Chicken Parmigiana is one of the most popular meals you'll find in Australia - a staple of the pub or club scene. It's also one of my all-time favourite meals. It has been a challenge of mine to make it into a dairy free and gluten free version, as the traditional versions are crumbed with flour and bread crumbs and topped with cheese. My husband and I try to avoid both dairy and gluten for health reasons.
To make the chicken parmigiana dairy free and gluten free I had to substitute quite a few ingredients, but I was really happy with the result, and it got a thumbs up from the taste-tester, my husband Jason.
I crumbed the chicken with a combination of arrowroot, coconut flour and almond meal and I topped the chicken with macadamia cheese. A cashew cheese is the most common cheese substitute for a meal like this, but as I am super fond of macadamias, I decided to make macadamia cheese and hoped that it would work out. Well, it did and I am pretty proud of my adaptation of Chicken Parmigiana. If you are after some more of my adaptation of popular dishes, then you must check out my Slow Cooker Butter Chicken, Slow Cooker Honey Chicken and Oysters Kirkpatrick with Healthy Worcestershire Sauce.
Dairy Free & Gluten Free Chicken Parmigiana
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1x 400gram tin organic diced tomatoes
- 2 teaspoons dried basil
- Black pepper and sea salt to season
- 2 chicken breasts, sliced in half in a similar manner to butterflying, but cutting right through
- 1/4 cup arrowroot (or tapioca flour)
- 1 egg, whisked
- 1/2 cup almond meal
- 1/4 cup coconut flour
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 cup macadamias, soaked for a minimum 4 hours
- 1/3 cup water
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1/3 cup nutritional yeast
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
Pre-heat the oven to 200 degrees celcius.
To make the chicken schnitzel; place the chicken breasts between cling wrap and flatten with a meat tenderiser, or roll with a rolling pin, until they are nice and thin. Then add the almond meal, coconut flour, paprika, sea salt and pepper to a shallow bowl, mixing to combine. Place the egg and arrowroot flour in separate shallow bowls. Dip each piece of chicken into the arrowroot flour, then egg, then the crumb mixture. Make sure that they are evenly coated. Place in a baking dish and refrigerate for 10 minutes.
To make the tomato sauce; heat oil in a small sauce pan on moderate heat, add garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add tomato, herbs and season with pepper and sea salt. Simmer for minimum 15 minutes.
To make the macadamia cheese; add all the ingredients to high speed blender and blend until smooth.
Once all the elements are ready; place the chicken schnitzel in a large baking dish and top each piece of chicken with the tomato sauce followed by the macadamia cheese.
Place in the oven and cook for 30-35 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through and the macadamia cheese is golden on top.
Remove from the oven and let cool for a few minutes.
Serves with your favourite steamed vegetables and sweet potato fries.
Vanessa Vickery (or Ness as she is also known) is a qualified nutritionist and a mother of two energetic toddlers. She created Becomingness, a health and wellness website, to help women achieve their health and wellness goals by providing accurate, accessible information, as well as offering valuable products and services that promote motivation, empowerment, self-belief and happiness. Come say hello and follow Ness on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter & Pinterest.