These Paleo, gluten-free, dairy-free, nut-free Whole30 Chicken Nuggets with Hidden Veggies are a perfect family win. The hand-held shape is perfect for little hands, though these aren’t just for kids! Great for your picky eaters and to get more vegetables in,
I love that these Chicken Nuggets with Hidden Veggies get in a veggie without any noticeable taste. I promise! Check out all the positive reviews below if you are unsure.
The key is to blend steamed riced cauliflower into ground chicken so it becomes just part of the chicken nugget. I do so by steaming frozen riced cauliflower in the microwave. I prefer to just buy steam in a bag frozen cauliflower. But, I also do it by just putting frozen riced cauliflower in a reusable Stasher bag, sealing it most of the way, and then microwaving on high for 5 minutes. Stasher bags are fantastic for steaming frozen veggies in the microwave!
I prefer to mix this all together in a food processor for easy blending. If you don’t have a food processor, you can just mix in the frozen cauliflower by hand. However, there will still be small noticeable pieces of cauliflower within the nugget. That can be a turn off for picky eaters, if that’s a factor.
Make it a Meal
We love them dipped in my Whole30 Date Mustard (pictured), Whole30 Ranch, or BBQ Sauce. Delicious paired with my Garlic Fries, roasted potatoes, or Whole30 Mashed Potatoes and a side salad or roasted veggies.
Tips and Tricks
We make them in the oven for an easy one batch and done. But they can also be done in a single layer in your air fryer or on the stove in shallow oil for the crispiest outside.
Plus, these freeze great – so double batch and let your kids pull them out as needed. After cooking, freeze in a sealed container for up to 3 months. We love reheating them in the air fryer.
We prefer the flavor of using ground chicken for these. However, ground turkey works well too, if that is more accessible to you. A family win all around!
- Ground chicken – We love the flavor of ground chicken, but you can also use ground turkey if that is more accessible to you!
- Steamed Riced Cauliflower – I love using easy steam in a bag frozen riced cauliflower for this.
- Dried Potato Flakes – Dried potato flakes is just another name for instant mashed potato flakes. These Bob’s Red Mill ones are Whole30 compatible, though these are the cheap ones I get from Walmart if I am not doing a Whole30 (not Whole30 compatible due to sulfites). If you are not on a Whole30, whatever instant mashed potato flakes your local store has should be fine.
- Note: If you can’t find compatible potato flakes or need a Keto version, use 1/2 cup almond flour instead of the potato flakes
- Eggs – Large whole eggs
- Garlic powder
- Onion Powder
- Tapioca or Arrowroot Flour or Starch
- Garlic Salt – My favorite Whole30 compatible garlic salt comes from Trader Joe’s. But, if not on a Whole30, most garlic salts will work just fine. Or, you can use regular salt in an equal amount and an additional 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder.
Whole30 Chicken Nuggets with Hidden Veggies
- 1 pound ground chicken
- 1 cup steamed riced cauliflower
- 1/2 cup dried potato flakes (instant mashed potatoes) see notes
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 2 teaspoons paprika, divided
- 1/2 cup tapioca or arrowroot flour or starch
- 1 teaspoon garlic salt
- If using the oven, preheat to 400 degrees. Line a baking pan with parchment.
- Food Processor: Combine the cauliflower, eggs, potato flakes in a food processor and process until combined. Add the ground chicken and salt. garlic powder, onion powder, and 1/2 teaspon paprika and process again until well combined. Using the food processor will help the cauliflower blend in better to the ground meat. and is recommended.
- By Hand: In a medium bowl, combine the ground chicken, cauliflower, eggs, potato flakes, salt, garlic powder, onion powder, and 1/2 teaspon paprika in a bowl. I find this easiest to do by hand. Mix until well combined.
- In a small bowl, combine the tapioca or arrowroot, garlic salt, and remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons paprika.
- Scoop out about 1 1/2 tablespoons of meat mixture. Drop into the tapioca flour mixture, rolling around until coated. Flatten into more of a nugget shape and place on parchment. Repeat with all of the meat mixture.
- Spray uncooked nuggets generously with cooking oil spray. Bake at 400 for 10 minutes. Flip and spray again with cooking oil spray. Bake for another 10 minutes, or until both sides are golden.
- TO FREEZE: Freeze cooked nuggets in a sealed container for up to 3 months.
- AIRFRYER COOKING: Cook in a single layer at 350 for 8-10 minutes until golden and not pink in the center. These will need to be done in a single layer, so I usually use the oven method to avoid multiple batches. The airfryer is awesome for reheating these though!
- STOVETOP COOKING: If you want McDonalds-cispy outside, pan fry these in 1/2 cup melted coconut or avocado oil over medium heat for 4-5 minutes each side.