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Paula Deen Cuts the Fat, 250 Favorite Recipes All Lightened Up, Exclusive: Pecan-Crusted Chicken Thighs


Even though these beauties are baked instead of fried, the nutty, crunchy coating helps to keep the chicken extra moist and juicy. Cooking at a high temperature ensures that the thighs cook from the outside in, so that the crust crisps up before the meat dries out. This is a finger-lickin’ kind of meal if ever there was one.


  • 1/2 cup finely chopped pecans
  • 3 tablespoons plain bread crumbs
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 4 bone-in, skinless chicken thighs (about 1/2 pound each), patted dry
  • 1 egg white, lightly beaten with 1 teaspoon water
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil


  1. Preheat the oven to 400 °F. Lightly grease a rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray.
  2. In a small bowl, combine the pecans, bread crumbs, salt, chili powder, and thyme.
  3. Dip each chicken thigh into the beaten egg white mixture, letting any excess drip off. Dip into the pecan mixture and turn to coat evenly.
  4. Place the chicken thighs on the prepared baking sheet. Drizzle with the oil. Bake until the chicken is cooked through and the coating is golden, about 25 minutes.

Serves 4

More about Paula Deen Cuts the Fat, 250 Recipes All Lightened Up

Paula Deen has lost over 40 pounds and has maintained her weight loss for over two years by swapping out ingredients to reduce fat and calories. Paula’s key to weight loss is moderation and accountability, and one day a week she still enjoys good old southern cooking with biscuits and all. One does not have to give up taste when reducing calories, and these recipes are a testament to that. Paula shares 250 of her favorite recipes lightened up. This brand-new, New York Times best-selling cookbook presents lightened up versions of fifty of her classic southern recipes and presents new recipes that cut the calories but not the delicious taste.

The New-York Times Best-Selling cookbook, Paula Deen Cuts the Fat, 250 Favorite Recipes All Lightened Up, is now available now at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Target, and your local bookstores!

Paula Deen - As a young girl growing up in Albany, Georgia, Paula Deen never dreamed she would become an American icon. As a young mother, Paula was living the American dream — married to her high school sweetheart and raising two adorable boys — when tragedy struck. Her parents died, her marriage failed and she began a prolonged battle with agoraphobia. With her boys in their teens and her family near homelessness, Paula took her last $200, reached deep inside her soul and started The Bag Lady, a home-based catering company that marked the start of Deen's professional cooking career. With sons Jamie and Bobby delivering lunch-and-love-in-a-bag, beginning in June 1989, Paula turned her life around by sharing what she knew best, traditional Southern cooking.