Walnut Coated Smart “Fried” Chicken


1, 3 1/2 -pound chicken, cut into 10 pieces
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
1 cup panko
1/2 cup chopped California walnuts, finely chopped
1/2 cup cornmeal
2 cloves garlic, crushed or minced
2 teaspoons garlic salt
2 tablespoons paprika
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon black pepper


Place the chicken pieces and garlic in a large bowl. Pour the buttermilk over the chicken pieces and turn to coat. Cover tightly and refrigerate, turning the chicken pieces occasionally, for 2 hours .

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly oil a large, low-sided baking pan; set aside.

In a large paper bag, large plastic bag, or bowl, combine the panko, walnuts, cornmeal, garlic salt, paprika, cumin, cayenne pepper, thyme, oregano and black pepper. Shake well, or whisk, to mix.

Remove the chicken from the buttermilk allowing any excess to drip off. Set one piece at a time in the panko mixture. Shake the bag, or toss in the bowl, until well coated.

Arrange the chicken pieces on the prepared baking pan, leaving space between the pieces. Bake until deep golden brown, about 45 to 60 minutes. (An instant read thermometer should register 160 degrees F for the white meat and 170 degrees F for the dark.)

Serve hot or at room temperature with Mollie’s Chicken Gravy or Brilliant Mushroom Gravy.

Nutrition Information: Calories: 470, Total Fat: 11 g, Saturated Fat: 2 g, Monounsaturated Fat: g, Polyunsaturated Fat: g, Trans Fat: 0 g, Cholesterol: 155 mg, Sodium: 600 mg, Total Carbohydrate: 24 g, Dietary Fiber: 3 g, Protein: 67 g.

Recipe and image courtesy of the California Walnut Commission. For more recipe ideas and information about the health benefits of walnuts, visit www.walnutinfo.com.