Buttermilk Fried Chicken Tenders (Guilt Free)

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Okay, so I’m a sucker for fried chicken.  You’d think between THE Mac and Cheese and its popularity and my love for fried chicken, I’d be a southern girl.  Not so much, but it I’m trying to prove that even girls from the frozen north can cook the good stuff.

And my twist makes this guilt-free.

These beauties leave no after-eating-fried-food, why-the-heck-did-I-eat-that?, regret.  Because of the way I fry them, you can safely and happily eat them with no remorse.

It’s coconut oil, friends.  Because of its ability to withstand high temperatures, and its myriad of health benefits, I do almost all of my cooking with coconut oil.  And no, it doesn’t make your chicken taste tropical if you buy a good, refined oil with no coconut flavor.  I use an organic, expeller pressed oil that I buy by the gallon which makes it much more affordable than off the store shelves.

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So, for about 20 tenders (I usually double so we have lots of leftovers), cut 4-5 breasts into strips and put them into a bowl with about 2 cups of buttermilk.  Just make sure they are all covered and let them soak in the fridge for at least a couple hours or even overnight.

Now, you’ll need your flour mixture.  In a large, shallow dish (I use a 9×13″) whisk together:

2-1/2 c. of flour,

2-1/2 T. seasoned salt

1-1/2 tsp. pepper

1/2 tsp. garlic powder

1/2 tsp. onion powder

1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper

1/2 tsp. smoked paprika

Lay each buttermilk-coated tender in the flour mixture and press it in there well to coat it with as much flour as possible.  You can make a whole pile at a time to get them ready for frying.

When you’re ready to fry, heat about 2-3 cups of coconut oil over medium heat in a very heavy frying pan.  I love my cast iron for this kind of project.  You want a depth of oil of about 2 inches or so, so start with 2 cups or so and then add more oil as you go as needed.

 When a bit of flour sprinkled in the oil bubbles when sprinkled in, the oil is hot enough.  Now, let me say that fried chicken is a bit of a trial kind of thing.  You have to get a feel for things.  If the oil is too hot, it will burn the outside of the chicken and not cook the insides.  So play wi th the temp a bit and don’t expect an exact science.  Another tip for frying is to not overcrowd the pan.  If you add too many tenders to the pan at once, it will bring the oil temp down a lot and slow your process considerably, so in my twelve inch skillet, I fry about 5 strips at a time.

Gently lay the buttermilk-soaked tenders in and about 4 minutes or so or until the bottom is beautifully golden, then turn it over and let the other side get nice and golden.  Remember, the times and temps are variable.  Remove golden tenders to a paper towel-lined platter and keep warm in a 170 degree oven while the rest get fried.

When you have a lovely platter of the most delicious fried chicken you’ve ever tasted warm and ready for your family, you will be thinking, that Alison is one smart girl.  :o)

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Buttermilk Fried Chicken Tenders Grocery List:

4-5 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

2 c. buttermilk

2-3 c. refined coconut oil

2-1/2 c. flour

2-1/2 T. seasoned salt

1-1/2 tsp. pepper

1/2 tsp. garlic powder

1/2 tsp. onion powder

1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper

1/2 tsp. smoked paprika

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Crock Pot Bourbon Chicken

Addie here…

I love to cook. You probably gathered that from the food blog, but I figured I’d just throw that out there.
Some days I have more time to cook, and I’ll go the extra mile and make bread and a dessert and prep things for the next days meals, but most days I have way too many things going on (hello, toddler!) and I can’t devote as much time to dinner prep.

This is a recipe for one of those days.

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This is one of those lovely meals you spend 10 minutes of your morning on and you let your crockpot do the work the rest of the day.

I have tried several different bourbon chicken recipes and have found that my favorite one doesn’t actually have any bourbon in it. You can substitute the apple juice in this recipe for bourbon if that sounds yummier to you, but we’ve tried it and prefer the slightly sweeter version with the apple juice.

You’re going to start by putting 4-6 bone in or out chicken thighs in your crockpot.

In a bowl, combine 1 clove garlic,

1/4 tsp. ginger,

1/4 c. apple juice,

1/4 c. brown sugar,

2 T. ketchup,

1 T. apple cider vinegar,

1/2 c. water,

and 1/3 c. soy sauce.

Stir, and then pour over the chicken.

Cook for 6-8 hours on low, turning the chicken thighs every couple of hours.

If they were bone in and had skin, just strain those out before you serve it up.

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We love to eat this with white rice and a vegetable.

That’s it! Seriously how easy is that? If you catch the thighs when they’re on sale it is a super cheap meal to make too!

Sounds like a win-win to me!

Bourbon Chicken Grocery List:

4-6 Chicken thighs

1 clove of garlic

1/4 tsp ginger

1/4 cup apple juice

1/4 cup light brown sugar

2 TBSP ketchup

1 TBSP apple cider vinegar

1/2 cup water

1/3 cup soy sauce