So, this recipe was supposed to appear during Lent as it’s my favorite Whole30 recipe. In fact, we like it so much that it’s now a regular staple around here. The following IS Whole30, but I’ve added ingredient swaps in italics in case you aren’t
crazy doing Whole30 at this particular time.
I’m going to give you fair warning – while I follow recipes fairly closely when baking, I’m a bit, shall we say, relaxed when I cook. Over the years, my poor mother-in-law has learned that my usual measurements for seasonings in my recipes are “I just add a little, and keep tasting it.” This recipe reflects that a little bit. I tend to dislike recipes that are really specific because everyone has different tastes. Heck, I usually split the buffalo sauce in two and make Steve’s spicier than mine.
- 3 chicken breasts, cut into strips/tenders
- 1-2 egg whites
or 2 cups buttermilk
- Generous sprinkling of Seasoned Salt
start with 1-1/2 tsp, if you’re the measuring type
- 2 cups unseasoned potato flakes
- 1/2 cup ghee
- 3/4 cup hot sauce
- 1-1/2 tablespoons ketchup (unsweetened for Whole30!)
- Date Paste or Apple Juice concentrate to taste.
or honey (my preferred sweetener for this recipe, though not Whole30)
If you’re using buttermilk, whisk in the seasoned salt and soak the chicken in it for at least 3 hours, or as long as overnight. Place the potato flakes or bread crumbs in a shallow pan/dish/plate. Remove the tenders one at a time from the buttermilk, allowing any excess to drip off. Coat in breading of choice, and let sit on a cooling rack for about 10 minutes.*
If you’re using egg whites for Whole30: Whisk the seasoned salt into the egg white in a shallow dish or plate, and place the potato flakes or bread crumbs in a second pan/dish/plate. Dip the chicken in the egg white and allow the excess to drip off, then dredge in the potato flakes. Place them on a cooling rack to sit for about 10 minutes. *
While the chicken sits, it’s time to make the buffalo sauce! For this, combine hot sauce, ketchup, butter (or ghee) and the honey, date paste, or apple juice concentrate in a pan. I like my buffalo chicken sweet, so I use just under a quarter cup of honey or date paste, and almost a half cup if I’m using juice concentrate. If you want it spicy, don’t use any. In the middle? A tablespoon or 2.
Heat the pan over medium-low heat until butter has melted and whisk to combine all the ingredients. This is where you taste test, and adjust the sweetener or hot sauce however you want.
Place 1/4 cup cooking oil in a pan over medium heat. Wait until oil is hot, and cook the chicken tenders 2 and a half minutes on each side. Coat chicken in the Buffalo sauce, then place it on a cooking sheet in the oven to keep warm while you finish the rest. After every 2 batches, wipe out the frying pan and add another 1/4 cup of oil to keep the little brown bits that come off the chicken from burning and sticking to the chicken.
So, there you have it. Our favorite Whole30 recipe, now that we’re done with Whole30. A little clean eating never hurt anyone, though, and this is still a favorite even though we’ve returned to “normal” foods!
*The resting time is important! I have a wonderful chicken parm recipe from the “America’s Test Kitchen” cookbook that we loved – – except I could never get the breading to stay on. Well, in re-reading the recipe a few months ago (after using it for 7 years) I realized I was skipping the resting step. It works like a charm! No more breading slipping off the meat.