Gluten free crispy chicken may not sound so exciting, but this coating mix is packed with that zippy flavor you crave from the famous take-out chicken restaurant. The secret is in the coating mix, which has a base of cornstarch rather than flour. The herb and spice combination really packs a punch to liven up boring chicken. It is baked in the oven, and the preparation of the mix literally only takes a few minutes.
You will note the inclusion of baking powder (not to be confused with baking soda!) in the coating mix. This ingredient, along with the hot-start/slow-finish cooking method results in the crispiness we love in fried chicken without the oil from frying. Feel free to adjust the balance of the herbs and spices to suit your personal tastes.
Gluten Free Crispy Chicken Recipe
1/4 cup cornstarch
2 Tablespoons Hungarian sweet paprika
1-1/2 Tablespoons table salt, or to taste
1 Tablespoon dried oregano
1 Tablespoon dried basil
2 teaspoons baking powder (not baking soda)
2 teaspoons ground chipotle chile pepper, or to taste
1 teaspoon celery salt
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
Butter-flavored vegetable oil spray
3 pounds skin-on chicken thighs or legs or combination of both (chicken leg quarters also work – See Notes)
Whisk together cornstarch, sweet paprika, salt, oregano, basil, baking powder, chipotle pepper, celery salt, garlic powder, onion powder, and poultry seasoning. Place this mixture in a rimmed shallow plate.
Coat the chicken on all sides, shaking off any excess, and place on the baking rack. (Discard any excess coating mix.) Make sure none of the pieces are touching. Let rest for 15 minutes to let the coating set, then coat with butter-flavored vegetable spray.
Preheat oven to 425 F. Lightly spray the coated chicken with the vegetable oil. Bake for 30 minutes. Reduce heat to 375 F., and bake an additional 15 to 30 minutes. (Timing will depend upon the size of the pieces.) Let rest for 10 minutes before serving.
Yield: 5 to 6 servings
• I buy chicken leg quarters on sale and cut them apart myself to save on the food budget. The coating mix as specified above was enough to cover 6 drummies and 6 thighs with a little leftover.
• Skin-on chicken breast halves may be substituted for the legs/thighs. Reduce the baking time about 15 minutes to avoid overcooking. A meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the chicken breast, not touching bone, should read 165 F.
• This method works best with skin-on chicken. You can try it with boneless, skinless chicken, but I’m afraid the method might make the outer layer of the chicken a bit too tough and chewy. The skin holds in moisture. If you do try it, omit the baking powder and use an egg dip before coating. This should help retain moisture and texture.
Gluten Free Crispy Chicken Recipe Photo ©2017 Peggy Filippone