If you follow along with me on social media, you may have seen me recently mention some food sensitivity testing that I did, and the subsequent foods I've chosen to eliminate for healing my gut. With food eliminations done in this way, the intent is not necessarily to take those foods out forever or indefinitely, but rather to get rid of the drivers of inflammation and give the body a chance to rest and heal. By removing the ongoing stressors and strategically supplementing with gut healing supports and lifestyle shifts, in time you can experiment with bringing some of those foods back in and determining how well your body is really able to handle them (or not, in some cases).
Bananas were a high sensitivity for me, no big deal really, until I realized that would also include the banana's near and dear cousin--the plantain. My love, my life, my soul mate. I'm a professional at plantaining ALL the things. That's where the sorrow set in for me. So in true food elimination fashion, I made this dish to indulge in and enjoy before eliminating its key ingredients for a while. You're welcome, gut. Rest assured, this dish and I will meet again.
In the meantime, please do me a solid and make this recipe for yourself and anyone you hold near and dear. Take it a step further and tag me on social media (@ashley_castle_nutrition) so I can vicariously enjoy it too! You absolutely will not be disappointed with this dish. It's reminiscent of a very famous fast food chicken joint, including the epic magic sauce that accompanies it. This recipe is a true favorite of mine for a number of reasons. It was born out of pure and simple necessity. At the time of its creation, I had two half-eaten, nearly stale bags of plantain chips in my pantry (a true tragedy, I know. I was ashamed they even made it to that point). I also had some chicken thighs hanging out in the fridge, and thought "I bet there's a way I could get those plantain chips on that chicken and subsequently make the world a better place." And that's precisely what I did. As for the sauce, I had a half-used, nearly-expired container of coconut yogurt, and I literally threw the additional ingredients right into the container to create this luxurious sidekick. All of that to say, kitchen creativity can come from the most basic and unexpected places. In this case, it was the necessity to use up ingredients. If you've got some similar things going on in your fridge or pantry, get creative and think of new ways to use up those things. You just might surprise yourself!
Without further ado, I present to you the crunchiest, tastiest, plantainiest chicken you ever did experience. Scout's honor, cross my heart, hope to die, stick this chicken in my eye. If you don't love it, I'll give you your money back, guaranteed (DISCLAIMER: I have no say on where your money goes and if or when it returns to you. There is no actual money involved in this transaction. This amazing recipe is comin' atcha fo' FREE).
Plantain Crusted Chicken with Magic Tangy Dipping Sauce
Paleo, AIP, Gluten-free, Grain-free, Dairy-free
For the chicken:
- 4-5 pastured chicken thighs (preferred--they always stay moist) or chicken breasts (organic is OK, aim for the highest quality you can find)
- 1-2 cups finely crushed plantain chips*
- Approx. 1/2 cup cassava flour
- 1-2 pastured eggs, whisked (for AIP version, just use coconut milk to coat chicken. Your crumb won't stick quite as well, but you'll still get all the flavor and crisp)
- salt and pepper
*I use a food processor to blend the plantain and apple chips (if using) to a fine crumb. Bigger chunks are ok. You could also place the chips in a plastic baggie and crush with a rolling pin or other heavy object.
For the magic tangy sauce:
- 1/2 cup plain coconut yogurt ( I love this brand) or quality plain yogurt of choice
- 2 Tbs organic dijon mustard
- 1 Tbs raw honey
- 1-2 tsp smoked salt (to taste)
- 1 tsp fresh dill (or up to 1/2 tsp dried garlic granules)
- 1/4 tsp dried turmeric
- dash coconut aminos (approx. 1 tsp)
- Combine all of the sauce ingredients, whisking until smooth. Taste and adjust seasoning as necessary. Allow to sit while preparing the chicken. This gives the flavors time to get acquainted. The flavor gets better the longer this sits.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Set up your chicken dredging and breading station. On a large plate or shallow dish, combine your cassava flour and a pinch of salt and pepper. In a small bowl, whisk your eggs. Place your crushed plantain mixture in a shallow dish. You want about 2 and a half cups of the plantain crust. You may need more or less, depending on the size of your chicken.
- Cut the chicken into smaller pieces, roughly the size of chicken tenders. You can also leave whole if desired. Working with just a few pieces at a time, lightly dredge the chicken in the cassava flour. Use one hand for the flour and egg mixture, and the other for the plantain crumbs. This keeps it from getting extra gooey on your hands. Toss dredged chicken into whisked egg, making sure it coats every nook. Using your other hand, toss the chicken into the crushed plantains, flipping to coat completely.
- For evenly crispy chicken, place your coated chicken on a wire rack placed over a baking sheet. Make sure to oil the wire rack to prevent the chicken from sticking. You can also place the chicken directly on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
- Continue the coating process until all pieces are covered. Bake for approx. 20 min or internal temperature reaches 165 degrees (oven temperatures may vary). Check the chicken periodically while baking. You want a nice, golden brown crispy outside.
- Serve warm with dipping sauce and do the happiest chicken dance!
This one is a true winner winner chicken dinner. Sharing is caring, so wow your friends and family with the amazing flavors and textures of this dish, and be sure to let me know what you think of it!
In loving health,
Note: This post does contain affiliate links. While a little extra moolah is always nice and helps keep this blog up and running, the sole purpose of sharing these links is to help you find quality ingredients with ease and take out some of the guess work. It is my hope that your experiences in the kitchen are free of stress and frustration, and this is my way of helping you get there. I also never advocate for anything that I don't 100% believe to be a quality item. All recipes are solely mine. Sharing is caring, and I kindly ask that you give credit appropriately.