath and walk away while it cooks.

sous vide chicken breast on a cutting board

Can You Overcook Chicken in Sous Vide?

It is difficult to overcook chicken in sous vide cooking, but it is not impossible. In this recipe I suggest cooking the chicken for 1 1/2 to 4 hours. If you left it in the water bath for 8 hours it would probably still technically be edible, but I doubt it would taste very good!

Additionally you can overcook chicken, or any meat, in a sous vide if you set the temperature of the water bath too high. But as long as you don’t leave it in too long or cook it at too high a temperature the process is simple.

At What Temperature Should I Cook Sous Vide Chicken?

For sous vide chicken breast the ideal cooking temperature is between 140-160°F. I recommend cooking sous vide chicken breast at 145 F. This is the temperature I use and it gives me delicious chicken which has a soft texture with no stringiness. As you increase the temperature of the water bath the texture of the chicken will get more firm and the chicken will become a little bit stringy. But up to about 160 F you will still have nice juicy chicken breast.

Is Sous Vide Chicken Safe?

If you are familiar with the FDA guidelines, which suggest cooking chicken to 165 F, you might wonder how this lower cooking temperature can be safe. It is safe, because food safety depends on both time and temperature.

The FDA recommended temperature of 165 F is the temperature at which chicken becomes safe instantly. So one second at 165 F is long enough to kill any bacteria in the chicken. But chicken cooked to lower temperatures is safe as long as it is kept at that temperature for a long enough time to kill any bacteria. At 145 F it takes about 9 minutes to ensure the chicken is safe to eat. If you want to learn more about the science behind safe cooking temperature check out this post by Serious Eats for a detailed explanation complete with charts!

Sous Vide Chicken Breast Recipe – Step by Step

1. Heat the Water Bath

The first step in sous vide cooking is to heat the water bath to the desired temperature. My Anova sous vide cooker has a handy app that helps me figure out what temperature I need to use for cooking various items.

sous vide cooker up close

2. Prepare the Chicken Breast for the Sous Vide

You shouldn’t add the meat until the water bath has reached the desired temperature. So while it is coming to temperature is the perfect time to season and bag your chicken. I seasoned my chicken with salt and pepper and then added cut lemons, thyme and rosemary to the bag.

Adding spices and lime or lemon slices flavors the chicken and makes it even tastier. You can find other sous vide chicken breast seasoning ideas here. In these pictures I used a Foodsaver Vacuum Sealer, but you can also use standard food storage bags if you don’t have a vacuum sealer.

vacuum sealing chicken breast

3. Add the Chicken Breast to the Water Bath

Once the desired temperature is reached add the bag of chicken to the water bath. If the bag is vacuum sealed the chicken will sink to the bottom. If you are using a food storage bag use the water displacement method.

vacuum bag with chicken breast and lemon and herbs

For the water displacement method seal the top of the bag half way, then lower the bag into the water, holding the top out of the water. As the bag enters the water it should seal up around the food from the pressure of the water. Once it is completely submerged fully seal the bag.

I usually clip the bag to the side of the pot with a binder clip to keep it in place.

4. Wait for the Chicken Breast to Cook

Then it is simply a matter of waiting until the cooking time is complete. At 145°F the chicken should cook between 1 1/2 to 4 hours. This is a pretty wide time range, which gives you a lot of flexibility as to when dinner will be ready.

When you add the chicken to the water bath the temperature of the bath will drop by a few degrees. You should start timing the cooking when the temperature increases back to the temperature you have set. My Anova sous vide cooker will beep when this happens, which makes it easy to start timing.

chicken in sous vide cooker

5. Sear the Chicken Breast

Searing the chicken breast is optional. But the chicken will look prettier and taste delicious if you sear it in a hot frying pan for a few minutes. This creates a nice crispy skin on the chicken breast and builds some nice flavor into the meat.

A few minutes before you are ready to take the chicken out heat a skillet over medium-high heat on the stove and add a tablespoon of oil or butter.

searing chicken breast in hot skillet

When the chicken is done remove it from the bag and throw out any herbs or lemon. Pat it dry it with a paper towel. Then add the chicken to the hot pan and let it sizzle for a minute or so until it is nicely brown. Turn it to brown it on all sides.

browned chicken after sous vide

6. Serve the Chicken

If you used bone-in chicken let it rest for a few minutes. After 5 minutes the chicken should be cool enough to able to pull away from the bone, slice and serve.

sous vide chicken on a plate with lemon, thyme and rosemary

Should I use Boneless Chicken or Bone In Chicken for Sous Vide?

