I have been trying to crack the homemade chicken nugget code for a while now. My kids have hated everything I’ve tried; they’ve complained that they were too spicy, the wrong texture or they just didn’t “look” like chicken nuggets. Isn’t a chicken nugget supposed to be made out of chicken? It has been an uphill battle for sure but I have finally cracked the code for healthy homemade nuggets that my kids actually eat. If you are a mom, grandma, aunt or someone who cooks for kids, this post is for you. I’ve realized, through trial and error, that the secret isn’t so much the flavor of the chicken as it is the texture. Have you ever seen that ad showing what is inside a McDonald’s chicken nugget? It looks like pink taffy coming out of a meat grinder and it is so gross that I didn’t even think it was real. Real or not, it helped me develop this recipe below. Grinding up the chicken in a food processor or blender gives these nuggets a similar consistency to store-bought nuggets but without all the chemical and preservatives. This recipe is my own creation based on what my kids like and can eat (two out of the three cannot have dairy) but the recipe is very flexible and forgiving; you can tweak anything listed below as long as you get a sticky consistency in the end (think turkey burger or meatball consistency). Add in some buffalo sauce if your kids like hot wings or Parmesan cheese and serve it with a side of spaghetti sauce instead of ketchup. This recipe has endless possibilities so get creative and make this your own family’s favorite chicken nugget recipe.
- 2 large chicken breast, cut into large chunks
- 1/3 cup almond flour (coconut flour, white flour, bread crumbs and oats are all options)
- 1 tsp parsley
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1/2 tsp salt & pepper
- 1 cup panko
- 1/4 cup olive oil or cooking spray
1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees
2. In your food processor combine the first 6 ingredients and mix until well combined/ very moist (add water or milk if you mixture doesn’t look wet enough)
3. Using a table spoon, scoop out mixture and form into a small patty. Press patty into Panko, coating the top, bottom and edges. Place nugget on a cookie sheet and brush olive oil or spray with a cooking spray, flip the nugget over and do the same to the other side.
4. Bake at 350, until golden brown (approx. 20-30 minutes)
5. Mix things up by adding in a teaspoon of hot sauce or by replacing the flour with cheese. Or make fish sticks instead by swapping the chicken for tilapia or Swai. The possibilities are endless.
Thanks for stopping by~
Crystal York says
Wow! This is exactly what I’ve been looking for, especially with school starting in about 30 days or so! I don’t like buying the ones at the store. Thank you! I’m going to try them out this week on my 8 & 9 yr old girls:)
That is terrific Crystal. Please let us know how they liked them. Remember, make them your own… add or take away ingredients to make them you own. Thanks for stopping by!
Christina Bartz says
You are a genius! 🙂
Thank you CB- you are the best!!
Thank you! I have a very picky little eater who loves chicken nuggets. I will try this.