Our Paleo Family

Paleo “Shake and Bake” Chicken Nuggets (Paleo and AIP versions)

Around here, we try to make Friday night family fun night. This involves a dinner the kids really love and usually a game or a movie.

After trying these chicken nuggets, my son said, “I really like it when you take something we can’t have anymore and turn it into something paleo that we can have.” Exactly! He got it! This is precisely what I’m trying to do: take old favorites and make them new again and better for us by removing the grains, dairy and refined sugars.

With this recipe, I have two breading choices for you: plain old paleo and AIP. When it came time to taste test, I had a hard time telling the difference between the two. The paleo version’s breading was a little thicker. They were both really yummy.

These were still really delicious the next day as leftovers. Double win!

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On the left side, you have the AIP version. On the right are the paleo nuggets. The taste was very, very similar. My family gave a slight edge to the paleo version.

I tweaked the recipe a bit and made chicken sandwiches the next time around and they were a huge hit! The marinating in pickle juice is supposedly a trick to replicate Chick-fil-a’s flavor. I don’t know if I would go that far, but the marinade did make a big difference in flavor.

The bread you see in this picture is a focaccia made with a gluten free flour blend I’ve been experimenting with. Sometimes we need to make something gluten free, not necessarily paleo, and I don’t want all the additives and sugar that come with packaged gluten free products. I hope this is something I can share with you soon.

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These chicken nuggets (or sandwiches or strips) are now a top pick for family fun night. Even beating out pizza. Trust me, that is saying a lot!

Paleo "Shake and Bake" Chicken Nuggets
Print Recipe
You can use this same recipe with chicken tenders or any other cut of chicken. Nuggets are just so cute and fun!
Servings Prep Time
4-6 people 20 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
30-40 minutes 12-24 hours
Servings Prep Time
4-6 people 20 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
30-40 minutes 12-24 hours
Paleo "Shake and Bake" Chicken Nuggets
Print Recipe
You can use this same recipe with chicken tenders or any other cut of chicken. Nuggets are just so cute and fun!
Servings Prep Time
4-6 people 20 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
30-40 minutes 12-24 hours
Servings Prep Time
4-6 people 20 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
30-40 minutes 12-24 hours
Ingredients
Paleo Dry Breading Ingredients
AIP Dry Breading Ingredients
Horseradish Honey Mustard Sauce
Servings: people
Instructions
  1. Marinate chicken pieces in dill pickle juice for at least three hours and up to 24. In the refrigerator. I figured that goes without saying, but thought I better say it just in case.
  2. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 450 degrees.
  3. Prepare baking sheet(s) by covering them with parchment paper or non-stick aluminum foil. Set aside.
  4. Remove chicken from marinade and lay on paper towels. Blot with paper towels to remove the excess moisture.
  5. In a shallow dish, combine coconut milk and egg (if using egg). Season with 1/4 tsp. pepper (if using pepper).
  6. Decide which breading you will be making: either paleo or AIP. Then, in a large, good quality zip top bag, add dry ingredients, zip bag and shake to mix well. Add 2 teaspoons of the milk mixture and mix that well. You may need to use your hands to incorporate the liquid well. You are making your breading "shaggy" which will give your finished product a thicker, crispier crust. You can see the difference between the "shaggy" and "non-shaggy" chicken in this picture. The strips have a thinner crust. Still great tasting. Feel free to not add the liquid to the dry if you prefer a thinner crust.
  7. Dredge chicken in milk mixture until thoroughly coated.
  8. Pick up chicken, shaking off excess milk and add to zip top bag. Add about 1/4 of your chicken pieces at a time. If using large pieces of chicken, just add one piece at a time.
  9. Shake, shake, shake! Make sure each piece of chicken is coated well.
  10. Remove chicken from bag and arrange on tray so that pieces are not touching. Allow to rest for about 20 minutes for the breading to adhere well.
  11. Bake for 30-40 minutes, until chicken is browned on both sides. Flip once during cooking. Sprinkle with additional salt as soon as you take the chicken out of the oven.
  12. Serve with your favorite dip or sauce. Our favorite is the horseradish honey mustard.
To make the honey mustard
  1. Grate the horseradish with a microplane grater or the finest side of your box grater. Then combine all ingredients and chill until ready to serve. The proportions I've given you is what my family likes. You may like more of less of one ingredient. Play around with this to get it the way you like it!
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