When my husband was growing up, his mom made “Wheaties chicken” just about every Wednesday, and when Jayson and I started dating, this was one of the first meals he made for me. (The first was his famous lasagne!) I don’t make this dish nearly as often as his mom did, but I should make it more often, because it’s super easy and really delicious. And best of all, the kids love it!
You can use any cut of chicken, and either leave the skin on or remove it. I thawed out a big bag of frozen hindquarters we got on sale, and made six of them. This was just enough for the five of us, plus enough for my middle son, Luke, who is a chicken aficionado, to take a couple of legs in his lunch the next day.
There isn’t a specific recipe, per se, but I’ll tell you how I made my mother-in-law’s chicken. First, I put about a cup of Miracle Whip (you could use mayo, of course, and I actually used light Miracle Whip) in a dish. Add enough milk (about 1/4 to 1/3 cup) to thin it out to be about the consistency of buttermilk. In fact, you could probably just use buttermilk if you had some sitting around. If you want, you can add a little barbecue sauce to the wet mixture, or a packet of powdered ranch dressing mix.
In another dish, I crushed a bunch of cereal flakes. This is a great job for the kids! You want the flakes to be broken up but not completely crushed. You can use wheat flakes, corn flakes, or bran flakes, which is what I used this time.
Simply coat the chicken pieces in the wet mixture, then dip in the crushed cereal flakes until completely coated. Put pieces on a foil-covered cookie sheet treated with non-stick spray. Glop any leftover cereal flakes with a little of the wet mixture and pile it on top of the chicken. This is the best part!
I baked the hindquarters at 350 degrees F. for about 45 minutes. The time may change a bit depending on your cut of chicken, and how much you are preparing. Just make sure the internal temperature of the meat reaches 165 degrees F. That was easy!
The mayonnaise/Miracle Whip base gives this chicken a nice tang, and it’s crunchy and delicious without being fried. We like ours served with a little stuffing (I actually prefer the stovetop variety) and cheesy cauliflower from the freezer section. This dinner is good enough for Sunday, but fast enough for a school night!