These oven fried chicken drumsticks can be coated in bread crumbs or panko, sure. But let’s not forget crushed potato chips, cheese crackers, tortilla chips, crushed wasabi peas, saltines, corn flakes, or just about anything. The best part? You can put this easy meal together for less than $4.
Oven fried drumsticks. Proof that some things never go out of style but just take on a somewhat newish look now and again. This easy weeknight breaded chicken drumstick recipe still inspires kids to shout LOUDLY about these being the best chicken dinner EVER. Just the way kids did decades ago when crumb-coated oven-baked drumsticks first began to make the rounds in American kitchens.
Although we’d venture to say that some of the drumstick coatings suggested in their recipe seem to reflect the Shake ‘n Bake era, there’s no stopping you from dredging the drumsticks in whatever your whim. Which means pretty much anything that crumbles is an option. Just look in the back of your pantry for for those rolled up bags filled 1/16 full of crumbs from crackers or cereal or potato chips.
We’ve listed a few additional suggestions for you just below. But don’t let us put a crimp in your creativity. Go on. Bring a little playfulness back into weeknight dinner for the kids (of all ages).–David Leite
Why our testers loved this
Our testers are praising this easy oven fried chicken drumsticks recipe for being both kid and adult-friendly, making it a “good family dinner.” They loved experimenting with different coatings and discovering their favorites.
Sofia Reino summed it up with her comment, “This is a fun and simple recipe to be repeated.”
Notes on ingredients
- Chicken drumsticks–The timing in the recipe is for using average-sized chicken drumsticks, but you can apply this method to any cut of chicken. You will need to adjust your cooking time depending on what you use.
- Coating–There are dozens of topping options for these drumsticks. Anything crispy or crunchy that you’ve got in the pantry, such as chips, crackers, or corn flakes will work. See our favorite options in the FAQ section below.
How to make this recipe
- Heat the oven to 400°F. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and coat it with oil or melted butter.
- Dry the chicken and remove the skin, if desired. Beat the egg in a shallow bowl. Place your coating in a resealable bag, close it, and crush the topping to a fine crumb.
- Dip the drumsticks in egg and let any excess drip off. Toss the chicken into the coating bag, seal it, and shake to coat evenly.
- Place the chicken on the prepared baking sheet and bake until cooked through to an internal temperature of 165°F.
What types of coatings can I use?
In the spirit of no crumb left behind, we raided our pantry to uncover every crumb we could find. Below, just to start the drumsticks rolling, are just some of the crumbs we’re toying with trying next time we make this recipe.
Simply toss the ingredient in a resealable plastic bag, press out as much of the air as possible, and start banging on it with a rolling pin or a heavy skillet to work out some of that workday frustration. If you’ve got some crumb-inspired genius that isn’t found below, don’t be selfish and let us know it in a comment below!
Potato Chip: Any flavor. Crushed. (Who are we kidding? Don’t crush a perfectly good chip. Just nosh on the perfectly shaped whole potato chips and reserve the sad little crumbs at the bottom of the bag for your drumsticks.)
Wasabi Peas: Yep. Try crushing wasabi-coated peas into oblivion.
Tortilla Chips: No, we’re not suggesting any of Doritos’ dozens upon dozens of flavors. We mean tortilla chips. You know, the real deal, the kind that comes in yellow, white, or blue corn.
Corn Flakes: Minus the milk.
Panko: Japanese panko, preferably seasoned with sesame seeds or spice or dried herbs
Day-old cornbread: (and yep, you can use cornbread with cheese, fresh corn, and crumbled bacon)
Cheese Crackers: Know those cheesy fish crackers? Uh huh. You can see where we’re going with this. Especially relevant if you happen to have some homemade cheesy fish crackers on hand.
Gluten-Free Rice Crackers: Hey, how about those zesty little rice crackers that come in all those funky shapes?
Pita Chip: Finally, a proper use for pita chips! (Any flavor you fancy or happen to have on hand will work except maybe apple-cinnamon.)
