Many of you might remember my article that I wrote a couple of weeks ago about the dangers of eating conventional chicken nuggets. I specifically broke down all of the ingredients in McDonald’s nuggets, but sadly they are not alone. The junk that I mentioned that was in them is not just in nuggets, but can be found in many pre-packaged food-like substances.
So in order to avoid all of the junk while still allowing my children to eat the foods that they like, I came up with a healthy version of chicken nuggets. And guess what? It’s easy too! Who knew? What I suggest doing is to make a large batch of this and freeze them so you can have a healthy meal on hand when you feel yourself giving into the drive-though temptation that we have all felt. Serve them with some raw carrots or celery sticks for some added crunch.
Here’s what you need:
- 2-3 lbs. of pastured local chicken cut into bite-sized pieces (note- if you are using a bone-in chicken as I did, I suggest using the breast portion to save yourself the hassle of cutting the meat off of an un-cooked chicken on the bone)
- 1 cup buttermilk or kefir
- Enough flour to coat evenly (sprouted flour is always the preferred choice in this but use what you have on hand)
- About 1 quart grass-fed beef tallow OR expeller pressed coconut oil or palm oil (expeller pressed coconut oil has no coconut flavor or taste but is still a healthy fat to consume-you must use expeller pressed as it has a higher smoke point than virgin)
- A heavy bottomed stainless steel pan or deep fryer
- About a tsp. each of the following seasonings (I didn’t measure so this is approximate)
- sea salt
- dried mustard seed
- adobo seasonings (the natural version)
- onion powder
- garlic powder
- cayenne pepper (optional)
The How To:
First you want to slowly warm up the fat of your choice (I used tallow with great results) to prevent any smoking. While the fat is warming up, go ahead and add everything but the flour to the cut up chicken and allow it to sit for a few minutes. When you are ready to begin frying, (make sure the oil is gently bubbling) go ahead and cover the seasoned chicken that’s now covered in buttermilk or kefir in the flour. Once it’s covered completely, add it to the oil and begin frying the chicken in small batches. Make sure that you turn the chicken a couple of times to make sure it cooks evenly. You want the chicken to look light brown all over-it will take about 5-7 mins. Use tongs to remove it from the hot oil and allow the fat to heat back up before starting another batch. Just keep going this way until you have fried all of your chicken! You now have super healthy chicken nuggets that you can serve right away or do like I did and serve about half and freeze the rest!
ENJOY!!! I really hope you like this recipe, I was so happy when my kids devoured them and asked for seconds. Oh and I also served it with a bit of raw honey to dip it in. Even I loved it!
This recipe is shared at The Hearth and Soul Blog Hop #48, day2day joys: Read the ingredients, and Real Food Wednesdays 5/18, and Simple Lives Thursday #44, and Fight Back Fridays 5/20, and Made it on Monday #10