How Long To Bake Chicken Breast At 400? Best Ways To Bake Chicken!

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Chicken breast is such a great ingredient because it is such lean meat and is packed with protein. Once you have coated it with some herbs and spices and drizzled a little oil over it, it is super easy to make and is always a family favorite. This is your complete guide to cooking your chicken breast safely while ensuring it doesn’t dry out.

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Baked chicken breast with rosemary

Table of Contents

What Temperature Do You Bake Chicken Breasts To?

Firstly, I’ll start off by going through what temperature you need to cook the chicken. In order to have safely cooked your chicken to a safe temperature, the interior temperature of the chicken needs to be 165 degrees Fahrenheit.

It will also take a different length of time for your chicken to cook depending on whether you have it covered in tinfoil or not.

How Long To Bake Chicken Breast At 400? Best Ways To Bake Chicken!

How Long To Bake Chicken Breast At 400 Degrees?

I will run through the different lengths of time it will take your chicken to cook depending on whether or not you cook your chicken covered or not:

How Long To Bake Chicken Breast At 400 Degrees Fahrenheit Covered in Tinfoil?

If you are cooking your chicken in aluminum foil then it should usually take a little less time. It is a good idea to bake you chicken in tinfoil because this helps to lock in the juices within the breast. Chicken breast is often susceptible to drying out when you are baking it because the breast is quite a lean meat, therefore can be quite dry.

When cooking your chicken breast in tinfoil, season your breast with whatever herbs and spices you choose along with some pepper. I tend not to season chicken breast with salt because this draws the moisture out of the chicken, and causing the finished product to be dry.

Next, wrap your breast in the foil and pop it into the oven which should be preheated to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. This should only take between 20 to 30 minutes at this temperature.

How Long To Bake Chicken Breast At 400 Degrees Fahrenheit Uncovered?

If you are looking to make your chicken breast nice and crispy on the exterior, then you will want to bake it uncovered, and leave the skin on. Saying that it can be difficult to get it right. If you have overcooked the chicken in any way, the interior may be quite dry.

It should take between 25 to 30 minutes for your uncovered chicken to cook nicely at 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

There are a few different steps you can take to ensure the interior is nice and juicy, while giving you that crispy exterior.

  1. Firstly, you should rub the chicken breast with olive oil or melted butter. You can even prepare a marinade for your chicken. I have a super tasty chicken marinade recipe on a separate blog post, so you should check it out! Let your chicken breasts soak in the marinade for 2 to 3 hours to get the optimal flavor from your chicken breasts.
  2. Next, pour approximately 1 cup of liquid into the baking pan. This could be butter, lemon juice, vinegar or any other liquid you desire. Add your chicken and place the chicken in the oven for 25 minutes.
  3. Make sure to check the internal temperature of your chicken breast after about 20 minutes. After this, you should check the internal temperature every 2 minutes until the internal temperature has reached 165 degrees Fahrenheit. This will ensure you catch the chicken just before it has dried out on the inside while ensuring that the chicken is safe to eat. If the chicken is still pick, cook a little longer until it has cooked through completely.

How Long Do I Bake Chicken Breast At 400 Degrees Fahrenheit In An Air Fryer

Cooking chicken breasts covered with foil in an air fryer at 400 degrees Fahrenheit takes about 20 minutes, and uncovered, it takes 16 to 20 minutes. Make sure that you flip the breast.

In order to bake your chicken breasts in the air fryer, you should follow the same rules as cooking them in a conventional oven. The air fryer should be preheated to 400 Fahrenheit for no more than 3 minutes. If you intend to bake the breasts uncovered, soak them in a marinade before cooking. If you have many chicken breasts to cook, I recommend that you cook them in batches.

Lastly, spray the basket and breasts of the air fryer to prevent sticking. Do not overload the air fryer to ensure the chicken breasts cook evenly.

I have a separate blog post outlining a full guide on how to cook boneless chicken thighs in the air fryer, so make sure you check it out!

How Long To Bake Chicken Breast At 400? Best Ways To Bake Chicken!

