Feeding Littles: Nuggets a la Chick-Fil-A

This recipe wouldn't really fit into the category of "healthy" kids food, compared to the rest of the foods in this series - but they are definitely healthier than Chick-fil-A's version: they're baked with coconut oil, rather than fried with peanut oil, and they don't have nearly as much salt. My kids love these nuggets, and they don't upset their stomachs like the nuggets I sometimes get in the freezer section or at the drive-thru. We also like to prepare whole filets using this same recipe, having a knock-off Chick-fil-A sandwich night - always a welcome dinner in our house, since we live over 200 miles from one of the restaurants. They take a bit more time than all the other recipes I've shared, but my family is always glad I put in the extra work.
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Prep time: 2 hrs. 20 min.
Cook time: 40 min.

What you'll need: 
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil 
  • 3 chicken breasts 
  • Brine of one 24 oz. bottle of sweet pickles 
  • Salt 
  • Pepper 
  • 1 cup flour 
  • Cayenne pepper 
  • 2 heaping tbsp powdered sugar 
  • 2 eggs 
  • 1/4 cup milk 
Preheat oven to 400°. Coat a tin foil-lined, rimmed cookie sheet with coconut oil. 

Butterfly the chicken breasts and lay them flat on a large cutting board. Cover them with a layer of plastic wrap and, using the flat side of a meat tenderizer, flatten the breasts to about 1/2 inch thickness. Slice the breasts into small (2 inch) pieces, and stack them in a container that has a lid. Cover the chicken with the pickle brine and store it in the fridge for at least two hours.

When you are about ready to remove the chicken from the fridge, set up your dredging line: combine the flour, two dashes of cayenne, and the powdered sugar in one container. Toss to combine, and set it aside. Then beat the eggs and the milk together in a separate container and set that aside as well.

Remove the chicken from the brine and pat-dry the pieces with paper towels, discarding the brine. Season the chicken with salt and black pepper.

Dredge four or five pieces of chicken at a time - first in the flour mixture, then in the egg, then in the flour again. Line the pieces on the cookie sheet, leaving a bit of space between each one. Flip the pieces to cover them with the oil, so the outside is nice and crisp, rather than flour-y.

Bake them for about 40 minutes - turning over the nuggets after about 20 - until they are a nice golden brown. This recipe makes 40 nuggets, and any extras can be frozen and reheated at 400° for 15 minutes.

3 comments:

  1. These look really yummy! I followed you on Bloglovin so that I can get more great recipes off of your blog :)

    Reviews Until You Drop

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  2. Amazing Naomi, I think I'll try this recipe in the weekend! Thanks for sharing. : )

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