Everyone will love this crispy oven fried chicken recipe - it's so simple to make but so full of flavor! We love to serve it with potato wedges or mac and cheese, or add your family's favorite sides for an all-around comforting meal.
4tablespoonsplain breadcrumbsPanko or Italian seasoned work as well
For the chicken:
2poundsskinless, boneless chicken breastcut into strips (I do 2-3 per breast)
For the pan:
¼cupbutteror more as needed
Prep: Heat the oven to 410°F (210°C). Place a dark-colored (or at the very least a silver metal) roasting pan (a rimmed baking sheet works as well) in the oven to heat up.
Prepare breading: In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg and the milk. In a separate bowl, mix the flour, breadcrumbs, baking powder and seasoning together.
Bread the chicken: Toss the chicken pieces in the flour, coating evenly and shaking off any extra flour. Next, toss the chicken pieces in the egg mixtures. Then, dip each into the flour mix again, this time coating very well – press the breading well on the chicken to make it stick.
Place chicken on pan: Take the baking pan out of the oven and melt the butter on it. Place the coated chicken pieces on the tray – leave enough space in between, I usually bake it in two batches.
Oven fry: Bake for 10-12 minutes, carefully flip and bake for another 5-10 minutes (depending on how thick your chicken pieces are). Finish by broiling the chicken until it turns golden brown and crispy.
Chicken parts: I usually use skinless, boneless chicken breast because it’s easiest for me to make and everyone will eat it. You can use whatever pieces you want, though – many readers have successfully made it with thighs and drumsticks!
Buttermilk: It’s not mandatory to use actual buttermilk. If you don’t keep any on hand, feel free to use either just regular milk or regular milk with 1 teaspoon white or apple cider vinegar stirred in.
Breadcrumbs: I use plain breadcrumbs because I always have those on hand, but Panko is also very delicious and yields amazing results.
Salt and spices: I reduced the salt by half from a previous version because some people felt it was too salty; if you’ve made this before and the saltiness was right for you, feel free to increase. And I know it sounds like a crazy amount of spices… But trust me here, your chicken will turn out bland if you don’t season it enough. If you want to add some heat, try using some cayenne pepper or chili powder.
Baking powder: This helps the breading to puff up a little and behave more like a batter fried in oil. I know it sounds like a strange ingredient in oven fried chicken, but please don’t skip it!
Butter: While this is a baked recipe, it still needs fat to crisp up and brown right. If you prefer to stay away from butter for whatever reason, I have also made this with canola oil before and it turned out well.
Use a dark pan: A dark pan reflect the heat best, which results in the crispiest chicken. A silver pan is acceptable and yields good results, too.
Use kitchen tongs plus spoons: Use kitchen tongs to toss the chicken in the flour mix initially, and to pound on the breading. Use one large spoon to stir the chicken in the egg mixture and to remove single pieces to drop back into the dry mix (this is your “wet spoon”). Then use a second, separate spoon to pile breading mix onto the chicken (this is your “dry spoon”). This is the easiest way to keep the mess to a minimum.
Breading: Do not skip pressing/pounding on the dry flour mix in the final step of breading. This is very important to help the breading stick to the chicken and to keep it from flaking off during baking.
Flip it VERY carefully: Use a spatula to slide underneath the chicken and very gently release the chicken from the pan before flipping/serving. If you just rip it off with tongs etc, the breading will fall off.
Let the chicken rest for 2-3 minutes before serving, but don’t let it sit around for longer than this. Otherwise, it will start getting soggy.
In full disclosure: While I do love this recipe 100% (I wouldn’t have shared it otherwise!) it is important to me to tell you that you shouldn’t expect the same results from baking as you should from deep-frying.This recipe here does make a crispy oven fried chicken, but it’s not identical to regular deep fried chicken. It’s very delicious though (I do really do like it better than KFC!) and your family will probably fight for the last crunchy oven fried chicken piece. I know mine does 😉
Either freeze the breaded, unbaked chicken OR the fully baked and cooled chicken. Flash-freeze in a single layer on a cookie sheet for ~1 hour before transferring to freezer bags (flash freezing is mandatory for the unbaked chicken, but also very much recommended for baked chicken).Use a container or bag that is suitable for freezing. Label the bag or container with the contents, and the use-by date (freeze for up to 3 months). Place the flash-frozen chicken in the bag and freeze.Reheat the frozen chicken for 20-30 minutes at 375 in the oven, or until it reaches an internal temperature of 165°F. You don’t need to defrost it before reheating.