Jul 10, 2010

Recipe Review: Crunchy Oven 'Fried' Chicken

Hello and welcome to the weekend! Today I thought I'd do something a little different. I don't know about you, but I always see those thirty second commercials on TV, especially while watching The Food Network, that spotlights a simple recipe featuring a particular product. I've seen quite a few of them and always think, I need to try that one day. Well, I did just that and thought i'd share my results with you.
The recipe I tried was FRENCH'S(R) CRUNCHY ONION CHICKEN and the product they were featuring was the French Fried Onions. Since I am always looking for alternatives to frying foods, I was anxious to try it. Take a look at the recipe:

  • 2 cups (4 oz) French's Frid Onions
  • 2 tbsp all purpose flour
  • 4 (5 oz) boneless chicken breasts (Or you can use tenders)
  • I egg, beaten

Place French Fried Onions and flour into plastic bag. Lightly crush with hands or rolling pin. Transfer to plate.

Dip chicken into egg, then coat with onion crumbs, pressing firmly to adhere. Place chicken on baking sheet.

Bake at 400' for 20 minutes or until no longer pink inside.

See, I told you it was simple!! OK, now on to my results. First I'll start with the positives:
  • Like I said, its a very simple and quick recipe, especially for busy people
  • Very few ingredients. No need to purchase special stuff you normally don't use. (I hate that!)
  • If you have a toaster oven, like I do, you can use it instead of heating up a large oven, especially in this heat! And there's no splatter like when frying chicken on the stove top.
  • The onions did give the chicken a nice flavor
  • Easy clean-up. I used aluminum foil on my baking sheet so I didn't have to scrub baked-on coating from my tray.
Now for the negatives:
  • I thought the coating was going to be crunchy, like the title implied. However, it really wasn't. It certainly did't look like the picture, especially after slicing it the way they show in the photo.
  • Although it did have good onion flavor, it was a little too moist making it not stick to the chicken well at all. I even left my coating a little more coarse, thinking ahead that it would help with this, but it really didn't matter. I'm thinking the onions soaked up the egg too much and thats where the moistness came from.
  • The recipe didn't mention turning the chicken half-way through baking, but if I were to make this again, I definitely would because the bottom side coating was, I hate to say it, soggy.
  • Although the chicken did have some good onion-y flavor, I would definitely season it with at least salt and pepper, maybe some paprika or whatever you like before coating with the onion/flour mixture the next time. As you know, chicken is bland and really needs spicing up.
Well, those are my thoughts on this recipe. Even though I didn't love it, I wouldn't say I hated it either. I think I will attempt this dish again, making some distinct changes along the way. I like the idea of baking the chicken instead of frying, both for healthy eating reasons along with the cleanup points, but if you like your chicken crispy, maybe frying is the way to go. Your just not going to get that crunch this way, unless you leave the chicken in much longer, but then you take the chance of having dried out chicken when you're done, and who wants that?

To sum it up:

I will give this one another try. Hopefully, with the changes I will make, it will be better next time. FRENCH'S(R) has a great website where they feature this recipe and it even includes a step-by-step video. You can find it here. If you choose to try this recipe, I'd love to know how it worked for you. I followed the recipe the way they had it so I would have comparable results. All in all, if I were to use the same rating system as I do with my books, I would award this recipe 3 out of 5 stars.

This post is part of Weekend Cooking, a weekly event hosted by Beth Fish Reads. Please stop by and see all of the other food-related posts featured today. I hope you'll come back next Saturday for another recipe review!


  1. Hmm, it looks delicious but I'm sorry to hear it came out a little soggy. That's a disappointment. Have you ever tried panko breadcrumbs on your oven "fried" chicken? We bake scallops with panko and they come out with a little bit of crunch and totally yummy!

  2. I always have trouble making the coating stick on a recipe like this - I just can't figure out the trick to it. I think I've tried a recipe similar to this one and it wasn't crunchy either.

  3. I'm always afraid of making recipes with these kind of coatings... they always seem to #fail :(

    Had a falafel disaster here just the other day! LOL

  4. This sounds like it has potential though. I hate that sogginess on the bottom. Yuck.

  5. This sounds interesting...if we could get Durkee's friend onions here I would try it.

    I have an even easier coating for oven baked chicken...Kellogg's Corn Flakes. This is an old time 1950s recipe. Just wash your chicken pieces (you can dip in milk if you want to-I don't bother), crush corn flakes in a plastic bag, add some garlic powder, salt and pepper, toss in the chicken to coat and put in the oven pan. The crumbs get wet so crush only enough for about half the chicken pieces then crush fresh corn flakes. The more you crush the Corn Flakes the better it is (In the US, you can buy crushed Corn Flakes) Bake about 45 minutes at 350 F or 175 C.

  6. There is always that risk with a new recipe, isn't there?! I have had similar experiences with getting coatings to stick and then being soggy--I like the idea of Panko crumbs--they seem like a crisper lighter option. I sure like the baking part of the recipe as fried chicken mess drives me crazy!
    Have a happy weekend!

  7. I like how you listed both the positives and negatives with the recipe. Sound like it might work with just a couple changes.

  8. maybe I will stick with my old time Shake and Bake.

  9. Chicken strips are one of my favorite things to eat. I might try this with your suggestions and see how they turn out!


Thank you so much for taking the time to leave a comment! I look forward to hearing from you again soon!