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Author Notes: About 4 to 5 years ago, I happened to try one of the frozen spicy chicken fillets at a local grocery store. At that time, it seemed like a good back-up to keep in the freezer for the occasional lazy day or crazy mornings when I needed a quick lunch option for my kids’ lunch. But unfortunately, like most readily available options, it was deep fried and thus had its own baggage of artery-clogging saturated fats. Originally, I tried to create my own healthier version of the fillet, but it was very difficult to replicate the unique taste that comes with deep frying. Then, I came across a promising Martha Stewart recipe and gave it a shot. I did not quite like the taste but definitely liked the crispiness it offered without needing to be fried. So I adapted the recipe and modified it until I came to the version that I was happy with. Most importantly, my younger daughter (who is quite the chicken connoisseur), was happy with it as well
Since this chicken is baked with a panko breadcrumb coating, you get the perfect crispiness without all the unhealthy fat that would have been added by frying it. So by using this recipe, you are not only seriously reducing the fat content, but are also cutting back the calories by about one-third. It’s a win-win situation!
This recipe freezes well, so you can make it in bulk. Later, you can thaw it in the fridge and heat it in the oven (rather than microwaving it) to keep it crispy. This chicken can be used in sandwiches, Caesar salads, or as an entrée with various different sides. I have used this same recipe to make oven-fried buffalo sauce chicken nuggets as well!
pieces Boneless, skinless chicken breasts (approx. 2 lbs)
cups Panko (Japanese-style breadcrumbs)
cup Plain Greek yogurt
cup Buffalo wing sauce
tablespoons Canola oil
Garlic cloves, microplaned
teaspoon Cayenne pepper
Salad mix - Romaine lettuce, tomatoes etc. (optional, whatever your choice)
- Mix the Buffalo wing sauce with the Greek yogurt. Add the salt and red chilies also to it and blend well (you can taste test the yogurt blend for seasonings right now itself).
- Put the yogurt blend in a bowl/pie dish.
- Preheat oven to 500 degrees. On a slightly rimmed baking sheet, mix the panko and oil. Spread in an even layer, and bake until golden, about 2-3 minutes. Transfer to a separate bowl/pie dish.
- So you now have 2 pie dishes, one with yogurt blend and other with toasted panko. A sort of assembly line system!
- Put 1 or 2 cooling racks on a rimmed tray to layer the chicken for baking so that the chicken does not stick to the tray.
- Now first dip the chicken into the yogurt mixture, coat well. Then dip in second pie dish with panko, cover well with breadcrumbs and then place on rack. • Repeat process with all 6 chicken breasts.
- Bake 9-10 minutes, then flip them and cook for another 9-10 minutes. Let them cool 5 minutes for juices to set. Slice and serve over salad mix as a Caesar Salad or have with any veggies as a side dish or as chicken sandwich.