Growing up, I never ate shake-n-bake, but I always thought the commercials made it look fun. The kids on the commercials always got to do the shaking part. My husband, however, ate it when he was growing up, so when we got married, I finally got the privilege of shaking that bag to coat the chicken! Whoo-hoo! Well, since I’ve been on a mission to save a bit of money and cook things a bit healthier, I decided to search out a recipe for homemade shake-n-bake. Thanks, once again, to the big “WWW,” I found one. Actually I found several, but I just used the basic recipe. According to the site I got it from, this recipe makes enough of the mix to equal 20 packets for 25% of the cost! Now don’t that just beat the socks off the stuff from the store, and better yet, you can pronounce every ingredient. In fact, you probably have every ingredient sitting in your kitchen right now.
I got this recipe (and 2 other versions of it) from http://www.easy-homemade-recipes.com/shake-and-bake.html.
4 cups flour
4 cups cracker meal or ground inexpensive crackers (I used my food processor to grind up saltines, which tastes fine, but I think Ritz crackers will get a flavor more like the store-bought mix.)
4 tablespoons salt
2 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons onion powder
3 tablespoons paprika
1/4 cup vegetable oil
Mix well and store indefinitely in the refrigerator in a covered container. Use to coat chicken, pork chops……just like Shake ‘N’ Bake and you made it!
*Note: I am storing mine in a gallon-size freezer bag and am keeping in the freezer. There is so little oil that it does not turn into a huge block of mix.
To cook with chicken:
1. Spoon out just enough mix for the chicken you are going to cook. (This recipe makes approximately 8 cups of mix. Divide that by 20, and you get 2/5 of a cup, which is about what comes in a store bought packet. 2/5 cup is between 1/3 and 1/2 cup or 6-7 tbls.)
2. Rinse your chicken under cold running water. It’s optional to cut the chicken into smaller chunks and to cut the fatty pieces off.
3. Coat the chicken with the mix. Place in an ungreased baking dish.
4. Bake at 400-degrees until the juices of the chicken run clear. If you use bone-in chicken, it will take about 40 minutes. If you use boneless chicken, it will take about 20 minutes.