Tender, Crispy Guilt-Free Fried Chicken


Women's Health |

By Keri Glassman; Images by Brian Kennedy 

We’re not kidding – this guilt-free fried chicken recipe is almost too good to be true, except that it’s real and totally delicious.

Check out below how to hack your way to fried chicken that isn’t just lekker, it’s better for you, too.

1. Make Better Marinade

… With cashews and almonds! They’re not only tasty, but they make a great base for marinade.  Tree nuts like these have been linked to better weight maintenance, happier moods – thanks to magnesium and the amino acid tryptophan – and, possibly, even a longer life. Almond milk surpasses dairy in bone-building calcium and has none of the saturated fat or cholesterol.

2. Boost The Breading 

Go for quinoa and ditch the breadcrumbs. It’s rich in fibre, unlike the fast-food fare. And it’s got tons of protein – four grams per serving. That’s almost as much as the chicken itself, which tallies around six grams. Using it to coat the chicken before baking it means you get all the crunch minus the frying.

3. Bake It 

Ditch the deep-fry and bake your chicken instead. You’ll still get the crispy texture, with way less saturated fats. A serving of fast-food chicken could rack up almost twice the kilojoules, fat and cholesterol compared to this DIY version. Use white breast meat rather than darker thighs and ditch the fatty skin.

4. Dip It Good 

What is fried chicken without a dope dipping sauce? Use ours: it’s way lower in kilojoules (125kJ per serving) – a typical dipping sauce at the drive-through could get you up to 580kJ.

guilt-free fried chicken

Fried Chicken Recipe 

You’ll need:
3 cups whole raw cashews, soaked overnight and drained
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/3 cup lemon juice
1 tbsp dill
1/2 tsp onion powder
2 tbsp hot sauce
2 cups almond milk, divided
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (110g each), trimmed and pounded flat
2 cups cooked quinoa
4 tsp olive oil
2 tbsp tomato paste

Method
1. In a blender, combine cashews, garlic, lemon juice, dill, onion powder, hot sauce and one cup almond milk.
2. Set aside half a cup of this mixture, then add remaining cup of almond milk to blender and combine.
3. Pour into a ziplock bag, add chicken and marinate for 30 minutes.
4. Preheat oven to 200°C. Coat chicken in quinoa and pan-sear over high heat with three teaspoons oil for three minutes per side.
5. Place on an oil-coated rack (use remaining oil) on top of a baking pan; bake for 25 minutes. Flip halfway through.
6. Combine reserved cashew mixture and tomato paste for the sauce. Garnish with lemon.

SERVES 4. Per serving: 1 233kJ, 15g fat (2.5g sat), 28g carbs, 294mg sodium, 3g fibre, 13.5g protein

OK, so maybe fried chicken isn’t your ‘thing’? We’ve got an awesome Mexican chicken tinga tacos recipe for you to try instead, plus this tipsy chicken chorizo stew recipe – perfect for winter!

This article originally appeared on www.womenshealthmag.com

READ MORE ON: Chicken Dishes Dinner Ideas High-Protein Dishes Main Dishes Nutrition Recipes