Recipe: Paleo Chicken Schnitzel

Chicken Schnitzel is pretty much the national dish of Australia (perhaps after pie?), which is funny, because if you ask for chicken schnitzel in the UK people think you’ve come straight from the 1970’s.

The only problem with chicken schnitzel is the ingredients. This is what’s in a fairly standard one I saw in the supermarket:

Chicken (52%), Water, Buckwheat Flour, Wheat Flour, Thickener (1404, 415, 1442), Salt, Dehydrated Vegetables (Onion, Garlic), Herbs (Parsley, Rosemary, Thyme, Sage), Spices (Pepper), Wheat Gluten, Yeast, Egg Albumen, Sugar, Colours (150a, 100, 160c, 160b), Dextrose (Tapioca, Maize), Mineral Salts (450, 500), Canola Oil, Cottonseed Oil, Soy Protein, Thickener (1404), Yeast, Vinegar, Iodised Salt, Soy Flour, Emulsifiers (411, 481, 472E), Vitamin (Thiamin, Folate), Vegetable Gum (412), Hydrolysed Vegetable Protein, Wheat Cereal, Flavour Enhancer (635)

Quite alarming when the chicken element in your chicken is barely 50%, don’t you think? Also “chicken” doesn’t really tell you too much, I think we can assume if it doesn’t say free-range, it’s almost certainly not the type of chicken I’d choose to buy. So you know what this means? Yes – it means a paleo chicken schnitzel recipe is called for!

Recipe: Paleo Chicken Schnitzel
Recipe type: Poultry
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
  • 2 free-range chicken breasts
  • 1 cup tapioca flour
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 cup almond meal
  • ½ cup coconut flour
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • ¾ teaspoon paprika
  • ¼ tsp ground coriander
  • ¼ tsp ground cumin
  1. Preheat your oven to 230C (450F) if you’re going to oven bake rather than fry
  2. Slice the chicken in half width-ways, creating two thin pieces and pound with a rolling pin (or, if you have a better equipped kitchen than me, a meat tenderiser) until it’s super thin. If you don’t want raw chicken flying around your kitchen, you can wrap it in gladwrap/ cling film for this step. You can keep whole and have proper schnitzels, or slice into strips like I did.
  3. Put the Tapioca flour (or you can use arrowroot flour if you don’t have tapioca) in a bowl, and the egg in a separate bowl. Tip – fill up the Tapioca bowl as you use it to avoid waste.
  4. In another bowl, mic together the almond meal, coconut flour, seasoning and herbs/ spices. I tend to do this in small batches too, to avoid being left with an eggy mess of excess crumb mixture I’ll have to throw away.
  5. Now for the fun part. Dip the chicken pieces in each bowl, turn by turn: start with the tapioca layer, then the egg layer and end with the crumb mixture. Maybe it’s just me, but I find this turns into a huge mess, so small batches of the dry bowls will help here.
  6. You now have a choice and whilst most people will choose to fry, I find I get far better results oven baking. The crumb is evenly golden with the inside cooked but tender. But give both a try and see what works for you.
  7. If you’re oven baking, arrange on a baking tray and cook for about 20 minutes. I always cut into the chicken in a couple of the thickest places to ensure there are no pink bits left. If you’re going to fry about 8-10 minutes in a hot pan in some coconut oil should do the trick – just make sure you turn them a couple of times.


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Do you have a gluten-free paleo version of this recipe that you use? I'd love to hear your secret ingredients!

Cooking paleo recipes with almond flour almond meal

Cooking paleo recipes with almond flour

If you've done much paleo cooking you'll have noticed lots of recipes call for almond flour or almond meal. With flour a no-no, almond flour is a great alternative.

Cooking paleo recipes with almond flour almond meal

What's the difference between almond meal and almond flour?

Simple – almond meal is darker in colour because it is made with almonds with their skins on. Almond flour is made with blanched almonds.

I prefer cooking with a more finely ground almond flour/ meal as I find it a lot lighter. Another thing to bear in mind, is that if you're substituting conventional flour for almond flour, you'll need to watch the temperatures – you'll probably need them a lot lower.

Make your own

You can make your own almond flour by blanching almonds and grinding them -but be careful not to over grind, or you'll end up with almond butter. To get really good results (like shop bought almond flour), you'll need a grain/ nut mill, like this. If that's too much like hard work, you can buy your almond flour or meal ready to use. Remember – buy in bulk to save money – the small packs are really expensive.

paleo recipes almond meal flour discount promo code iherb

Substituting flour for almond flour

Unfortunately it's not as simple as substituting one cup of white or wholemeal flour for one cup of almond flour. Almond flours lack the starch and gluten SAD flour has, which may mean you need to consider adding some sort of binding ingredient like eggs. You may also find a 1-1 substitution makes your recipe turn out too dense.

Storing almond flour

As this is an oil based flour, you need to make sure it doesn't turn rancid (if it does,throw it away). I store mine in the freezer, but if you keep yours in a cool dark place it should be ok for several months. Another reason to buy in bulk.

Here are some of my paleo recipes to try, which use almond flour:

Paleo Diet Primal Recipe Double Almond and Black Cherry Slices Paleo diet recipe Cinnamon and molasses flax cookies Paleo Dinner Recipe Spicy Tilapia Fishcakes Crispy Coconut Coating
Paleo Diet Primal Recipe Paleo Lemon Cookie Cupcakes Paleo network pizza recipe almond cauliflower crust Paleo Diet Recipe Ginger Bread Men Man Cookies Biscuits
Crispy Spiced Chicken Thighs Paleo Diet Recipe Primal Raw Chocolate Caramel Torte Recipe Chilli Cumin meatballs mango pomegranate salsa paleo diet