Oven Baked Crispy Coconut-Masala Chicken Thighs with a Curried Yogurt Dipping Sauce

It turns out that our teenage son is not only rebelling against his loving parents, he also recently took a big swipe at British particle physicist Brian Cox (happy to know we’re in good company).

I bought the BBC Series ‘Wonders of the Universe’ and ‘Wonders of the Solar System’ as a Christmas gift for the family this year. I thought it was a smashing idea. We’ve often worked our way through life and science series in the past and have always enjoyed them.  Not this time.  We were only about an hour into the Solar System DVD when our eldest declared that he simply couldn’t bear another minute.

Son: “This is total BS Mom.”

Mom: “What’s that Dear? You want to pursue a Bachelor of Science?”

Son: “I can’t watch this.  It’s nothing more than speculation based on a bunch of assumptions that we can’t measure and that are probably false and I guarantee you in 10 years from now, people will be laughing at the fact that we sat down to watch this series.”


Who are you and what have you done with my sweet, trusting little boy??

We’ve always raised our boys to be free and independent thinkers so that’s all good; it’s the cynicism at the ripe old age of 14 that I wasn’t quite prepared for.

What’s that saying, “the older I get, the smarter my parents become”- hopefully he’ll return to us sometime in the next several decades.  In the meantime, I’m holding on to our 12-year-old for dear life!

If you’re anything like us, chicken figures prominently in your mealtime planning so it’s always nice to have a few new tricks up your sleeve to give it a new taste sensation.

This Indian inspired recipe is a simple and affordable way to transform the ordinary.

The coconut-masala crust gives the skinless chicken thighs a crispy delicious exterior that is fully satisfying while keeping the interior tender and juicy.  And there is no frying involved!  All the magic happens in the oven. You will love the dipping sauce too.

Oven Baked Crispy Coconut-Masala Chicken Thighs with a Curried Yogurt Dipping Sauce
(Recipe adapted from Canadian Living Magazine)

For the Coconut-Masala Chicken Thighs:
  • 1 cup unsweetened desiccated coconut shavings
  • 1/2 cup panko (Japanese bread crumbs)
  • 2 Tbsp garam masala
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • Pinch red pepper flakes or cayenne, if desired (they are hot)
  • 8 – 10 skinless, boneless chicken thighs
  • 2 eggs, beaten
For the Curried Yogurt Dipping Sauce:
  • 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 2 tsp curry powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tsp honey

Makes 8 – 10 coconut-masala chicken thighs.


Heat oven to 400 F.

Combine coconut, panko, garam masala, onion powder, garlic powder, coriander and cayenne (if using) in a flat based dish, stirring to combine.

In a separate flat based dish, place beaten eggs.

Dip each chicken thigh into the egg mixture, being sure to fully saturate them and then dredge each thigh through the coconut/masala mixture making sure to fully coat the chicken with the mixture.

Arrange coated chicken on a foiled lined baking sheet that has been sprayed with some olive oil or brushed with melted coconut oil (that’s what I used).  If you don’t use oil, the chicken pieces will stick and half of the crispy-delicious coating will stay on the foil (you won’t like that).

Cook the chicken thighs for 12 minutes on one side and then flip them over and return them to the oven for another 10-12 minutes or until chicken is cooked through. (I added a few pieces of uncooked coconut shavings to the top of the cooked chicken just for fun – I thought it looked pretty).

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine curried yogurt dipping sauce ingredients and stir to combine.  Adjust seasoning as desired.


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  1. Jillbartholomew says

    This Sounds Wonderful and as for your sons Bachelor of Science Degreee….he sounds Exactly like my 47 year old husband :)

  2. inspirededibles says

    Haha, Cheers Jill! (I shutter to think what our 14-year-old will sound like at 47 – LOL – although perhaps he will have softened by then). Thanks for stopping by ;0).

  3. says

    I’m laughing..but I should not as I’m the proud parent of one of THOSE teen boys..now 20 and just barely now stopping to briefly pause to reflect on what I say as I might possibly know something!! Its always good for our motherly soul to know we are not alone! Now I do believe my son will enjoy this – as long as I ‘bread’ the chicken he is good! I do know I will like it ;)

  4. says

    Amazing chicken, I must say! I look forward to making this. My son’s critical thinking skills always gave me a good run for my money! I think having intelligent children is a huge learning curve for most of us parents! :-)

  5. inspirededibles says

    Hello there and thank you for stopping by my blog! That our son is a thinker, there is no doubt. He’s been outsmarting his lawyer parents since he was about 4 ;0). I’m not sure upset characterizes the emotion – more a parent’s musings on keeping up with the pace of change… cheers and thanks for the note.

  6. beyondthepeel says

    Oh Kelly. I feel for you. I think I was dreadful too at 14 (ok it was 15 but meh). Just remember to laugh it off because this too shall pass. hahaha. In the meantime there’s amazing coconut masala chicken to enjoy. There’s always an upside. lol.

  7. says

    Such a beautiful crunchy chicken bits, coated in spiced coconut and not even fried???? You are a real fairy! I must test this magical recipe as soon as possible. As for Greek yogurt, since I can get only the 10% fat one, I try to avoid looking at it in my supermarket. (I mean it’s addictive and I moreover they sell it in packages of two! ? Needless to say I end both yogurts alone in two days max.). It seems that you have a very intelligent son!

  8. mjskit says

    Smart kid you’ve got there Kelly! I’m sure it’s interesting watching him change physically and intellectually as he grows up. So what’s his theory of the universe? :) We always have chicken thighs in the freezer. I quit buying a whole chicken because we both always want the thighs. This is a great recipe and quite different than any I use. It’s like getting the fried chicken without the fat. Love the dipping sauce as well!

  9. justonecookbook says

    Love the coconut breading! I made shrimp one before. I love your curried yogurt sauce too. Really refreshing which make you think you can get one more extra chicken piece… ;)

  10. Kristy says

    Oh my goodness! I can totally hear Mr. N in that comment. You’re going to have to prepare me for what’s to come. ;) This meal looks delicious. I love the sweetness of the coconut with all the spiciness too. Looks like this one would be a winner around here. Good luck with the teen years. I remember them all too well – fortunately I came back around to liking my parents and valuing their judgement. ;)

  11. says

    At least you know he is confident to share his opinion, all in all, it sounds like you’ve raised some lovely, thoughtful and well rounded young men.
    The chicken will surely bring the family together, food always does. I love a breaded chicken with such a flavourful dipping sauce. So pretty too.

  12. says

    Love your response to your son, so funny. Hang on tight…ah, the teenage years. I’ve got two right now and I’m just waiting it out. My oldest has really matured over the past year, so I know things will get better and that they will return to this planet soon enough ;).

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