Saltine: Well, why not? (Wait, does anyone ever eat saltines any more? Or are they reserved only for those days when you need some flat ginger ale and something really really bland?)
How do I make flavored coatings?
If you’d like to boost the flavor of your crunchy coating, the authors of the Everyday Cookbook have the following suggestions:
Italian: 1 cup wheat germ, 1/3 cup grated parmesan, 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper
Honey-mustard: 3 cups honey-mustard pretzel pieces, 1/4 teaspoon pepper
Mexican: 3 cups tortilla chips, 2 teaspoons each chili powder and ground cumin
Krispie ranch: 1 1/2 cups crisp rice cereal, 1 envelope ranch dressing mix
Cheesy: 3 cups cheese crackers (goldfish-shaped are fine), 1/4 teaspoon pepper
Herb: 1 1/2 cups herb stuffing mix
Onion: 3 cups French fried onion rings
Can I make these with chicken tenders?
Yes. You can use this method on any cut of chicken. However, you will need to adjust the cooking time.
For chicken tenders, plan on baking them for 15 to 20 minutes. Take care not to overcook your chicken or it will become dry.
- Save yourself an extra bag and crush your chips or crackers directly in their bag. Plop the chicken pieces in there and shake to coat.
- These are best served immediately after making. The crust won’t be as crispy if you reheat them, but for best results, if you have leftovers, reheat them in a 350°F oven until heated through.
- This recipe is suitable for a dairy-free diet if made with oil and is also suitable for a gluten-free diet if made with a gluten-free coating, such as rice crackers.
More great chicken drumstick recipes
☞ If you make this recipe, or any dish on LC, consider leaving a review, a star rating, and your best photo in the comments below. I love hearing from you.–David
Oven Fried Drumsticks
These oven fried drumsticks can be coated in bread crumbs or panko, sure. But let’s not forget crushed potato chips, cheese crackers, tortilla chips, crushed wasabi peas, saltines, corn flakes, or just about anything.
Preheat oven to 400°F (200°C). Line a shallow roasting pan or a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil and coat the foil with oil or melted butter.
Pat the chicken dry. If desired, remove the skin from the chicken by grasping the skin with a paper towel and yanking.
Grab a fork or a whisk and lightly beat the egg in a shallow bowl.
Place your desired Crazy Crunchy Coating in a resealable plastic food bag. If using anything that’s not already smashed into smithereens, close the bag and gently crush the contents into fine crumbs with a rolling pin, the bottom of a heavy skillet, or even a wine bottle.
Working with one or two drumsticks at a time, first dip them in the egg, then allow any excess to drop off before placing the drumsticks in the bag of Crazy Crunchy Coating. Shake to coat the chicken evenly.
Place the drumsticks on the prepared pan and lightly coat the drumsticks with oil or melted butter. Bake until the chicken is cooked through and the coating is brown, 30 to 35 minutes. Serve right away.
- Use your packaging–Save yourself an extra bag and crush your chips or crackers directly in their bag. Plop the chicken pieces in there and shake to coat.
- Reheating–These are best served immediately after making. The crust won’t be as crispy if you reheat them, but for best results, if you have leftovers, reheat them in a 350°F oven until heated through.
- Dietary–This recipe is suitable for a dairy-free diet if made with oil and is also suitable for a gluten-free diet if made with a gluten-free coating, such as rice crackers.
Serving: 2drumsticksCalories: 284kcal (14%)Carbohydrates: 6g (2%)Protein: 29g (58%)Fat: 15g (23%)Saturated Fat: 4g (25%)Polyunsaturated Fat: 3gMonounsaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 0.1gCholesterol: 186mg (62%)Sodium: 226mg (10%)Potassium: 367mg (10%)Fiber: 0.2g (1%)Sugar: 1g (1%)Vitamin A: 262IU (5%)Vitamin C: 1mg (1%)Calcium: 22mg (2%)Iron: 3mg (17%)
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