Whole30 Chicken Nuggets with Hidden Veggies
Home » Whole30 » Whole30 Chicken Nuggets with Hidden Veggies

Chicken Nuggets with Hidden Veggies - Whole30, Paleo, Keto, Gluten-free, Dairy-free, nut-free, airfryer optionThese Paleo, gluten-free, dairy-free, nut-free 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!

I love that they get in a veggie without any noticeable taste. We love them dipped in my Whole30 Date Mustard or BBQ Sauce. 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 airfryer or on the stove for the crispiest outside.

Plus, these freeze great – so double batch and let your kids pull them out as needed. We love reheating them in the airfryer. A family win all around!

Chicken Nuggets with Hidden Veggies - Whole30, Paleo, Keto, Gluten-free, Dairy-free, nut-free, airfryer option

Whole30 Chicken Nuggets with Hidden Veggies

Autumn @wholefoodfor7
5 from 6 votes
Prep Time 25 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Servings 4 people


  • 1 pound ground chicken
  • 1 cup steamed riced cauliflower
  • 1/2 cup dried potato flakes
  • 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.


SUBSTITUTIONS: We prefer ground chicken with these, but you can also use ground turkey.


  1. 5 stars
    Yummy, easy and budget friendly – all things we love at our house and always find in Autumn’s recipes! I made these as a healthier option (love the sneaky veggies and clean ingredients) for our 2 young grandsons. HOWEVER…..they are so good my hubby and I can’t stop eating them ourselves! Great texture and flavor, plus so easy to tweak the seasonings (simple for the 1 and 2yr old, kicked up a notch for the grown ups). Loved that you can bake a whole batch in the oven – fast and easy. Another winner! Off to make more to stock up the freezer 🙂 Thank you Autumn!

    • WAHOO that this was a win on so many levels for your family! I agree, my kid’s love these…and do I! Definitely not just for kids and love that they are fast and easy. Thank you! 💛

  2. 5 stars
    I made these nugs tonight after eyeing them for a while on your Instagram. So delicious! I fried mine in a cast iron for ultimate crispness and served them up with New Primal BBQ sauce. Easy to follow recipe, easy ingredients to find at the grocery store, and a fun recipe for when you want to eat out/want something different/want to feel like a kid again. 🙂 I’ll definitely be making these again.

    • It’s true, these are not just for kids ; ). I’m so happy you loved this easy recipe and easy-to-find ingredients. Thank you!

  3. 5 stars
    I was so excited to make these after Autumn posted them on Instagram that I made a double batch. The nuggets fried up well in my cast iron. The texture is reminiscent of commercial chicken nuggets. I’m excited to freeze them and have some to pull put for a quick meal. The only change I might make next time would be to double the spices or add Cajun seasoning because we like a little kick.

    • So glad these were enjoyed and putting some in the freezer for a quick meal is so handy! Thank you!

  4. 5 stars
    My son is newly diagnosed celiac and my other kids are reeling from the huge shift. I tried this recipe tonight after multiple other attempts at a nugget recipe. My kids, husband and myself all devoured these! They’re going into the weekly rotation. I’ll probably make in bulk and freeze for easy weeknight dinners. Thank you SO much for creating and sharing this recipe.

    • I know that is such an overwhelming shift, to build a new vocabulary of foods your family enjoys. I’m so very happy to hear this one was a family hit – hooray! I hope you find some other favorites here and good luck with this process, you can do this!

  5. 5 stars
    Delicious, easy, healthy and perfect for a saturday afternoon

  6. 5 stars
    Delicious, easy, healthy and perfect for a saturday afternoon!

    • Thank you! I’m so happy these were a win and enjoyed!

  7. What kind of potato flakes do you use?

    • Hi! If you are on a Whole30, I’d recommend Bob’s Red Mill brand, which is just dehydrated potatoes. Other mainstream brands often have sodium bisulfite, which is an additive not allowed on Whole30. I find them at Walmart, walmart.com, or amazon. Enjoy! : )

    • Anyone try this in an air fryer ? What would be the cooking time and temp?

      • They definitely work in the airfryer in a single layer. See step 8 on the recipe for full instructions!


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating