The BEST Copycat Chick-fil-A Nuggets Recipe

December 10, 2019Van
Blog post

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 30 minutes

Serves: 50+ Nuggets

I grew up eating Chick-fil-A. If a PhD existed in chicken nugget eating, I’d certainly have one. The nuggets at Chick-fil-A are quite unique. Little texture, but a certain flavor you’re hard pressed to find anywhere else. No, the secret ingredient isn’t pickle juice like many people think, it’s actually MSG and A LOT of it, Chick-fil-A most likely uses way more that I do in this recipe. It’s taken me YEARS of experimenting to get this right.

My motivation was quite simple. I have a family of hungry kids. Have you been to Chick-fil-A with your entire clan and checked the receipt? Yes. Sticker shock! These tiny, tasty nuggets hit the pocket book quite fast—so do yourself a favor. Make this recipe at home on a Sunday and completely fool your friends and family!

The BEST Copycat Chick-fil-A Nuggets Recipe

MSG is added into the brine and coating, you can purchase it here on Amazon or check your local supermarket, it might be in the spice aisle under the name Accent Salt. Chick-fil-A uses a generous amount of MSG in their nuggets – it’s what gives their chicken the extra savoriness or boost of flavor that you usually don’t get with homemade, so if you omit it, it will not taste similar to Chick-fil-A
Popeyes Spicy Chicken Sandwich Recipe

If you love Chick-fil-A’s Honey Roasted BBQ Sauce, check out my copycat recipe here
it’s my favorite sauce for these nuggets. I also buy frozen waffle fries from the grocery store, if you deep fry them, they will taste just like Chick-fil-A (oven baking or air frying won’t result in the same texture) Heat the oil until 380°F, deep-fry the waffle fries in a few batches until they are light golden, make sure the temp returns to 380°F before frying the next batch. COPYCAT Chick-fil-A Honey Roasted BBQ Sauce Recipe

Print Recipe

The BEST Copycat Chick-fil-A Nuggets Recipe

  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 30 minutes
  • Serves: 50+ Nuggets


  • 2 lbs Chicken Breasts, cut into 1” pieces
  • ½ Cup Water
  • ½ Cup Milk
  • 4 Teaspoons MSG (Monosodium glutamate)
  • 1½ Teaspoons Lawry’s Seasoned Salt
  • 1 Teaspoon Ground Black Pepper
  • 4 Teaspoons Granulated Sugar
  • 1 Large Egg
  • Peanut Oil, enough for 2-3 inches of oil


  • 1¼ Cups All Purpose Flour
  • 1 Tablespoon Powdered Sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon MSG (Monosodium glutamate)
  • ½ Teaspoon Salt
  • ½ Teaspoon Baking Soda
  • 1 Teaspoon Baking Powder
  • ½ Teaspoon Paprika


  • 1)

    Make the brine: In a large bowl, place ½ Cup Water, ½ Cup Milk, 1½ Teaspoons Lawry’s Seasoned Salt, 4 Teaspoons MSG, 1 Teaspoon Ground Black Pepper, 4 Teaspoons Granulated Sugar and whisk well to dissolve the sugar. Add the chicken pieces to the bowl, toss to make sure all the pieces are soaked in the brine, cover and refrigerate overnight or up to 2 days. When you’re ready to fry the nuggets, pour out all the excess brine left in the bowl. Whisk 1 Large Egg and add to the chicken and stir to coat.

  • 2)

    Make the coating: In a large tupperware container, place 1¼ Cups All Purpose Flour, 1 Tablespoon Powdered Sugar, 1 Tablespoon MSG, ½ Teaspoon Salt, ½ Teaspoon Baking Soda, 1 Teaspoon Baking Powder and ½ Teaspoon Paprika. Seal the lid and shake to combine everything. Place the chicken into the container, seal the lid and shake vigorously to evenly coat the nuggets. Take the pieces out, shake off excess flour and rest them on a cutting board or large piece of parchment paper.

  • 3)

    Use a large 5 or 6QT Cast Iron Pot, pour in 2-3 inches of Peanut Oil. Use a deep fry thermometer to monitor the temp, heat on high until it reaches 370°F. Fry until golden brown, which takes about 4-5 minutes each batch. Fry in 3-4 batches – in between each batch wait until the oil reaches 370°F again before frying more nuggets. Drain the nuggets on a rack. Enjoy!

↓ Supplies to make this recipe ↓


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