Whole30 Blackened Chicken
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5-ingredient blackened chicken - This fast and easy main dish is Whole30, Paleo, Keto, and kid-friendly. Takes only 20 minutes to make and great on it's own or in a salad!

We make this Whole30 Blackened Chicken at least monthly. It is such a fantastic entree to have in your back pocket for an EASY weeknight dinner or meal prep. It’s one of my top 5 go-to recipes for a fast dinner. All of my 5 boys love it and it is so incredibly versatile.

I first had blackened chicken at a pizza parlor in southern Oregon. My husband and I ordered their Caesar Salad with blackened chicken on it and were wowed by how simple yet fantastic it was. Immediately I went home and started playing around with spices to see if I could get a similar flavor. And then I was blown away again by how incredibly easy and budget-friendly this dish is!

Why We Love This Whole30 Blackened Chicken

First, the Whole30, Keto, and Paleo-compliant chicken recipe is quick & easy, has ingredients you probably already have, and is flavorful! It uses 4 basic spices plus salt and pepper for an easy rub. When I worked at the Walmart deli early in our marriage, I learned how wonderful and simple a great rub can be. No hand breading involved – just mix the spices together and then rub on the outside of the chicken. Fastest chicken prep ever!

Second, it’s allergen-friendly and great for so many dietary needs. It’s Whole30, Paleo, Keto, gluten-free, dairy-free, grain-free, nut-free, and egg-free. Whew! Perfect for so many people coming to your table.

Also, this chicken is kid-approved! My youngest son regularly cheers when this comes to the table. My pickiest eater loves pairing it with my Whole30 Ranch or Raising Canes sauce. We most definitely always double or triple-batch this recipe. The leftovers freeze fantastically too!

Plus, it checks all the boxes and is great by itself or in a salad or lettuce wrap. And don’t you worry, I most definitely recreated that Blackened Chicken Caesar Salad I loved so much from Southern Oregon. You can find it on page 204 of my Cookbook, complete with a fantastic creamy Caesar Dressing recipe.

5-Ingredient Whole30 Blackened Chicken: Gluten-free, dairy-free, keto, paleo, nut-free, egg-free, EASY! Air fryer, oven, or stove.

Finally, you can make this chicken on the stove, grill, or in the air fryer! I love the charred bits from cooking it on the grill. And also, I love the convenience of throwing it in the air fryer on a busy night.

Whole30 Blackened Chicken = Budget Friendly!

This Whole30 Blackened Chicken was one of the first Whole30 Family Meals for under $20 entrees I used. With only spices and no flour or breading, my Whole30 Blackened Chicken costs almost no more than the cost of your chicken breast. Here is an idea of what that budget meal could look like and the cost breakdown.

Keep in mind, prices are based on the current prices at my local NorCal Walmart. I cannot tell you how much this meal will cost YOU, based on your local prices. But, hopefully, it will still inspire you. Also, organic/free-range/etc. products are not factored into these prices. Though ideal, not everyone can afford them, especially if they are on a tight budget.

Blackened Chicken with Kale Salad and roasted potatoes with Homemade Ranch = $16.33 total, $2.33 per serving

  • Blackened Chicken = $6.18
    • 6 spices = $0.22
    • 2 pounds chicken breast = $5.96
  • Roasted Potatoes = $3.94
    • 3 pounds potatoes = $3.78
    • Olive oil + salt = $0.16
  • Kale Salad = $3.87
    • Large bunch of kale = $1.28
    • Mix-ins (Broccoli slaw, sunflower seeds, raisins) = $1.97
    • Homemade dressing = $0.62
  • Homemade Ranch for dipping = $2.34

5-Ingredient Whole30 Blackened Chicken: Gluten-free, dairy-free, keto, paleo, nut-free, egg-free, EASY! Air fryer, oven, or stove.


  • Paprika – I get most of my spices from either the bulk bins at Winco or Walmart. Both have great budget-friendly options!
  • Dried Thyme
  • Salt – Just regular old table salt here
  • Pepper – Ground black pepper
  • Onion powder or granulated onion – I prefer granulated onion and garlic vs. the powder as it handles better, but both work!
  • Boneless, skinless chicken breast

5-Ingredient Whole30 Blackened Chicken: Gluten-free, dairy-free, keto, paleo, nut-free, egg-free, EASY! Air fryer, oven, or stove.

Blackened Chicken

Autumn @wholefoodfor7
THE easiest chicken recipe that is the fastest way to get dinner on the table!
4.95 from 18 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Servings 4 people
Calories 133 kcal


  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 2 medium chicken breasts, about 1-1.5 pounds cut in half horizontally or cut into strips


  • In a small bowl, combine all the spices together. 
  • If using a grill, preheat grill to 450. If using the stove, place a large saucepan over high heat.
  • Rub mixed spices onto chicken breast, trying to get it on all sides and as even as possible. Spray or lightly coat skillet, if using stove, with oil/cooking spray. 
  • STOVE: Place chicken in the pan. Don't move for 5 minutes - the high heat will create the "blackened" effect of this chicken. Flip over and cook on high heat for another 5 minutes. If using a thicker chicken breast and still not cooked through, reduce to medium heat and cook covered for 5 more minutes, until no longer pink in the middle. 
  • GRILL: Cook 5-6 minutes on each side, to an internal temperature of 165 degrees.
  • AIRFRYER: Cook at 350 for 7-8 minutes, flipping or stirring once.
  • Chicken is done when no longer pink in the middle and time will vary based on the thickness of the chicken you are using.


Delicious with my broccoli salad found here as well as on a green salad!


Calories: 133kcalCarbohydrates: 1gProtein: 24gFat: 3gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0.01gCholesterol: 72mgSodium: 277mgPotassium: 440mgFiber: 0.3gSugar: 0.1gVitamin A: 289IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 13mgIron: 1mg
Keyword budget-friendly, dairy-free, easy, egg-free, gluten-free, keto, kid-friendly, main dish, nut-free, paleo, whole30
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
5-Ingredient Whole30 Blackened Chicken: Gluten-free, dairy-free, keto, paleo, nut-free, egg-free, EASY! Air fryer, oven, or stove.


  1. 5 stars
    Everyone LOVED this chicken. We paired it with the salad the recipe gave an idea for which was lettuce, cashews, avocado, sunflower kernels and primal kitchen dressing and WOW that was a salad full of flavor! A big hit in our family. Doing this for sure again!

    • HOORAY that this easy chicken was a big hit. Definitely one we turn to often for an easy, delicious dinner. Thank you!

  2. 5 stars
    This chicken is bomb! So easy to make & can be used in so many ways – by itself, on pasta, on salad. I make a big batch & use leftovers for lunch.

    • YES, such a versatile, flavorful chicken yet SO EASY. I’m so happy you love it. Thank you!

  3. 4 stars
    So easy & delicious! I make it all the time

    • I agree – this is such a go-to for our family when we need something FAST and easy. A delicious dish my family enjoys on the regular as well. Thank you! : )

  4. 5 stars
    This is THE chicken recipe in my house. I knew from the very first bite that we had a keeper! I make it at least once a week, sometimes more. It’s fast, delicious and the flavor profile is very versatile.

    • YASSS! I love that it’s the IT chicken in your house – it is in ours as well. Delicious with so many things and just dang easy to make. Thank you!

  5. Loved this recipe! A perfect thing to make when I’ve run stuck with ‘what’s for dinner tonight’. Will definitely be having this regularly.

    • This is such a great fast dinner go-to! I’m happy this is one worthy of going on the rotation, thank you!

      • 5 stars
        Thrilled that all my boys think this Blackened Chicken is delicious!! They couldn’t get enough. Adding to our meal rotation! Thank you, Autumn!

  6. 5 stars
    Delicious, easy, fast and so versatile! We have made this twice this week already.

  7. 5 stars
    This is so easy and delicious! I made another batch for salads and will be making this on a regular!

  8. 5 stars
    I made a triple batch of these right off the bat, so I could have some for meal prep and the rest for the freezer. I trust you (and my cousin who raved over them) that much. 😆 I was not disappointed. They’re so so yummy! I ate them on a salad all last week. I kept meaning to make the date mustard to go with it but never got around to it. Delicious!

  9. 5 stars
    Affordable, quick, kid approved and delicious

    • Well said and so happy you and your family enjoy it, thank you!

  10. 5 stars
    Such a simple and easy recipe to whip up on a week night. My husband actually is the one that cooks it up usually to give my a cooking break. Very flavorful and chi misleads comes out juicy on the inside.

    • So happy you enjoy it and so great that it gives you a cooking break. Thank you!

  11. 5 stars
    Such a simple spice blend that made the chicken extra delicious! I’m going to make a big batch of the spice blend – It’s a keeper! The blackened chicken makes for great leftovers for a salad.

    • I’m so happy you love this easy option! I agree, love it in a salad. Thank you!

  12. Another simple fantastic recipe. I tried to make ahead but ended up eating it before I could put it away!

    • So good it didn’t even make it to leftovers, I love it! Thank you!

  13. 5 stars
    Last night, errands kept me from preparing dinner on time. I texted this recipe to my 17 and 13 year old boys. They made it. Not only was it good, we ate at a “normal” time. Thanks for making a great recipe – easy to follow and delicious. Also, we multiplied by 4 because …. walking stomachs.

    • I LOVE that your teens made this – what a win all around!

    • 5 stars
      How can this be so easy and so delicious? I normally avoid making chicken in a pan because it always turns out dry and flavorless, but this recipe made me want chicken weekly! I mixed with wild rice and broccoli, and it was fantastic!

      • I get it, dry chicken is so frustrating! I’m so happy this easy recipe is a new favorite, thank you!

  14. 5 stars
    This is one of my favorite fast and easy meals! With the date sauce WOWZA it is everything I need in healthy eating.

    • I love that this reached a “wowza” in your book, thank you!

  15. 5 stars
    My husband and I love the spice blend for this chicken. So easy to make in the air fryer too!

  16. 5 stars
    This spice blend has gone into my regular rotation… especially when I need a go-to, no-fail dinner! I usually make it with some form of your broccoli salad too… and a side of watermelon (your picture is great advertising! )

  17. My husband asks for this chicken almost weekly! I love to put it over a salad. The spice blend is fabulous!

    • I’m so thrilled this is in your regular rotation, thank you!

  18. Delicious! I like to make this and serve it over a salad.

    • Thank you! I love this one in a salad too!

  19. 5 stars
    I have been making this at least twice a month, if not more, for I don’t even know how long! It’s so easy, so delicious, and so versatile. I love it best as a blackened chicken Caesar salad! One of my favorite meal prep staples. 😋

    • Aw, I love that this has become a staple in your home! Thank you!

  20. 5 stars
    I just made this on the grill and it was one of the most amazing pieces of chicken I have ever had! I also topped it with your date mustard.. needless to say it was a crowd pleaser!

    • Wahoo, happy this was a slam dunk for your family! I love how easy and tasty this one is!

    • I love this meal because it’s something my toddler will eat and it’s suuuper easy 🙌 and it’s super versatile you can serve it with anything. It’s one of my go-to easy recipes! If you don’t know what to make for dinner I would recommend this and chances are you have all the ingredients already 😉

      • Yes! This is totally one of my go-to’s when I’m not sure what’s for dinner and need something fast! Love that your toddler loves it too!


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