Veal Scallopini With Lemon and Capers

Veal scallopini with lemon

The Spruce / Diana Mocanu

Prep: 5 mins
Cook: 10 mins
Total: 15 mins
Servings: 4 to 6 servings
Yields: 12 cutlets
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
244 Calories
17g Fat
10g Carbs
10g Protein
See Full Nutritional Guidelines Hide Full Nutritional Guidelines
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4 to 6
Amount per serving
Calories 244
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 17g 22%
Saturated Fat 9g 46%
Cholesterol 63mg 21%
Sodium 421mg 18%
Total Carbohydrate 10g 4%
Dietary Fiber 1g 3%
Total Sugars 1g
Protein 10g
Vitamin C 4mg 22%
Calcium 39mg 3%
Iron 1mg 7%
Potassium 218mg 5%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Veal cutlets are one of the quickest and tastiest meals you can pull together for a last-minute dinner. And veal scallopini is a classic (some may say "old-school") recipe. A few moments in the pan, a couple of ingredients to create a sauce, and dinner is done. This recipe is simple, delicious, and ready in 15 minutes.

These veal cutlets are cooked with butter, lemon, and capers and served over arugula; the heat from the veal and sauce gently wilt the leaves. All you need is some crusty bread or a side of roasted potatoes and you've got dinner.

Ingredients

  • 1 pound veal scallopini or cutlets

  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt, plus more to taste

  • 2 teaspoons vegetable oil

  • 2 tablespoons capers, drained

  • 1/4 cup white wine

  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice

  • 3 tablespoons butter, cut into 4 to 8 pieces

  • 4 cups loosely packed arugula leaves, for serving

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for veal scallopini

    The Spruce / Diana Mocanu

  2. Pat the veal dry with paper towels and sprinkle it lightly with the salt.

    Veal scallopini sprinkled with salt on a plate

    The Spruce / Diana Mocanu 

  3. Heat the oil in a large frying pan (preferably large enough to hold all the veal in a single layer) over medium-high heat.

    Oil in a frying pan

    The Spruce / Diana Mocanu

  4. Put as much of the veal as fits in a single layer in the pan (it is important you don't crowd the pan) and cook until it has started to brown and releases from the surface of the pan—about 2 minutes.

    Veal scallopini in a hot pan

    The Spruce / Diana Mocanu 

  5. Turn the cutlets and cook them until they're cooked through and browned on the second side—about 2 more minutes. Transfer the veal to a plate. Repeat with any remaining veal, as necessary.

    Cook veal cutlets in a pan

    The Spruce / Diana Mocanu

  6. Return the frying pan to the heat. Add the capers to the pan and let them sizzle for about 30 seconds.

    Capers in hot pan

    The Spruce / Diana Mocanu

  7. Add the white wine and use a spatula to help scrape up any brown bits on the bottom of the pan.

    Add white wine and scrape up brown bits in the pan

    The Spruce / Diana Mocanu

  8. Whisk together and cook until the wine is reduced by at least half, about 2 minutes.

    Veal scallopini sauce in a pan

    The Spruce / Diana Mocanu

  9. Add the lemon juice and stir to combine.

    Add the lemon juice

    The Spruce / Diana Mocanu

  10. Swirl in the pieces of butter, whisking if you like, to make a sauce. Taste and add salt if needed.

    Swirl butter into sauce in a pan

    The Spruce / Diana Mocanu

  11. Return all of the veal to the pan to coat it in the sauce.

    Cooked veal in pan with capers

    The Spruce / Diana Mocanu

  12. Divide the arugula between 4 plates. Drizzle a bit of the sauce over each serving of arugula before placing the veal on top of the salad. Drizzle any remaining sauce evenly over the veal.

    Veal scallopini plated on top of arugula

    The Spruce / Diana Mocanu 

  13. Serve immediately.

    Veal scallopini with lemon on arugula on plates

    The Spruce / Diana Mocanu

Tip

If you don't eat veal for animal welfare reasons, know that there is an alternative kind of veal on the market. The difference is that the veal comes from the calves culled from the herd, not calves raised virtually motionless in pens. You may find it labeled as "red veal," or with the Italian word "vitello." The meat isn't milky white but instead is a pale red color.

What's the Difference Between Scallopini and Piccata?

Scallopini is a thin slice of meat, usually chicken or veal, that is dredged in flour and pan-fried. One type of scallopini dish is piccata, which includes a pan sauce of lemon, capers, white wine or sherry, and butter. The dish is often referred to as piccata and scallopini interchangeably.

Does Veal Need to Be Fully Cooked?

Veal can be cooked much like beef, from rare to well-done, and can actually become tough when overcooked. Rare is about 145 F, medium 160 F, and 170 F is well-done. The USDA recommends cooking veal to an internal temperature of 160 F for safe consumption. Veal cutlets are cut so thin that they cook through in just a few minutes.

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