Oven Fried Chicken

01.17.2019

Oven Fried Chicken – all the flavors of the deep fried chicken without all the extra fat and oily mess! These chicken thighs are coated with a seasoned Panko and baked until golden brown and perfectly crisp! You wouldn’t believe how close they come to the real thing. This is how you do comfort food.

Oven Fried Chicken

Deliciously Satisfying Baked Fried Chicken

I’ve always loved deep fried chicken but we all know it’s loaded with fat and calories. This version skips the frying and is coated with lightly oiled panko, then cooked in a hot oven instead of a pot of vegetable oil.

It’s deliciously flavorful and you’ll be swooning over the crispy breading and perfectly tender chicken.

I added some spices and herbs to the Panko to build flavor and mimic color (the paprika helps give it a nice orange shade). And you’ll love the light kick from the cayenne (if you love heat feel free to add more!).

And this really isn’t difficult to make. The hardest part here will just be waiting for it to bake in the oven!

Oven Fried Chicken on serving plate with a side of mashed potatoes and green beans.

What Ingredients do You Need for Oven Fried Chicken?

  • Panko bread crumbs
  • Olive oil
  • Seasonings – paprika, thyme, garlic powder, cayenne pepper, S&P
  • Egg whites
  • Bone-in, skinless chicken thighs

How do You Remove the Skin from Chicken Thighs?

Removing the skin is actually really easy (and necessary for this recipe, you don’t want the extra oils). The skin mostly just pulls away then in areas where it sticks trim away with a sharp knife (HERE is a quick video that shows how).

Ingredients for Oven Fried Chicken

How do You Make Oven Baked Fried Chicken?

  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray a large wire rack with non-stick cooking spray and place in an 18 by 13-inch baking sheet.
  • Pour Panko into a shallow mixing bowl. Drizzle with olive oil and toss and rub with fingertips to evenly moisten.

Mixing panko with olive oil and spices in a shallow dish for oven fried chicken.

  • Sprinkle in paprika, thyme, garlic powder, cayenne pepper and season with salt and pepper to taste then toss.
  • In a separate shallow mixing bowl whisk together egg whites, salt and pepper until slightly frothy.

Dressing chicken thigh in egg white in a bowl and panko for Oven Fried Chicken

  • Working with one pieces of chicken at a time, dip both sides of chicken in egg white then transfer to Panko mixture and dredge both sides in mixture while pressing crumbs to adhere, sprinkle some over top as well and press.

Eight panko and olive oil coated chicken thighs on a wire cooling rack set over a baking sheet before baking.

  • Transfer to prepared wire rack spacing evenly apart.
  • Bake in preheated oven until golden brown and cooked through (center of thickest portion should register 165 on an instant read thermometer), about 50 minutes. Serve warm.

Oven Fried Chicken on a cooling rack set over a baking sheet.

What Works Best for the Coating?

I tested with several different ingredients for the coating. I’ve tried melba toast, cornflakes and Panko, and Panko is my favorite here. Then I opted to leave out the flour for dredging because it works fine without it here, the egg whites are the perfect “glue” on their own.

Can I Use Boneless Thighs or Chicken Breasts?

I personally prefer the bones because they add flavor, plus they take longer to cook with bone-in so you end with a really crispy coating that has a nice golden brown color. But boneless thighs or chicken breasts will work fine too.

How Long do You Cook Oven Fried Chicken?

  • Chicken thighs with bones (about 5 – 6 oz each, after removing skin) will take about 50 minutes at 400 degrees.
  • If using boneless skinless chicken breasts (about 6 oz each), cook time should be about 20 – 25 minutes.
  • Boneless thighs (about 4 – 5 oz) should take about 25 – 30 minutes.

Oven Fried Chicken

What Should I Serve with This Chicken?

Slicing into a piece of Oven Fried Chicken

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Oven Fried Chicken

5 from 5 votes

All the flavors of the deep fried chicken without all the extra fat and oily mess. These chicken thighs are coated with a seasoned Panko and baked until golden brown and perfectly crisp! You wouldn't believe how close they come to the real thing!

Servings: 8
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 cups Panko bread crumbs
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 large egg whites
  • 8 (5 - 6 oz each) bone-in, skinless chicken thighs, visible excess fat trimmed

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place a large wire rack over an 18 by 13-inch baking sheet, spray wire rack with non-stick cooking spray.

  2. Pour Panko into a shallow mixing bowl. Drizzle with olive oil and toss and rub with fingertips to evenly moisten.

  3. Add paprika, thyme, garlic powder, cayenne pepper and season with salt and pepper to taste then toss.

  4. In a separate shallow mixing bowl whisk together egg whites, salt and pepper until slightly frothy.

  5. Working with one pieces of chicken at a time, dip both sides of chicken in egg white then transfer to Panko mixture and dredge both sides in mixture while pressing crumbs to adhere, sprinkle some crumbs over top as well and press.

  6. Transfer to prepared wire rack spacing evenly apart. 

  7. Bake in preheated oven until golden brown and cooked through (center of thickest portion should register 165 on an instant read thermometer), about 50 minutes. Serve warm.

Recipe Notes

  • If your oven generally browns more than average and you find the panko coating is getting darker than you'd like you can drape a sheet of foil over the chicken when needed and continue to bake through.
  • This method will work for boneless thighs or boneless chicken breasts too. Cook time will be about half but as always test to 165 degrees in center for doneness.
Nutrition Facts
Oven Fried Chicken
Amount Per Serving
Calories 282 Calories from Fat 90
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 10g 15%
Saturated Fat 1g 5%
Cholesterol 96mg 32%
Sodium 219mg 9%
Potassium 304mg 9%
Total Carbohydrates 11g 4%
Sugars 1g
Protein 22g 44%
Vitamin A 3.8%
Calcium 3.7%
Iron 9.3%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Oven Fried Chicken
Calories: 282 kcal
Author: Jaclyn

12 comments

  • Anna Montgomery: How many oz.s of oven fried chicken does the nutritional information cover? April 21, 2019 at 6:31pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Each 5 oz piece (weight before baked). April 21, 2019 at 9:28pm Reply

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