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I like fried food just as much as the next person — even had a home fryer once. I got rid of it because it just got too messy, not to mention too tempting to fry everything. And what to do with all of the used oil? I guess I could convert my car to burn vegetable oil, saving the planet while killing myself eating all the fried foods I’d need to cook to fuel my car. No thanks (Full disclosure: a friend just gave me one so expect some frying recipes soon).

As much as I love roasted chicken, sometimes fried chicken just can’t be beat. I’ve never been good at frying chicken in a pan, just submerge in oil and cook all the way around. So how to combine my loves? Baked, breaded chicken, of course. I’d love to say I came up with the idea of breading chicken with potato chips and baking it, but I saw it in a magazine and thought it was brilliant. The oil in the chips gives the baked chicken a fried crunch and salty flavor. That version was pretty plain, so I figured I could spice it up. Literally.

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Think of all those different potato chip flavors: salt & cracked pepper, BBQ, sour cream & onion, jalapeño…the list goes on and on. My first attempt consisted of salt & cracked pepper Kettle Chips and leftover Flaming Doritos (yup, corn chips work, too). The beauty of this is that the recipe stays the same, but with many chip flavor options. You can even mix chip flavors to create something completely new. I tried mixing sour cream & cheddar chips with jalapeño chips and it worked out pretty well.

Easier to make than fried chicken and seemingly less fat from frying, this recipe gets plenty of oil from the chips, which is then mostly baked off. Even without an oil soak, you get the crunch and virtually endless flavor options. All this without having to worry about the leftover cooking oil, not to mention cleaning a greasy frier — that’s a win in my book.

Potato Chip Chicken

  • Prep Time: 1h
  • Cook Time: 40m
  • Total Time: 1h 40m
  • Serves: 6

What's in it:

  • 2 c flour
  • 4 c milk
  • 1 tbsp. salt
  • 1 tbsp. pepper
  • Chicken legs, thighs and breasts
  • 2 small bags of chips

How to make it:

  1. Clean chicken pieces and pat dry with a paper towel. Season with salt & pepper, cover and refrigerate for at least an hour (or brine overnight).
  2. Mix salt, pepper and milk into a shallow bowl large enough to dip chicken. Smash chips into small crumbs and place into another shallow bowl.
  3. Dredge chicken in flour to coat. Dip coated chicken in seasoned milk and then roll in chip crumbs making sure chicken is covered with crumbs. Place breaded chicken on a rack in a cookie sheet or roasting pan. Refrigerate for 30 minutes to an hour.
  4. Preheat oven to 425º. Spray the breaded chicken with an oil spray and place in oven. Cook for 30-40 minutes until the breading is golden brown and the chicken is cooked through.