This copycat KFC oven fried chicken recipe has a super spice mix to give it a great taste without all the calories.
I love all types of copycat recipes. It is fun to tinker in my kitchen to try and come up with recipes that give me the flavors of my favorite restaurant or take away meals. For this copycat KFC oven fried chicken recipe, I have given the chicken great flavor with a super mix of spices, but have cut way back on both calories and fat by cooking it in the oven instead of deep frying it.
What is oven fried? For me, it’s a way to infuse my chicken with the spices and give it a lovely texture by using just a little butter and concentrating on what goes on the outside of the chicken. This chicken could be just baked in the oven without the butter, and it would be okay, but it won’t be the quite the same. And I don’t like to settle for just okay. The butter gives the coating a crispy texture and great taste when combined with the spices. And thus my term – oven fried. The small amount of butter that I do use is FAR less than normal fried chicken, but it allows the chicken pieces to get a crunchy coating even though it’s not deep fried. Best of both worlds….plenty of flavor and less calories!
There are all kinds of baked chicken recipes out there but I wanted something that will have me thinking I am eating fried chicken, and also something that won’t have my hips complaining at me for the next few weeks. And so this copycat recipe was born.
The spice blend is what gives my chicken a super flavor, and unlike KFC, I won’t be stingy on sharing the spice mix with you. After all, once you see how well this turns out for me, you will want to be making it in your kitchen won’t you? I have seen this spice mix also with the addition of MSG, but I have omitted it for my recipe. I don’t like using MSG, since so many people don’t tolerate it well. The spice blend does just fine without it, thank you very much.
My helper for this meal is a wonderful silicone baking mat from my sponsor Smarter Baking. The company sent me a mat to try for this recipe. The mat is a huge help to make clean up super easy, especially for a recipe like this that can be kind of messy in a normal baking pan. Once the chicken is done, all that is needed is a wash in warm soapy water to clean it and then it’s ready to use for another project. I have a whole collection of these mats. Each is allocated to a particular cooking project. Some I use only to make cookies. Others are for oven baking like this, and one is even used JUST to roll out dough for bread. Trust me. You can’t have too many of these mats.
I LOVE this baking mat. It is really large and fits my baking sheets perfectly. And it is BY FAR the easiest mat that I have used for clean up. I just left my mat on the baking sheet when it came out of the oven, added a bit of dish washing soap to it and some warm water and let it soak for about a minute. Then I used a sponge to clean it and it looks just like new. And it cooked my chicken beautifully too. I can’t recommend this mat enough. I’ve tried others that are very hard to clean, and anything that makes my kitchen tasks easier has my vote.
The recipe is easy to make. You start by setting up a dipping station. I am using four containers. One holds the skim milk and next to it is the flour and 1/2 of the spice mix. A third bowl holds the egg wash and near it is the container of Panko bread crumbs and the rest of the spice mix. Doing a dipping station makes the whole process very streamlined and easy to do.
I let my chicken pieces rest on a wire rack after coating for a bit so that the milk and egg wash helps to get the coatings to really stick to the chicken. The is make them crispy and also makes sure that the coating does not fall off in the oven.
Melt your butter in the microwave and add it to the mat which lines a baking pan. Place your chicken on the mat being careful to leave room around it so that every area will brown. Flip the chicken half way through the baking time for best results and the crispiest chicken ever. If they look this good before cooking, imagine how they will look after!
Voila! Just took them out of the oven and can’t WAIT to try a piece. I love doing this recipe on the silicone mat. None of the chicken pieces stuck to it when I flipped them over or when it was done. The chicken was just perfect when it came out of the oven.
You are going to love this crispy “fried” chicken with a tremendously tasty crust. You won’t be complaining that these were not deep fried. The flavor is THAT GOOD. There is just enough butter to give the coating a super rich taste but not enough to add a lot of calories or fat to the dish.
And the flavor of this chicken is unreal. As in WHOA…I’ve gotta have a couple more pieces unreal. The outside was crispy and perfect, yet it was juicy and flavorful on the inside. This is no mean feat with skinless chicken breasts that will often dry out in the oven.
Your kids will love these nuggets of chicken and you’ll love knowing that you have made something healthier for them.
Disclosure of Material Connection: This is a "sponsored post." One of the companies who sponsored it compensated me via a cash payment, gift, or something else of value to write it. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."