Real Food Remedies for Cold and Flu Season

If you have a young brood at home, chances are you’re going to need to fight off ailments at some point. While most of these are acute and short lived, the odd one does require a visit to the doctor.

However, antibiotics and medication are prescribed less often today because of antibiotic resistance. There have been instances we saw the doctor and she told us to go home and rest, continue the remedies we were using, and let my kiddo fight it off over the next few days (advice I greatly appreciated). Always go to the doctor if symptoms are serious, but for more minor child ailments, take a look at these home remedies that could be beneficial!

Real Food Remedies for Cold and Flu Season

Ear Ache

Nearly every child will have an earache at some point-some are more prone than others. This can range from a mild dull ache with few other symptoms, to the ear being painful to the touch, hot and red, and accompanied by a fever and tiredness. Consider a honey and lemon warm water mixture if accompanied by a sore throat and ensure that your little rests. Seeing a doctor for tinnitus may be necessary; you can learn more about that here. Some olive oil drops may be prescribed. (We like using Wally’s Naturals.) We have found relief from ear aches using diluted Thieves and Purification essential oils on a cotton ball around the outside of the ear.

Common Cold

Colds can be picked up throughout the year, but particularly at the start of the school year and in the winter. We homeschool and the first week all the public school kids were back to school, we ended up with 2 colds in our home (germs are shared everywhere!). If your little returns home from church, the store, or school with a sore throat and congestion, make sure they get plenty of rest. A hot water bottle taken to bed can relieve chills and aches, along with a little homeopathy remedy like Cold Calm. We also like taking elderberry syrup.

For a sore throat, we love our homemade cough medicine, but an ice cold Vitamin C smoothie can offer relief when it hurts to swallow food. Our kids love my homemade smoothies (strawberries, ice, milk of your choice, baobab powder, and a dash of vanilla, maybe a little stevia).

A soup made from warm bone broth, with plenty of tender veggies to boost your little one’s immune system is a great dinner (or any meal). We like to drink it from a mason jar when we are fighting illness. It is a good immune supporter, and helps coat the gut (where most of our immune system lives) so we can get well faster. not to mention it is full of collagen and minerals!

Hayfever

In our home, hayfever is very real-there have been times when my son and I couldn’t breathe at all through our noses because of hayfever. If your child has a runny or swollen nose, is sneezing and has itchy eyes, hayfever can be to blame. Encourage them to stay hydrated, and try an allergy remedy like Borion’s Histaminum Hydrochloricum 6C.

My mother in law read changing the pillow case helps prevent laying and sleeping in the same pollen over and over-so changing pillowcases frequently, or rinsing off every night before bed in the shower (which may be difficult with very young ones). Also, a hypoallergenic pillowcase can be a good preventative. 

Being a parent is tough job- especially if your child is struggling with their health. Children tend to go through a period where they come down with every bug going around-and other times they’re healthy no matter what they come in contact with.

Try these home remedies at the onset of a rundown immune system.

 

 

Disclaimer: Some links on this blog are affiliate links; when you use those links you help support my family, at no additional cost to you.  Thank you!

Easy Dairy Free Quinoa Breakfast Mash

Easy Dairy Free Quinoa Breakfast Mash

We have been in a breakfast rut for a few months now. We have tried so many breakfast recipes for oats and quinoa, and my kids haven’t liked any of them.  Today I mashed together a few different ideas and came up with something they did like.  Well- my daughters liked … my son still prefers oatmeal and an egg sandwich.  *sigh*

The struggle of feeding 4 children real, nutritious food is real, y’all.

This makes about 4+ servings, depending on how much your children eat.  This would last us about 2 days in our house, with 2 of 4 kids eating a bowl.

