Cliff’s “I Have No Fear of Cholesterol” Potato-Chip Chicken

This chicken recipe strikes me as appropriate for July 4. Something about its excess of fat and good nature is very American.
I was inspired to seek out this recipe by Ginny Ray, my editor at the Shelburne Falls and West County Independent. (This long name represents a very small paper. It’s a good paper as well as a small one, however.)
Ginny told me that Cliff and Kelly Phillips are making a culinary splash these days in Shelburne Falls, Massachusetts, with Cliff’s Smokin’ Backyard Barbecue. Every Friday night they offer a special meal at the local VFW post, and in warm weather one can find them there on other days as well offering simpler fare. 

Cliff parks a huge smoker outside the VWF building and generates wonderful smells. I was fortunate enough recently to buy some of his pulled pork.

I asked Kelly for a recipe, and she responded with a family favorite that she described as “yummy in your tummy.” The secret ingredient in Cliff’s chicken recipe may surprise you. In fact, I had never purchased Miracle Whip before making this dish. Overseas readers may not even be familiar with it! Basically, it’s a lot like mayonnaise. It’s sweeter, however, with extra vinegar and spices. 
I admit that I strayed from the recipe A LITTLE when I made it. I had no onion or garlic powder so I used the real things (very finely chopped) and added a few dried herbs. I think Creole seasoning might be nice in the sauce, too.

Cliff’s chicken came out just a little crunchy and very moist indeed, thanks to its high fat content. I wouldn’t make it again immediately: although you might not guess it from reading this blog, I do try to keep my diet reasonably healthy. The chicken is a fun occasional dietary extravagance, however.

The Chicken
1 cut-up chicken
1 cup Miracle Whip (plus more if needed)
1/2 to 1 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
hot sauce to taste
1 large bag potato chips, crumbled (These can be any flavor you like; Kelly says ridged ones work best. I used about half of a 14-ounce bag, but one could use a few more, I suppose!)
Pat the pieces of chicken dry. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. In a mixing bowl combine the rest of the ingredients (except the potato chips), adjusting for taste with the pepper and hot sauce.
Coat the chicken pieces with this mixture and then roll and press well into crumbled chips. Arrange them on a baking sheet, making sure not to overcrowd.
Bake the chicken for 35 to 40 minutes, until the chicken juices run clear. 

Serve with your favorite salad and barbeque sauce. Serves 4 to 6.

Happy Independence Day! Don't forget to wear red, white, and blue....

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11 Responses to “Cliff’s “I Have No Fear of Cholesterol” Potato-Chip Chicken”

  1. Mattenylou says:

    Sounds good! I remember a time when every casserole was topped off with those crushed potato chips… (it was usually the best part!)

  2. Jack Estes says:

    I’ve had it somewhere, Tinky. Maybe with my daughter. Loved it.

  3. Jean Gordon says:

    I think you are giving this chicken a bad rap. Are you sure the fat from the Miracle whip doesn’t melt off the chicken along with any chicken fat occuring naturally in the chicken so that the end result is actually quite lean? At least I will tell myself this when I make it, as it looks wonderful. But like you, I’ve never bought Miracle Whip in my life. I’m a Hellmans person, or Best Foods west of the Mississippi (for those old enough to remember that oft heard explanation).

  4. I think that when it comes to ‘fried chicken’ there’s just no point counting calories, kinda like how there’s no point in looking at the Cool Whip ingredient list 🙂 I have heard of breading chicken in potato chips and have never tried it myself but I am quite sure its delicious-how could it not be? And I’ve never bought Miracle Whip either…I’m not a big mayo fan in general but my brand is Hellmans…although my great grandmother just rolled over in her grave at the thought of me not using Duke’s. This sounds great, perfect for the holiday weekend!

  5. Grad says:

    I sooo love the glasses. And I just knew you’d have something delish for this weekend. I’ve got the chicken. Like you, I don’t usually buy Miracle Whip because it’s a little too sweet for sandwiches. But in this instance I’ll get a small jar and not make any substitutions. I had to smile at EveryDayChampagne’s comment! It’s so true. Mayo brands can be sacred. I only buy Hellmans, a friend raised in the south will only buy Blue Plate, another only Dukes. One day I’m going to do a taste test. Happy 4th of July!

  6. E. Sheppard says:

    This looks delicious. I’ll bet it tastes as good as it looks. Thanks for another fine recipe.

  7. tinkyweisblat says:

    Thanks, gang! Jean, you are a hoot. I think you and EveryDay have a point. NO MORE APOLOGIES!

  8. Joe Thompson says:

    That sounds really tempting, but my doctor would probably kick me down the stairs. Nice glasses for the holiday. Happy Independence Day.

  9. tinkyweisblat says:

    Thanks, Joe, and same to you! My apologies to you and your doctor.

  10. This sounds so delicious it must be bad for you!! I think your Miracle Whip sounds like our salad cream, which comes in bottles like ketchup, rather than jars like Hellmans. A recipe using salad cream – cheese savoury sandwiches – grate carrots and strong cheddar cheese into a bowl, add a very finely chopped red onion, then stir in enough salad cream to bind. Use as a sandwich filling with your favoutite bread. Love the glasses – I hope you will have them on all day on the 4th!!

  11. tinkyweisblat says:

    It sounds very similar, Frayed. I like the savory spread idea; I may have to try it soon, along with a little pimiento cheese! Thanks for the idea.

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