Crispy Chicken Fingers – Gluten, Egg & Dairy Free

Crispy Chicken Fingers - Gluten, Egg & Dairy Free at The Happy Housewife
By contributing writer Tessa

I am not sure what it is about chicken fingers and nuggets that kids go nuts over, but the vast majority of kids seem to relish in this simple meal!  When we first had to cut out so many foods, I had to get pretty creative with my homemade version of healthier chicken nuggets.

Whether gluten is a problem for you or not, there are loads of fun breading options out there (all of which could be subbed one to one in this recipe):

  • Homemade bread crumbs – Keep the end pieces of any dry crumbly gluten-free bread, such as the heels.  I have used some baking mishaps here too.  Just whir the bread chunks in a high powered blender or food processor, and you have fresh bread crumbs ready to go.  Just be sure to store them in the freezer because the moisture is still in them and they will mold.
  • Crunched up gluten free cereals –  Use cereal such as Rice Chex, Rice Crispies, or corn flakes. Crunch them up by hand (inside a bag) or in a food processor.
  • Your own simple flour & spice mix – Any all-purpose gluten free flour will do, but I usually prefer brown rice, sweet rice, or regular rice flour for breading.
  • Crunched up gluten free crackers 
  • Store bought gluten free bread crumbs – These are super expensive generally, which is why I avoid them.


Crispy Chicken Fingers - Gluten, Egg & Dairy Free at The Happy Housewife

If you would like to see a pan-fried version using Rice Chex, check out my Panko Crusted Chicken!

Crispy Chicken Fingers - Gluten, Egg, & Dairy Free
Recipe type: Main Dish
Serves: 4
  • 1 pound boneless chicken (thighs or breasts), cut into desired pieces
  • 1 cup unsweetened milk substitute
  • 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar or lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Tabasco (optional)
  • 2 cups gluten free breadcrumbs (see options above)
  • ½ cup tapioca flour
  • 1-2 tablespoons Salt-Free Cajun seasoning OR 1 tablespoon Hungarian paprika (If your seasoning contains salt, omit the extra salt below, and use half the amount of Cajun seasoning)
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons oregano or thyme
  • Allowed butter, oil, or cooking spray
  1. Create a pseudo buttermilk by mixing your milk of choice with the apple cider vinegar or lemon juice. (You can sub regular buttermilk if you like.)
  2. Mix the 'buttermilk' salt , and Tabasco together in bowl or Ziploc bag large enough to accommodate your chicken.
  3. Add the chicken and brine for 1-2 hours
  4. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
  5. Combine all the breading ingredients and remove the pieces from the brine, dredging each piece and pressing down for a thorough coating.
  6. Place coated pieces on a greased cookie sheet.
  7. Lightly spray the top of each piece with cooking spray so that the breading is lightly moist., or drizzle some melted butter or oil over each piece.
  8. Bake at 400 degrees for 20-30 minutes until crispy and golden brown. How long this takes will depend on your chicken piece size.
Brining is a great step for adding flavor to otherwise bland meat pieces. You could forgo the brine and just dip the chicken in the buttermilk for a quicker version.

This general technique can be used with any food such as shrimp or drumsticks.

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Grilled Pineapple Chicken Kebabs

Grilled Pineapple Chicken Kebabs | The Happy HousewifeBy contributing writer Kristia

For a different variation of grilled chicken, try these Grilled Pineapple Chicken Kebabs. Grilling the pineapple brings out the fruit’s sweetness and it goes well with the vegetables and marinated chicken.

Serve the kebabs with rice and a large salad. If you have leftovers, use them to make wraps for the next day’s lunch or dinner.


Pineapple Chicken Kebabs
Recipe type: Main Dish
Serves: 6
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut evenly into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 bell pepper, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 small red onion, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 pineapple, cut into chunks
  • ¼ cup fresh orange juice
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • approximately 12 (12-inch) skewers, bamboo or metal
  1. The chicken, pepper, onion, and pineapple should all be cut into bite-sized pieces, but still large enough to thread onto skewers.
  2. Place the chicken in a shallow bowl or pan. Combine the orange juice, soy sauce, oil, and garlic cloves and pour over the chicken. Make sure the chicken in completely coated. Place the chicken in the refrigerator and marinate for at least an hour or more.
  3. Pre-heat grill to medium.
  4. Place peppers and onions in a small bowl and drizzle lightly with olive oil.
  5. If using bamboo skewers, they need to soak in water for 30 minutes before using. Thread the chicken, peppers, onions, and pineapple onto skewers. Don't thread too tightly, leave some space between pieces so the food can cook evenly and properly.
  6. Place chicken skewers on grill and close lid. Cook for 5 minutes. Turn the skewers and grill for another 3-4 minutes or until chicken is cooked through.

Grilled Pineapple Chicken Kebabs | The Happy Housewife

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Love to grill? Check out our Grilling Recipes Pinterest Board for more inspiration:
Follow The Happy Housewife’s board Grilling Recipes on Pinterest.

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Spicy Dry Rub for Chicken


Spicy Dry Rub for Chicken | The Happy Housewife

By contributing writer Andrea Green

Have you ever been asked the question, “What’s for dinner?” and not had the answer? This recipe for homemade spicy dry rub for chicken has saved me from dinnertime panic on many occasions.

This dry rub is made from spices you probably already have in your cupboard and only takes a few minutes to mix up. Once you’ve combined the spices, store your rub in a small mason jar, and you can whip up dinner in a snap!

You can use it on any chicken pieces you have: drumsticks, thighs, or breasts. Skinless or skin on. Boneless or bone in. All you need to do is rub it on. Then choose your preferred cooking method to cook the chicken. I usually broil or grill it.

If you have a family of young kids, you may want to play around with the amount of ground red pepper you include.

Spicy Homemade Spice Rub for Chicken


  • 2 1/2 tablespoons paprika
  • 2 tablespoons garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme
  • 1 tablespoon ground red pepper
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper


  1. Combine ingredients in a small bowl, stirring until well mixed.
  2. Store closed in a small mason jar until ready to use.

Don’t forget to pin this recipe–it makes excellent homemade Christmas gifts!

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Honey Mustard Slow Cooker Pork Roast

Honey Mustard Slow Cooker Pork Roast | The Happy Housewife
By contributing writer Andrea Green

This flavorful honey mustard slow cooker pork roast recipe is easy to make and cooks all day so you have a delicious, moist, and tender dinner ready when you are. Your family is sure to love the classic flavor combination of honey and mustard.

Try serving this pork roast with a side of rosemary and garlic roast potatoes. Add a green salad and you have a mouthwatering meal with very little prep time.

Honey Mustard Slow Cooker Pork Roast Recipe
Recipe type: Main Dish
  • 4 pounds pork shoulder roast
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ cup Dijon mustard
  • ¼ cup honey
  • 2 cups chopped onion
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  1. Add the pork roast to your slow cooker. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  2. In small bowl, stir together garlic powder, mustard, and honey. Spread on the pork roast.
  3. Add the onion and chicken broth to slow cooker.
  4. Cover and cook on low 8 to 9 hours or until you can easily shred the pork with two forks.


Have you made pork roast in the slow cooker?

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