Monday, August 30, 2010

Chicken Parmesan with a Twist

I used to cater (for a brief moment in my life).

It was a way for me to make a little cash during college. I also waited tables, managed a restaurant, and ran the kitchen at a camp. I learned how to make hordes of food for, well, hordes. When I got married, we liked to have a little holiday party. Soon the holiday party became 100 people. At my house. It wasn't a problem. I like a crowd. Expensive, but not a problem. Yes, I'm a little bit weird, I know. Please don't hold it against me. My sister gets nervous having a more than three people over. I get it.

 [My husband and I have since pared our party down to just family again. It's lovely, manageable. I'm growing increasingly sane.]

Anyway, when I catered, one of my specialties was making fried chicken. Oh, how I love fried chicken!!! But because I now have to eat gluten-free, fried chicken is out. No ifs, ands, or buts. No regular flour. So I've learned to be creative. Sure, I could dredge the chicken in rice flour and fry away, but I still want something crunchy. I came up with making my coating out of gluten-free rice cereal.

And then I decided to add cheese. [I know, I know. I'm a little cheese-happy this past year.] I thought if I added cheese to the
mix, it might make the fried crust chewy.

Well, it did!

Here's my experimental recipe.

By the way, it's not just for people who need to eat gluten-free. It's delicious, if I do say so myself.



4 breasts of chicken
½ cup rice cereal
½ cup Parmesan cheese, grated

1 teaspoon basil
1 teaspoon thyme
1 teaspoon parsley
1 teaspoon ground pepper
1 teaspoon salt
1 egg whites

Mix rice cereal, spices and cheese. Spread evenly on 9x13 pan that has ben covered with foil.
Rub chicken breasts with egg whites. Press skin side down on the rice mixture.
Seal the foil and bake chicken in oven for 1 hour at 300 degrees F.
Remove from oven. Turn oven to broil. Open foil and turn the chicken, meat side up. Return to oven for 10 minutes on broil.
Serve warm.
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  1. This is an excellent recipe that I've written down and will try out tomorrow. Daughter has colitis and wheat is an issue.


  2. This is perfect. I'm adding this to my recipe collection.

  3. Fake Fried Chicken sounds soggy to me. That has been my sad experience the three times I tried to fake fried chicken. But this looks just about right.

    Aside from my sad history with baked, supposed to look like fried, chicken, the step of broiling at the end will make all the difference. I also like that you are using bone in chicken. Completes the faux fried feel.

    But me, I am seeing a boneless skinless, flattened and then cooked this way... A Faux chicken fried chicken, covered in milk gravy with a side of mashed potatoes and beans...

    I just checked my pantry. I have everything needed to make this tonight, except... I only have the confetti colored rice krispie cereal (colored rice krispie treats last time the nieces visited). One of two things will happen, either it will not matter, as the rice will brown no matter what colors, or... the colors will bleed into the meat and it will be incredibly funky looking (probably not a good funky).

    "fried" Chicken Parmesan, it's what's for dinner!

  4. I'm with Dave. We make a lot of fried chicken down here, but we're trying to eat healthier. But I've been disappointed with the results of the faux fried chicken I've made. This looks crispy! I'll give this one a go, Avery! Thanks. :)

  5. Okay, down to details, when you say "rice cereal," what brand do you use? Rice Chex? Or one of the brands in the GF aisle?

    Friend of mine just gave me a can of GF cornflake crumbs--if they work for fried chicken and fish, I'll let you know.

  6. Count me among the folks who don't mind soggy skinned chicken. Heck, I even like it. Not to say that I don't like crispy. I guess I just like it all. This one is most definitely worth trying and I'll be interested too, to know what rice cereal you prefer to use.

    Great, Avery!

  7. Wow, what a lot of comment so early. It's only 6 a.m. on the west coast. Welcome to all of you. I used General Mills Rice Chex (which are now Gluten-Free). I have also used Barbara's GF Rice cereal (which I prefer as an eating cereal).

    Year on the grill: not sure about those colored cereal LOL, but I would bet Rice Krispies will work. They do have a little malt in them, so they're not 100 percent gluten-free. But the Krispie-ness will probably stay.

    Can't wait to hear back from all of you with results!

  8. This looks delicious! We're big fried chicken
    fans, but this looks SO much healthier. Thanks, Avery.

  9. Great ideas here. My mother used crushed cereals in certain recipes -- I think it's a great secret ingredient, depending on what you're going for. Can't wait to try it -- and I enjoyed your tale of feeding masses of people and loving it! :)

    ~ Cleo
    Free Coffee Drawing LIVE today at 7 PM (Eastern)
    Cleo Coyle on Twitter

  10. This one looks yummy. Actually everything here looks yummy. :-) Will definitely be giving it a try, although at the moment all I have are boneless, skinless breasts and no rice cereal. However, I don't have any gluten issues, and I do have Panko bread crumbs.

    Terry's Place
    Romance with a Twist--of Mystery

  11. I haven't had a lot of luck with oven fried chicken, either. I'm dying to hear about that colorful chicken Dave will be making! LOL! Obviously, broiling it at the end is key. Great idea, Avery!

    ~ krista

  12. I have also done oven fried catfish with Rice Chex with great success! Next time I'm going to add Parmesan for sure!!! Thanks so much, Avery!

  13. Using fish is a great twist!

  14. I will be posting this soon, but I did indeed make this. Small changes (I pounded the breast for even thickness, and used Rice Krispies, so not gluten free).

    As a baked chicken dish, it is TERRIFIC. still not fried chicken (baked), but amazingly great as a baked chicken dish.

    Well done!