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Chicken Nuggets

I just love these homemade chicken nuggets. Bake them or fry them, either way, you are going to love them. Dip them in ketchup, barbecue sauce, ranch, etc. No need to go to Chik Fil A or McDonald's when you can easily make tasty chicken nuggets at home. If I can do it, you can do it.
Prep Time25 mins
Cook Time22 mins
Cooling Time5 mins
Total Time52 mins
Course: Appetizer, Dinner, Lunch, Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: crispy, crunchy, juicy, moist, soft
Servings: 5 people
Calories: 239kcal
Author: Matt Taylor


  • Tongs
  • Bowls
  • Knife
  • Cutting board
  • sheet pan
  • parchment paper or a silicone mat
  • Metal oven-safe cookie rack (optional)


  • 8 chicken tenderloins about 2lbs or 900g (will make 24 to 32 nuggets) or you may use chicken breast or thighs, etc.
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tsp. water 10ml
  • 1 cup buttermilk or enough to cover the chicken if not using the eggs
  • 1 cup of pickle juice/brine another alternative to the buttermilk and eggs
  • 1 to 1 1/2 cups of bread crumbs panko or traditional (you may need a bit more) (125 to 187g)
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder 2g
  • 1/2 tsp. salt 2g
  • 1/4 tsp. black. pepper 1g
  • 1/4 tsp. red chili powder optional for a bit of spiciness(1g)
  • 1/4 tsp. red pepper optional for a bit of spiciness (1g)
  • 1/2 tsp. paprika optional (2g)


  • Take the thawed chicken and cut it into chunks roughly one inch in size.
    If using the buttermilk or the pickle juice place the cut chicken into a bowl and pour the buttermilk or pickle juice over it. Cover and chill for at least 2 hours or overnight.
  • Preheat the oven to 400 F/205 C. Or heat a large pot with a little over an inch deep of oil to 325 F/162 C.
    Add the egg and water to a small bowl and whisk until well combined, creating the egg wash. Skip this if you soaked the chicken in buttermilk or pickle juice.
  • In a medium bowl mix together all the seasonings, the salt, pepper, garlic powder, etc. with the breadcrumbs.
    Or place everything in a bag and shake it.
  • Take a chicken chunk and dip it in the egg wash and then let the excess drain off, then dip it into the breadcrumbs and cover evenly.
    The same goes for the buttermilk or pickle brined chicken accept you won't use an egg wash.
    Or alternatively, dip a handful of chicken pieces and drop them into the bag with seasonings, and then shake to coat them.
    Place the chicken on an oven-safe metal rack, on top of a sheet pan lined with parchment paper or a silicone mat. Or don't use the wire rack at all. It helps with even baking, and you don't have to turn it.
  • Cook the nuggets in the oven, middle rack position, for 18 to 22 minutes until golden brown and slightly crisp and completely white in the middle when cut in half, no pink. If you don't use the wire rack, turn them over halfway through baking.
    Or if frying the nuggets, gently drop 5 to 6 coated nuggets into the hot oil and fry for 5 to 7 minutes until golden brown, and completely white in the middle when you cut it in half.
  • Remove them from the oven and allow them to cool for just a few minutes before serving them warm.
    Or remove them from the oil and place on a paper towel-lined plate and fry the rest.
    Dip in your favorite sauces. Enjoy!



Note: This seasoning is on the lighter side. If you are using seasoned breadcrumbs already, then it will probably be fine, or if you know you will be dipping them. Otherwise, you may want to double the amount of seasonings. :)
Note: The nutritional facts will vary slightly depending on the variation you use. The ones included are for the baked version with the egg wash. 
Note: The nutritional facts do not include any dipping sauces.
List of nutritional facts for chicken nuggets