Fresh Start Bariatric Cookbook: Healthy Recipes to Enjoy Favorite Foods After Weight-Loss Surgery

Baked Fried Chicken Thighs

SERVES 4 / PREP: 10 MINUTES / COOK: 35 MINUTES / TOTAL: 45 MINUTES

Fried chicken is the most popular meal ordered in restaurants in the United States, but it’s laden with artery-clogging fat and will certainly not be well tolerated by your new stomach after surgery. Try this tasty baked fried chicken recipe, which is loaded with flavor and has a crunchy coating made from cereal that will make you think it was deep-fried.

Nonstick cooking spray

1 teaspoon ground paprika

½ teaspoon garlic powder

½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

½ teaspoon ground cayenne pepper

½ teaspoon dried oregano

4 (5-ounce) boneless, skinless chicken thighs

2 eggs

1 tablespoon water

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

2½ cups bran flakes

1 Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil, and place it in the oven below a clean oven rack. Spray the clean rack with the cooking spray.

2 In a large zip-top bag, combine the paprika, garlic powder, black pepper, cayenne pepper, and oregano. Add the chicken thighs to the bag, seal the bag, and shake to coat the thighs with the seasonings. Set aside.

3 In a small bowl, lightly whisk together the eggs, water, and mustard.

4 Crush the bran flakes in a large plastic bag.

5 To bread the chicken, dredge the seasoned chicken thighs in the egg mixture, and then put them in the bag of crushed cereal. Shake to coat well.

6 Place the chicken thighs on the clean oven rack, making sure the baking sheet is directly under the chicken to collect any drippings.

7 Bake for 35 minutes, or until the thighs are crispy and reach an internal temperature of 165°F, and serve.

Post-op tip: Dark-meat chicken is slightly higher in cholesterol and saturated fat than its white-meat counterpart, but don’t fear trying the dark meat since it tends to be more moist and tender than chicken breast. After surgery, texture is very important to your ability to tolerate different proteins. Balance out this meal by serving with Mashed Cauliflower (here) and your choice of vegetables.

Per Serving (1 chicken thigh): Calories: 272 Total fat: 8g Sodium: 279mg Total carbs: 15g Sugar: 3g Fiber: 3g Protein: 35g

Post-Op Servings

image ½ chicken thigh (2 to 4 ounces) image 1 chicken thigh (4 to 6 ounces)