Homemade chicken strips always used to feel like a big undertaking to me. Then I actually started making them, and realized they can be super easy! These Coconut Chicken Strips are gluten free, low in fat, and baked rather than fried. Perfect for a healthy weeknight meal, or a lean lunch.Jump to Recipe
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These chicken strips are one of those accidentally healthy meals that sometimes happen. (They’re also good for Whole30!) I first made them just on a whim, and it wasn’t until later that I realized they were pretty healthy. Chicken breasts are a really good source of lean protein. Baking them instead of frying them means that they aren’t dripping in saturated fat. In fact, coconut contains good fats that can help with heart health, and cholesterol levels. And being gluten free is a double bonus! One, you can serve them to any of your coeliac friends. And two, lower in carbs!
Coating the Strips
Coating anything can feel like a big task. But these chicken strips are definitely simple. They get a quick dip into eggs, and a quick dip in unsweetened coconut. That’s all. No double dipping, no extra layers. When you set up any dipping process it is good to make sure you have everything you will need in front of you. You don’t want to get your hands sticky and then realize you forgot to set out the tray to put them on. So set yourself up with the strips, the eggs whisked in a bowl, and your bowl of seasoned coconut. And have your lined baking sheets beside you, and a tea towel nearby in case of any messes.
And when you’re dipping the chicken strips, it’s good to remember to use one hand only for the wet stuff and one hand only for the dry stuff. That way you wont end up coating your hands.
To get the crisp outer layer that you would get from deep frying, the key is air flow. If you over crowd the tray then the chicken strips will end up steaming each other. They will end up soggy, and they won’t brown as nicely. So it’s important to give yourself a good amount of space on the trays. And if you’re using these as part of your meal prep, you’ll want to re heat them in the oven rather than the microwave. Again, to prevent sogginess.
Mike gets these for his lunches some weeks, and this week he had these alongside the Sweet Potato Fries that I posted about on Monday. Together, they make a pretty delicious and healthy meal. Definitely pop over and check out that post as well. If you aren’t feeling like going full healthy and need a little indulgence in your life, then try these Peppermint S’mores Jars. They’ll knock your socks off, so dress in layers.
Baked Coconut Chicken Strips
- 3 Boneless, Skinless, Chicken Breasts
- 2 Eggs
- 1 1/2 cups Unsweetened Shredded Coconut
- 1/2 tsp Thyme
- 1/2 tsp Cumin
- 1/2 tsp each Salt & Pepper
- Heat the oven to 400F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Slice the chicken breasts into 1/4-1/2" thick strips. Cutting on a diagonal you can get about 6-8 strips per breast. Set aside in a bowl.
- In a shallow dish, wide enough for easy dipping, whisk the eggs with the salt and pepper.
- In a third dish, also good for dipping, combine the coconut, thyme and cumin.
- Using one hand as your "wet hand" and one as your "dry hand" dip the chicken strips one at a time. Dip first into the egg and fully coat. Shake off any excess dripping, then place the strip into the coconut. Switch hands, and coat fully in coconut. Transfer the strip to a baking sheet. Repeat until all your strips are coated.
- Make sure the strips are spaced out on the baking sheet. Overcrowding can lead to soggy chicken strips instead of crisp ones.
- Bake for 10 minutes, then flip the strips and bake for another 10 minutes or until golden brown and crisp.