Coconut Oat Crusted Chicken Nuggets & Two Pomegranate Sauces

Coconut Oat Crusted Chicken Nuggets & Two Pomegranate Sauces


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 contestThe 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 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


    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)


  • 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!

Baked Chicken Nugget Recipe Links

56 Responses to Coconut Oat Crusted Chicken Nuggets & Two Pomegranate Sauces

  1. Coach’s Oats Recipe: Coconut Oat Crusted Chicken Nuggets with POM Dipping Sauce | POM Community | The Official POM Wonderful Website, makers of 100% Pomegranate Juice the Antioxidant Superpower says:

    […] Recipe by Marla of […]

  2. I just voted – you totally deserve the award for creating a gourmet lunch! The other kids at school must be so jealous!

    Also, wanted to let you know that I embedded one of your YouTube videos to be site. I’m trying to rotate the video content, and I just love your content so I wanted to include it. I hope this is alright?

  3. Definitely sending hubby to the market with the girls to get all the ingredients for this one. Looks like the perfect ‘Daddy/Daughter we just love to cook for Mommy cuz she likes it like that’ recipe!!! Can’t wait to try it :)

  4. I luv that these chicken nuggets are baked and not fried. Great recipe and technique. I bet that dipping sauce is tasty! =)

  5. Wow, the chicken sure sounds and looks good…oat and coconut…yummie and the pomegranate sauce sure looks delicious…what a great match!

  6. I just received some POM also, and I’ve been looking for new uses for it…I will look no further since this looks like a great use for it! And I love the oats that you used to coat the chicken…sounds fabulous!

  7. These look fantastic! So crunchy and the POM sauce makes them extra special! I love that their healthy. I voted for you and wish you the best!

  8. glorious dipping sauces aside, the coconut in the chicken coating is just phenomenal! this is a powerful combination of components, and that’s that.

  9. These chicken nuggets do look perfectly seasoned and cooked! I love them as a salad topping. My mouth is watering. Really. Watering. At the pomegranate dipping sauces.

    Good luck with the contest! I may be biased, but I see a win in your future!

  10. What a fantastic recipe! Love it – oats and coconut- perfect nutritional balance for me on the chicken. My son won’t use dipping sauces so we’d probably just go ahead and take a shot of POM for the antioxidants instead.
    And, to answer your ?, just about ready to pop and finally getting some bursts of energy!

  11. Hi! I saved your recipe a few weeks ago and finally got to try it tonight, with some changes. For the breading I used a 1/4 teaspoon of all the spices and included the cayenne; I had to do batches in my food processor as it is a small one. I did add a touch more garlic and some onion powder after tasting. As for the sauce I skipped the pomegranate seeds and used a blackcurrant-yumberry juice instead of the POM as that was on sale (and the closest I could get to pomegranate juice). It still came out great, and I liked the way it tasted with the chicken nuggets. The hubby-to-be and my two year old did not care for the sauce, but that’s okay since I loved it! We ate these with those “smiley” taters you can get in the frozen section of the grocery store. Overall, a fun and healthy alternative to take-out. Thank you!

    • Rebecca, glad to hear you had success with the chicken nuggets. I like the idea of the blackcurrant-yumberry juice. Way to go using what you could find easily & for a lower cost.

  12. These are my new favorite kid food. WE LOVED THESE. I made extra so that I could put them in my son’s lunch and also for my daughter and I to have them on a salad the next day…cold! They are delish! Thanks for the recipe. Im gonna make them again this week! YUM!

    • Melissa, soooo glad you love my healthy chicken fingers. Funny how the usual greasy “kids” food can become so nutritious + jam packed with a lot more flavor. Think I need to make a batch this weekend too! Love ’em over salads as well :)

  13. They look absolutely delicious and I bet my kids would love them. I usually need to make my kids’ lunch the night before or get up before dawn to prepare anything. I am just wondering if others would warm them up before packing them or serve them cold?

  14. I made these for dinner tonight with sauce number 2, and I also used a pomegranate-blueberry juice instead of POM and it turned out wonderfully! However, I did need to leave my nuggets in for a few extra minutes – more like 30-32 than 20-25 for me. Not sure what the component for that was, but no big deal. Was great and totally cured my chicken nugget cravings! Will be sending leftovers with the boyfriends lunch tomorrow :)

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