Friday, September 7, 2012

[Gluten-Free] Pan Fried Chicken Nuggets with Honey Mustard Sauce

When I was a little kid, I never met a chicken nugget that I didn't like. It didn't matter if they were hot, cold, big, or small... I don't hate when it comes to chicken nuggets. What's not to like? Juicy chicken with a golden brown crust - it's the perfect vehicle for your favorite dipping sauces.

I can remember heated debates at the lunch table in middle school (mostly the boys), on which dipping sauce was the best for chicken nuggets. Some people were ketchup all the way. Others thought mustard was the way to go. But it was honey mustard, so tangy and sweet, that bridged the gap between both parties.

Fast forward some years later to my gluten-free life and I was in a chicken nugget drought. I hadn't had one in years. If you had asked me 10 years ago what came to mind when you said "Chick-fil-a," I would've said chicken nuggets. But if you asked me today, I would say iced tea.

Since my sister is a big fan of Chick-fil-a, we always go at least once when she comes into town. I used to just sit there with my big iced tea and watch her eat those tasty chicken nuggets. I was so jealous. I just had to do something about it!

That's when I created my gluten-free Pan Fried Chicken Nuggets. These things are AWESOME! First off, you don't have to be gluten-free to enjoy these little guys. They are light and juicy and bring me right back to childhood. And of course, I love to make them extra special with a side of my Honey Mustard middle school lunch table would be so proud!

I guess you could say, I'm not a chicken anymore...when it comes to chicken nuggets!

[Gluten-Free] Pan Fried Chicken Nuggets
I don’t know anyone who doesn’t like chicken nuggets! My gluten-free chicken nuggets are juicy with a light crust. I love to serve them with ketchup and my Honey Mustard Sauce. Perfect for kids and the young at heart!

Makes 25 chicken nuggets

2 eggs
1 cup brown rice crumbs (I use “Hol-Grain brand, salt free)
1 cup white rice flour
2 teaspoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons onion powder
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoons chili powder (optional)
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 pound chicken breast or tenderloins, cut into ¾ inch chunks
¾ cup safflower oil, coconut oil, or almond oil
         Whisk together eggs in a medium bowl. Set aside. 
         In another medium bowl, whisk together brown rice crumbs, white rice flour, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, chili powder (if using), and black pepper. 
        With both bowls next to each other, place 4-5 chicken pieces in the eggs. Coat both sides of the chicken pieces. Then transfer them to the flour mixture. Use a spoon to gently scoop then flour mixture over the egg-coated chicken pieces. Transfer chicken to a plate. Repeat with the remaining chicken pieces.
       In a large sauté pan, heat oil over medium heat. Test the oil temperature by placing one chicken piece in the hot oil. If it starts to sizzle, the oil is ready. Working in batches, cook chicken pieces 2 minutes on each side. Nuggets should be slightly golden brown. Continue until all chicken pieces are cooked.
       Keep cooked nuggets warm in a 200 degree oven until ready to serve. Serve with my Honey Mustard Sauce (recipe follows)- Enjoy!

Lauren Marie’s Tips:
*By the 3rd batch or so, I find that I only have to cook the chicken pieces about 1 ½ minutes on each side because the oil is hotter than at the beginning. If the oil gets too hot, just take the pan off the heat for a couple seconds, rather than turning down the heat. When in doubt, you can always cut 1 chicken nugget in half to see if the batch needs more time. 

*If you are using brown rice crumbs that have added salt, don’t add as much salt to the flour base.

*Dairy-free? Replace eggs with 1/3 cup olive oil. 

*Make-ahead tip: Prepare the chicken pieces in the morning and keep in fridge until dinner time. Let them stand at room temp for about 5 minutes before pan-frying.

[Gluten-Free] Honey Mustard Sauce
I really should have called this “Ridiculously Easy Honey Mustard Sauce.” This is a no-fuss sauce that is so simple to make and packs a great classic flavor. I just love it!

Makes 2/3 cup sauce

1/3 cup Dijon mustard
1/3 cup honey
Pinch of salt

In a small bowl, whisk together ingredients. Pour into a pretty dip bowl and serve with chicken nuggets. Keep in an airtight container in the fridge for 2-3 days. It also makes a great salad dressing!

recipe courtesy:

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