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Crispy, fried homemade chicken nuggets are a family favorite! They are quick, easy, and even better than the restaurants.

Can you beat homemade chicken nuggets? I think not! This version is amazing (along with our Baked Nuggets) and we like to serve it with Homemade Ranch or Fry Sauce.

Homemade chicken nuggets on white plate with bbq sauce.

Homemade Are the Best

With six kids, you better believe we’ve eaten a few thousand nuggets in our lifetime. Most have been from fast food joints and restaurants and because they love them so much, I decided to try a homemade version.

After coming up with a recipe and realizing how simple it was, we have been making these for dinner at least once or twice a month. The kids have declared time and time again that they are better than anything they’ve had outside the house!

I was happy they liked the homemade chicken nuggets, not only because it’s a simple dinner idea but because it saved us a few trips (and money) to the local fast food locations.

Cut up chicken pieces on cutting board.

How to Make Homemade Chicken Nuggets

This homemade chicken nuggets recipe is easy to make at home!

PREP CHICKEN. Cut chicken into bite-sized pieces about 1-1½ inches.

PREP BOWLS. Place the flour into a bowl. Add the eggs and water into a second bowl and beat together. In a third bowl combine the bread crumbs, Parmesan cheese, garlic salt, and Italian seasoning. Mix together.

HEAT OIL. Add about 2 inches of oil to a frying pan and heat over medium heat.

COAT. While the oil is heating up, coat the chicken. Coat each nugget with flour, then dip into the egg mixture. Finally, coat with the bread crumb mixture.

FRY. When the oil is ready place one nugget into the oil to test. It should sizzle immediately. If it darkens too quickly without cooking the inside then the oil is too hot. Adjust the heat accordingly. Fry the nuggets 3-4 minutes on each side. Place on a wire rack or paper towel to drain excess oil and cool.

Cooking alternatives

I think we can all agree that fried food is amazing (including this crispy chicken nugget recipe). But, this baked version and an air fryer version are just as good and have fewer calories.

  • Baked nuggets. Once breaded, place on a wire rack over a foil-lined baking sheet. Spray with olive oil spray and bake at 400°F for 10 minutes. Flip, spray, and cook for an additional 8 minutes. Broil for a few additional minutes to brown nuggets.
  • Air fryer. Preheat the air fryer to 400°F. Spray the air fryer basket with cooking spray. Arrange the chicken nuggets in a single layer in the basket making sure the sides are not touching. For a crispy texture, spray the top of the nuggets with olive oil. Cook for about 7 minutes. Repeat for remaining nuggets. 

Serving Ideas

Homemade fried chicken nuggets are popular in our home (with kids and adults alike), and here are some of our favorite ways to enjoy them!

Serving suggestions. These are our favorite sides to serve with this best chicken nuggets recipe:

Dipping Sauces

Are you a dipper too? If so, here are some of our favorite homemade dip recipes to enjoy with the nuggets:

Fried chicken nuggets on paper towel lined plate.

Storing Nuggets

Whether you want to make this easy chicken nuggets recipe ahead of time or store them as leftovers you can choose to keep them in the fridge to use soon, or in the freezer to be baked later.

Store fried nuggets. Place cooled nuggets in an airtight container and store in the fridge for 4-5 days. Reheat under the broiler until warm and crisp.

Store unfried nuggets. After coating the chicken, place them in a single layer, cover them tightly with plastic wrap, and store in the fridge for 1-2 days before frying according to the recipe.

FREEZE. Flash freeze unfried nuggets and transfer to a freezer-safe container. Freeze for 1-2 months. To bake, place frozen nuggets on a baking sheet with a wire rack. Bake at 400°F for 25-30 minutes. Crisp under the broiler. 

Homemade chicken nuggets recipe on plate with sauce.

Recipe FAQ

What oil is best to fry homemade chicken nuggets?

Use a high smoking point oil like vegetable oil, canola oil, or peanut oil. I have been able to find olive oil suitable for frying.

How can I season homemade chicken nuggets?

The best way to season the nuggets themselves is by adding different flavors to the breadcrumbs. You can mix in an Italian seasoning blend, paprika or cayenne pepper, onion powder, black pepper, or lemon pepper. You can also add even more flavor by dipping the nuggets in different sauces.

What is the best way to cut even-sized chicken nuggets?

Chicken can be tricky to cut because it can move around a lot leaving oddly shaped and uneven pieces. The best way I have found to cut even pieces of chicken is to partially freeze the chicken breast. This stabilizes the chicken allowing you to easily cut even pieces. Once cut allow the pieces to thaw before cooking.

Why does the breading fall off my homemade chicken nuggets?

The chicken pieces need a moisture barrier, in this case, flour between the chicken and the bread crumbs. When the chicken is cooked, steam is released. Without the flour to absorb the extra moisture, the bread coating would fall off.

