Couples Cook-Off Challenge

Let me preface this by saying that this recipe contains chicken, so if you’re vegan or that isn’t your thing, I respect that and want to give you a heads up. For more on this, see my preface to today’s post.

The other night, my friend and I had some chicken breasts we wanted to prepare. I knew how I wanted to prepare them- I had some GF breadcrumbs and a new seasoning, and I wanted to do a lightly breaded, healthy “fried” chicken breast. But then a dilemma arose: how should we cook them? We had initially planned on grilling them, but I was concerned that the breading might not stay on during the grilling process, so I suggested sautéing them in a skillet. After waffling indecisively between these two options, I had a moment of inspiration- chicken cook-off challenge! My idea: I would prep the chicken and then hand off two breasts to Rob to grill while I would take the other two and sauté them inside. We would sample each cooking method and see who “won” the challenge. Thus, the battle began.

I think this type of cook-off challenge would be a great activity for couples who are trying to learn how to cook, prepare more of their meals at home, or experiment with healthier options. However, it doesn’t have to be a couple activity! I only named it as such because 1. I love alliteration and 2. I think it’s a super cute idea for couples. If you don’t have a SO or if your SO turns the kitchen into a biohazard zone, you can follow my lead and grab a friend to challenge! I think the indoor vs outdoor cooking challenge is a nice way to entice more men into this challenge, as most guys seem to enjoy cooking on a grill more than other methods. You can prepare the same food in different ways (like we did) or you could prepare different dishes to compare. The possibilities are endless, and it adds some fun and playful competition to cooking to keep things interesting and new in the kitchen! So check out this recipe for Healthy Fried Chicken and think of who you will challenge next!

Healthy Fried Chicken Cook-Off Challenge


Organic chicken breast
Ian’s Gluten Free Panko Breadcrumbs
Rowdy Kitty Rub seasoning (I found this at Whole Foods. Yes, I splurged on it because the name made me laugh)
Olive Oil


1. Rinse your chicken breast under running water and pat dry (this will help the breading stick and to help add crisp to the skin).
2. Lightly brush olive oil onto the breasts.

3. Roll your breasts in a mixture of the GF Panko Breadcrumbs and the Rowdy Kitty Rub (or your seasoning of choice.. the particulars aren’t very important) until evenly coated.

4. If preparing in a skillet, coat the skillet with olive oil and sauté the breasts on medium heat until evenly cooked (6-8 minutes each side). If grilling… uhh you’ll have to ask Rob about that, he’s the Grill Master, not me. But we’ll say “grill until cooked through,” which is at least 8 minutes each side.
5. Put your boxing gloves on because the battle is on!

My sautéed chicken breasts are on the left while Rob’s grilled chicken breasts are on the right.

I prepared a sautéed vegetable medley and tadiq for sides (so I get bonus points for that, right?!)

The Verdict

Really, we both won because both options were delicious, and we got to eat both! The sautéed chicken was juicy, savory, and flavorful, while the grilled chicken had a great crunchy, crispy coating and that lovely grilled texture. I voted for Rob’s grilled chicken to win the challenge, while he diplomatically claimed a tie because “they’re both delicious!” All in all, I had such a fun time cooking this meal. I usually enjoy cooking, but preparing a meal with others makes the experience so much more enjoyable. There’s so much pride and love that goes into preparing your own meals, and it’s a great experience to share that with loved ones!


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