Healthy Fried Chicken?

On the rare occasion that I allow fried chicken in my house, I am reminded of how little willpower I really have. You can stick any pie, cake or cookie in front of me, and I can pass it up without a second thought or a single regret. I credit going to Weight Watchers when I was a pre-teen for that. But something about fried chicken brings out the pudgy ten-year-old in me again. I joke with my husband that the crust has crack in it, as I pick at the microscopic morsels of yummy crispness he has left on his plate (my plate is already licked clean).

So, when I came across this recipe a few years ago, it became a staple in my house. It’s not fried chicken like Colonel Sander’s (in case you’ve ever wondered he was a real person, and you can visit his house just outside of my hometown Louisville, Kentucky). There’s no secret recipe or deep-fried crust coating a leg, breast or thigh. And it’s not even called fried chicken. Technically, it’s called chicken-under-a-brick. But I call it healthy fried chicken. It was a Rachel Ray 30-minute meal recipe that I modified to suit my family and my tastebuds. I hope you find the time to make it and enjoy it as much as my family does!



  • approximately 8 chicken thighs (bone-in and skin on)
  • 1/2 cup dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. pepper


  1. Combine dijon, olive oil, salt and pepper until oil is completely blended.
  2. Place chicken in a glass baking dish and coat with dijon mixture.
  3. Let the chicken sit for as long as you have (I shoot for an hour but it’s not necessary).
  4. Place the chicken skin-side down in a skillet. Then place a piece of aluminum foil on top (make sure it covers all of the chicken) and place a heavy pan on top of that (must fit inside the other skillet). If you don’t have a heavy pan (think cast iron skillet), you can place a weight of some sort (canned goods work in a pinch) on top of the second skillet.
  5. Cook chicken for approximately 20 minutes on medium heat. Depending on your burner, you might have to adjust the time and the heat.
  6. Remove top pan and foil. Flip the chicken and cook for another five minutes uncovered.
chicken under a brick a.k.a. healthy fried chicken
chicken under a brick a.k.a. healthy fried chicken

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