We've had one of those weeks. Actually, more like one of those months, but it has really all come to head this past week and a half. In addition to the normal work/home/kids' stuff, Robin wrapped up a fundraiser she ran at the school and I've been coaching basketball, including a weekend tournament and had Parent-Teacher night. Oh, and both Robin and I were sick all week. Like fever, headache, up-all-night coughing sort of sick. We needed simple recipes this week just to survive.
Enter Easy Chicken Fingers.
This recipe is a favourite in our house. I have adapted it from our basic Fish Stick Hack somewhat to reduce the number of recipes I have to carry around in my brain. (Robin will likely point out that all our recipes are printed out and could easily be looked up, but that isn't how I roll. Or cook, at least.)
My secret ingredient: Montreal Steak Spice. Robin has been scolding me for months because I've been sneaking this spice mix into more foods than she thinks is necessary or tasty (i.e. more than just steak). Imagine her surprise when she was raving about how tasty these Chicken Fingers are and I told her just what I'd put in that night. Hah.
Here's the recipe:
Easy Chicken Finger Recipe
Serves 4 to 6
- 3-4 frozen chicken breasts
- 3/4 -1 cup of bread crumbs (about 1/4 cup per breast)
- 1 egg
- dash of Montreal steak spice, onion powder and garlic powder
- spray cooking oil
1. Chicken breasts are easier to cut up when they are still slightly frozen. On the morning before you plan on making them take the chicken breasts out of the freezer and put them in your fridge.
Your goal is to only partially thaw them. I have never read that anywhere, but it needs to be said. For something like chicken fingers or nuggets, where most of the work is in the cutting, this is a key piece of advice and makes step 3 easy.
2. Preheat over to 375C. Spray a cookie sheet with cooking oil spray.
We often use parchment paper. (The small increase in cost will still be less expensive and more healthy than store-bought fingers. Also, you can likely find store brand parchment paper. Totally do that. There's no difference)
3. Cut the chicken breasts into desired shapes - you can make nuggets and fingers in the same batch if you have choosey kids - simply arrange the smaller nuggets on the inside of the cookie sheet so they will cook a bit slower. Place your chicken pieces in a bowl.
4. Mix the breadcrumbs and seasonings on a plate.
5. In a small bowl, mix the egg thoroughly with a fork and pour it over the chicken. Use the fork to toss the chicken around a bit to make sure it is coated.
(This is the other odd thing I've noticed about chicken fingers. If you really take a second and think about the ingredients you are using in this step and what you are doing with them, it is like some direct-to-Netflix chicken horror movie)
6. Pick the pieces of chicken up, roll/press them into the breadcrumbs to cover then place on the oil-sprayed cookie sheet. When all pieces are done, spray oil the topsides of the fingers/nuggets.
7. Put in oven and cook for 10 minutes. Turn and cook for an additional 5-10 minutes, depending on how big your fingers/nuggets are.
They should look browned on each side, and those nervous about frozen meat and internal temperatures (A.K.A. "Good Parents") you can check with a meat thermometer (you want it over 165F or about 75C).
Serve with plum sauce, honey, BBQ sauce, ketchup or whatever your kids prefer. I've been tossing mine a bit with Buffalo wing sauce to make knock-off boneless wings.
Click here for a Free Printable / Tablet Friendly Recipe:
This recipe is one of the meals on our Meal Plan Master List.
Check it out here.
So what do you think? Am I the only one who finds slightly frozen chicken easier to cut? Have I forever ruined chicken fingers/nuggets with my Chicken Horror Movie allusion on step #5?