Shake and bake chicken is super tasty, insanely versatile, and crazy easy to make.
So basically, it ticks all the boxes and then some.
Between the crispy skins, the tender and juicy meat, and the sensational flavors, this dish is purely phenomenal.
Also, it couldn’t be more straightforward.
You just mix, shake, and bake. It shouldn’t take more than a few minutes and you’ll get the most glorious chicken dinner on the planet.
As a bonus, it’s also healthier than fried chicken.
Sure, it has a bit of butter, but the fact that it’s baked, not fried in tons of oil, means it has fewer calories than the deep-fried classic.
That’s what I call a win-win!
Shake and Bake Chicken Recipe
The original Shake N Bake is a spice mix made of flour, spices, seasonings, and a bunch of other ingredients that are hard to spell and pronounce.
That’s why I decided to make my own mix – to control what ingredients go into it, so I know it’s healthier.
Plus, this homemade dry spice mix is super convenient and so much more economical.
You’re probably wondering – does it taste the same, though?
Call me biased, but I think it tastes so much better!
My shake and bake chicken is perfectly salty and savory with mild hinds of earthy and spicy flavors.
Don’t believe me? Try it for yourself!
- Chicken – The main event. I use bone-in chicken pieces in this recipe, but feel free to use any cut. Just keep in mind that the cooking time will vary depending on the size of the meat.
- All-Purpose Flour – Coating chicken in flour gives it an extra layer of crispiness once baked.
- Spices and Seasonings – I use a blend of salt, paprika, sage, and ground black pepper for my own version of shake and bake. I use regular paprika, but you can also try sweet or smoked paprika for flavor variation.
- Butter – for a wonderful boost of flavor.
How to Make Shake and Bake Chicken
Making shake and bake chicken only requires three main steps, and they’re not that hard to follow:
1. Make the breading. In a large, resealable bag, combine the flour and spices.
2. Shake. Coat the chicken pieces in breading by placing them in the bag and giving it a shake.
3. Bake. Place the chicken in a baking pan with melted butter, and bake!
Tips for the Best Shake and Bake Chicken
This recipe really is as easy and 1-2-3, but I’ve still got a few tricks up my sleeve to guarantee you get the best results.
Getting the Breading to Stick to the Chicken
Most breaded chicken recipes call for beaten eggs, which act like glue for the breadcrumbs to stick to.
This isn’t the case for shake and bake chicken.
So, to ensure the breading sticks to the chicken, pat them dry with clean paper towels after you rinse them. The drier the surface, the more the breading will stick.
Another alternative is to lightly coat the chicken with canola oil. Not only will it make the breading adhere properly, but it’ll also make the chicken skin extra crispy.
Using Other Cuts of Chicken (+Cooking Times)
The instructions on the original Shake N Bake box suggest using the seasoning mix with various cuts of chicken.
So, try it with thighs, legs, wings, breasts, or a combination of them all. You can even use pork chops, too!
Just keep in mind that the cooking time will vary depending on the cut of the meat and whether they’re bone-in or boneless.
Oh, and if you’re wondering about frozen chicken breast recipes – this isn’t one. You’ll need to thaw the chicken first, or the breading won’t crisp up.
Use this table as a guide:
|Cut of Meat||Type of Cut||Cooking Time||Oven Temperature|
|Chicken Thighs||Boneless||25-30 minutes||400 degrees Fahrenheit|
|Chicken Pieces||Bone-In||40 minutes||400 degrees Fahrenheit|
|Chicken Breasts||Bone-In||45-50 minutes||400 degrees Fahrenheit|
|Chicken Breasts||Boneless||30-35 minutes||400 degrees Fahrenheit|
|Chicken Tender and Nuggets||Boneless||15-18 minutes||400 degrees Fahrenheit|
|Pork Chops||Boneless||20-35 minutes||400 degrees Fahrenheit|
|Pork Chops||Bone-In||35-45 minutes||375 degrees Fahrenheit|
Flip the meat over midway through to ensure even baking.
To test for doneness, stick a thermometer into the center of the meat. Cooked chicken has an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit; for pork chops, it’s 145 degrees Fahrenheit.
More Tips and Tricks
- No Ziploc, no problem. You can use any large mixing bowl to dredge the chicken in the breading.
- Shake and bake chicken is best served immediately. The longer it sits, the more the skin gets exposed to air, softening it. But, do give it 3 minutes of resting time post-baking to allow for the juices to redistribute throughout the meat.
- The great thing about making your own shake and bake mix is that you can literally make it your own. Feel free to adjust the measurements and add or omit spices according to what your taste buds tell you!
- Some recipes require seasoning the chicken with salt and pepper before coating it with breading. I don’t find it necessary because the breading is already flavorful enough, but it’s totally up to you.
Air Fryer Shake and Bake Chicken
Healthy is in!
If you want to enjoy crispy and juicy shake and bake chicken without using all that butter, all you need is an Air Fryer.
1. Spray the Air Fryer basket with oil to prevent the chicken from sticking. Or use some parchment paper cut to size.
2. After dredging the chicken with breading, arrange them in a single layer in the Air Fryer basket or on the tray. Be sure the pieces don’t overlap to promote air circulation. Cook in batches if needed.
3. Air Fry the chicken for 24 to 28 minutes at 380 degrees Fahrenheit. Flip the pieces halfway through to ensure even cooking.
What to Serve with Shake and Bake Chicken
- Serve the chicken with your favorite dipping sauce. I love this dish with BBQ sauce, Ranch dressing, and honey mustard. I also like it with bleu cheese dressing, if I’m feeling fancy. Be sure to have ketchup, too, for the kids!
- For the ultimate comfort food, serve shake and bake chicken with the best mac and cheese. The creamy pasta will balance perfectly with the crispy chicken skins.
- If serving for breakfast, shake and bake chicken MUST be paired with waffles, with maple syrup on top. I think honey would work too, especially hot honey!
- Give the savory dish a sweet contrast with moist cornbread. It’s a traditional southern-approved combination.
How to Store and Reheat Shake and Bake Chicken
Refrigerate for Four Days
Wrap leftovers with foil or place them in an airtight container. Then, refrigerate for up to 4 days and reheat as instructed below.
Or, enjoy it cold, straight from the fridge!
Cold shake and bake chicken makes a great topping to a garden salad too.
Freeze for Up to Three Months
If you want to keep shake and bake chicken around longer, pop it in the freezer. Wrap leftovers with foil and freeze for up to 3 months.
Alternatively, freeze the pieces on a baking sheet for 2-3 hours, or until frozen solid. Then transfer them into a freezer-safe container.
Reheat in the Oven for Best Results
Place refrigerated chicken in a casserole dish and cover the dish with foil. Bake for 10 minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
Do the same for frozen chicken, but increase the temperature to 375 degrees Fahrenheit and bake for 30 minutes.
You can also reheat leftovers in the Air Fryer:
- 4 minutes at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for refrigerated chicken
- 16 minutes at 325 degrees Fahrenheit for frozen chicken
More Chicken Recipes You’ll Love
A Guide to Cooking Time:
|Chicken Thighs||Boneless||25-30 minutes|
400 degrees Fahrenheit
|Chicken Pieces||Bone-In||40 minutes|
|Chicken Breasts||Bone-In||45-50 minutes|
|Chicken Breasts||Boneless||30-35 minutes|
|Chicken Tender and Nuggets||Boneless||15-18 minutes|
|Pork Chops||Boneless||20-35 minutes|
|Pork Chops||Bone-In||35-45 minutes||375 degrees Fahrenheit|
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