Coconut Oat Crusted Chicken Nuggets & Two Pomegranate Sauces

by Marla on July 6, 2010 · 56 comments

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Health food for kids, school lunchbox, dinner, snack

I was recently selected to be in a super fun summer cooking competition. Coach’s Oats and POM Wonderful have gotten together to do a second round of their Recipe Battle. POM Wonderful hosts occasional cooking challenges with other healthy food companies to see who can come up with the most delish recipe. Each company chooses their signature ingredients and one blogger each to represent them.

I have been chosen to represent Coach’s Oats. As soon as they asked I flexed my foodie muscles and agreed to the challenge.  I’ve been a fan of both companies for a long time, so it was a no brainer to get creative using their products. The blogger representing POM is Deep South Dish

Healthy food ingredients compete in contest The idea behind the contest is to use the ingredients together in a creative way. This time around we were asked to create a savory recipe. While in the car (my creative thinking place) I came up with these Chicken Nuggets. I couldn’t wait to get cooking. My last two recipes using Coach’s Oats have been on the sweeter side, Cocoa Coconut Oat Parfaits and High Energy Skillet Oatmeal. It was fun to go savory for a change.

Healthy Chicken Nuggets with Salad and Sauce

My goal was to create the perfect baked chicken nugget. This is some good family cooking and it’s kid tested and approved. They are quick and easy to prepare and oh so healthy.  Your kids will love them and they are great for your lunch box and entertaining.  Serve as an appetizer or over a salad for a full meal.  Bring ‘em to potlucks, beach parties and BBQ’s.

Spoon with fruit sauce and crispy chicken nuggets

These Family Fresh Cooking nuggets are made from whole food ingredients and they are baked and not fried. They have much more flavor and a significantly better nutritional profile than take-out or overly processed boxed chicken nuggets.  From the whole grains of Coach’s Oats to the antioxidant filled POM dipping sauce, this is truly a match made in heaven.

healthy chicken nuggets with pomegranate vinaigrette sauce

The most cost efficient, healthiest, tastiest ways to have your meals when you are out of the house is to pack ‘em yourself.  In the photo below  is my favorite lunchbox and I am so excited to share it with you! Take a look  at this lunch I packed with my Chicken Nuggets:

Healthy baked Chicken Nuggets with fruit

You guys all know who my all time favorite Nugget is:

Little boy with frisbee, dad & daughter

Coconut Oat Crusted Chicken Nuggets & Two Pomegranate Sauces

Rating: 51

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 35 minutes

Yield: 8 servings

Coconut Oat Crusted Chicken Nuggets & Two Pomegranate Sauces

Ingredients

    Coconut Oat Chicken
  • 2 pounds Chicken Breast, pat dry, sliced into 2 inch nuggets
  • 1 cup Coach's Oats
  • 3/4 cup Unsweetened Coconut Flake
  • a few pinches Garlic Salt (to taste, you can add more later)
  • a few pinches Black Pepper
  • 1/4 tsp ground Ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon Smoked Paprika (add more or less to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon dried Parsley
  • 1/2 cup Egg Whites
  • Optional: Red Pepper Flakes or Cayenne for some heat. Combine with other dry ingredients.
  • Pomegranate Dipping Sauce 1
  • 36 oz unsweetened Pomegranate Juice
  • to taste Black Pepper
  • to taste Smoked Paprika
  • Optional: Top with pomegranate seeds (arils)
  • Pomegranate Sauce and Dressing 2
  • 16 oz Pomegranate Juice
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon Mustard
  • dash of Smoked Paprika
  • 4 tbs light Sour Cream
  • Black Pepper
  • Salt to taste
  • Optional: Top with pomegranate seeds (arils)

Method

    Chicken
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F with rack in the middle of the oven. Line a baking sheet with foil. Place a lightly sprayed wire rack in center of baking sheet. Place oats, coconut, garlic salt & spices in the bowl of your food processor. Grind to fine bread crumb consistency. Taste mixture to see if you want to add any more spice. In another bowl, whisk egg whites.
  • With one hand dip the pieces of chicken in egg whites, let the excess drip off. With the other hand coat chicken in the oat/coconut mixture. Lightly spray both sides of the chicken nuggets. Lay nuggets down in a single layer on the greased rack.
  • Bake in oven for about 20-25 minutes, until cooked through. Don't let chicken overcook as you want to keep them crispy on the outside and moist on the inside. You can finish & crisp up the nuggets under a low broiler for about 2 minutes, just watch they do not burn.
  • Sauces
  • In a medium sauce pan bring pomegranate juice to a rolling boil. Reduce heat and simmer about 30-35 minutes. Check sauce periodically to see how thick it is getting. It will appear really bubbly, syrupy and thick when it is done. Juice should be reduced by about 3/4 of it's original volume and should coat a spoon. Remove sauce from heat as soon as it is done cooking and put in a bowl. (If making sauce number 2 combine with sour cream, spices and mustard once sauce is off the heat as it is cooling.)
  • Notes
  • Serve your pomegranate sauce as thick or thin as you like. Add water if it gets too thick. Cook longer if you want it thicker.
  • The sauces are enough for 4-8 servings depending on how much you use. They are great as salad dressings too!
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