A real chicken nugget, at least in the fast food context, is not just a small solid piece of chicken. It's more of a deep-fried, mostly-chicken sausage patty, fabricated from various parts of the bird, such as every legal part. But I like to use chicken thighs.

Chef John
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Ingredients

8
Original recipe yields 8 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified

Starch Coating:

Directions

  • Place chicken thighs in bowl of a food processor. Add breadcrumbs, kosher salt, paprika, pepper, seafood seasoning, and cayenne pepper. Drizzle in hot sauce and melted butter. Pulse on and off until mixture becomes a coarse paste with very few big chunks, about 18 pulses.

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  • Line a rimmed baking sheet with a silicon mat. Scoop out 24 portions of the chicken mixture with a small ice-cream scoop and place on mat. Cover sheet with plastic wrap. Refrigerate until thoroughly chilled. (Or place pan in freezer for 15 minutes.)

  • Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.

  • Place cornstarch, self-rising flour, and salt into a quart-size zip-top plastic bag. Shake bag to mix thoroughly. Place 3 or 4 scoops of chilled chicken mixture into the bag; shake gently to coat and place on parchment-lined pan. Repeat with the rest of the nuggets. Shape them into flattened ovals, about 5/8-inch thick. Refrigerate pan overnight or until starch on surface is absorbed, flipping over once while they're in the fridge.

  • Heat oil in a deep-fryer or large saucepan to 300 degrees F (150 degrees C).

  • Fry nuggets in batches for 1 minute. Drain on a rack over a baking sheet; chill about 1 hour or until you're ready to serve them.

  • Heat oil in a deep-fryer or large saucepan to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Fry the nuggets a second time in batches for 2 minutes. Drain on rack.

Tips

Chef's Notes:

The exact cook time of the nuggets depends on the size and shape.

I like to serve these with celery sticks and a bowl of blue cheese dressing mixed with Frank's hot sauce.

Nutrition Facts

228 calories; 11.1 g total fat; 57 mg cholesterol; 767 mg sodium. 17.9 g carbohydrates; 13.2 g protein; Full Nutrition

Reviews (4)

Read More Reviews

Most helpful positive review

Rating: 5 stars
02/10/2017
These were awesome. I had to make some slight adjustments (my kids can't tolerate anything too salty or spicy but they love chicken nuggets). I cut the salt back a little and didn't put the spices or hot sauce directly in the nugget. Instead I used Chef Johns buffalo wing sauce (which is amazing) as a dipping sauce for the adults. Also I didn't read the recipe ahead of time all the way through so I didn't realize how long they need to refrigerate I used the suggestion of cutting down the time by putting them in the freezer and it worked perfectly. I will be making these again but this time will plan ahead! Read More
(6)
6 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 5
  • 4 star values: 1
  • 3 star values: 0
  • 2 star values: 0
  • 1 star values: 0
Rating: 5 stars
02/10/2017
These were awesome. I had to make some slight adjustments (my kids can't tolerate anything too salty or spicy but they love chicken nuggets). I cut the salt back a little and didn't put the spices or hot sauce directly in the nugget. Instead I used Chef Johns buffalo wing sauce (which is amazing) as a dipping sauce for the adults. Also I didn't read the recipe ahead of time all the way through so I didn't realize how long they need to refrigerate I used the suggestion of cutting down the time by putting them in the freezer and it worked perfectly. I will be making these again but this time will plan ahead! Read More
(6)
Rating: 5 stars
02/10/2017
These were awesome. I had to make some slight adjustments (my kids can't tolerate anything too salty or spicy but they love chicken nuggets). I cut the salt back a little and didn't put the spices or hot sauce directly in the nugget. Instead I used Chef Johns buffalo wing sauce (which is amazing) as a dipping sauce for the adults. Also I didn't read the recipe ahead of time all the way through so I didn't realize how long they need to refrigerate I used the suggestion of cutting down the time by putting them in the freezer and it worked perfectly. I will be making these again but this time will plan ahead! Read More
(6)
Rating: 5 stars
02/03/2017
Please try. Loved it. Used breast. Redoing tomorrow kids want them Read More
(2)
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Rating: 5 stars
12/19/2017
This was so easy and my guests loved them. Read More
(1)
Rating: 5 stars
02/07/2017
Very good! I will make again I made the recipe as written. We used BBQ sauce for dipping. I have some duck in the freezer to use. I'm wondering if I can make duck nuggets....hmmmm... Read More
(1)