My son has entered the "picky eating phase" where chicken nuggets top the list! Although there are some decent nuggets out there - I really wanted to try my hand at a healthier version that was also gluten-free. So, I picked up a package of ground chicken and went to work.
Less than 30 minutes later - I had 32 cute little nuggets that not only looked like real nuggets, but tasted like them too! And if that wasn't good enough, my son ate them all up and asked for more! Now that's what I like to call a win-win.
Frequently asked questions about chicken nuggets
Can toddlers eat chicken nuggets?
Yes, especially these baked chicken nuggets. Sometimes toddlers have a hard time eating meat but these nuggets use ground chicken which is perfect for their little teeth.
Are these healthier than packaged chicken nuggets?
A big yes to that question! These limit the salt and fat, not to mention chemicals, that are found in the frozen nugget varieties. So feel good about making this homemade version for your little one.
Pro-tip: For a crispier coating - spray top of nuggets with additional cooking spray.
More foods toddlers will love:
Chobani and Healthy Snacks from 2 Cookin Mamas
Gluten Free Fish Sticks from What the Fork
Pineapple Carrot Muffins from 2 Cookin Mamas
- ¼ cup Bob's Red Mill old-fashioned rolled oats ground
- 1 lb. ground chicken
- 1 teaspoon paprika divided
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ cup Pecorino Romano cheese divided (Parmesan can be substituted)
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- ½ teaspoon Kosher salt
- ¾ cup gluten free breadcrumbs
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray a large cookie sheet with nonstick spray.
- Using a food processor - grind oats into breadcrumb size pieces.
- Combine oats, chicken, ½ teaspoon paprika, garlic, 2 tablespoons pecorino romano, salt and pepper in large bowl and mix well.
- In a small bowl, mix together remaining paprika, Pecorino Romano and breadcrumbs.
- Take 1 tablespoon of chicken mixture, press into nugget shape with fingers, and coat with breadcrumb mix.
- Place nuggets on prepared cookie sheet and bake for 18-20 minutes, turning once after 10 minutes.