How Long To Bake Chicken Breast At 400? Baking Time Matters

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We’re dealing with boneless skinless chicken breasts, the most commonly cooked and eaten meat among fitness geeks.

They’ll be delicious, tender, and moist if you do it correctly. But if you fail, your meat will get tough and dry. Thus, it’s imperative to know how long to bake chicken breast at 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

A medium-sized piece of 5-6 ounces takes about 20-25 minutes to bake at 400 in an oven. Baking at such a high temperature will help seal the flavor and juices.

By the end of this article, you’ll pick up the basic techniques related to oven-cooking breasts and baking time. Time to start!

How Long To Bake Chicken Breast At 400?

How Long To Bake Chicken Breast At 400
You’ll have a delicious baked dish within 30 minutes. (Source: Max Pixel)

If you want to bake at 400°F, you’ll set the machine to run for about 20-25 minutes. This cooking time is ideal for skinless and boneless meat’s thickness of one inch.

Therefore, it will vary depending on the breast’s thickness, whether it comes with a foil cover or not, and the convection oven’s performance.

The timing scheme will differ accordingly depending on your poultry meat’s size and the oven’s temperature.

Because the purchased items might be smaller or larger than the standard size of eight ounces we’ve mentioned, and the oven’s performance might differ, it’s essential to check the meat’s internal temperature to ensure it’s well-cooked.

In particular, the meat is safe to eat if the internal temperature of the thickest, chunkiest part reaches 165°F.

How Long To Bake Chicken Breast At 400 In Foil?

Thirty minutes is the right baking time for foil-wrapped poultry breasts. Using foil can make your food remain moist, tender, and juicy.

Here are the quick steps to cook it this way: Season the meat with some herbs, pepper, and salt. Then, cover your food with foil (aluminum) and set the oven to run for 30 minutes at 400°F.

The breasts will absorb the flavors and textures of the herbs and spices and get hot quickly within a couple of minutes. Why? Because the foil cover makes them stay juicy and moist.

How Long To Bake Chicken Breast At 400 In Air Fryer?

How Long To Bake Chicken Breast At 400
The same steps go for using a traditional oven and air fryer. (Source: Flickr)

Generally, if you cover the meat with foil, it’ll take about 20 minutes to cook in the air fryer. If you choose to bake it uncovered, it’ll take eight to ten minutes for each side.

To air fry your poultry products evenly, you need to follow nearly all the similar rules to cooking with a traditional oven.

  • First, preheat your air fryer to 400°F. Ensure not to exceed three minutes.
  • Should you want to cook the food uncovered, dip it in the seasoning mixture or marinade before baking.
  • Spray the food and air fryer’s basket to avoid sticking.
  • Remember not to overload the machine unless you can ensure enough space between the breasts. Should you have to cook a large amount, we suggest cooking it in batches.

How Long To Bake Chicken Breast At 400 From Frozen?

Poultry meat cooked at 400°F from frozen will be ready to serve after 40-50 minutes in a convection oven and around 15-25 minutes in an air fryer.

If you’ve not seasoned your food yet, ensure to thaw them before baking. Place it in the refrigerator, and it’ll cool down and melt within 12 hours. You can also soak it in warm water for quick thawing (within three hours).

It’s OK to cook it straight without thawing if you want to skip the seasoning step. However, ascertain to adjust the temperature and set the recommended cooking time to prevent drying out.

How Long To Bake Chicken Breast At 400 Uncovered?

How Long To Bake Chicken Breast At 400
It takes much faster to cook the food uncovered. (Source: Flickr)

Typically, uncovered poultry breasts will take 25 minutes to cook at 400°F in an oven.

Baking your food this way requires you to be extra careful. If you take any incorrect steps, the meat will get hard and dry.

  • First, season the breast with melted butter and olive oil. You can also soak it in a marinade for 2-3 hours to let it absorb the moisture and flavor.
  • Then, spray a good amount of liquid in the baking dish, such as vinegar, lemon juice, melted butter, or any mixture you like.
  • Five minutes before the baking process ends, check the meat’s inner temperature if it has reached 160-170°F. We often check the temperature every two minutes during the cooking process until it approaches the ideal level.

Though it takes extra effort to cook your food this way, you’ll be pleased with the golden and brown color and crunchy texture in the end.

How To Bake Chicken Breast At 400°F?

Note down this list of necessary ingredients:

  • Boneless, skinless poultry breasts (6 pieces/2-3 people)
  • One teaspoon of Italian seasoning
  • Two tbsp of olive oil
  • ¼ teaspoon of ground pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon of paprika
  • ½ teaspoon of Kosher salt

Follow these no-fuss steps to conjure up a perfect baked meal:

  • Prepare the meat:
    • Remove any trimmable fat. Look for bones (sometimes it’s the case) and blood vessels as well. Pat dry. Don’t rinse.
    • Even out. This step is crucial because some pieces are so thick that you can’t cook them well with the original size.

Amazing tips for preparation in this video can assist you in the initial phase:

  • Season the meat: Start by rubbing it with olive oil and melted butter. This coating will never reach close to there for those worrying about the smoke point.
  • Cook: Now is the time to use your convection oven. 400°F or more will be the best way to go.


We’ve also received hundreds of questions about the cooking temperature for baked poultry breasts, and below are the three most commonly asked.

Is It Better To Bake Chicken At 350 Or 400?

400°F is the ideal temperature for baking and delivers better results than 350°F. High heat will shorten the cooking time and make your food juicier, moister.

Yet, it doesn’t necessarily mean that baking the poultry at a higher temperature than 400°F is good as you might risk burning or drying out your food.

You should avoid cooking at too high temperatures, like 450°F or 475°F.

How To Know Chicken Breast Is Cooked?

The best way is to use a food thermometer. This ultimate tool consists of a round head that indicates the temperature and a needle stem.

Simply insert the thermometer into your poultry’s thickest part. You know the food is well-cooked if the tool reads 74°C (165°F) for cuts or 82°C (180°F) for the whole serving.

How To Know Chicken Breast Is Cooked Without Thermometer?

If you don’t have a food thermometer around, the best way to check the poultry’s readiness is to slightly cut the skin between the sides and see the color. If it is still pink, cook for longer until it turns white.

It’s fine to go for this method As long as you can ensure good lighting when checking the color.


While there are many recipes showing how to make the best-baked poultry with an oven, variations are largely in the baking time and temperature.

Knowing some helpful tips is one of the secrets to perfecting the result and simplifying your cooking process. We hope our helpful tips have helped you create a new favorite for your family.