Kids love chicken nuggets – and now you will love them too! These quinoa coated chicken nuggets are easy to make and full of whole food proteins – without the junk. Kids and adults love these crispy chicken nuggets.
Quinoa coated chicken nuggets are a hit in my house. They’re crunchy, golden, and tender. And easier to make than other breaded things I’ve made in the past – win!
Making your own chicken nuggets is easy, and with a quinoa coating they’re extra healthful. We wanted to make these healthy nuggets because chicken nuggets are so often one of those go-tos for picky eaters.
They’re great because protein in chicken and quinoa will keep them full. And there’s no wondering what’s in them! Feel free to make a large batch and freeze some extras for later.
Set up your nugget making station
The process here is pretty simple, but it’s important to get your station all set up before you begin. And make sure you have some cooked quinoa ready for the job, cooked however you prefer to cook it.
Begin by cutting your chicken breasts into 1-2 inch pieces, to your liking (remember that the quinoa coating does add thickness). The size doesn’t matter so much as that they’re all similar sized so they cook evenly. If you make them too big they may take longer to cook, so just be aware.
Fill one bowl with flour, salt, pepper, and garlic powder. In a second bowl, whisk the egg and water together until well scrambled. Fill a third bowl with your cooked and cooled quinoa. I recommend lightly salting and peppering the quinoa and egg mixtures if you haven’t already.
Finally, prepare a baking sheet covered in parchment paper and sprayed with cooking spray. Preheat the oven to 350* F. Grab a rag to keep near the station for cleaning up as you go.
How to make quinoa coated chicken nuggets
Now that you’re set up, it’s time to get coating! Be aware that the process is a bit messy and that you will handle lots of raw chicken. I have used tongs to do this, but I also find sometimes using a fork and my fingers just works best.
Working just one or a few nuggets at a time, dip pieces of chicken into the flour mixture until fully covered. They can sit here for a minute while you take each nugget individually through the next step.
Next, quickly dip each piece into the egg mixture. Make sure the whole nugget is covered – sometimes the flour is pesky. Then let the extra egg drip off.
Plop each piece into the quinoa and lightly press into the mixture to coat. The quinoa sticks remarkably well, and it doesn’t cause frustrating clumping in the quinoa mixture the way that using other breading so often does.
Finally, place each nugget onto the prepared baking sheet. If you want them extra crispy, spray a touch of cooking spray onto the top of each nugget.
Place into the oven and cook for 20 minutes. The nuggets should be slightly browned and cooked all the way through so there is no pink and the internal temperature is 165* F.
Serve with your favorite dips and enjoy for lunch or dinner! I even cut a few up to throw on my salad – delicious.
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Quinoa Coated Chicken Nuggets
- 2 cup cauliflower, florets
- 2 cup broccoli, florets
- 4 medium kiwi
- Preheat oven to 350° F. Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper and spray with cooking spray; set aside.
- Cook quinoa according to package directions; salt and pepper to taste.
- Cut chicken into flat, 2-inch, nugget-sized pieces.
- In a small bowl, combine the flour, salt, garlic powder, and pepper.
- In another small bowl, whisk together the egg and water.
- Working in small batches, coat pieces of chicken with the flour mixture; then, dip in egg mixture to coat completely, letting the excess egg drip off. Finally, drop into the quinoa, lightly pressing and flipping until all sides are coated.
- Place quinoa-coated chicken onto the prepared baking sheet; spray with a little extra cooking spray if desired to make them extra crispy.
- Bake for 20 minutes or until the outsides are slightly browned and the chicken is cooked through.
- While chicken is baking, cut cauliflower and broccoli into small florets (if not already purchased that way).
- Place an inch of water into the bottom of a large pot and add the veggies. Cover and bring to a boil, cooking for 2-3 minutes or until the desired doneness is reached.
- Serve chicken and veggies with kiwi slices on the side.
I'm a registered dietitian, mom of 4, avid lover of food and strong promoter of healthy habits. Here you will find lots of delicious recipes full of fruits and veggies, tips for getting your kids to eat better and become intuitive eaters and lots of resources for feeding your family.Learn More about Natalie