The Secret’s in the Breading!
Everyone loves Chicken Parmesan! Whether it’s on a sub or on a plate of spaghetti, it’s delicious in every way! Unfortunately for us keto-ers, an order or chicken parm from our local pizzeria or Italian restaurant usually means trouble. From the sub or spaghetti, to the breading and even the tomato sauce, you’ll find carbs all over this dish.
The hidden carbs in the breading and tomato sauce are what we need to watch out for. Tomatoes are fruits that are high in sugar (not as high as, say, bananas, but nevertheless high). Their sauces are often full of added sugar as well, sometimes upwards of 10 grams of carbs per 1/4 cup, depending on the brand. Ketchup alone is usually cut out of a low carb diet because of all the sugar that it can add to meals. A tablespoon of ketchup alone has 5 grams of carbs!
We love using Rao’s Homemade Marinara Sauce in most of our Italian/pizza/tomato sauce dishes. It’s low in sugar, has real, pronounceable ingredients and tastes great. It is on the expensive side, but we’ve found it more affordable to buy in bulk at BJ’s!
The Secret to the Breading
Now onto the breading! Traditional chicken parm is covered in a crispy outer breading. This alone can add 20-30 grams of carbs to your day, and that’s not including the pasta or bread that may come with it! We’ve got a way to fix that 🙂
We’ve experimented in the past with ways of breading chicken and fish to add a bit of different texture to it. We’ve used almond flour, coconut flour, Parmesan cheese and other forms of “crumbs” to achieve the texture of traditional breading. They were all close but had their downfalls. For example, almond flour peeled right off our baked chicken time and time again.
Enter: pork rinds.
Crushed up pork rinds make for an amazing breading! They add the much needed crunch and texture we were looking for! We figured about a 1/2 oz of pork rinds per chicken breast as well as a tablespoon of Parmesan cheese crushed up in a NutriBullet would work well. And it did!
Our “breading” baked up into a lovely, crispy, golden brown crust and stayed put- we were able to cut the chicken breast as any normal breading would allow. It could’ve fooled anyone!
Make this even more authentic by cooking up some spaghetti squash to go with your low carb chicken parmesan!
Loved this recipe? Let us know! Something didn’t quite turn out right? Ask us in the comments below or contact us– we respond to comments every day and would love to hear from you and help you out! And check out all our low carb dinner recipes to learn to make more delicious and healthy meals!
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