Homemade Chicken Nuggets with Hidden Vegetables Recipe

Chicken Nuggets with Hidden Vegetables Recipe | How To Sneak Vegetables Into Chicken Nuggets

What’s more kid friendly than chicken nuggets?  There isn’t a kid I’ve met who doesn’t LOVE chicken nuggets… heck I know kids who will only eat chicken nuggets.  These homemade chicken nuggets are perfect for weeknight meals and freeze great.

Homemade Chicken Nuggets with Hidden Vegetables Recipe

Sneaking vegetables into food is one of my favorite things to do.  The kiddos at my school eat so many veggies every day, and they have absolutely no idea that they are eating them.  I have found my winning combination of vegetables that are easy to hide in any meal are; zucchini, onion, garlic, green or red bell pepper, celery and tomatoes.  In this recipe, I just use zucchini and onion.  To make your vegetables more conspicuous, peel the skin on your zucchini first.

I decided to grind my own chicken to make these chicken nuggets.  If you don’t want to grind your own chicken, pick up 1 lb of ground chicken from the grocery store and double this recipe.  By grinding my own chicken, I was able to use 1 large chicken breast and got 24 chicken nuggets!

how to grind chicken
Click Here To Learn How To Grind Chicken With A Food Processor

Grinding your own chicken is easy.  Click the picture above and learn how to grind your own chicken in 3 easy steps.

Start by preheating your oven to 425 degrees and gathering your ingredients.  Prepare a large baking sheet with parchment paper.

Ingredients:

1 large chicken breast
1/2 zucchini
1/4 yellow onion
1 clove garlic
1 egg
1/4 cup bread crumbs
2 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
For Coating:
1/4 cup flax meal (optional)
1 cup panko bread crumbs
1/2 cup bread crumbs
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper

Cut zucchini and onion into large chunks.  Add to bowl of food processor along with onion and salt and pepper and pulse until finely grated.

Homemade Chicken Nuggets with Hidden Vegetables Recipe

Dump veggies into a large bowl, replace the blade in your food processor and add chilled, diced chicken breast.  Click here to learn how to grind your own chicken.

Homemade Chicken Nuggets with Hidden Vegetables Recipe

Homemade Chicken Nuggets with Hidden Vegetables Recipe

Add ground chicken to bowl with veggies and add egg, and 1/4 cup bread crumbs.  If you are using store-bought ground chicken, add two eggs.

Homemade Chicken Nuggets with Hidden Vegetables Recipe

Using your hands, mix chicken, egg and veggies together until it reaches the consistency of meatloaf.  Be sure to thoroughly wash your hands after touching raw chicken.

Homemade Chicken Nuggets with Hidden Vegetables Recipe

In a shallow bowl, combine ingredients for coating.  With wet hands, roll equal size balls of chicken mixture and toss in bread crumb mixture to coat.

Homemade Chicken Nuggets with Hidden Vegetables Recipe

Homemade Chicken Nuggets with Hidden Vegetables Recipe

Place chicken balls on prepared baking sheet and gently press down into discs to form the nugget shape.  I like to work assembly line style, I roll the balls, toss in bread crumbs and then just place on a baking sheet, once I have all of the chicken balls on the baking sheet, I like to line them up, and press down.  I was able to get 24 chicken nuggets from 1 large chicken breast.

Homemade Chicken Nuggets with Hidden Vegetables Recipe

Homemade Chicken Nuggets with Hidden Vegetables Recipe

If you do not want to eat your chicken nuggets right now, freeze in a single layer on baking sheet.  Once frozen transfer to a labeled ziplock bag.  To cook, add an additional 5-10 minutes to cooking time.

Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until your nuggets reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees and serve with your favorite dipping sauce.  Enjoy your chicken nuggets knowing that your kiddos are getting a full serving of vegetables in one of their favorite dishes.

Homemade Chicken Nuggets with Hidden Vegetables Recipe

Homemade Chicken Nuggets with Hidden Vegetables Recipe

Homemade Chicken Nuggets with Hidden Vegetables Recipe

Click the link below for the printable version of this recipe

Chicken Nuggets

17 Comments

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  5. If we use already ground chicken from the store, how much should we use to match the recipe above.

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  7. Did you mean to put 2tsp of salt?

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  9. Mine was extremely wet. I used ground chicken from the store so I doubled the recipe but only used 3 eggs instead of 4. Should I have only used 2 still? Definitely didn’t form into balls and I just kind of plopped gobs of it into the panko.

    • Hi Kristin,

      The recipe only calls for 1 egg in the mixture, so the 3rd egg you added might be whats making it a little goopy. If this happens next time, or if you’re wondering how to fix it, I suggest adding more bread crumbs to the mixture to make it a little thicker. It won’t really change the taste, your nuggets will just be a little bit fluffier on the inside.

      I hope this helps!

      Lindsie =)

  10. Hi Lindsie,

    I made these once for my oldest who loved them but now going to attempt at making again for my oldest and youngest (2.5 & 1yo) unfortunately our youngest has an egg allergy, would there be anything you’d recommend as a replacement binder for the nuggets? 🙂

    • Hi Megan,

      Sorry for the late reply. The egg just helps hold it together, so you could completely leave it out, or soak a slide or two of break in milk (about 1/4 cup)and mix that into the meat mixture. Hope this helps!

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  12. Hi! Would you recommend baking it and then freeezing it? Or did you mean to freeze them raw and bake later?

    • Depends on how much time you have. If you’re usually in a crunch for time, I’d cook them first, and then freeze them, and then you can even re-heat them in the toaster oven (my re-heating appliance of choice), but if you have a little more time, freeze them raw and add another 5 minutes to the cooking time. Hope this helps! <3

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