The fried chicken recipe Oprah herself raves about in her new Weight Watcher’s cookbook, developed by her personal chef: Art Smith has now been made allergy-friendly. This unfried chicken is still crispy, oven baked and loaded with flavor but without the typical gluten, dairy or eggs. This winner-winner chicken dinner is also top-8-free!
“You get a chicken dinner. And YOU get a chicken dinner!” Just imagine beloved Oprah shouting that with her characteristically enthusiastic yell. Except–I’m the one that’s yelling it, and I’m yelling it to a crowd that too often doesn’t get chicken with any type of batter because of food allergies and food restrictions.
Man does it feel good to feel like Oprah for a day!
I’ve always loved fried chicken. Growing up when my mom wanted a treat (or I’m just realizing now–probably a break from cooking!) she’d have my dad stop by Albertson’s and pick up their fried chicken. Yum, yum!
Since my son can’t do wheat, dairy or eggs–it makes the traditional fried chicken a bit tough! I did create my own recipe for classic fried chicken here that you can try, if you’ve got a cast iron handy and you’re wanting to officially fry.
But, with all the hoopla around Oprah’s Weight Watcher’s cookbook (you know you’ve seen the commercial at least 1 million times), and of course loving and trusting Oprah with all my heart–I had to find out what was going on with this “famous” unfried chicken.
I guess she had a personal chef for awhile, Art Smith, who specializes in Southern Cuisine. He created this recipe for her, and when I saw the ingredient deck–that it was full of spices and crunch without the frying I was hooked. I HAD to figure out how my son (and therefore ME!) could have this for dinner.
I have made this allergy-friendly and taken his recipe and omitted the wheat and dairy (his already didn’t have eggs).
The result was a spicy, flavorful chicken that has great crunch. My son calls it “crunchy chicken” and says it’s one of his favorite meals.
I love to serve it with baked beans (recipe coming soon!) and a simple sweet potato drizzled in vegan butter and honey. Seriously one of my favorite meals!
The only hard part is remembering to let the chicken marinate, but other than that, it’s a breeze because I put the breading in my blender. Feel free to pulse it as much as you like, but as you can see in the picture, I like to leave some bigger pieces of the cereal (YES CEREAL!) so that it has really great texture. Pulse to your heart’s desire.
May this Oprah’s Unfried Chicken Made Allergy Friendly also take you back to your childhood and allow you to have a nice meal that perhaps you thought you wouldn’t have again.
*None of the products in the recipe are sponsored; however, I have linked to some of them so you can see their labels, or order with ease if you don’t have these products near you. All of the links are Amazon affiliates.
Oprah's Unfried Chicken--Made Allergy-friendly! (Gluten, dairy, egg, soy, peanut & tree nut free; top-8-free)
The fried chicken recipe Oprah herself raves about in her new Weight Watcher's cookbook, developed by her personal chef: Art Smith has now been made allergy-friendly. This unfried chicken is still crispy, oven baked and loaded with flavor but without the typical gluten, dairy or eggs. This winner-winner chicken dinner is also top-8-free!
- 1 cup plain rice milk
- 1 Tablespoon Louisiana Hot Sauce (or hot sauce of choice)
- 2 boneless chicken breasts, cut into thin pieces
- 1 1/2 cups Rice Krispies**
- 3 Tablespoons nutritional yeast
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 and 1/2 teaspoons onion powder
- 1 and 1/2 teaspoons garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- In a large, flat bowl (I like a pie plate) stir together the rice milk and hot sauce. Place the chicken cutlets in the faux "buttermilk" mixture and allow to marinate, covered, for at least 1 hour up to 24 hours. (Note, this will give it a kick, but really doesn't make it too hot. Trust me--I'm a baby. If you'd like it to be quite spicy, see the notes.)
- When you're ready to start cooking, preheat your oven to 400 degrees F.
- In your blender, place the: cereal, nutritional yeast, black pepper, onion powder, garlic powder and salt. Pulse until you have your desired texture for breading (I prefer mine not very fine).
- Pour the breading mixture into either a zip top bag, or brown paper bag. Place one piece of chicken in the bag at a time, close and shake until the chicken is fully covered.
- Put the breaded chicken on a cooling rack that has been placed inside a cookie sheet. I have found that baked chicken breading works better when the hot air can get all around the chicken. If you simply place the chicken on a baking sheet, the entire underside can become soggy.
- Bake for 20-30 minutes (or until the chicken is done). I find my chicken is often done, but I leave it in for a few minutes later to help it brown.
- Serve with your favorite sides.
- *If you have any chicken leftover, it is better to reheat it in a toaster oven, than microwave otherwise the breading will be soggy.
**Rice Krispies cereal are wheat free, but not gluten-free because of barley. Feel free to use Rice Chex instead, or use a gluten-free version of Rice Krispies like Erewhon or Malt-O-Meal.
ALSO: The original recipe also called for these spices: 1 teaspoon ground cayenne & 1 teaspoon smoked paprika, however my son cannot have paprika and I think it's too spicy with the cayenne--but if you can handle the heat, feel free to add it in!
Adapted from: Popsugar.com
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Looking for more easy chicken dinner ideas? Here’s some of my favorites:
Fried Chicken (Gluten, dairy, egg, soy, peanut & tree nut free; top-8-free)
30-Minute Dairy-free Creamy Tuscan Chicken (Gluten, dairy, egg, soy, peanut & tree nut free; top-8-free)
The BEST Lemon Grilled Chicken (Gluten, dairy, egg, soy, peanut & tree nut free; top-8-free)
Chicken Enchilada Pasta (Gluten, dairy, egg, soy, peanut & tree nut free; top-8-free)
The brand name rice crispies have malt in them and are not gluten-free. Rice Chex, however, is.
Right you are! Which is why in my recipe notes I talk about that very thing. 🙂
We love this recipe but I can’t get it to crisp up particularly well. I’m thinking it is because there is too much moisture in the chicken when I’m coating it. Have you come across this?
That’s interesting. Perhaps you have too thick of breading? Mine always crisps. Make sure you’re setting the chicken on a cooling rack, as that also allows it to crisp extra well, so it’s not sitting in it’s own juices.
Good point about the coating. I’ll try that next time. Thanks!
Darn, we just ran out of hot sauce! I bought rice krispies this week because they are white rice (husband doesn’t do well with brown rice anything) and we just pulled out chicken tenders to defrost. This looks perfect … just to figure out the sauce.
I hate it when you’re out of one ingredient! Well, you could try putting some chili powder in the milk instead. Or, if you don’t care of it’s spicy, just omit it. The crunch and seasoned breading would still be good. Hope you get to try it soon 🙂
My family loves chicken dinners like this. Love the idea of using a gf rice cereal!
That cereal is a perfect way to add a nice crunchy coating. I’ve even used it to make crispy tofu.
Good to know it will adhere to tofu!
Loving the simplicity of this recipe. Fried chicken is comfort food at it’s best—but not always easy to find gluten-free … I secretly love that yours is not deep fried.
It truly is comfort food! And yes, sometimes it’s too big a mess to fry!
Rebecca @ Strength and Sunshine
That’s fun, my family is a fan of any chicken recipe 🙂
Yes! You can never have enough chicken recipes!