Homemade Chicken Nuggets

Homemade Chicken Nuggets

Homemade Chicken Nuggets

This has to be one of my kids’ favorite dishes. This would make sense as what kid doesn’t love chicken nuggets? These nuggets, unlike the drive thru kind feature real chicken breast, which makes for a food even grownups can eat. I often make these as mini nuggets (pictured) because my favorite part is that outside breading and this maximizes that. Probably, that’s bad to admit. The good news is these are totally flexible. You can make mini nuggets like mine. You can make chicken fingers/tenders by just making strips. You can butterfly the chicken breast and then cut 2×2 nuggets which gets you the same breading ratio as my mini nuggets, but a crispier taste overall (a bit like chicken parmesan) The other thing you can do is make these (slightly) healthier by cooking them in the oven vs on the stove top. I’ve provided alternate directions for that below. The nice thing about cooking them in the stove is that your hands are free to do something else for 20 or so minutes while they cook. As a busy mom, that fact might actually sway me more than the fact that they aren’t fried that way. Another thing that’s probably bad to admit. Anyway, cook them on the stove in the time it takes to drive thru or cook them in the oven and make the side dishes with the time. Either way, make these awesome nuggets.

Side note, the main reason we don’t have these more often at my house is because they are a pricy (relatively speaking) dish. One pound of chicken breast does not feed four like it can in, say, a Chinese stir fry. I would recommend at least two pounds if you’re feeding two adults and two children over the age of 5. Plan at least ½ lbs of chicken per person, more obviously if you’re feeding teenage boys (I’ve got two boys and, given what decent meat will probably cost me by then, I’m thinking of going vegetarian those years…)

Side note two about the buttermilk and egg. If you have time and are very on it (as ever, not me) soak the chicken breast in the buttermilk several hours before you make these. It tenderizes the chicken because buttermilk is acidic and is generally really good. You don’t need to wash it off when you do the breading. Just take the chicken chunks and dump them directly into the bread crumbs. If you like a slightly heartier taste, dunk the chicken pieces into the egg before frying/baking. It will make more breading stick to the nugget so they will be heavier and egg always adds richness. You can do both egg and buttermilk if you want. Then these totally rock. Otherwise they are just really good. Your kids won’t care either way, so do what you have time for.

Serves: 4

Reheats: I eat them cold. They are okay re-warmed, but clearly best the first day.

Kid Friendly Tasks: Getting out the barbecue sauce and ketchup

Ingredients

  • ½ lb of chicken breast per person (roughly), chunked into your nugget shape of choice
  •  1 c bread crumbs (either Italian or regular. It doesn’t honestly matter all that much)
  •  ½ tsp Oregano (or 1 whole tsp if using plain bread crumbs)
  •  1 tsp seasoned salt (I use low salt seasoned salt (I know, really, but my husband got it by accident and I’m still using it up) so use slightly less than this and taste first. Otherwise add ½ tsp salt, ½ tsp garlic powder, ½ tsp paprika and ½ tsp onion powder)
  •  Oil for frying or baking

Optional Ingredients

  • 1 c Buttermilk
  •  1 Egg

Directions

  1. Mix the bread crumbs, oregano and seasoned salt together in a shallow bowl.
  2. Heat your skillet on medium heat or pre-heat your oven to 425 and choose a baking dish large enough to accommodate your chicken breast. Cover either the skillet or the baking dish with enough oil to coat the bottom of the dish/pan.
  3. Take your chicken breast and dunk into egg if using (water if not. It is slightly healthier), shake off excess and then dredge in bread crumbs. If you’re using egg everything should stick really well. If you’re not don’t be surprised if you have bare/thin spots. Just pat a little more on those and don’t worry if it doesn’t stick well. Drop into hot skillet or baking dish. Repeat for all of your nuggets.
  4. Fry in skillet about 5 mins per side (depending on the size/thickness of your nuggets) or until not pick in the middle. OR bake in the oven for 15-20 mins (again depending on the size of your nuggets.

Serve with the usual ketchup and barbecue sauce and enjoy!

Homemade Chicken Nuggets

Homemade Chicken Nuggets

 

 

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