Either boneless or bone-in chicken works well in this sous vide chicken breast recipe. I used bone-in chicken in these pictures, but I have made the recipe both ways. If you use boneless chicken you can lower the minimum cooking time to 1 hour.

I use bone-in chicken because it is cheaper and once the chicken is cooked the bone peels right off anyway. But if you prefer not to bother taking the bone out before serving boneless chicken breasts work just as well.

How Many Chicken Breasts Can I Sous Vide at a Time?

The number of chicken breasts you can cook at one time is determined by the size of the container you are using for your water bath. You don’t want to overload the cooker. I find two bone-in breasts or three boneless breasts fit in nicely in the big stock pot I usually use. But if you want to cook more just get a bigger pot. Some people rig up coolers when they want to sous vide a whole bunch of food at once.

overhead view of sous vide chicken breast

Can You Sous Vide Frozen Chicken?

Yes, you can sous vide frozen chicken. The ability to cook frozen meat easily and without thawing first is one of my favorite things about sous vide cooking.

Since the frozen chicken breast starts out at a lower temperature you do need to increase the cooking time, by about an hour. So a sous vide frozen chicken breast should cook for 2 1/2 to 4 hours.

I like to buy a big family pack of chicken breasts and then seal portions and put them in the freezer so I can just grab what I need. I season the chicken breasts and add aromatics like thyme, rosemary and lemon before I seal the bags.


Sous Vide Chicken Breast Seasoning

There are lots of great combinations of herbs and other seasonings that are delicious with sous vide chicken breast. I like to buy a big pack of chicken breasts, flavor them a bunch of different ways, vacuum pack them and freeze them for later. Here are some of my other favorite flavor combinatons:

  • Italian Chicken Breast – flavored with lemon, parsley and basil
  • Asian Chicken Breast – flavored with soy sauce, five spice powder, basil and ginger root
  • Spicy Mexican Chicken Breast – flavored with lime, coriander and jalapenos
herbs for seasoning sous vide chicken breast

How to Use Sous Vide Chicken

Sous vide chicken is delicious just served hot as a main dish, especially if it is flavored with lemon and herbs. But it is also a great way to prepare a bunch of chicken for meal prep. The chicken is delicious cold and can be used in a salad like Southwestern Chicken Salad or used as leftovers like in these Buffalo Chicken Zucchini Boats.

If you are making a bunch of sous vide chicken breasts to use in meal prep I recommend you cool them in an ice water bath before refrigerating them. Adding a lot of hot chicken to your refrigerator can overwhelm your refrigerator and cause food safety issues.

close up of sous vide chicken

Sous vide chicken breast is also tasty added to pastas, tacos or soups. It can be used in any recipe that calls for leftover chicken since it will provide a tasty and juicy chicken. So if you are looking for a way to cook perfect chicken breast try using a sous vide cooker!

Find more Sous Vide Recipes

Yield: 4

Sous Vide Chicken Breast with Lemon

overhead view of sous vide chicken breast

This juicy and tender Sous-Vide Chicken Breast with Lemon and Herbs is easy to make with your sous-vide immersion cooker.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Additional Time 5 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 10 minutes


Sous Vide Chicken Breast

  • 2 chicken breast, bone-in
  • 1/2 lemon
  • 2 sprigs rosemary
  • 2 sprigs thyme
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 Tablespoon oil or butter
  • 1 teaspoon capers


  1. Set up your sous-vide cooker with a water bath at 145 F.
  2. Season each chicken breast with salt and pepper to taste. Put each chicken breast in a FoodSaver bag with 2 slices of lemon and a sprig of both thyme and rosemary. Vacuum seal. OR put the ingredients in a food storage bag.
  3. When the sous vide cooker has reached 145F add the chicken to the water bath and let it cook for between 1 1/2 to 4 hours. 
  4. When the chicken is almost done heat a cast iron or stainless steel pan over medium high heat. Add the tablespoon of oil or butter.
  5. Take the chicken out of the bag and throw out the lemon and herbs. Pat dry with paper towels.
  6. Brown the chicken in the skillet for a minute or so until the chicken is nice and brown on top.
  7. Let the chicken rest for 5 minutes or so until it is cool enough to handle.
  8. Use your thumb to peel the chicken from the breast bone. It should come right off. Then slice the chicken diagonally and serve with lemons, capers and herbs.


