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Shake and Bake Chicken Nuggets (Paleo & Gluten-free)



Shake and Bake Chicken

So, I grew up eating a fair amount of processed foods.  Lodged in the grey matter of my brain, the wonderment of instant mashed potato that fluffed up when hot water was added, lives on.  The taste of Mrs. Paul’s fish fingers with tartare sauce on Fridays at my Catholic elementary school still haunts me.  But the most troubling problem from my semi-real food childhood  is chicken nuggets!  I must confess that I still crave them!  And apparently, many school kids today love them too.  The problem is that chicken nuggets from fast food chains are terribly unhealthy, and as a recent article from the American Journal of Medicine cited, made of ingredients that are down right scary.

Processed Chicken Nuggets: What’s Really in Them?

Do we dare ask?
Researchers did an “autopsy” of chicken nuggets from two different national fast-food chains, and found that some of them were composed of 50 percent skeletal muscle, fat, blood vessels, and nerves.(1)
Rather unsavory, wouldn’t you say?  Not to mention that those nuggets were also made from factory-farmed birds that were given GMO feed, antibiotics, artificial hormones, and other drugs.  Then they are coated with gluten containing bread crumbs spiced with preservatives and lots of sodium chloride.  Wow, finger licking bad!

Dr. deShazo and his colleagues who conducted the study concludes:
“Our analysis confirms that chicken nuggets available at national fast food chains operating in a state with an epidemic of obesity and obesity-related disease remain a poor source of protein and are high in fat. Medical professionals should advise patients of the limited nutritional value of many processed foods, including this product.” (2)

Well, here’s my very own healthy, gluten-free and paleo version of chicken nuggets.  Enjoy them without fear of ingesting unknown parts and toxins.

Shake and Bake Chicken Nuggets

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Serving Size: 2 - 3 as a snack

Shake and Bake Chicken Nuggets


  • 12 oz. boneless free-range/pastured chicken (thigh or breast),
  • 3/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground [chipotle powder:http://amzn.to/1hK2BEM]
  • (You can also use cayenne, but cut don't on the amount as it will be more spicy)
  • ½ cup ground almonds or [hazelnuts:http://amzn.to/1pvf476]


  1. Pre-heat oven to 375ºF. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Cut the chicken into approximate 2” chunks.
  3. In a bowl, mix the seasoning and ground nut.
  4. Place the chicken pieces in a medium pot, add in the spice and nut mixture, then place the lid on.
  5. Keeping one hand firmly on the lid, grab the handle with you other hand and shake the pot up and down until the chicken pieces are coated.
  6. (You can also do this with a zip lock bag, but I discourage using plastic.)
  7. Transfer the coated chicken onto the prepared backing sheet and set them
  8. about an inch apart.
  9. Bake for about 20 – 25 minutes, or when the internal temperature reaches 165º F.
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For Love of Food and Friends,



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