The Baking Process
Baking helps in reducing the calories of food. A major contributing factor for calories in food is the fat content. Baking food in a fully covered container traps the heat within the container, and the stored heat releases natural energy and fat from the food. Baking, moreover, does not require oiling the food. Oiling adds fat content and consequently, calories to the food. On the other hand, other forms of cooking such as battering and frying that require the addition of oil to aid the cooking process increase the fat and sugar content and thereby the calories.
Baked Chicken Nutrition
How many calories in baked chicken? As a rule of thumb, chicken meat provides 150 calories per 100 grams. Chicken is low in carbohydrates and fat and has a moderate protein content.
Calories in baked chicken generally remain on the lower side. A 4-oz serving size of baked chicken breast (skinless) provides 100 calories, 3g of fat, 68mg of cholesterol, 77mg of sodium, and 23g of protein. One baked chicken leg provides 150 calories, 7g of fat, 85mg of sodium, and 21g of protein. In contrast, the same 4-oz serving of roasted chicken breast provides 223 calories, including 74 calories from fat, 8.82g of fat, 33g of protein, and 95mg of cholesterol.
The caloric values of baked chicken found in supermarkets and fast foods restaurants, however, does not always remain low.
One good option is Louis Rich Chicken Breast Classic. One 45g serving provides 44 calories, just 0.2g of fat, 23mg of cholesterol, 1.7g of carbohydrates, 8.9g of protein, and 514mg of sodium.
A 5-piece serving of Kirkwood’s Frozen Chicken Nuggets provides 230 calories, 15g of fat, 30mg of cholesterol, 600mg of sodium, 14g of carbohydrates, and 12g of protein.
Boston Market’s Crispy Baked Country Chicken provides 420 calories, including 198 calories from fat, 22g of fat, including 5g of saturated fat, 25mg of cholesterol, 880mg of sodium, 31g of carbohydrates, including 5g of dietary fiber and 1g of sugar, and 26g of protein.
A 308g serving size of Costco Baked Chicken provides 810 calories, including 272 calories from fat, 30.2g of fat, including 8.2g of saturated fat, 62mg of cholesterol, 75g of carbohydrates, including 7g of dietary fiber and 5.5g of sugar, 2061mg of sodium, and 59g of protein.
Fazoli’s Baked Chicken Parmesan, however, provides 960 calories, including 297 calories from fat, 33g of fat, including 11g of saturated fat, 115mg of cholesterol, 2350mg of sodium, 117g of carbohydrates, including 9g of dietary fiber, 12g of sugar, and 56mg of protein per order.
A review of Fazoli and Costco baked chicken nutrition reveals that such foods are high in calories and exceed the average recommended intake of sodium per day for an average man. The best approach is to share such servings.
Advantages of Baking Chicken
Apart from the low calories in baked chicken, it scores high in its excellent taste. Baking does not require adding oil, and the chicken cooks with its own oil making it very juicy and rich in flavor.
One excellent way to bake chicken is by making a hole underground, placing a red-hot piece of coal in it along with the chicken piece, and keeping it covered for the required time. This helps the chicken absorb the flavor and aroma in the best possible way.
The key, however, is to bake for the accurate time, at the accurate temperature, and with measured ingredients. Failure to adhere to such values would lead to the baked chicken becoming too dry or hard and tasting bad.
- WHFoods. “Chicken.” https://whfoods.org/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=116. Retrieved 11 March 2011.
- USAD Nutrient Data Laboratory. https://www.nal.usda.gov/fnic/foodcomp/search/ Retrieved 14 March 2011
- Nutrition facts. https://www.myfitnesspal.com/nutrition-facts-calories/baked-chicken. Retrieved 11 March 2011.
Image Credit: flickr.com/Alpha