Acne Safe Crispy Fried Chicken - Beach Beauty Bar and Acne Clinic
chicken sandwich - acne safe fried chicken

Acne Safe Crispy Fried Chicken

For many, the smell of fried chicken incites a trip down memory lane. That greasy (and oh, so good) scent brings to mind a feeling of cozy comfort and Sunday dinners with Grandma. For me, it triggers memories of ordering a box of Kentucky Fried Chicken at the local drive-thru. I remember my friends loving that crispy fast food.

Now that I’m older I’ve learned to avoid the drive-thru – not just for my health, but because it’s much more delicious (and empowering!) to cook at home.

But the question remains:

Is fried chicken safe food for people who have acne-prone skin?

The short answer is no. The long answer is with caution.

Fried food like donuts, French fries, chips and chicken are loaded with saturated fats and refined carbohydrates, which in turn make your skin produce more oil.

More sebum on your skin, results in more acne.

Choose Your Oils Carefully!

When it comes to fried chicken, there are tons of oil options available to create the crispy outer crust. But here’s where the rubber meets the road for acne sufferers.

Peanut oil, canola oil and soybean oil are huge acne triggers!⁠
And almost every fried chicken joint we reviewed (from Popeye’s to Chic-fil-e to Raising Kanes) uses one of them in their grease friars.

If you are making homemade fried chicken, choose high smoke point oils like olive or coconut for deep frying and avocado for shallow frying. Oils with high smoke points may be more stable and more healthful to cook with than those with low smoke points.

Ditch Dairy

And, what about dairy? These fried food fiascos are chock full of dairy-laden batters.

Are you wondering how to prepare fried chicken as an acne safe food?

I’m here to tell you, it’s entirely possible to enjoy fried chicken as an acne safe alternative. You just need to tweak the original recipe a little.

All you need to do is: use coconut oil in place of traditional vegetable oil or peanut oil to fry the chicken and brine the chicken in a dry rub or simple water brine as opposed to traditional buttermilk.

I encourage you to experiment and find a method that you love – We did a little experimenting too! We’re delighted to share that we found an acne safe alternative just for you!

We made a few versions of this recipe using three different types of flour:

  • Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free Flour
  • Oat Flour
  • Kosovo Flour

After taste testing all three, we found Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free Flour to be the best choice as it provided the perfect crispy crunch you want for fried chicken!

Now for the most important game changing ingredient of all — *drum roll please* — freshly made almond milk.

WOW — what a difference this step makes! If you have the time, we highly suggest adding this to your process.

You can purchase an Almond Cow (yes, that’s a thing. No, I’m not making this up.) online to help create the most delicious dairy-free milk you’ve ever tasted.

But before we get started – there are a few important details behind the success of this recipe:

(1) The Temperature Must be Spot On.

The chicken is fried at exactly 350 degrees and then placed on paper towels to drain.

(2) Coat it Twice for Crispy on the Outside, Tender on the Inside.

Double-flouring helps to lock in the juices and create a nice crunchy coating.

(3) Let it Rest, If You Can.

Allowing the fried chicken to sit and cool before eating enables the crust to stick to the chicken.

Acne Safe Crispy Fried Chicken

  • Coconut oil, for frying
  • 4 pounds boneless skinless chicken breast
  • Himalayan pink salt
  • Cracked black pepper
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 2 eggs (1 whole egg, 1 egg white)
  • ½ cup unsweetened dairy-free milk (we used fresh almond milk)
  • 2 cups Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free All Purpose Flour
  1. Heat enough oil to 350ºF in an electric skillet or fryer to cover the chicken pieces.
  2. Cut the chicken breasts in half or strips. I cut mine into chicken strips. Generously salt and pepper the chicken.
  3. Mix the eggs and milk in a bowl, and place the flour in a separate bowl.
  4. Dip the chicken in the flour, then dip it in the egg mixture and then back in the flour to evenly coat each piece. Place the coated pieces on a sheet pan as you work and while you wait for the oil to come to temperature.
  5. Place chicken pieces in the hot oil and cook until the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 170 degrees on an instant read thermometer (your best friend while cooking meat). Flipping halfway through. It took about 25 minutes for a half chicken breast. Remove the chicken with a slotted spoon and place it on a paper towel lined platter. Let it rest for 5 minutes before serving.
  6. Enjoy with a side of fresh steamed vegetables and a healthy salad.

If you love spice, I recommend adding dry cayenne pepper to the flour mixture to give your chicken a little punch! And, I absolutely love topping the fried bird in Frank’s Red Hot Sauce.

If you love fried chicken, I urge you to make your own and steer clear of ordering it out. Your skin will thank you!

Cheers to clear!


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