Quinoa Breakfast Mash

20 minutes

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Quinoa Breakfast Mash

Ingredients

  • 2 cans coconut milk
  • 2 cups uncooked quinoa
  • 4-8 TB of Pure Grade B Maple Syrup
  • 1 cup water
  • salt to taste
  • your choice of topping- dried coconut, craisins, raisins, sliced banana, etc

Instructions

  1. Add all ingredients (exclude toppings) to a pot
  2. Bring to a boil
  3. partially cover and turn down to a simmer until most of the liquid is absorbed, about 15 minutes
  4. Serve with dried coconut sprinkled on top

This recipe is prepared dairy free, but I imagine it would be even more delicious with a pat of butter on top. =)

Disclaimer: Some links on this blog are affiliate links; when you use those links you help support my family, at no additional cost to you.  Thank you!

Dairy Free, Real Food Vanilla Cupcakes and Chocolate Frosting

I always find myself trying to convert recipes for our family’s health needs- real food ingredients and dairy free- for special occasions.  So, I wanted to share a new favorite recipe for yellow cake cupcakes with chocolate frosting!

A few tips: To make a real food powdered sugar, just grind your sucanat in a blender or food processor to a powdered consistency.  You can of course use regular powdered sugar, it is up to you!  I prefer real, pink salt but use what you have on hand.

Also, expeller pressed coconut oil will have NO coconut flavor, that is the kind we prefer in our family.   (coconut flavored eggs in the morning are not popular here!  haha)

Looking for a chocolate cake recipe?  See my post HERE

Dairy Free, Real Food Vanilla Cupcakes and Chocolate Frosting (gluten free options)

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Dairy Free, Real Food Vanilla Cupcakes and Chocolate Frosting (gluten free options)

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat or all-purpose flour (I like to do about 3/4 freshly ground whole wheat and 1/4 all purpose flour)
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons aluminum free baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon pink himalayan salt
  • 1/2 c expeller pressed coconut oil
  • 1 cup sucanat
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cup rice, almond, or coconut milk, at room temperature
  • Frosting
  • NOTES: if you are gluten free as we are now, using a gluten free mix will work well here. I like to do 3/4c gluten free flour, and 1.4c almond flour)

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350
  2. Line a 12-cup muffin pan with paper liners, or spray with nonstick spray.
  3. Whisk the flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl
  4. Beat the coconut oil and sucanat in a mixer using the paddle attachment on medium-high speed until fluffy, about 4 minutes
  5. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, scraping down the bowl as needed
  6. Beat in the vanilla
  7. Reduce the mixer speed to medium low; beat in half of the flour mixture, then all of the milk, then the remaining flour mixture until combined.
  8. Pour batter into the muffin cups, filling about half full
  9. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean, 15-18 minutes
  10. Let cool and top with frosting!

For the Dairy Free Frosting:

  • 1/4 c coconut oil
  • 1/3 c rice, coconut, or almond milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3/4 c cocoa powder
  • 3 1/2 c powdered sugar

Frosting Directions:

  • In a large bowl beat coconut oil and cocoa together until combined
  • Add milk and vanilla; beat until smooth.
  • Gradually beat in powdered sugar until desired consistency is achieved.
  • Adjust with more milk or powdered sugar if necessary for right consistency.

Disclaimer: Some links on this blog are affiliate links; when you use those links you help support my family, at no additional cost to you.  Thank you!

Homemade Cream Cheese and Whey (using kefir or yogurt)

I wrote this post before we knew our oldest had a dairy allergy- She is now 7 and still reacts to dairy. However, I absolutely *loved* making unique foods from our raw milk in the past. Maybe one day we can do it again, or try it with goat milk. =)
(2019 update- we now have our own goats and use raw goat milk without any protein problems like we have with cow dairy)
Homemade cream cheese and whey from raw milk yogurt
enjoying homemade-cream cheese filled strawberries
Would you like to make your own cream cheese and have homemade, raw whey to ferment foods with? (and sip on when you’re feeling run down? You can do that! All you need is:

 

You know … “curds and whey?” from the favorite childhood nursery rhyme? Yep- that is farmer’s cream cheese and whey!

