Monday, April 12, 2010

Recipes # 2&3 - Buffalo Chicken Tenders and Cheese Sticks

Hello again! This weekend I had 'the wives' (most of my husband's friends have great taste in women and so all the fiances/wives happen to get along really well so we hang out for girls night and have dubbed ourselves 'the wives') over on Saturday night for a little girl time. I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to try out some low fat appetizer recipes!!

The first is from Chef Rocco Disprito's new cookbook 'Now Eat This'. He's taken 150 of America's 'comfort foods' and has re-created them so they are all under 350 calories! These are sort of like the first recipe I posted, only these were Buffalo Chicken Tenders (not bites) and I have to say, I think I liked these better!


1 C whole-wheat flour - ok, I didn't have this so I used regular white flour*

2 1/2 C whole-wheat panko breadcrums - I couldn't find whole-wheat so again, I just used regular*

4 Large egg whites

12 Oz chicken tenders - You can find these in the meat section at the store, perfect size!

Salt and Pepper - I HATE black pepper so I didn't use this

Nonstick Cooking Spray

1/2 C Buffalo Sauce

1/2 Reduced Fat blue cheese or Ranch salad dressing


Preheat oven to 450*. Place a wire rack on a foil-lined baking sheet

Put flour in a shallow dish and panko breadcrumbs in another shallow dish

In medium bowl, whip the egg whites until foamy

Working in batches, dip chicken into the flour and shake off excess

Add chicken to the egg whites and toss to coat completely

Add chicken, a few pieces at a time, to panko and coat completely

Spread coated chicken on a wire rack, season with salt and pepper, and spray chicken with cooking spray (this is AWESOME! I helps make it extra crispy)

Bake tenders until breading is golden and crispy and chicken is cooked thru (about 14 mins)

Remove from oven and using a pastry brush, coat with buffalo sauce

Serve with dressing of choice

Ok, we LOVED these!! The panko breadcrumbs really helped make them light and crispy. That trick of spraying them with nonstick spray was AMAZING! These would also be great for moms with kiddos that like chicken fingers, but want them to be a little healthier. They really didn't take a long time, just a bit of a messy process much like the buffalo bites from Recipe #1.

At first I was a little skeptical because they weren't soaked in the buffalo sauce so I wasn't sure how they would taste. The pastry brush I used gave them a good coating down each side (I flipped them to get them coated all over) but it didn't completely coat them. I'm not sure if it would work, but possibly tossing them in the buffalo sauce might cover them better. I don't know if that would knock the breadcrumbs off, but would be worth a shot if you really like the buffalo flavor. I love it, but these were also kind of nice because they were a little lighter/milder with less sauce. All in all, I would DEFINITELY recommend this recipe!!

Nutrional info (Servings 4):
Calories: 308
Fat: 7.5 g
Protein: 31 g
Carbs: 29 g
Fiber: 4 g
Sodium: 798 g

* I didn't use the 'whole-wheat' flour/breadcrumbs so that may have affected the carbs or calories, but not by much

Recipe #2 came again from - seriously, love this website! These are a low-fat take on fried cheesesticks (which I LOVE).


4 light string cheese sticks - I used a whole bag since there were 4 of us

1 T flour - you'll need more than this*

1 c panko (Japanese bread crumbs) - more than this too*

1/2 c egg substitute (or 2 egg whites)

1 1/2 T Italian herb blend


Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Spray a baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray.

Pour the flour onto a small plate.

Cut the cheese sticks in half. Roll each cheese stick in the flour.

Place breadcrumbs and Italian herb blend in a small container with a lid or zipper-top bag; set aside.

Pour egg substitute into a shallow dish. Using one hand, roll the floured cheese sticks in the egg mixture.

One at a time, using your other (dry) hand, transfer the cheese sticks to the bread crumb mixture and shake to coat.

Using the dry hand, remove from the crumb mixture and place on the baking pan. Continue until all cheese sticks are breaded.

Spritz each cheese stick with cooking spray.

Bake for 10 minutes or until cheese is bubbly and melted.

This recipe tasted much better than I expected! I was a littler nervous when we were making these because we could get some of the sticks fully coated. But they actually turned out really good! I was surprised by how well the cheese melted also. Be careful about leaving them in too long because the cheese will start to melt OUT of the breadcrumbs and spread all over the pan!

I would recommend putting the breadcrumbs in a shallow bowl rather than a bag. We noticed by the end of the batch, the bag got wet so it was preventing the breadcrumbs from really sticking to the cheesesticks. I served them with just some Prego marinara/pasta sauce and it was a great treat. Again, the non stick spray helped crisp them up really well!!

* For the flour/breadcrumbs, I start with the recommended amount and just add more as needed

Nutrional info (2 stick serving):

Calories: 151.8
Total Fat: 2.8 g
Cholesterol: 10.6 mg
Sodium: 365.0 mg
Total Carbs: 13.8 g
Dietary Fiber: 0.6 g
Protein: 15.7 g

I also made shredded BBQ chicken sandwiches this weekend, I'll post that recipe later! I attempted sweet potato fries and burned them, so I'll try again some other time and keep you posted!

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