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Crunchy Keto Popcorn Chicken with Spicy Chipotle Aioli

You'll be poppin' these chicken pieces in your mouth like they're popcorn.
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This ultra crunchy oven-baked chicken recipe begins and ends with a very special, keto breaded crust. We use almond flour, chopped almonds, and a flaky spelt cereal to create a unique crunchy combo that adheres beautifully to little pieces of chicken. While many traditional crunchy chicken recipes use corn flakes, spelt flakes are lower in carbs and provide a toasted, nutty flavor.

Serve these bite-sized nuggets with a spicy chipotle aioli for the full craveable effect (and to get more fat).

Makes 4 servings


For the popcorn chicken:
1 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1 1/2-inch cubes
1 tsp chili powder
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
4 cups Arrowhead Mills Organic Spelt Flakes cereal
1/2 cup Bob's Red Mill Almond Flour
1/2 cup almond slivers
Chosen Foods olive oil spray
Freshly ground black pepper

For the chipotle aioli:
1/2 cup mayonnaise
Juice of 1/2 lemon
1 tsp tomato paste
1/8 tsp salt
1/8 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp chipotle powder

How to Make It

  1. Preheat oven to 425°F. Place a wire cooling rack over a baking sheet.
  2. Season the chicken with chili powder and place in a large bowl. Pour the buttermilk over the chicken, cover the bowl, and marinate in the fridge for 2 hours.
  3. To prepare the breading, combine the spelt cereal, almond flour, and almonds in a food processor. Pulse until you get a coarse meal with some larger flakes of cereal. Place in a bowl.
  4. Remove the chicken from the marinade, and press each piece into the breading on all sides. Place on the rack and spray with oil.
  5. Bake for 15 minutes, until the chicken is golden brown and reaches an internal temperature of 165°F. Remove from the oven and season the chicken with salt and pepper while it's still hot.
  6. To make the aioli, in a medium bowl, combine mayonnaise, lemon juice, tomato paste, salt, garlic powder, and paprika. Stir to combine.

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Carlene Thomas, RDN
Carlene Thomas RDN, LD is a registered dietitian, nutritionist, and culinary creator. Read more about Carlene