Crispy Chicken & Pimento Cheese Sandwich with Lemon-Ranch Salad
Craft

Crispy Chicken & Pimento Cheese Sandwich

with Lemon-Ranch Salad

55 MIN
+$6.99/serving 4 Servings
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From the Test Kitchen

WHY WE LOVE THIS DISH
Tender chicken breasts are pounded thin, then marinated in spiced buttermilk before being coated with flour and pan-fried to crispy perfection. You'll layer them onto fluffy challah buns alongside crunchy pickles and pimento cheese—a beloved Southern spread that, at its simplest, features a combo of grated cheese, mayonnaise, and pickled peppers.
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  • Nutrition
    PER SERVING
  • Calories
    990 Cals (est.)
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fresh
ingredients
Crispy Chicken & Pimento Cheese Sandwich with Lemon-Ranch Salad
Title
  • 4 Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts
  • 4 Challah Buns
  • 2 Pasture-Raised Eggs
  • 2 Romaine Lettuce Hearts
  • 2 Persian Cucumbers
  • 6 oz Radishes
  • 1 oz Pickled Peppadew Peppers
  • 4 oz White Cheddar Cheese
  • 1 Lemon
  • 6 oz Pickle Chips
  • ¼ cup Ranch Dressing
  • 1 cup All-Purpose Flour
  • ¼ cup Mayonnaise
  • ¼ cup Cornstarch
  • 1 Tbsp Southern Spice Blend (Onion Powder, Garlic Powder, Ground Yellow Mustard, Smoked Paprika & Cayenne Pepper)
  • 1 Tbsp Everything Bagel Seasoning (Poppy Seeds, White Sesame Seeds, Black Sesame Seeds, Dried Minced Garlic, Dried Minced Onion & Coarse Salt)
  • ½ cup Buttermilk
Marinate the chicken
1 Marinate the chicken
In a large bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, eggs, and half the Southern spice blend; season with salt and pepper. Pat the chicken dry with paper towels. Place between two sheets of plastic wrap on a sturdy work surface. Using the bottom of a heavy pan (or a meat mallet), pound the chicken to a ¼-inch thickness. Remove the plastic wrap. Season with salt and pepper on both sides. Place in the bowl of spiced buttermilk; turn to coat. Set aside to marinate, turning occasionally, at least 10 minutes.
Prepare the remaining ingredients & make the pimento cheese
2 Prepare the remaining ingredients & make the pimento cheese

Meanwhile, wash and dry the fresh produce. Halve the buns. Roughly chop the lettuce. Halve the cucumbers lengthwise, then thinly slice crosswise. Halve the radishes lengthwise, then thinly slice crosswise. Grate the cheddar on the large side of a box grater. Roughly chop the peppers. In a bowl, combine the grated cheddar, chopped peppers, mayonnaise, and remaining Southern spice blend; season with salt and pepper. Halve the lemon crosswise; squeeze the juice into a large bowl, straining out the seeds. Add the ranch dressing and a drizzle of olive oil; season with salt and pepper. Stir to combine.

Coat the chicken
3 Coat the chicken
In a medium bowl, combine the cornstarch and flour; season with salt and pepper. Working one piece at a time, coat the marinated chicken (letting any excess marinade drip off) in the seasoned flour (pressing gently to adhere). Transfer to a plate.
Cook the chicken
4 Cook the chicken

In a large pan (nonstick, if you have one), heat a thin layer of oil on medium-high. Once the oil is hot enough that a pinch of flour sizzles immediately when added, add the coated chicken (tapping off any excess flour before adding). Cook 6 to 7 minutes per side, or until golden brown and cooked through.* Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate; immediately season with salt. Carefully drain off and discard the oil. Wipe out the pan. 

*The USDA recommends a minimum safe cooking temperature of 165°F for chicken.

Toast the buns
5 Toast the buns

In the same pan, heat a drizzle of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Working in batches, add the halved buns, cut side down. Toast on medium-high 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until lightly browned. Transfer to a work surface.

Make the salad & serve your dish
6 Make the salad & serve your dish

To the bowl of lemon-ranch dressing, add the chopped lettuce, sliced cucumbers, and sliced radishes; season with salt and pepper. Toss to coat. Assemble the sandwiches using the toasted buns, cooked chicken, pimento cheese, and pickles. Serve the sandwiches with the salad on the side. Garnish the salad with the everything bagel seasoning. Enjoy!

Tips from Home Chefs

Marinate the chicken
1 Marinate the chicken
In a large bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, eggs, and half the Southern spice blend; season with salt and pepper. Pat the chicken dry with paper towels. Place between two sheets of plastic wrap on a sturdy work surface. Using the bottom of a heavy pan (or a meat mallet), pound the chicken to a ¼-inch thickness. Remove the plastic wrap. Season with salt and pepper on both sides. Place in the bowl of spiced buttermilk; turn to coat. Set aside to marinate, turning occasionally, at least 10 minutes.
2 Prepare the remaining ingredients & make the pimento cheese

Meanwhile, wash and dry the fresh produce. Halve the buns. Roughly chop the lettuce. Halve the cucumbers lengthwise, then thinly slice crosswise. Halve the radishes lengthwise, then thinly slice crosswise. Grate the cheddar on the large side of a box grater. Roughly chop the peppers. In a bowl, combine the grated cheddar, chopped peppers, mayonnaise, and remaining Southern spice blend; season with salt and pepper. Halve the lemon crosswise; squeeze the juice into a large bowl, straining out the seeds. Add the ranch dressing and a drizzle of olive oil; season with salt and pepper. Stir to combine.

Prepare the remaining ingredients & make the pimento cheese
Coat the chicken
3 Coat the chicken
In a medium bowl, combine the cornstarch and flour; season with salt and pepper. Working one piece at a time, coat the marinated chicken (letting any excess marinade drip off) in the seasoned flour (pressing gently to adhere). Transfer to a plate.
4 Cook the chicken

In a large pan (nonstick, if you have one), heat a thin layer of oil on medium-high. Once the oil is hot enough that a pinch of flour sizzles immediately when added, add the coated chicken (tapping off any excess flour before adding). Cook 6 to 7 minutes per side, or until golden brown and cooked through.* Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate; immediately season with salt. Carefully drain off and discard the oil. Wipe out the pan. 

*The USDA recommends a minimum safe cooking temperature of 165°F for chicken.

Cook the chicken
Toast the buns
5 Toast the buns

In the same pan, heat a drizzle of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Working in batches, add the halved buns, cut side down. Toast on medium-high 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until lightly browned. Transfer to a work surface.

6 Make the salad & serve your dish

To the bowl of lemon-ranch dressing, add the chopped lettuce, sliced cucumbers, and sliced radishes; season with salt and pepper. Toss to coat. Assemble the sandwiches using the toasted buns, cooked chicken, pimento cheese, and pickles. Serve the sandwiches with the salad on the side. Garnish the salad with the everything bagel seasoning. Enjoy!

Make the salad & serve your dish
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