Easy high
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Easy high

Aug 05, 2023

Healthy weeknight dinners don't have to be daunting and KaleJunkie has just the combo for families or someone looking to feed their inner kid's craving.

Cookbook author and food creator Nicole Keshishian Modic shared her simple dinner idea with "Good Morning America" for veggie chicken nuggets with smashed lemon Parmesan broccoli and ranch dipping sauce.

"Whether you have kids or are just a kid at heart this is a stellar high protein dinner that also happens to be easy and quick to get on the table," Modic said.

She titled this recipe "Easy Veggie Chicken Nuggets" because not only do you get a hefty dose of protein from the chicken, but "you also get a dose of carrots and zucchini that you can’t even taste," Modic said.

You can eat these on their own, but Modic boasted, "I can easily polish off half the tray when they come out of the oven."

Check out how to make her easy protein-rich ranch dressing for dunking the nuggets below and even more recipes on her Instagram and website.


2 small zucchini, grated (can also use 1 large zucchini instead)

1 large carrot, grated

1/2 onion, grated or finely diced

1 1/2 pounds ground chicken

2 teaspoons onion powder

2 teaspoons garlic powder

1 teaspoon cumin

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

1 egg


To make these nuggets, start by preheating your oven to 400 F.

Next, line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set it aside. You may want to spray the pan lightly with olive oil, to ensure that the parchment paper sticks to it.

Wash and grate the zucchini, carrot and onion. Then, add them to a cheesecloth or nut milk bag and squeeze as much liquid out of them as possible. If you don't have a cheesecloth or nut milk bag, you can wrap paper towels around them and squeeze the moisture out that way.

Once the veggies are prepared, set them aside while you prepare the chicken nuggets.

Add the ground chicken to a large bowl alongside the onion powder, garlic powder, cumin, sea salt, black pepper and egg. Mix until they're fully incorporated, then add in the veggie mixture and stir until the veggies are mixed in with the chicken.

Use a spoon to scoop out approximately 3 tablespoons of the meat mixture and use your hands to form the mixture into nuggets. Line the nuggets up on the baking sheet and repeat until all of the mixture has been formed into nuggets.

Bake the nuggets for 15 minutes, then remove them from the oven, flip and bake them for another 10 minutes, until they reach an internal temperature of 165 F.

Once they're done, remove them from the oven, serve and enjoy! Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 week.

Ingredients 1 large crown broccoli, washed1/4 cup olive oil1 lemon, juiced1 tsp garlic powder1 tsp kosher salt1/2 tsp ground black pepper1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan


Bring water to a boil, and add one broccoli crown. Let boil for about 4-5 minutes, do not leave on longer than that, or the broccoli will be mushy, then rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process.

Preheat oven to 400 F.

Prepare the vinaigrette and set aside.

Cut/break up the broccoli into florets, then line them up on a parchment lined baking sheet.

Smash the broccoli with the bottom of a cup. Brush generously with the lemon vinaigrette.

Add grated Parmesan cheese on top of each broccoli floret.

Pop in the oven for 20-22 minutes, until the edges of the broccoli are crisp and the cheese is fully melted.

Serve with chicken veggie nuggets and enjoy!


1 cup Greek yogurt (I recommend using full fat Greek yogurt)2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce1/2 lemon juiced1 teaspoon dried dill1 teaspoon onion powder1 teaspoon garlic powder1 teaspoon dried parsley1 teaspoon kosher salt1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper1/4 cup water (this is optional but can help to thin out the dressing if it's too thick)


To make this healthy ranch dressing, start by adding all of the ingredients (minus the water) to a blender. If you don't want to use a blender, you can add all of the ingredients to a large bowl and whisk them together by hand.

Blend until all of the ingredients are combined and the ranch dressing is smooth and creamy! If the dressing is too thick, add in the water and re-blend until your desire consistency is reached.

Once the ranch dressing is done, serve and enjoy! Store any leftovers in an airtight container, in the fridge, for up to 1 week!

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