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We took a vacation to France and Switzerland last September. I’ve talked about it before, but because we were not yet sharing that I was pregnant at the time, my description of it definitely left out some details. Like the fact that my morning sickness made the restaurant experiences… um, interesting. Instead of trying out as many local foods as I could, like I usually do when we travel, I desperately searched each menu for chicken nuggets. Unfortunately, paleo or low carb chicken nuggets were out of the question for eating out. At that point it hardly mattered, because regular ones were one of the few foods I could handle.
When I originally planned our trip, I had all these restaurants planned. I like to research menus and read reviews in advance whenever we travel. Usually, it works out wonderfully. It means no stress trying to find a place when we’re tired after activities, and no disappointments with the food quality, the selection, or the service. Besides, it’s one of the best ways to make sure we get to try authentic foods from the region we’re visiting.
Needless to say, many of the restaurants I’d picked out didn’t have the most “first trimester friendly” options. I couldn’t handle the foie gras, the fondue, the exotic salads, and so many other foods I would have normally been thrilled to try.
Instead, I breathed a sigh of relief every time I found that the restaurant happened to have chicken nuggets on the menu. Chicken nuggets, of all things! Not that there’s anything wrong with chicken nuggets. (Back home, I especially love making low carb chicken nuggets!) But, they’re not exactly exciting food to try when you’re traveling halfway across the world.
As one might expect, chicken nuggets were a common item on kids’ menus. I figured I’d just keep getting those – problem solved, right? What I wasn’t expecting was how difficult it would be to order them!
One experience in Grindelwald, the mountain town in the Alps where we stayed, turned out to be particularly ridiculous. After figuring out that the restaurant I’d booked had nothing I could eat, we settled for a place next door to our hotel. At least it had a gorgeous view of the mountains as we sat outside! The chicken nuggets on the kids’ menu would have to do, or so I thought. Instead, the conversation with the waiter went something like this:
Me: I’ll have the chicken nuggets.
Waiter: Those are on the kids’ menu.
Me: I know. It’s okay, that’s what I’ll have.
Waiter: No, the kids’ menu is only for kids. Pick something else.
Me: I don’t want anything else. I’ll just have the chicken nuggets, please.
Waiter: You should look at the menu again. You’ll find something else.
This went on for another few minutes. I finally had to explain that I was 7 weeks pregnant and everything else would make me feel sick. He reluctantly agreed after mumbling something under his breath. When the bill came, they’d charged me 25 dollars for the child-sized portion of four chicken nuggets. At that point I just wanted to get out of there. At least I was still in a decent mood from our Lake Bachalpsee hike earlier that day.
When I returned home, chicken nuggets were still one of the few ways I could get my protein in. By this point, I was definitely tired of all the processed versions eating out, and instead opted to make my own. The low carb chicken nuggets recipe I’m sharing today was the result.
I fried my paleo chicken nuggets in a pan on the stove, which gets the breading more crispy compared to baking. It takes just a couple of minutes on each side, so the process goes very fast. Make sure to use plenty of oil, otherwise they may stick and the breading can fall off.
You can also bake them in the oven if you prefer. If you go that route, you can omit the oil and it should take about 6-8 minutes per side at 450 degrees F. You may need to adjust depending on the size of your nuggets.
I needed these gluten-free chicken nuggets to be quick and easy. When I created them, cooking continued to be difficult due to the morning sickness. For this reason, I kept this recipe super simple with just five ingredients, plus salt and pepper. I discovered that mayo works great as a binder for breading when I developed my bacon crusted chicken recipe, so used a similar process here, with a little vinegar added.
Even if you’re not going through what I did, I knew that you guys would appreciate the simplicity of a five-ingredient recipe. Those have always been one of my favorite kinds! They can be a lifesaver on a busy weeknight.
Fortunately, at 29 weeks pregnant this week, I’m feeling better most days. Just as I predicted, though, these low carb chicken nuggets are still one of my favorite easy chicken recipes.
5-Ingredient Paleo Low Carb Chicken Nuggets Recipe (Gluten-free):
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Craving something else? Try these low carb, gluten-free recipes: