Serious Heat: Green Fried Chicken for St. Patrick's Day

[Photograph: Bill Milne]

This southern gal—who is serious about both fried chicken and spice—is always dabbling in a creative way to make variations of the tasty treat, whether it's coated in a blend of chile powders or bathed in a combo of buttermilk and hot sauce.

And I thought, this version of chicken thighs coated in Panko breadcrumbs and crushed wasabi peas would be a glorious green way to celebrate St. Patty's day. Because even though there aren't any special spicy dishes courtesy of Ireland (who usually rely on a bottle of hot sauce to jazz up food), doesn't mean the holiday can't be celebrated in zesty style.

Boneless chicken thighs are used for a quicker cooking time because the coating will burn with a longer stint in the hot oil. Or, use cut boneless chicken breast cutlets and a reduced cooking time for a playful take on chicken fingers.

Wasabi-Coated Fried Chicken

About the author: Andrea Lynn is senior editor for Chile Pepper magazine, where she not only creates a wide range of zesty recipes for readers, but also participates in numerous tastings for hot sauce, salsa, and other spice-laden products (even chocolate!). Her favorite chile? A tie between the mild yet flavorful poblano and the mighty, reliable fire of the serrano.

Serious Heat: Green Fried Chicken for St. Patrick's Day

About This Recipe


  • Canola oil, as needed
  • 1 1/2 cups wasabi peas, finely ground in the food processor
  • 1 1/2 cups panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 teaspoon wasabi powder
  • Whole milk, as needed
  • 1 egg
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 6 to 8 boneless chicken thighs


  1. 1

    Preheat oven to 350°F. In a cast-iron pan, fill halfway with canola oil, and warm over medium heat.

  2. 2

    In a large bowl, combine ground wasabi peas and panko breadcrumbs. In another large bowl, whisk wasabi powder, milk and egg together. Season the milk with salt and pepper.

  3. 3

    Dip each chicken piece into milk and then into the wasabi-panko mixture. Add to the warmed oil. Cook chicken, turning often, until golden brown, around 8 to 10 minutes. Be careful because the wasabi-panko mixture burns easily.

  4. 4

    Once the chicken has browned, transfer to a baking sheet. Cook in oven until the internal temperature registers 180°F, about 5 to 7 minutes. Sprinkle with salt, and drain on a paper-towel lined plate before serving.


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