  • If using frozen chicken breasts increase the cooking time to 2 1/2 hours to 4 hours.
  • If using boneless chicken breasts you can decrease the minimum cooking time to 1 hour.

Recommended Products

As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Nutrition Information:



Amount Per Serving: Calories: 192Saturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 79mgSodium: 266mgCarbohydrates: 2gProtein: 24g

Nutrition facts are estimates.

By on September 17th, 2019

65 thoughts on “Sous Vide Chicken Breast Recipe with Lemon”

  1. 5 stars
    This looks amazing! I would love to try Sous-Vide! I love how easy the FoodSaver makes cooking the chicken! Thanks for sharing about this and the deal. I can’t wait to try this! #client

  2. 5 stars
    Hello Anne! It’s a wonderful recipe! Many thanks for such a detailed instruction with step-by-step photos. I’m a big fan of sous vide cooking and I also use Food Saver vacuum sealer, although it is a different model. How long have you been using your model? Does it have any cons?

  3. Yeah definitely don’t take nut butters in your carry on luggage- especially yummy handmade ones that you’ll be sad to lose. I got a jar of jif taken once ? Might be worth it to stick in your checked luggage for the other side, though!easy recipes

  4. This looks ahhhhmazing! I am part Hungarian, and we certainly enjoyed tons of sauerkraut at my grandparents, but I haven’t had this specific dish (that I can remember) and I can’t wait to give it a try! Thanks so much for sharing.rluy

  5. Hey Bill! I love these tips. Thanks so much. I need to get one of those single burners. We only have the 3 of us, so I think that would be enough for some simple meals! juice

  6. Now, you need to try actually DIGGING for clams – with a shovel. That gun thingy is only for tourists. Which, of course, you are, but still. You cleaned and cooked them to perfection, though. Bravo!food Mixer

  7. I once made a cake that had no pictures and a few fairly complicated sounding steps. It was tasty but I wasn’t sure I got it right. One day I saw a bakery with a similar specialty cake and sure enough, mine looked nothing like it haha.italian wine search motor

  8. Hi,
    Spinach and bacon are not the things that I would really think of combining. The taste that both bacon and spinach is really different from one another. To tell you the truth, I am not really a fan of vegetables, more so of spinach. However, I do love eating bacon and I am not really closed to new things. I think that I would probably try this original spinach and bacon recipe of yours, I hope that I made the right choice doing it.tasty recipes

  9. This may be a silly question…. do i make the bouillon as it says on the box.. and then just use 1/4 of that broth??? Also i accidently bought huge bok choy should i just chop it up or go back and get baby??salsa ensalada cesar

  10. I have a mini fall goal to make all seven of these soups and share them with friends and neighbors. I started today with number 1, made one pot for a friend who had a baby and shared another pot with friends we haven’t spent time with in too long. The things you love are the things I love, too. The gospel, family, hospitality, and cooking. I’m not so good at the decorating part.
    rare fruits

  11. Innumerables variedades de verduras de hoja verde para elegir. Para aumentar la variedad en su dieta, intente experimentar y consumir diferentes tipos y diferentes métodos de preparación de sus vegetales verdes favoritos.verduras de hoja

  12. I love this! I love all the bright colors. I was thinking about doing something like this for gifts this year. Thanks for linking up to Party Time on Moms & Munchkins and we hope to see you next week.Banana benefits

  13. Yep, this has all my favorite flavors rolling into one delicious cake, it came out perfect. I’ve made it in a bundt pan and a sheet pan the glaze is delicious and my whole family can’t wait for me to make it again.printed pizza box

  14. I can see why you would like this so much – it sounds wonderful. I would definitely add protein to this, simply because I can’t survive on high carb/low protein meals. I’m looking forward to trying it.Hungry Darren

  15. Hi, Bamboo Steamer is a gadget that is used in cooking. This gadget will help you create dishes such as Dim Sum, Sushi, Pork Bun (Baozi), Zhaliang, and many more. On this post, you will learn about how this gadget may look like, what are the different types of Bamboo Steamer, the steps on how to use it, and its benefits when cooking. Cooking Bamboo Steamer has all the information about bamboo steamers and how to cook delicious meals using this device.Buy Bamboo Steamer on Amazon

  16. Affordable prices, best quality products, super stylish cuts and classic look of world most famous celebrities, we have got it all for you at Hilton sky. Order now! We deliver worldwide.