How Long Does It Take To Bake Chicken Breast At 425?

When cooking chicken at a higher temperature, this is a good way to prevent the interior from drying out. Cooking your chicken hard and fast at a high temperature ensures that the interior doesn’t dry out!

  1. Place your chicken into the oven and roast (uncovered) at 450 degrees Fahrenheit for 10-15 minutes. Check the internal temperature to give yourself an idea of how far along the cooking process is.
  2. Then reduce the temperature to 350 degrees and continue cooking for about 20 minutes. Check the internal temperature of the chicken every 5 minutes to see if it has reached 165 degrees Fahrenheit. Skin should be golden brown and the juices should be sizzling and run clear.

How Long Does It Take To Bake Chicken Breast At 450 Degrees?

Depending on the thickness of your chicken breasts, roasting chicken at 450 degrees Fahrenheit should require a cooking time of about 15-18 minutes (depending on the thickness/size of your chicken breasts).

This is a great way to ensure that the interior does not dry out too much, but you will need to make sure that the interior of the chicken has been cooked the whole way through and that it is not pink.

Make sure your chicken is cooked the whole way through using a meat thermometer. If you do not have one, you can get it through here:

KULUNER TP-01 Waterproof Digital Instant Read Meat Thermometer with 4.6” Folding Probe Backlight & Calibration Function for Cooking Food Candy, BBQ Grill, Liquids,Beef(Black)
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If you are looking for an alternative way to cook your chicken, I have a separate blog post outlining how boiling your chicken before frying can truly impact the flavor!

Recipe For The Juiciest Baked Chicken Breast

Now that we’ve gone through the best temperatures for cooking your chicken breast, it’s time to run through the actual recipe. The best-baked chicken recipe I use all of the time when cooking chicken breast is outlined below.


  • 1 tsp Brown Sugar
  • ½ tsp paprika
  • ½ tsp Oregano
  • ½ tsp Garlic Powder
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 Tbsp Olive oil


The Following recipe is to be cooked at 425 degrees Fahrenheit as opposed to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. This is because the higher temperature over a shorter timeframe will make the meat less susceptible to drying out.

Total Time: 20 minutes

Preheat The Oven

The best way to cook your chicken in this way is by preheating the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit (220 degrees Celsius).

Coat Chicken Breasts

Next, mix up all your ingredients to make your marinade and coat your chicken in the marinade. I would let the chicken sit in the refrigerator for 2 to 3 hours with the marinade over it. If you don’t have the time, you can just pop it straight in the oven.


Let your chicken cook for 18-20 minutes. You should be able to tell the chicken is ready because the marinade will begin to caramelize on top of the chicken. It is worth checking the internal temperature first before serving. Serve and enjoy!

If you want to check out another way to make tasty chicken breast, you should check out this youtube video below!


How Long Does It Take To Bake Chicken Breast at 400?

It should take you between 20 to 30 minutes for your chicken to cook properly in the oven. If your chicken is covered, it will take less time as the tinfoil will create a mini-oven effect. If your chicken is uncovered, beware the inside does not dry out.

How Long Do I Cook Chicken At 400 – Answered!

Hopefully, this guide will help you to cook your chicken breasts perfectly, without drying out the interior. The trick is to cook your chicken breast at a higher temperature for a shorter period to avoid the inside from drying out.

A meat thermometer is a great investment to make if you don’t already have one, especially when cooking chicken. It will provide great peace of mind knowing that the food you are preparing won’t make anyone sick.

If you enjoyed this post, you should check out some of my other posts, or let me know in the comments. The same goes for if you have any questions, let me know below!

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By Anna

Anna Brooks, the voice behind, is a seasoned writer and editor with an insatiable love for food. While not a professional chef, her culinary adventures and unique insights have captivated readers for years. Anna believes in the transformative power of food, stating it "feeds the soul." Dive into her writings for a mix of inspiration, entertainment, and culinary wisdom. Author Pinterest Facebook Twitter Instagram YouTube Tumblr Reddit Quora

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