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How to Make Nut Coating for Chicken: Honey Nut Crust Chicken | The Recipe ReDux

How to Make Nut Coating for Chicken: Honey Nut Crust Chicken | The Recipe ReDux

Add toasty crunch to chicken without the frying – here are tips for making a nut coating – that are so easy you won’t need a recipe.

How to Make Nut Encrusted Chicken | @tspcurry

In the dinnertime rush, sometimes there just isn’t time to search for a recipe for that chicken in the fridge; this simple no-recipe recipe for nut encrusted chicken has saved dinner more than once at my house. Nuts add toasty crunchiness to skinless chicken – plus extra nutrition. It’s perfect for boneless chicken breasts or tenders; it also works for bone-in thighs and/or drumsticks.

Here are some tips to make sure your chicken comes out crispy outside, juicy inside – every time:

How to make nuts stick:

  • Honey + mustard – Mix together a spoonful of each and and brush on. Need more directions? For every 1 pound chicken, use 1 tablespoon each of honey + mustard.
  • Buttermilk – If you don’t have honey/mustard, pour a little buttermilk in large bowl; add chicken and toss to coat. Specifics: For every 1 pound of chicken, use 2 tablespoons buttermilk.

How to Make Nut Coating for Chicken | @tspCurry

Which nuts to use:

  • Best nuts for encrustingPeanuts, pistachios, almonds, walnuts or pecans – all work great – especially because they are easy to chop and toast beautifully in the oven.
  • Use with careMacadamia nuts and Brazil nuts are oilier – so watch them in the oven as they burn easier.

Best way to chop nuts for encrusted chicken:

  1. Add nuts, salt and pepper to a mini-food processor or spice grinder and process for 2 or 3 pulses. Don’t process too long or your nut coating will be all dust, no crunch! (Adding salt + pepper to the processor saves the extra step of salting/peppering chicken later.)
  2. Dump nuts/salt/pepper onto cutting board to chop remaining bigger nut chunks. Results: You’ll have a bit of finely ground nuts for coating the entire surface of meat with nutty flavor, plus you’ll have bigger nut chunks for crunch.

BIG benefits of ‘nut crust’ chicken are:

  • Added flavor! – Toasting any nut adds warm, rich aromas – without lots of ingredients. Anyone in my kitchen always asks, “What smells so good?!”
  • Added nutrition – Nuts have several nutrients not found in many other foods like:
    B-vitamins – May be helpful in countering stress
    Magnesium – Has been shown to help decrease symptoms of headaches, even migraines
  • Omega-3 fatty acids – Helpful with heart health!
Add toasty crunch to chicken: How to Make a Nut Coating for Chicken + Honey Nut Encrusted Chicken via @tspcurry Click To Tweet

And for one more reason to make this…Tomorrow is  National Nut Day – October 22! So we’re celebrating – along with everyone else at The Recipe ReDux with a theme of nuts. Check out all the nutty and nutritious recipes below!

And if you feel a bit more comfy with a real recipe – instead of a no-recipe recipe, here it is:

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Honey Nut Crust Chicken

  • Yield: 4 servings 1x


Simple no-recipe recipe and tips on which nuts are best for encrusting chicken. How-to photos included.


  • 1 pound skinless, boneless chicken or 1.5 pounds bone-in chicken (see above post for suggestions on chicken cuts)
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 tablespoon whole grain mustard (or whatever kind you have)
  • ½ cup peanuts, walnuts, pistachios – or any nut or seeds
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper


  1. Coat a wire rack well with non-stick cooking spray. Place rack on baking sheet or bottom of a broiler pan. Heat oven to 375-degrees
  2. Cut chicken into 2-inch pieces (if using bone-in chicken, leave as is)
  3. In a large bowl, combine honey and mustard; add chicken and toss to coat. Set aside.
  4. In a small food processor, add nuts then salt and pepper, pulse 2-3 times until coarsely chopped.
  5. Dump entire contents onto cutting board and chop larger nuts into pieces the size of sunflower seeds.
  6. Slide nuts onto a plate and press chicken pieces into nuts. Place chicken pieces on wire rack.
  7. Bake for 12 minutes or until chicken registers 165-degrees with a thermometer.

How to Make Nut Coatings for Chicken : Tips for pistachios, almonds, walnuts, peanuts | @tspcurry

What is your favorite nut to use in cooking? Sweet or savory for your nutty creations?

Steph @NutrishusRD

Friday 23rd of October 2015

Great idea! I have had nut crusted fish out a few times and have meant to try it at home. Thanks for this!

Jessica @ Nutritioulicious

Wednesday 21st of October 2015

love using nuts to coat chicken and fish, and pistachios are my fave coating to use! looks delish!

Serena Ball

Thursday 22nd of October 2015

I know pistachios are so pretty on chicken too!

Amee Livingston

Wednesday 21st of October 2015

Love the honey mustard nut crust! That sounds delicious!!

Serena Ball

Thursday 22nd of October 2015

Thank Amee - these would be perfect for dinner with your Fall Harvest about a kid friendly (and me friendly!) meal.


Wednesday 21st of October 2015

Honey mustard and chicken is always a great combination. Love that it's used as the "glue" to hold the nuts on. I'll have to give it a try with tofu, too :)

Serena Ball

Thursday 22nd of October 2015

It works great Lydia. The key is to also have some 'fine-dust' nuts from the food processor plus those big crunchy nuts. Then your chicken will be nut-happy!


Wednesday 21st of October 2015

Very nice...I love how the recipe is so versatile and that you can use whatever nuts you like or have on hand! Thanks for sharing :)

Serena Ball

Thursday 22nd of October 2015

Thanks Karielyn...I'm a nut lover so this works great with whatever I have on hand!

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