  17. Thank you so much for this wonderful Post and all the best for your future. I hope to see more posts from you. I am satisfied with your post. You are really a talented person I have ever been.

  18. Nice work Excellent Article all good & Your Website is so user-friendly. Your Website & article are amazing great job. I’m a fashion blogger. You Can Check My work By Clicking This Website.
    Web Page

  19. I’m new to your site, and I’m happy to report that your blog is wonderful and simple to explore. freddie mercury pant This website has taken up a lot of my time and attention, and it will continue to do so in the future. Best of luck in the future.

  20. I really enjoyed your dish when I first saw I thought that it will be difficult to make it but I created it on the first attempt your images are dull a small you should do proper editing on them by using the clip studio that will easily available by using the clip studio paint coupon code that will save your money & provide you with the great features.

  21. er a consolation or effective technique to complete this manner and i think this is the most appropriate manner to do it correctly. I am a lot thankful to have this terrific records 해외사이트

  22. i read your article its proper for humanity thanks for sharing this its very informative . I’m very tons thrilled with the contents you have got cited. I desired to thanks for this superb article . That is a exceptional article, given a lot info in it, those type of articles maintains the customers interest within the internet site, and keep on sharing extra … Proper luck. Actually extraordinary weblog absolutely loved reading and gaining knowledge of to benefit the substantial understanding. In the end, this weblog helps in developing certain competencies which in turn helpful in enforcing those talents. Thanking the blogger for turning in any such lovely content material and maintain posting the contents in upcoming days. I locate it very interesting and thoroughly notion out and put together. I look forward to reading your paintings within the destiny 토토사이트 가입

  23. oximately that mather. Virtually any approach many thank you in addition to i had undertaking to promote your very own article in to delicius though it’s miles seemingly a quandary using your records web sites can you please recheck the idea. Thanks another time. 메이저놀이터 순위

  24. you’ve got defined matters in this article. This newsletter is quite exciting and i’m looking forward to studying greater of your posts. Thank you for sharing this article with us . Its a remarkable pride analyzing your post. Its complete of information i am seeking out and that i in reality want to put up a commentary that the content of your submit is brilliant great paintings 꽁머니3만

  25. attempting to say thank you will not simply be enough, for the stunning readability for your article. i’m able to genuinely get your rss to stay instructed with respect to any updates. awesome work and much fulfillment for your commercial enterprise attempts . At the point when you are organized doing all that we have discussed inside the beyond sections, that’s considering your purchasing listing with careful arranging exactness, discovering the medicinal drugs you require remember that 먹튀폴리스주소

  26. A decent office can assist you with expanding your transformation rate by upgrading your site for a superior client experience and changes. They will likewise work with you to make a compelling change channel so you can amplify the quantity of guests who make your ideal move.Conversion Rate OptimizationTampa

  27. All of the sears parts direct coupon discount codes for August 2022 are available on this page. To provide you the most recent and effective Sears Parts Direct coupons on the web, we update all of their promo codes, discounts, and special offers continuously.

  28. This Sous Chicken Breast Recipe With Lemon is a quick and easy dinner option. It only takes about 15 minutes to prepare and can be served in a variety of ways. You can also get do my class for you and with this chicken breast is easy to cook and is seasoned with salt, pepper, and lemon.

  29. I am visiting this blog post, my friend shared a link and I read the whole blog post and find every kind of knowledge.

  30. if you are charging on giving assistance then it is not good I as a student of Learning with Experts I never took any help and give charges to them or do some help. If you really want to help someone never charge them. I completed my study If you want me to help you then do contact me.

  31. Well, Sometimes I feel difficult when I don’t receive any ideas but these days I got an alternate that is very helpful to continue the ideas. Currently, I’m reading Milking – The Metaverse Cashcow which is based on the combination of virtual reality and so far the best in exploring social dilemma. So, In this way, I variated in new topics and under process with new writing materials.

  32. You’ll definitely agree that we serve the best pizza in town, so we’re happy you’re here. In this brief video that introduces you to our head chef, he will demonstrate two of our favourite dishes pizza karachi, the Chicken Bacon Ranch and Margherita Pizzas. You can reproduce our gluten-free crust recipe and use it to experiment with your own pizza designs. Give it a try and let us know what you think.


Leave a Comment

Skip to Recipe