With two growing boys at home, these Air Fryer Chicken Nuggets are a pretty popular choice for after school snacks or an easy dinner. Serve with some dipping sauces and you’re all set.
I like to serve mine with Homemade Honey Mustard (recipe coming soon) and my kiddos like these with ketchup. Any condiment you enjoy is a good idea (especially my Tangy Alabama White Sauce), or serve them on their own… because they’re seriously delish. Other kid-friendly recipes my munchkins enjoy include these Pepperoni Pizza Garlic Knots, my Taco Bell Copycat Mexican Pizzas, and this Homemade Spanish Rice.
INGREDIENTS FOR THIS RECIPE:
While these can be baked in the oven, I head-over-heels prefer the air fryer method. They’re crispier, cook quicker, and clean up is so simple. Here’s what you’ll need:
- Bread Slice
- Heavy Cream
- Garlic Powder
- Dried Minced Onion
- Springer Mountain Farms Ground Chicken
- Crushed Cornflakes
- Grated Parmesan
- Melted Butter
- Fresh Parsley
Now I know what you’re thinking… a bread slice? What’s that for? Often when folks form their own meatballs, they make a panade first… which is a simple mix of bread and milk. It keeps the meat nice and juicy… and kinda fluffy. Which is what you would expect in a chicken nugget. I like to mix mine with the heavy cream, garlic powder, dried onion, paprika and salt. After the bread has soaked in the liquid, then I mix-in the chicken to create the interior of the nuggets.
CRUSHED CORNFLAKES VS BREADCRUMBS:
While the panko breadcrumbs will give you a crispier crust than Italian breadcrumbs, I highly recommend crushing your own cornflakes for this recipe. The texture is crunchier and you get the semi-sweetness flavor from the cereal! Savory-sweet is always a good idea in my opinion.
GROUND CHICKEN OR CHICKEN BREAST?
When you buy chicken nuggets at a fast food chain or in your grocer’s freezer aisle, they’re made with ground chicken. If you prefer utilizing slices of whole chicken breast, I would refer to those as chicken strips instead of nuggets. You can use the same seasoning and air frying method for strips, just skip the panade.
CAN YOU FREEZE AIR FRYER CHICKEN NUGGETS?
You ‘betcha! After air frying, let the chicken nuggets cool completely before transferring to a cookie sheet. Freeze them on the sheet and then transfer and store in a freezer-safe bag for up t0 2 months. To reheat, simply air fry on 350F for 10 – 15 minutes, or bake for 25 – 30 minutes at the same temperature. Air fryers and ovens may vary, so monitor accordingly. I don’t recommend the microwave, as they won’t be as crispy.
WHAT TO SERVE WITH FOR DINNER:
Of course, you’re going to want your dipping sauces (or at least if you’re like me, I’m a sauce fanatic!). To make these into a full meal, I suggest pairing with one of the recipes below!
- Mind Blowing Southern Baked Macaroni and Cheese
- Grandma June’s Fully Loaded Mashed Potato Casserole
- Fettuccini Pasta with Garlic Cauliflower Cream Sauce
- Lightened Up Yellow Squash Casserole
- Classic No Bean Chili
- How To Make Smashed Potatoes in the Air Fryer
- Grilled Corn with Cilantro Cowboy Butter
- Super Refreshing Watermelon Cucumber Salad with Feta
- 1 Bread Slice
- 3 tbsp. Heavy Cream
- 1 tsp. Garlic Powder
- 2 tsp. Dried Minced Onion
- 1 tsp. Paprika
- 2 tsp. Salt
- 1 lb. Springer Mountain Farms Ground Chicken
- 1 Egg
- 1 cup Crushed Cornflakes
- ¼ cup Grated Parmesan
- 3 tbsp. Melted Butter
- Fresh Parsley, optional for garnish
- Preheat air fryer to 400F.
- Add the bread, heavy cream, garlic powder, dried minced onion, paprika, and 1 teaspoon of salt to a large mixing bowl. Allow to soak for 1 - 2 minutes, or until the bread has absorbed the liquid.
- Gently combine the soaked bread with the ground chicken.
- Crush the cornflakes and mix together with the parmesan cheese in a large bowl. Whisk the egg in a separate bowl and set aside.
- Form the chicken into nuggets and coat with the egg first, then the cornflake mixture.
- Place the nuggets in the air fryer and brush the top of each one with melted butter. Air fry at 400F for 8 - 10 minutes, flipping halfway through. Nuggets are done when internal temp is 165F.
- Garnish with fresh parsley, if desired, and serve with your preferred dipping sauce.
NOTES ON THIS RECIPE:
- I prefer to use sourdough bread for this recipe, as it absorbs the liquid best.
- Feel free to change up your spices. Sometimes I’ll add cayenne if I want to add a spicy kick. Za’atar gives these a unique and yummy flavor… when using it, add some chopped fresh mint into the chicken mix! Oh man, so good. Serve them on a piece of fresh hot pita with yogurt sauce, lettuce and tomato slices.
- If you prefer to bake these, preheat your oven to 400F and bake for 15 – 20 minutes. Always make sure the internal temperature is 165F before consuming.
This post is sponsored in partnership with Springer Mountain Farms. Per the usual, all opinions here are mine alone and I would never recommend a product or ingredient that I did not immensely enjoy myself. Thank you for supporting the brands that support SliceOfJess.com!