Cornmeal Crispy Chicken

Set of ingredients for fried chicken

Eric Isaac / Getty Images

Prep: 25 mins
Cook: 6 mins
Total: 31 mins
Servings: 4 servings

For crispy, flavorful chicken breasts without all of the fat of fried chicken, whip out your George Foreman or another two-sided grill. A coating of cornmeal and parmesan cheese adds a nice, thin coating with lots of flavor.

This is an easy recipe but is fun to make and eat and uses ingredients you probably have on hand. Boneless, skinless chicken breasts are excellent, but you can use chicken thighs if you'd like, or even pork tenderloin, sliced and pounded thin. This recipe is cooked on a dual contact grill. If you use a regular grill and have to turn the meat, the cooking time is doubled.

For sides, try garlic mashed potatoes or roasted potatoes. Add a green salad or a fruit salad and some biscuits or dinner rolls.


  • 4 chicken breasts (boneless, skinless)
  • 1 egg (beaten)
  • 3/4 cup yellow cornmeal
  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese (grated)
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano leaves
  • Salt and pepper (to taste)
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Place the boneless, skinless chicken breasts between two sheets of waxed paper and gently pound the chicken to 1/3-inch thick using the smooth side of a meat mallet or a rolling pin. Be careful not to tear the chicken.

  3. Pour the beaten egg into a shallow bowl. In a shallow bowl or pan, combine the cornmeal, parmesan cheese, basil, oregano, and season with salt and pepper.

  4. Brush the chicken with the lime juice then dip in the beaten egg.

  5. Coat with the cornmeal mixture. Let the chicken sit on a wire rack for 20 to 30 minutes so the coating dries.

  6. Spray a two-sided, dual-contact grill (like a George Foreman) with nonstick cooking spray. Cook the chicken for 4 to 7 minutes until thoroughly cooked to 160 F and the coating is brown and crisp. Serve immediately.


  • If you use chicken thighs, the cooking time would be increased to 5 to 8 minutes total.
  • If you'd like to use slices of pork tenderloin, it should cook to 150 F in about 2 to 4 minutes.
  • Make sure that all of the meat is pounded to the same thickness so it cooks at the same time.
  • Always check the final internal temperature with a meat thermometer. Chicken should be cooked to 160 F every single time to be truly safe.
  • If you don't have a dual-contact grill or regular grill, cook this chicken in a lightly oiled sauté pan on the stovetop. Check the temperature for doneness to make sure the meat is cooked through.

Recipe Variations

  • Lemon juice also works well for this recipe.
  • Add a pinch or two of red pepper flakes for a little spice.