The BLT is easily in my top five favorite sandwiches. It’s crispy, salty, fatty, and delicious. And with peak-season tomatoes? It doesn’t get much better than that.
Except when you replace the bacon with chicken skin.
You heard me: crispy chicken skin.
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I’m not saying BLTs need improvement, but this is a variation using my favorite part of a chicken: the crispy skin. I think this sandwich is a slam dunk. Picture it: vine-ripened tomato, Bibb lettuce, mayo, and perfectly golden-brown chicken cracklings.
(By the way, do you know about our technique for marinating your tomato slices for a BLT? You should.)
This recipe is mostly about achieving that brittle, shatteringly crispy skin. I opted for bone-in chicken breast skin rather than chicken thigh skin. In this case, more is more!
The key was figuring out how to keep the chicken skin thin and crispy. The answer? Sandwich the skin between two baking sheets. I lined a baking sheet with parchment, laid down the skin, topped it with another piece of parchment, and weighed it down with a second baking sheet. The result was evenly cooked, paper-thin, and perfectly crispy chicken skin.
I recommend cooking more crispy chicken skin than you need for a sandwich. #ChickenSkinSnacks
Crispy Chicken Skin BLTs
Serves 2 (Makes 2 sandwiches)
- 4 (12-ounce) bone-in split chicken breasts
- ¼ teaspoon table salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- 2 vine-ripened tomatoes
- ¼ cup mayonnaise
- 4 slices hearty white sandwich bread, toasted
- ½ head Bibb lettuce (4 ounces), leaves separated
1. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Line rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Carefully remove skin from chicken breasts; reserve chicken for another use.
2. Pat chicken skin dry with paper towels and transfer to prepared sheet. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Top chicken skin with second piece of parchment. Leaving chicken skin sandwiched between parchment layers, place second baking sheet on top and bake until chicken skin is golden brown and crispy, 35 to 45 minutes. Transfer chicken skin to paper towel–lined plate and let cool for 5 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, core tomatoes and cut into eight ¼-inch-thick slices (you may have some tomato left over).
4. Spread mayonnaise evenly on 1 side of bread slices. Divide lettuce, tomatoes, and chicken skin among 2 bread slices. Top with remaining 2 bread slices, mayonnaise side down. Cut sandwiches in half and serve.