Homemade Chicken Nuggets

Kid-friendly healthier baked homemade chicken nuggets for lunch or weeknight meals. Done in 25 minutes. No mystery ingredient, know what's in your nuggets.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time25 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Servings: 12 nuggets
Calories: 54kcal
Author: Dan Mikesell AKA DrDan

Ingredients

  • 2 skinless boneless chicken breasts trimmed
  • 2 egg whites or 1 whole egg
  • 8 tablespoons bread crumbs any combination of Panko or regular - flavored or not
  • 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese grated
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 375 convection (400 regular).
  • Prep a baking tray. Line with foil for clean-up. A rack will make the nuggets crispy all around. And then a good spray of PAM. If you don't have the rack, you will need to flip the nuggets after 8-10 minutes.
  • Pat dry and trim two medium skinless boneless chicken breast (about 1 pound). Cut the breasts into nuggets of 1 to 1 1/2 inches, 6-7 nuggets out of each breast. Pat dry again.
  • Whip two egg whites or one whole egg in a shallow pan or bowl. In a second shallow pan, mix 8 tablespoons total of bread crumbs with 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese. Salt and pepper to taste. I used 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.
  • Breadcrumb note: use what you have but 1/4 to 1/2 being Panko will add some texture and crispy taste. Also, I like some Italian flavoring but your choice.
  • Put the chicken in the egg mixture and stir to coat. Pick up the nuggets with a fork and shake off excess egg. Move the nuggets individually to the bread crumb mixture and coat well and place on the rack.  You could use a large baggie here and shake them in the bread crumbs instead.
  • Give the coated nuggets a light spray of PAM to prevent them from drying too much in the oven. If you have time, let sit for 5 minutes before place in oven. It will help the coating adhere better.
  • Bake until golden brown and the thickest is 165 temp about 15 minutes.

Notes

Pro Tips:

  1. You may use skinless chicken thighs but need to be cooked to 185 (for texture) and will take a few minutes longer.
  2. You may do this without the rack, but you will need to flip the nuggets at 8-10 minutes into cooking.
  3. You can make the nuggets smaller if you want for little kids.
  4. Most kids will want a smoother coating. So more regular breadcrumbs will be smoother. The more Panko, the rougher the coating.
  5. If you dry the nuggets well before the egg wash and you rest the nuggets before baking after coating, the coating will stick better
  6. Season to your taste.
  7. Good refrigerated for 3-4 days after cooking and in the freezer for 3-4 months. 
  8. With the combination of egg and chicken, I don't feel comfortable refrigerating or freezing uncooked.
  9. Good with dipping sauces.
  10. Nutrition is per nugget and is calculated on 6 nuggets per breast. Also, all topping is calculated as used, but obviously it won't be.
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Nutrition

Serving: 1nugget | Calories: 54kcal | Carbohydrates: 5g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 13mg | Sodium: 189mg | Potassium: 91mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 15IU | Vitamin C: 0.2mg | Calcium: 22mg | Iron: 0.4mg