For kefir cream cheese and whey you will need:

  • a jar of your kefir
  • a glass bowl
  • a white tea towel or a few layers of cheese cloth material
  • some way to hang your kefir above the bowl (I use a wooden spoon hanging from the cabinet by a rubber band)

1) lay your towel over your bowl
2) pour your kefir into the towel
3) pull the edges of the towel up until they are in a nice bunch at the top
4) use a big ole rubber band to tie the towel up to a wooden spoon that is hanging from your cabinet.
5) let the whey drip down into the bowl for 7+ hours. I let it go over night, or all day depending on what time I started…

After just a few minutes. see what I mean by hanging it up?

When you are done, you will have a tangy cream cheese in your cloth (that you can use for all sorts of recipes), and whey left in your bowl! Both will last weeks (6 or more for sure for the whey… the cream cheese doesn’t make it that long around our house!) in the fridge.

***Be sure when working with kefir grains that you don’t use metal. Metals can harm your grains, so you want a cheapo plastic mesh strainer, and preferably glass jars and bowls***

The cream cheese, or “farmer’s cheese” as a friend calls it, is really good if you add in a little powdered (ground up) sucanat, or sliced strawberries. You can use it for anything you use regular cream cheese for, and it is a probiotic! So good and nutritious for your gut.

You can also do the same thing with regular, plain, full fat store bought yogurt (look for Brown Cow and Stonyfield Farms brands- I have tried both and they were great). This way, you’ll know everything is fresh and made from scratch.

However, if you don’t want to make the kefir just yet, but want to try recipes that call for whey (and make homemade cream cheese) then I TOTALLY encourage you to use the store bought yogurt. It does need to be plain, full fat yogurt- no added sugars, sweeteners, or fruits- preferably organic and not ultra pasteurized.

You can use your whey to ferment foods, soak grains, and in place of milk in some recipes (like my favorite tortilla recipe by the Prairie Homestead).

A jar of whey

So, that’s how you make kefir cream cheese and whey!

What do you think? Easy enough?

If you have questions, please ask. If I don’t know the answer, I will direct you to someone that can help.

Traditional Foods: Making Milk Kefir with a Video (or two …)

This is a repost from 2013. We are still making kefir, using our goat milk and love our kefir cheese!

I wanted to explain how easy it is to make Kefir.  I read and read about doing it, but having a friend actually show me in her kitchen made it much less intimidating.

Kefir is like a tangy, drinkable yogurt.  It’s a probiotic, naturally cultured, enzyme containing yogurt-like dairy product that is amazing for smoothies, in place of yogurt for snack, can be used for soaking grains, and the list goes on.  You can also use it to get whey.

Did I mention it is delicious?  Especially with a little
Organic Sucanatand fruit on top?  =)

Lexie’s first time trying kefir- she LOVED it!

First, what you need to make kefir is some milk kefir grains

Kefir grains look like little cauliflower or tapioca grains, that turn milk into kefir!
You can have a wonderful friend give you some (because they multiply ….) or you can buy some dried kefir grains from Cultures for Health.  There are also some sold on Amazon
For about 2 teaspoons of grains, I use about 16 oz of milk.  We use raw milk from a local farm (raw milk is healthier and can actually aid in healing the gut because all the beneficial enzymes and bacteria have not been killed off via pasteurization), but any milk will work. (2019 update- we use our fresh, raw goat milk now.)
(Passionate Homemaking has a recipe for COCONUT MILK KEFIR!  I am so excited, because now I can make kefir for my little dairy allergy-havin’ Mister!  Yay)
OK, back to milk kefir.  There are two types of kefir grains: dairy and water.  Be sure you get dairy for the yogurt-like kefir.  (I want to try water kefir grains next!  But that comes after I master sourdough bread!)

So, you need:

  • milk
  • a jar
  • a coffee filter
  • a rubber band
  • kefir grains

1) Put your kefir grains in the jar

2) add the 2 cups or so of milk.

