Joy Bauer makes better-for-you chicken fingers with a pecan crust

·2 min read

I'm a serious health nut and celebrate National Nut Day with pride. Today I'm sharing two recipes that are nuttin' but delicious. First up, a blast from the past: a nutty twist on chocolate-peanut-buttery puppy chow. Next, savory and scrumptious pecan-crusted chicken fingers with a honey mustard dipping sauce. Two simple and mouthwatering recipes you're sure to go nuts for!

Nutty Puppy Chow

Courtesy Joy Bauer
Courtesy Joy Bauer

Can't stop, won't stop … eating this snackable puppy chow! It's addictive in the best possible way. Each chocolate-peanut buttery bite is super light and crispy and packed with irresistible flavor that makes your taste buds excited for more. (Imagine if a Reese's Peanut Butter Cup and Kit Kat had a baby.)

While I stay somewhat true to the traditional recipe, there's a few things I do to lighten up the sugar load while inserting extra nutrition. First, I pull way back on powdered sugar, since you really only need a dusting at the end. Next, I toss in peanuts for extra crunch, protein and fiber. Feel free to swap in any favorite nut — I've experimented with almonds, pecans, cashews and walnuts, and they all taste fantastic. Sometimes I even add in a sprinkling of shredded coconut; there's no wrong turn. This recipe is gluten-free, dairy-free (if you use dairy-free chocolate chips) and makes an extra-large batch, which can easily be halved if you prefer. It'll keep in the fridge for up to a week or you can freeze leftovers for up to two months … if you have any left.

Get the recipe here.

Pecan-Crusted Chicken Fingers with Honey Mustard by Joy Bauer

I'm always looking for clever ways to healthify a family-favorite: good ol' chicken fingers. This nutty variation comes together fast and provides a lower-carb and protein-packed way to enjoy the classic meal. Big bonus: These chicken fingers are baked not fried, yet they still crisp up nicely. Note: If you have an oven rack handy, set it on the baking sheet and position your chicken on top for even more crispiness. Also, if you have an extra 15 to 30 minutes, marinate the chicken beforehand with some plain yogurt, as it'll ensure your chicken is tender and juicy. And while the honey mustard dipping sauce is theoretically optional, it's a non-negotiable necessity in my house. It requires just three simple ingredients and truly delivers next-level flavor. It's subtle and creamy yet surprisingly alluring — you'll keep coming back for more and more.

For more tasty recipes, check out Joy's cookbook "Joy Bauer's Superfood!" and follow her on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.

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