2poundsboneless skinless chicken breastscut into 1-inch cubes
3cupspanko bread crumbs
Freshly ground black pepper
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Set a large wire rack over a large rimmed baking sheet and spray the rack with non-stick cooking spray. If you don’t have a wire rack, line the baking sheet with foil and spray with nonstick cooking spray.
Pour Panko onto a separate baking sheet and toast in the oven for about 6-7 minutes. Drizzle with 2 tablespoons olive oil and toss to moisten the breadcrumbs. Sprinkle paprika, garlic powder, 1 teaspoon salt and ½ teaspoon black pepper over the breadcrumbs. Use a spatula to stir everything together and bring to a mound in the center of the sheet.
In a shallow dish, like a pie plate, whisk together eggs with ¼ teaspoon each salt and pepper.
Place chicken pieces, a handful at a time, into the egg mixture, let any excess drip off before coating with the panko mixture. Press breadcrumbs into the chicken pieces so they will be well coated. Place panko coated chicken nuggets onto the prepared wire rack, about an inch apart. Repeat until all chicken nuggets are coated and on the rack.
Bake in the preheated oven for about 15-19 minutes. Outside should be golden and crispy and the inside of the thickest piece should register 165 degrees on a digital meat thermometer.
Serve immediately with your choice of dipping sauce. We like bbq, ranch or honey mustard.
You can use regular breadcrumbs if that's what you have on hand, but Panko is recommended for it's crispy texture.
For chicken tenders, bake an extra 5-10 minutes.
Freeze unbaked nuggets on a baking sheet for 2 hours, then transfer to a freezer bag for up to 2 months. Double the baking time and bake from frozen.