3). Cover with the coffee filter, secured by the rubber band, and let it sit for about 24 hours (24-36 hours is average. (the purpose of the filter is to keep bugs, namely fruit flies, out but still allow the fermentation process the air it needs.)

Leave the jar sitting on the counter to do its thing- try not to have it near fruit or other foods you have that are fermenting. You can also put it on top of the fridge or something, but I would forget it up there ….

The longer you leave it after 24 hours, the tangier and fizzier it becomes!  FUN!  And, if ever you leave it too long (which I have done) you just sorta scrape off the top layer of really thick stuff, and continue on like normal.

 

You can sorta see the whey starting to form “pockets” in there … that’s how you know it’s working!  Sometimes it will start at the top, other times at the bottom .. the grains sorta have a mind of their own.  =)
4) After 24 or so hours, simply pour the kefir into a plastic mesh strainer
over a bowl, so you can separate out the grains.5) When you are done, you will have your little grains in the strainer, and in the bowl you will have kefir!  Put your kefir in a jar and place in the fridge, or go ahead and use it.
6) Lastly, I take the grains and put them in a jar, add a little bit of the kefir I just made (this gets the good bacteria back in there and “boosts” the batch), and then pour in about 2 cups of milk, cover and do it all over again!

We like our kefir in smoothies, as a drinkable yogurt, and as “frozen treats,” (aka smoothie’s frozen into popsicle forms).  You can also flavor kefir in a second fermentation (like you would kombucha tea).  Learn more about that here: http://www.culturesforhealth.com/second-fermentation-milk-kefir

After they get acclimated to your milk (yes, I did just say that) they will do a great job turning the milk into kefir.

So, people joke about kefir grains being like pets … and they kinda are.

You have to keep them alive….  BUT HAVE NO FEAR!  They are so easy to keep alive.

If ever you want to take a break from making kefir, just put them in a jar or bowl, in the fridge and feed them milk every few days or so.  They need the sugars from the milk to stay alive.

They are a live organism, after all …
But with that kefir you can also make cream cheese and whey!  That post is coming soon!

Here is a 6 minute video (how embarrassing  …) on how I make kefir!

 

Replenishing Homemade Skin Cream Recipe {quick & easy}

In trying to avoid overuse of steroids and other interventions that can cause lasting effects (and be less effective the more we use them),  I have a go-to skin cream we make at home for general wounds.

Eczema Before
It is a salve with coconut oil, bentonite clay, comfrey oil and essentials oils-frankincense, lavender, tea tree. 5+years ago a lady in a natural group helped me make this recipe based off her husband’s recommendation, who was an herbalist. During a case of noro virus, my then 18mo son poopied in his sleep overnight, and I didn’t know it. The next morning his bottom was literally blistered and the skin was peeling. It was horrible!

After applying this cream that morning, the skin started healing and regenerating the same day. Within 2 days he was 85% better; there was new skin covering his entire bottom, no scabbing, no scarring, and even better? When applied in a thick layer it protected his bottom when he had to wear a diaper. (Mostly he laid on me for 3 days, sans diaper, but when he needed to sleep in his bed, which he preferred, or wanted to sit in the floor, he needed a diaper.)

This cream is amazing!

So when I saw my 8yo daughter’s hands this past week, covered in eczema, I knew what we needed to use.

Usually eczema can be traced to the gut-leaky gut to be exact- due to poor gut balance/health. However, in this case I believe it is atopic-too much hand washing, cold, dry air, and not enough moisturizing.

We are going to use homeopathy constitutions based on her particular eczema, and this cream, in hopes it will heal from the inside out, and stay gone for good. Steroid creams and prescriptions don’t work on the root cause of eczema, they sometimes quiet the symptoms without addressing the root cause of the illness/ailment to begin with.

Here is what you need to mix up for the cream:

  1. 1 cup organic coconut oil
  2. .5 cup bentonite clay
  3. 2tsp of comfrey oil
  4. 10-15 drops each: frankincense oil, lavender oil, tea tree oil (I use Young Living)
  5. Whip it up in an electric mixer for a thicker, creamier consistency. But mixing with a spatula will do, too. Store in an airtight container. That’s it!

