They say that what happens stays in Vegas. I suppose that’s true for much of what I’ve experienced in Vegas, such as flying wine angels, girls wearing nothing but petals floating in flower-filled bathtubs, and rubbing elbows with the most famous rodeo stars, when I obviously had no idea that rodeo was even a real thing.
But not so much when it comes to chicken ‘n waffles. It was just a couple of months ago that Ben and I got our first taste of this classic, at First Food in Las Vegas. Maybe that sounds odd to some of you, but just like rodeo, it’s not something you see a lot of in Massachusetts. Honestly, it was never something either of us were too curious about either. So I don’t know what it was that compelled Ben to order it that day* but once we got our first taste, we finally understood what we had been missing.
*Actually, I do. A little birdie, about 5’2″, dark hair and dark eyes, scanning the menu and sending not-so-subtle messages like “You know, that chicken waffle thing sounds ODDLY good. Especially with the optional added egg. I mean, why is that even an option? Hey, I think I’m getting the pancakes. Chicken and waffles sounds really good though, right?”
I never thought I’d write these words, but fried chicken – real, buttermilk brined, super fresh from the frier fried chicken – is almost magical. I’m not talking about fast food bucket variety, which, sadly, is the only kind either Ben or I had ever had before (remember, kids, this is Massachusetts we’re talking about.) I say “almost” because the real magic happens when you pile it on top of a crisp, buttery, lightly-sweet waffle and
dip drown it in real maple syrup. And since I recently got over my fear of syrup touching my eggs, I was able to enjoy that part too. (By the way, the pancakes – lemon poppy with honey-mascarpone butter and white balsamic macerated strawberries – were nothing short of divine either.)
Since then, we’ve been borderline obsessed with the idea of chicken ‘n waffles and the next time Ben ordered them was while we were out with friends in Chicago. It was also during this trip to Chicago that I caught up with my friend Annelies from Attune Foods, and she invited me to participate in a Whole Grain Brunch event co-sponsored by Attune Foods and Bob’s Red Mill. The idea was simply to create a brunch-style recipe using one whole-grains product from each Attune and Bob’s Red Mill. Naturally, I was happy about the offer to team up with two gluten-free friendly companies dedicated to creating wholesome products with no extra “stuff.”
It wasn’t much longer before my vision of what to make became clear: Chicken ‘n waffles! Given my choice of Attune and Bob’s Red Mill whole-grain products, I chose Erewhon Corn Flakes Cereal and Almond Flour. Of course, my version would have a healthier spin and a little flavor twist. The cornflakes became the crispy crust on baked chicken breasts (which Ben proclaimed were “still very juicy like the fried kind”) and the almond meal went into a gluten-free sweet potato waffle.
With this new recipe in our arsenal I don’t think we’ll ever lament about the lack of chicken ‘n waffles seen on brunch menus around MA. And if you’re wondering where that egg is… we kept it “light” the first time around but when the leftovers become dinner the next night, a runny, sunny-side-up egg was a welcome addition.
Want more brunch? Please check out the other additions to the #WHOLEGRAINBRUNCH party!
Lemon-Blueberry Coffee Cake by Queen of Quinoa
Cornbread Quiche by The Roasted Root
Strawberry Frangipane Tart with Brown Butter Brown Rice Crust by FrannyCakes
Cinnamon Date Muffins by Meg’s Food Reality
Brown Butter and Cardamom Crispy Rice Cereal Treats by Zest Bakery
If you need your chicken ‘n waffles fix, you’re in luck – Attune and Bob’s have each offered to give away the featured ingredients. One winner will receive a box of Attune Foods Erewhon Corn Flakes Cereal and Bob’s Red Mill Almond Flour. To enter the giveaway, complete any or all of the following actions and leave a separate comment for each one. See full giveaway rules at end of post.
Sweet Potato-Almond Waffles with Crispy Oven-Baked Cornflake Chicken
Yield: 4 servings
12 oz boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into 4 equal pieces
1 cup unsweetened almond milk
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
1/4 cup Bob's Red Mill Gluten Free All Purpose Flour
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1 egg white
1 cup Erewhon Corn Flakes Cereal
1 cup Bob's Red Mill Almond Meal
1 tablespoon Bob's Red Mill Arrowroot Starch
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup cooked, mashed sweet potato
1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
1 tablespoon maple syrup
Extra maple syrup, for drizzling
To prepare chicken:
Place chicken in a medium bowl. Whisk together almond milk and cider vinegar and pour over chicken. Cover and refrigerate for 30-60 minutes.
Preheat oven to 375ºF. Set a wire rack on top of a rimmed baking sheet and mist with cooking spray.
Measure the flour and chili powder into a medium zip-top plastic bag and shake to combine. Place the egg white in a small bowl. Grind the cereal into a coarse meal using a small food processor, and pour the crumbs onto a plate.
Remove all of the chicken from the milk and place in the bag with the flour. Shake until the chicken is fully coated. Dip each piece of chicken in the egg white and then roll in the cornflake crumbs. Transfer to the baking rack.
Bake for 17-20 minutes, until lightly browned on the outside and no longer pink inside.
To prepare the waffles:
Mist waffle iron with cooking spray and preheat according to manufacturer's directions.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the almond meal, arrowroot, baking powder, salt and cinnamon.
In a separate bowl or large glass measuring cup, whisk the eggs, sweet potato, almond milk and syrup. Pour the wet ingredients over the dry ingredients and mix well.
Spoon batter evenly into waffle iron. Close the waffle iron and cook for 10-12 minutes, or until waffles are crisp on the outside and cooked through.
Waffles may be kept in a warm oven until ready to serve.
To serve, place one waffle on each of four plates and top with one piece of chicken. Serve with maple syrup.
Amount Per Serving
Total Fat 18.5 g
Saturated Fat 2.0 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.8 g
Monounsaturated Fat 1.3 g
Cholesterol 141.8 mg
Sodium 580.6 mg
Potassium 334.0 mg
Total Carbohydrate 32.4 g
Dietary Fiber 5.7 g
Sugars 6.6 g
Protein 32.9 g
No purchase necessary. The contest will close on Sunday, June 3rd at 11:59pm EST, at which point a winner will be chosen via random number generator. Winner must reside in the United States and supply a valid email address in the commenting form. Winner will be contacted and have 3 days to respond, at which point s/he forfeits the prize and another winner will be chosen. Winner will provide name, email address, shipping address and phone number and give me permission to supply this information to the sponsors of the giveaway items.
Attune and Bob’s Red Mill provided me with Corn Flake Cereal and Almond Meal used to create this recipe. Other Bob’s Red Mill ingredients noted were already in my pantry. No compensation was provided and all opinions are my own.