For More Chicken Recipes, Check Out:

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5 from 47 votes

Homemade Chicken Nuggets

By: Lil’ Luna
Crispy, fried homemade chicken nuggets are a family favorite! They are quick, easy, and even better than the restaurants.
Servings: 4
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 15 minutes
Total: 30 minutes

Ingredients 

  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 cup regular or panko breadcrumbs
  • ½ cup Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • teaspoon garlic salt
  • oil, for frying
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Instructions 

  • Cut 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts into bite-sized pieces (about 1–1½ inches).
  • Place 1 cup flour in a medium bowl.
  • Combine 2 eggs and 2 tablespoons water in a second bowl and beat together.
  • In a third bowl, combine 1 cup breadcrumbs, ½ cup Parmesan cheese, 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning, and garlic salt and mix.
  • Fill a frying pan with about 2 inches of oil and heat over medium heat to 350°F.
  • While oil is heating up, coat the chicken. Coat each nugget with flour, then dip into the egg mixture. Finally, coat with the breadcrumb mixture.
  • When oil is ready, place one nugget into the oil to test. It should sizzle immediately. If it darkens too quickly without cooking on the inside, then the oil is too hot. Adjust the heat accordingly.
  • Fry nuggets in batches for 3–4 minutes on each side, then place on a wire rack or paper towel–lined plate to drain before serving.

Video

Notes

Store fried nuggets. Place cooled nuggets in an airtight container and store in the fridge for 4-5 days. Reheat under the broiler until warm and crisp.
Store unfried nuggets. After coating the chicken, place them in a single layer, cover them tightly with plastic wrap, and store in the fridge for 1-2 days before frying according to the recipe.
FREEZE. Flash freeze unfried nuggets and transfer them to a freezer-safe container. Freeze for 1-2 months. Allow them to partially thaw before frying.
To bake straight out of the freezer place frozen nuggets on a baking sheet with a wire rack. Bake at 400°F for 25-30 minutes. Crisp under the broiler. 

Nutrition

Serving: 1g, Calories: 386kcal, Carbohydrates: 36g, Protein: 37g, Fat: 9g, Saturated Fat: 4g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 3g, Trans Fat: 0.02g, Cholesterol: 163mg, Sodium: 474mg, Potassium: 539mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 1g, Vitamin A: 272IU, Vitamin C: 1mg, Calcium: 218mg, Iron: 4mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Making this recipe? Tag us!
Share it with us on Instagram using the hashtag #lilluna, so we can see what you’re creating in the kitchen!

About Kristyn

My name is Kristyn and I’m the mom of SIX stinkin’ cute kids and the wife to my smokin’ hot hubby, Lo. My mom’s maiden name is Luna, and I’m one of the many crafty “Lil’ Lunas” in the fam. On this site I like to share all things creative - from recipes to home decor to gifts and home decor ideas. Welcome!

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Recipe Rating




25 Comments

  1. Jack Mehoff says:

    This tasted like poop. It killed my son, Troy. Poor troy. He said he had something going on with his stomach, and then he was gone. You killed my son. Expecting to see you in court, Lil’Luna. What kind of name is Lil’Luna anyways? Who do you think you are? Some kind of gangsta?

  2. Staci says:

    5 stars
    I click on this website for chicken nugget recipes. I made this for my kids & omg they loved it 🥰. So easy to make & it made my kitchen smile yummy 😋.
    Thank you so much.

    1. Lil'Luna Team says:

      You’re welcome!! So glad your kids enjoyed the nuggets.

  3. Erlene Johnson says:

    I only have boneless skinless thighs. Can I use these?

    1. Lil'Luna Team says:

      You bet! You could definitely give it a try!

    2. Helen Ortega says:

      Since my youngest son loves nuggets, i’d decided to just make it at home. Will surely follow your recipe and thank you for sharing this. So glad i’d found this amazing site. More power and God bless dear.💖

      1. Lil'Luna Team says:

        You’re welcome!! So glad to have you here on the site using the recipes!

  4. Marcy says:

    5 stars
    My first time making chicken nuggets from scratch (or fried chicken for that matter). These came out perfectly. I didn’t have garlic salt or Italian seasoning. I substituted with 1 tsp onion powder, 1 tsp garlic powder, 1 tbsp dried parsley, 3/4 tsp salt. Since we are dairy free I added 3/4 tsp of nutritional yeast instead of parmesan cheese. Delicious!!

    1. Lil'Luna Team says:

      Yay!! Happy you tried them & liked them! Thank you!

  5. Jake Mayfield says:

    5 stars
    These are really tasty! I used a dutch oven and added a little extra oil so the nugs would be completely submerged. It cut the time in half and they came out crispy and perfectly cooked throughout. Thanks for the recipe!

    1. Lil'Luna Team says:

      You’re welcome!! Thanks for sharing what you did too.

  6. Raymond Wilcox says:

    Your ‘jump to video’ doesn’t function properly, because of so many pop-ups, or cookies. A recommendation: have people jump to video first, then the recipe below, more people will be moved to try your recipes having seen how it’s done. Raymond Wilcox.

    1. Lil'Luna Team says:

      Thanks for the feedback! Hope you enjoyed the recipe!

  7. Tammy w says:

    5 stars
    My daughters diet consists of chicken nuggets and Mac & cheese. She loves these chicken nuggets! Thanks for easy recipes that please my picky daughter!!

  8. Lynn says:

    Need to try these for my grand babies!