We use this for cuts, scrapes, diaper rash, and other minor skin uh-ohs. I usually keep it in the toddler’s dresser basket, since she needs it the most! haha

I also love Young Living’s Animal Scents cream. We use this for everything, too. When we travel I throw this in my bag, and keep my homemade stuff at home. I do not sell oils from my personal stash at retail cost(plus tax and shipping), but you can sign up to receive your oils at a 24% discount, including discounted shipping, with no monthly obligation. (I do place monthly orders for our family, because I like to save my points for bigger purchases at the end of the year, but you do NOT have to do a monthly order to get the discount.)

 

I you have dry, cracked skin this winter, try this homemade skin cream! (and come back to let me know how it worked for you.)

First Steers on the Farm Go to Processing {a grateful feflection}

We have spent the last 2 years raising, loving, and caring for our big ole’ “baby cows.”

These ornery boys have been so much fun to learn the ropes of raising cattle on our little farm. They left with scratches, kisses, and lots of loves as they headed off to freezer camp this weekend.

When I think about the fretting, the tears, and the love that went into raising them from bottle babies- the 5am early mornings, the evening bottle feeds in the snow, the escaping every. single. time. my husband was traveling, I can’t help but feel sad, and thankful.

They gave me cold morning walks under the stars with my husband, at a time when we were both still homesteading-babies, learning so much (still are …), excited, and nervous.

They taught us about the first hard loss of an animal you try so hard to save (there were once 3 big ole cow babies).

They gave us endless laughter as the ran and played in the pastures as calves, and heart attacks every time they came rumbling up for scratches after they were 1500lb pounds.

They gave us something to do each day, something to look forward to (our first home raised, grass-fed beef), and something to look back on.

We gave them a lot of love, a lot of garden tomatoes, a lot of good hay, a lot of time. In return they will continue to give by feeding our young family.

After taking them to the processor yesterday, we prayed for them at our family meal last night.

I didn’t cry, but I am now.

Not because they are gone, but because when I think about all we went through with them, what we learned,  the friendships that grew just from their escaping (howdy neighbors!), the time my husband and I had together while caring for them, our kids learning about real life from these 2 huge animals while watching them grow…

I am just grateful.

First Steers on the Farm {a Grateful Reflection}

munching on sweet cubes after getting some scratches before heading off

 

 

Disclaimer: Some links on this blog are affiliate links; when you use those links you help support my family, at no additional cost to you.  Thank you!

Friday on the farm {Gardening & Meat Chickens}

After a looong winter, We are finally preparing to plant the garden. We are putting down a heavy plastic for weed control, and covering with hay once the plants get up a little taller. My husband is also setting up a sprinkler for the center of the garden that won’t require us to disconnect and reconnect hoses, sprinklers, etc.

This year we added a permanent fence around the garden to keep out the chickens, dogs, and cows (when they escape, which is monthly).

Putting in the Garden 2018

My husband made a steal stencil for burning holes into the plastic to help with more precise planting. It is really cool, and I am so thankful he is an engineer! He thinks of the coolest ideas.

The meat chickens were moved from the brooder out to pasture last week. The weather was iffy, and the first evening out there was pretty cold (36 degrees!) But they survived and feathered out quickly. Being in the pasture makes them sooo happy; they can spread out, eat bugs, and because we can move them they get a clean dry space every day or so. (It has been a week and they are already MUCH bigger than this picture.)

meat chickens 2018

We have planted new blackberry bushes, some elder berries (Eeee!), and a few more fruit trees. This year the garden will hopefully produce:

  • watermelons
  • cucumbers
  • egg plant
  • a bazillion peppers
  • 3 bazillion tomatoes
  • squash
  • asparagus (a perennial that is producing right now!)
  • and i can’t remember what else my husband planted …

I am already thinking about our fall garden! I can’t wait to do broccoli, cabbages, potatoes, garlic, and cauliflower again!

