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Crispy Baked Chicken {Gluten & Dairy Free Adaptable}

Easy Crispy Baked Chicken - photoDo you struggle to make chicken exciting – me too! I usually get the response – not chicken again.  This week I decided to mix things and serve my crispy baked chicken as lollipops! I have also found that boring foods like chicken are more exciting when you make them with your children!  You can check out how to make these with my little helper here.   Make sure to only use white lollipop sticks.   The dye on the colored ones melted into the chicken – I learned that the hard way the first time.

Crispy Baked Chicken Variations

I make this same recipe multiple ways to add some variety.  Sometimes I cut the chicken into strips for chicken fingers and serve it with a fun dipping sauce.  Other times I do nuggets and for us adults I just keep the breast whole because it is easier.  You can even do a combination like I did this week.  

Allergy Friendly Crispy Baked Chicken - photo

This Crispy Baked Chicken has gluten and dairy free and paleo adaptations. Instead of dredging in flour, eggs and milk this recipe uses just olive oil to keep the chicken moist and to allow the breadcrumbs to stick.  This method makes it super adaptable.  I like to use these breadcrumbs from Whole Foods and Trader Joes also has a similar one.  I like them because they have minimal ingredients.  Most other breadcrumbs have a lot of additives, you have to be careful!  You can easily substitute gluten free breadcrumbs or I have even done this with nuts that I ground up in the food processor for a paleo version (need to share a picture of it!).  Since these are only dredged in oil it makes them easily dairy free adaptable too.  I like to add Parmesan for flavor, but you can alternatively use nutritional yeast!  The notes in the recipe have all the variations.  

Freezer and Crispy Baked Chicken Meal Suggestions

A bonus to the recipe is that they are freezer friendly!  One pound may be enough for your family so if you make 2 lbs you can freeze the remainder for an easy meal another night.  Two pounds may be perfect for your family, but you may want to double the recipe while you are in the mess and make enough for easy meal another night.  See the recipe notes for freezer instructions.  Your side options are endless with these but we enjoyed them this week with my Peas with Creamy Feta and Walnuts and Pasta and Butternut Squash.  

Kids Version:

Kid Friendly Crispy Baked Chicken - photo

Adult Version:

Gluten & Dairy Free Adapatable Crispy Baked Chicken - photo

Hope this adds some excitement to your dinner one night!  

Easy Crispy Baked Chicken - photo

Crispy Baked Chicken

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Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Course:Main Course
Keyword:5 Ingredients or less, Chicken, Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Kid Friendly, Kids in the Kitchen, Paleo Friendly

Ingredients

  • ½ cup of plain or panko breadcrumbs or gluten free breadcrumbs or ground nuts - see variations in notes below
  • ¼ cup parmesan or nutritional yeast
  • 1 - 1 1/2 tsp seasoning salt
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 1 ½ - 2 lbs of boneless and skinless chicken breasts see notes on quantity
  • lollipop sticks only use white!

Instructions

  • Mix together breadcrumbs, parmesan (or nutritional yeasand seasoning salt in a bowl or shallow dish
  • Pour oil into a separate bowl or shallow dish
  • Line your sheet pan with parchment paper
  • Pre-heat oven to 400 (note: sometimes I prepare the chicken earlier and put it in the fridge and cook it closer to dinner time)
  • Leave the chicken breasts whole or cut into strips or 1.5 inch nuggets (however your family prefers, my children prefer strips and nuggets or lollipop nuggets)
  • Place each strip/nugget/breast into the oil, let the excess drip off, and then into the bread crumb mixture and then onto the baking sheet
  • Bake at 400:
    Nuggets and Thin Strips about 12-15 minutes. Cook them for 7 minutes on the bottom rack and then move to the top rack for the remaining time and broil for the last 2 minutes.
    Breasts: about 20 minutes(it will depend how thick they are, always cook to the internal temperature reaches 165). Cook them for 10 minutes on the bottom rack and then move to the top rack for the remaining time and broil for last 2 minutes.
  • Let cool 5 minutes before serving

Notes

  • If making all nuggets you will have enough breading for 1 1/2 lbs of chicken
  • If you are making a combination or nuggets and breasts or strips you will have enough breading for 2lbs
  • Gluten Free Version
    • Simply replace the breadcrumbs with a gluten free version or nuts that are processed in food processor until they are very small
  • Dairy Free Version:
    • Simply replace the parmesan with nutritional yeast
  • Dairy Free & Gluten Free Version:
    • ½ cup of gluten free bread crumbs or ground nuts
    • ¼ cup nutritional yeast
    • 1 tsp seasoning salt
    • ¼ cup olive oil
    • 1 1/2 - 2 lbs of chicken breasts
  • Paleo Version:
    • ½ ground nuts
    • ¼ cup nutritional yeast
    • 1 tsp seasoning salt
    • ¼ cup olive oil
    • 1 ½- 2 lbs of chicken breasts
  • Freezer Instructions
    • 1 lb may be enough for your family so if you make 2 lbs you can freeze the remainder for an easy meal another night.  2 lbs may be perfect for your family, but you may want to double the recipe while you are in the mess and make enough for easy meal another night.  
    • Follow all of the steps above and cook your chicken and let it cool.
    • After it has completely cooled place them on a parchment lined sheet pan and freeze for 1 hour.  You can skip this step, but they may stick together.  I have done it without them sticking.  
    • Then transfer them to an airtight bag or container and store them in the freezer until you are ready to bake.   You can bake as few or as many as you like for up to 3 months. 
    • When you are ready to eat: bake them on a parchment lined pan for 12-15 mins in an oven pre-heated to 375.  
Did you make this recipe?I would love to see your creations! Snap a picture and tag @FoodPlayGo or #foodplaygo on Social Media!

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