Low-Carb Baked Chicken Nuggets with Mustard, Almond, and Parmesan
posted by Kalyn Denny on March 23, 2016
Baked Chicken Nuggets with Mustard, Almond, and Parmesan are kid-friendly and delicious! These tasty chicken nuggets are low-carb, Keto, gluten-free, low-glycemic and South Beach Diet friendly; use the Recipes-by-Diet-Type Index to find more recipes like this one.
I love updating older recipes with better photos that show off the food more effectively, but it can also be a challenge to update an old recipe. Because let’s face it, my tastes have changed since I first started this blog almost 11 years ago, and I’m a better cook now than I was then. So sometimes when I make an older recipe again I can’t stop myself from improving it!
That’s what happened when Kara and I worked on this recipe for Low-Carb Chicken Nuggets with Mustard, Almond, and Parmesan. We were expecting that some of the coating would fall off the chicken and stick to the pan, because in the original post I mentioned that happened and said that if this chicken had been slightly less delicious I might never have posted the recipe. And I explained how I had tried two versions, but by the second time I didn’t care if the coating fell off because the chicken was so tasty.
But Kara and I are up for a challenge, and although it took us a few tries, we managed to get what we thought was a greatly-improved result by switching the original chicken strips to chicken nuggets, and (drumroll please) using Parchment Paper to cover the pan when we baked them. And what a huge difference that made in the final result. We also used more finely ground almond flour instead of the coarser almond meal, which I think helped it stick better. And Kara and I agreed that if you’re making chicken nuggets you want a whole sheet pan full, so we increased the recipe to four chicken breasts as well.
And although they still looked a bit messy when they were cooking, we absolutely loved these low-carb chicken nuggets. I had some leftovers in the fridge when my nieces Kate and Amanda spent the night last weekend and they also raved over how good they were. And if you’re a mom who’s trying to follow a lower carb eating plan and looking for things the kids will eat, I promise, you’ll love this recipe!
Trim the chicken breasts and pound each one just until they are close to an even thickness and not much more than 1/2 inch thick. Cut the pounded chicken breasts into nuggets. Mix the mayo, Dijon mustard, white balsamic vinegar, water, garlic powder, and poultry seasoning to make the marinade; then put the chicken into a Ziploc bag and let the chicken marinate 3-4 hours or all day in the fridge. (You could cut up the chicken and mix the marinade the night before and keep them in the fridge; then just add the the marinade to the bag before you go to work or leave for the day.)
When it’s dinner time, dump the chicken into a colander placed in the sink and let the excess marinade drip off while the oven heats. Line the sheet pan with Parchment Paper. We used a food processor or mini-processor to grind together the Parmesan cheese, almond flour, poultry seasoning, salt, and pepper, but you can probably just mix it with a fork if your almond flour and Parmesan is finely ground. One at a time, dip nuggets in the almond flour mixture and place on the parchment paper.
Bake the nuggets without turning for 12-15 minutes or until they’re starting to get browned. Then turn then and cook about 10-12 minutes more. Total cooking time will be 20-25 minutes, depending on your pan and oven temperature.
And just for fun, here’s the original chicken strips photo from 2008, not too bad for those days.
Low-Carb Baked Chicken Nuggets with Mustard, Almond, and Parmesan
(Makes about 6 servings, or more if you’re serving to kids. Recipe adapted from Cooking New American.)
4 very large boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 T mayo (regular or light mayo will work)
2 T Dijon mustard (or use any mustard that appeals to you)
1 T white balsamic vinegar (or use slightly less than 1 T white vinegar if you don’t want to buy a special vinegar just for this)
1 T water
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. poultry seasoning
4 T Parmesan cheese (freshly grated is best, not the kind that comes in a can, but either will work)
1 cup almond flour (You can also use almond meal if that’s what you have, but it won’t stick to the chicken quite as well unless you grind it a bit more in the food processor.)
1/4 tsp. poultry seasoning
salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste (I didn’t use much salt)
Trim any undesirable parts from chicken, then put each chicken breast into a Ziploc bag and pound with a meat mallet (or something heavy) until the chicken is an even thickness, not much over 1/2 inch thick. Cut the chicken breasts into nugget-size pieces. Whisk together mayo, Dijon, white balsamic vinegar, water, garlic powder, and poultry seasoning. Place chicken strips and marinade in plastic bag and marinate in refrigerator for at least 3-4 hours or as long as all day.
When ready to cook, dump chicken into a colander placed in the sink so the excess marinade runs off and let chicken come to room temperature while you preheat oven to 450F/230C. If needed, use a food processor to finely grind the almond flour or meal, Parmesan, poultry seasoning, salt, and pepper, and put coating in large flat bowl. (If your almond flour and Parmesan are both finely ground you can probably just stir it together with a fork.) Cover baking sheet with Parchment Paper. Dip each chicken piece into coating, turning to coat both sides, and arrange in single layer on baking sheet.
Bake without turning for 12-15 minutes, or until the chicken is starting to look a little brown on the top. Then use metal turner and go under each piece of chicken to carefully turn each piece. Cook 10-12 minutes more on the second side until chicken is well browned and cooked through. Total cooking time will be 20-25 minutes, depending on your pan and oven temperature. Serve hot.
(If you’re reheating this in the microwave, be careful not to overcook or it will get dry. It is definitely best reheated in a hot pan or toaster oven.)
Low-Carb Diet / Low-Glycemic Diet / South Beach Diet Suggestions:
I’d consider these Low-Carb Chicken Nuggets to be a good option for any low-carb eating plan, including all phases of the South Beach Diet. For the South Beach Diet, be sure to consider the almond meal as your allowance of nuts for the day if you’re eating this for phase one.
If you want nutritional information for a recipe, I recommend entering the recipe into Calorie Count, which will calculate it for you. Or if you’re a member of Yummly, you can use the Yum button on my site to save the recipe and see the nutritional information there.