Traditional Food How To: Bone Broth {in the slow cooker}

I get lots of questions about how I make my bone broth.

I started out using a recipe from a book, but have adapted my own way of doing it since then.

Bone broth is FULL of nutrients that help heal the body and gut, & improve digestion.  Do a quick Google search for the benefits of bone broth, and you will see what I mean-gelatin, proteins, and nutrients dense, it is a favorite in our home.

Our family used it as the base of a homemade baby formula {and part 2 here} for our son with a dairy allergy, and a very messed up gut.  Every bit of me (and my husband) believes that bone broth helped heal our infant son’s gut, get him off medications, and get him healthy again, as an alternative to commercial formulas.  {I am not a doctor and what I write here is strictly my opinion, not medical fact}

We now give bone broth with a pinch of real salt during illnesses, cold season, and share with the dogs, chickens, and cats.

So if you want to replace the store bought “broths” and sodium in a square bullion cubes for a real, nutrient dense food, that is easy to make, keep reading!

  1. First, you have to get the bones by preparing a chicken, preferably from an organic grassfed chicken.  So, I make (an amazing) whole chicken in the crock pot or using my 9 Qt Le Crueset in the oven.
  2. Just cut up some carrots and onion, maybe some garlic, and any other veggies you like.
  3. I rub my chicken down with organic olive oil, Himalayan pink salt, pepper, paprika, and garlic.  But season yours however you like.
  4. Put your chicken in the crock pot (I start mine frozen so I cook it all day on low, but if yours is thawed 4-6 hours on low will probably cook it through nicely) BREAST SIDE DOWN, so it doesn’t dry out.
  5. Place your carrots and other vegetables in around the chicken.
  6. Add about 2 cups of water, and let it cook on low for 4-6 hours, or longer if frozen.
  7. About an hour before it is done, I flip it breast side up and season the breast really well.
  8. Pull the meat off the chicken bones and serve as you choose. (by itself, in soup, on pizza, in chicken salad, on a sandwich … the possibilities are endless.  And you can really make that meat stretch for some frugal meals!)

That is how you acquire your bones (and flavorful chicken for the week)!

{The great thing is, you can cook a chicken every week (say on Saturday, or Sunday), have chicken for recipes during the week (or freezer meals!), and make a new batch of bone broth every week for the freezer!}

Here is how you make (chicken) bone broth

You will need:

  • crockpot
  • water
  • aple cider vinegar
  • a fine mesh strainer (metal is better than plastic here, it is finer)
  • jars/plastic bags
  • funnel (not necessary but definitely helps the pouring process)

Your chicken has cooked and your house now smells good enough to attract passersby.  You have removed all the meat from your chicken, and are left with the bones, skin, etc.

