This Deviled Chicken recipe is spicy, smoky, and just a little bit tangy. It's one of those recipes that's super easy but also absolutely mouthwatering with that 1950s style panache. Buttered bread crumbs are added to the top and bake up golden brown and crunchy.
In the 1960s you didn't hang around the house on nice days, at least not in my family. Especially if it was the weekend! The car was packed and you'd head out to "the country" to have a picnic. Back then, even in the most urban areas, the "country" was only a few miles away.
Since we lived in the Philadelphia area we almost always headed for New Hope. It was decades ago so I don't know how it is now but you could whip out your picnic blanket right on the grassy shoreline of the Delaware river and people-watch while you ate. It was the height of the hippie movement and for some reason New Hope was the Haight-Ashbury of our area so the people-watching was superb. I loved to watch them walk by, long hair, fringed vests and purses, and love beads blasting out their identity as Flower Children. We'd eat whatever Mom had packed (usually cold chicken of some sort) and then Dad and I would play Frisbee until the sun went down or the mosquitoes got too friendly, whichever came first.
Mom later admitted that it had been almost impossible to steer clear of the couples practicing free love publicly on those same grassy banks. She was afraid that I would have a full understanding of where babies came from by the time I was 7. My parents must have been really talented at it because I cannot remember seeing anyone doing anything interesting -- at least not like that.
When my mom made her deviled chicken recipe for picnics she left of the breadcrumbs. If you are not picnicking then for sure add them -- they give a nice crunchy texture to the tender chicken and the butter softens that sharp tang of the vinegar.
The dish is traditionally made with bone in chicken parts but I use chicken breast because it's what my family likes. Because the breast can be dry I have added a step to the original recipe and marinate the chicken for about an hour in buttermilk mixed with just a few drops of hot sauce. This ensures that the chicken is tender and juicy. If you forget to set aside the time to do this step then you can just carry on with the recipe without marinating.
Deviled Chicken RecipePrint Add to Collection Go to Collections
- 1 cup buttermilk
- Few drops of Louisiana hot sauce
- 2 pounds of skinless chicken, (about 3/4 pound per person if using bone in chicken)
- 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon vinegar
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon chipotle powder, , optional
- 1 cup soft, , fresh breadcrumbs
- 3 tablespoons melted butter
- Add the hot sauce to the buttermilk and stir to blend.
- Marinate the chicken in the buttermilk for one hour.
- Preheat the oven to 375F.
- Grease a casserole dish and set aside.
- Remove the chicken from the buttermilk mixture and pat dry.
- Place the chicken in the casserole dish.
- Mix the mustard, vinegar, honey, paprika, salt, and chipotle and brush over the chicken, coating it well.
- Place the chicken in the pan.
- Cover with the crumbs.
- Drizzle with the butter.
- Bake at 375F for 20 minutes (for breasts) or until the meat registers 160F on an instant read thermometer.
- Let stand for about 5 minutes before serving.
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