The words fried and healthy normally don’t go together. But in this case, they absolutely do! Reason: because you’re thinning the chicken, cooking time is slashed considerably. On top of that, we’re using coconut oil to ‘fry’ the chicken breast. Coconut oil has so many benefits and unlike its oil counterpart, this one’s actually good for you! And because we’re using a minimal amount (definitely nothing that would constitute deep frying) and for little time, you get best of both worlds!
The result is juicy, tender chicken breast on the inside, and a crispy, mouth-watering crunch on the outside. And it only takes minutes to prepare! When stuck not knowing what to make for dinner, give this recipe a go!
I buy my chicken breast with skin on and bone in. It’s cheaper and I like the flexibility it gives me. But do feel free to buy whatever suites your fancy. If you get skinless and boneless, you’ll be able to get more pieces out of it. Completely up to you :)
Panko-Crusted Chicken Breast
4 Chicken breast
2 Heaping tbsp Veganaise (Vegan mayonnaise – it’s delicious, much healthier, and has no egg!)
~2 C Panko bread crumbs (Japanese bread crumbs)*
1 1/2-2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black ground pepper
2 tsp dried oregano (optional)
3-4 tbsp coconut oil (for pan frying)
Mix panko with the salt and pepper (and optional herbs) and set aside.
Do the same with your Veganaise and set aside.
Taking a chicken breast at a time, make thin cuts using a knife and repeat with the rest of the chicken.
Next, using a large Ziploc bag, place the sliced breast, one at a time, and using a mallet/meat tenderizer, pound the chicken until almost paper thin. flip bag and lightly pound the other side. This process ensures that the meat cooks quickly and if there are any ligaments or fibres, it will break those and allow for a tender piece of meat.
Next, using your hand, spread some Veganaise onto each breast and coat both sides.
Drop into the seasoned panko and ensure chicken breast is evenly covered.
Once you’ve finished breading the chicken pieces, turn the heat onto medium high and drop the coconut oil into the pan. When hot, add 2 to 3 pieces at a time, depending on the size of your skillet (excuse the shape my skillet’s in – it’s dedicated to pan frying ;))
After about a minute or so, flip the chicken pieces over to the other side and allow it to cook for approximately 2 minutes more, until breading is a nice golden brown in colour.
Tip: To keep the cooked chicken hot while finishing the rest of the pieces, place them onto an oven safe plate, into the oven, at 300°F, until you’ve finished frying the rest of the pieces.
And that’s it! Didn’t I promise it would be so easy?! Not to mention much healthier than the traditional cooking method. No egg, no mess, no fuss, no nothing! Just pure pleasure and no guilt!
Serve alongside salad and/or roasted potatoes.
Bon appétit! xo
Note: * When Munsur was younger and we had to stay away from many things, including wheat, I used to make this meal using almond meal/flour. So if you’re intolerant or allergic to wheat and/or gluten, then use almond meal instead and it will yield equally delicious results :)