healthy, mamavation, Miss Shannan


For any of my friends who read this post, please know that the comments I am about to make are out of love. But I’ve got to tell you that your eating habits are killing me. You guys fill yourself with some rotten stuff. Please understand, I’ll still hang out with you even though your eating habits are scarry. If I occasionally look at you cross-eyed, it’s just because I watched you eat something that is bound to increase your waistline or give you heart disease. No big deal right?

You do what you want, but we’ve been trying to make sure that we teach our Tot that healty food can be tasty food. We take every chance we get to slip in a fruit or veggie. We slip spinach into his eggs, broccolli into his Mac and Cheese, mixed veggies into his Pasta. So far, he’s good with it and we hope it continues. 

We’ve also started an “At Least Try It” policy in our house. We never make him eat anything, but we do encourage him to at least try new foods.  If he spits it out, oh well, but often he’ll eat it once he gives it a shot. 

So that’s our new strategy for our friends. We’re on a mission to find healthy versions of the food we know they like to replace the crappy versions they currently consume. If the recipes are good enough, maybe they won’t even notice the healthy change until it’s too late.  If we need to go stealth so be it. One of their favorites is Fried Chicken, so lets start with this.

We really liked the upgrade and the chicken came out moist and juicy. Not greazy like the Deep Fried version.  Give it a try. And friends.  Do worry.  Try it. You might like. 🙂

  Oven-Fried Chicken


Great news – crunchy, flavorful fried chicken can be healthy. We marinate skinless chicken in buttermilk to keep it juicy. A light coating of flour, sesame seeds and spices, misted with olive oil, forms an appealing crust during baking. And with only 7 grams of fat per serving rather than the 20 in typical fried chicken – that is good news.
Servings: 4 servings
Prep: 20 mins
Total: 1 hr 35 mins
1/2 cup nonfat buttermilk
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 teaspoon hot sauce
2 1/2-3 pounds whole chicken legs, skin removed, trimmed and cut into thighs and drumsticks
1/2 cup whole-wheat flour
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
1 1/2 teaspoons paprika
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground pepper, to taste
Olive oil cooking spray


1. Whisk buttermilk, mustard, garlic and hot sauce in a shallow glass dish until well blended. Add chicken and turn to coat. Cover and marinate in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes or for up to 8 hours.

2. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with foil. Set a wire rack on the baking sheet and coat it with cooking spray.

3. Whisk flour, sesame seeds, paprika, thyme, baking powder, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Place the flour mixture in a paper bag or large sealable plastic bag. Shaking off excess marinade, place one or two pieces of chicken at a time in the bag and shake to coat. Shake off excess flour and place the chicken on the prepared rack. (Discard any leftover flour mixture and marinade.) Spray the chicken pieces with cooking spray.

4. Bake the chicken until golden brown and no longer pink in the center, 40 to 50 minutes.


Tip: No buttermilk? You can use buttermilk powder prepared according to package directions. Or make “sour milk”: mix 1 tablespoon lemon juice or vinegar to 1 cup milk.

MAKE AHEAD TIP: Marinate the chicken for up to 8 hours.

Nutrition Facts

Calories 226, Total Fat 7 g, Saturated Fat 2 g, Monounsaturated Fat 2 g, Cholesterol 130 mg, Sodium 258 mg, Carbohydrate 5 g, Fiber 1 g, Protein 34 g, Potassium 400 mg. Exchanges: Starch 0.33,Lean Meat 4,Fat 1.5

Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet


  1. We want to teach our 3 year old the same things. We also adopted the "try it" mentality. My latest "trick" is to tell her that Mickey Mouse likes it. She loves Mickey. That trick got her to eat a slice of zucchini last night! I also had to yell at my mom over vacation to not implement the "clean your plate" club with our daughter. If she doesn't want to finish her meal, she doesn't have to. I give her choices (not making a separate meal, just choices within the meal), so that she can decide what and how much to eat. I'm still trying to get over the "clean your plate" mentality. You are doing a great job, Mama! Keep it up!

  2. Love the comment! I look at what my friends eat sometimes and feel like I'm watching a horror movie, too. It's rough because you don't want to be THAT friend, the one that makes all you friends feel like crap and hate you because you're trying to save them, but it's difficult to watch them make bad choices that mean they won't be your friend as long :(Thanks for the recipe, it sounds fab!

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