  1. Place the bones back in the crock pot.
  2. Add a 1/4 cup of apple cider vinegar.  This will draw the minerals out of the bones.
  3. Cover the bones with water, leaving 1 inch at the top.
  4. Turn the crockpot on low, and let simmer all night.  If you are feeling really froggy, in the morning add more water and let it go another 18- 24 hours.  I usually let mine go about 2 days in the crockpot.  This will cook those bones good!
  5. When the bones are done, use a big spoon to pull out the bigger, obvious bones.  Compost/trash them, or smash and feed to dogs/animals on the farm.
  6. Pour the broth through a fine mesh strainer into a big bowl
  7. Pour your strained broth into plastic bags or glass jars for freezing.
Before the broth is strained
remove the bones, fat, cartilage, etc from crock pot
**Tips**
  • Use a pastured chicken if you have a local source; we raise our own each year.
  • When putting your bones in the pot to cook, you can add in celery, carrots, onion … any vegetables you like (just like you did for the chicken meat).  They will only add flavor and nutrients!
  • When freezing in glass jars, be sure you are using wide mouth jars, and you stop at the fill line.  I never screw my lids on all the way until it is all the way frozen, because I lost an ENTIRE huge pot of {organic, grassfed} beef bone broth to my jars busting.  Talk about devastation.  So use the right jars and I’d suggest not sealing them air tight right away, because that liquid is going to expand up as it freezes and will need room to do so.
  • Make sure you freeze your broth in amounts you will use in a recipe.  Rarely will you use an entire gallon zip lock full of bone broth, unless you’re making a soup.  I freeze mine in pint and pint-and-a-half jars.  The pint-and-a-half jars are the COOLEST jars ever. and so versatile.
  • I also add chicken feet from our pastured chickens. Chicken feet are full of gelatin, which is a nutrient dense food when found naturally from organic sources.  This will absolutely improve any broth and make it gel so well! Bone broth done correctly should gel.
  • I suggest reading about the benefits of chicken feet in broth, because they far outweigh the weirdness of seeing chicken feet in your crockpot.  =)
I use my bone broth in any recipe that calls for broth, and add it when cooking brown rice and black beans.  Talk about FLAVOR (and nutrients!).
You can make delicious, from scratch soups like this.
Your family will thank you.
And drink every last drop from their bowls.
So there you have it- bone broth in the crockpot.  When you or someone in the family is feeling sick this winter, thaw a jar and have them drink it, or make them a soup with it.
It is truly a real, healing food.
Next time I will post how I make my bone broth from organic, grassfed beef.
Have you ever tried making bone broth?  If you try this method, let me know how it goes in the comments!

Crunchy Baked (dijon) Chicken with GF Alternative

I saw the original recipe on Rachael Ray .  Her title for it was Baked Devil’s Chicken-I adapted it a bit for our family.  You may want to look at the original recipe for other ideas.

It is a deliciously spicy, crunchy fried-chicken-alternative.  The good thing is, even with the spicy dijon mustard and red pepper in the coating, my kids DEVOURED this.  And, without anything to dip it in!

Before I share the recipe, I want to share something with you.

The secret to a crispy, crunchy baked chicken is getting it up in the air- lay a cooling rack in your cookie sheet.  Place the chicken on the cooling rack so the bottoms can crisp up!

the secret to crunchy baked chicken {www.quietinthechaos.com}

 

Crunchy Baked (dijon) Chicken

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Crunchy Baked (dijon) Chicken

Ingredients

  • 4-6 chicken breasts (or any chicken pieces you'd like)
  • dijon mustard
  • For the coating:
  • panko bread crumbs
  • dried or fresh rosemary
  • red pepper
  • paprika
  • dried minced onion
  • salt and pepper
  • *I just eyeball my spices; add them to your taste. Remember you are coating several pieces of chicken. be generous =)

Instructions

  1. Set up your "stations" first:
  2. a bowl w mustard & basting brush
  3. a shallow bowl with coating ingredients
  4. Prep chicken:
  5. using a basting brush, brush the spicy brown/dijon mustard onto both sides of the chicken
  6. dip chicken into the panko bread crumb mixture
  7. flip chicken and coat other side
  8. lay each piece of chicken on rack over cookie sheet
  9. Bake at 375 for about 25-30 minutes, or until chicken is done in the middle
  10. Enjoy!

easy crunchy chicken spices

For my spices, I use an organic minced onion from Azure, dried parsley from my herb-garden-pot, my favorite real, Himalayan salt.  Also, I used panko bread crumbs because they do NOT have milk in them; the regular bread crumbs contained milk?  I like the panko- they make for a larger, crunchier coating.

 

***** For a Gluten Free Alternative: I like to keep the heels of our Udi’s GF Bread in the freezer. When I need to make GF bread crumbs, I just toss what I need in a zip lock bacg and smash with a rolling pin. You can also use dried coconut, or GF oats!

I served this to my family with lima beans and baked sweet potatoes- there were NO left overs! My 20 month old absolutely loved it, as did everyone else.

Do you have a favorite baked chicken recipe?  Please share in the comments!

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