Find new (and easy!) ways to prepare chicken recipes for kids, from nuggets and meatballs to yummy Instant Pot and Slow Cooker options. (Bonus: Parents will enjoy them too!)
Chicken Recipes for Kids
Chicken is a dinnertime staple and it’s so super versatile. It can also be a great texture for kids, and an easy way to offer up protein. To make it easier for you to find easy recipes, I put all of my chicken dishes together into this post.
This will make it easy for you to scroll through options to use the kind of chicken you have on hand, or to pick the preparation that your kids prefer.
Tips for Choosing Kids Chicken Recipes
When trying a new recipe, I would recommend taking the age of the kids into consideration—older babies and younger toddlers will find it easier to chew softer meats such as nuggets made with ground chicken and shredded chicken.
Older kids shouldn’t have any issues with chewing diced up breast or thighs, so you have more options the older the kids get.
Chicken thighs, either whole or in very thick finger-size pieces, can be a great option for Baby Led Weaning (they are high in iron and fat, which babies need). And they are often really moist and tender for any age.
Add a dip if your kids like to dip their food and remember that if a kiddo doesn’t like a certain kind of meat, first try to make sure that it’s easy to eat. And second, know that there’s no kiddo who likes every food. (The approach known as the Division of Responsibility can help with perspective on this.)
Easy Family Chicken Recipes
Each of these recipes is appropriate for a toddler, but should also be appealing to the entire family—kids and parents alike! I always aim to have recipes that appeal to everyone to help reduce the amount of overall cooking we have to do. Fingers crossed anyway!
1. Baked Chicken Nuggets
These have just a few basic ingredients and are so crispy on the outside and tender on the inside. They’re a forever hit.
2. Baked Chicken Tenders
Recreate chicken tenders at home with this super simple method. (There are 2 options for the crispy coating, so pick the one that sounds best!)
3. Chicken Nuggets with Sweet Potato
These are a favorite chicken recipe for a baby and one year olds since they are super tender and super nutritious. The sweet potato pairs so nicely with the ground chicken.
4. Baked Chicken Meatballs
This recipe is so straight forward and I love the option to add some shredded carrots. These were a staple in our lives when my youngest was one and otherwise ate no veggies!
5. Pan Seared Chicken
Put the chicken into the pan, turn on the timer, and you’ll have perfectly cooked chicken every time. I love this with chicken tenders but it works with any boneless cut.
6. Sweet Potato Chicken Bowls
Whether you want an easy sheet pan meal or you want to prep ahead for lunch or easy dinners to store in the fridge, this is a great recipe to try.
7. Instant Pot BBQ Chicken
Let the instant pot do this work and serve up delicious barbecue chicken sandwiches or platters in no time.
8. Slow Cooker Chicken and Bean Tacos
The beauty of this recipe is that the sauce is loaded with veggies so you don’t need to make anything else on the side! Oh and it freezes so well.
9. Instant Pot Butter Chicken
Warm spices and a simple method make this one of our favorite chicken dinners to share with the kids. Add some rice and naan and you’re set.
10. Pesto Chicken and Rice
Cauliflower rice, chicken, and pesto team up in this easy skillet dinner. It’s a one pan wonder that’s perfect for easy weeknight cooking.
11. Pasta Salad with Chicken
Whether for an easy dinner or a make-ahead lunch to serve up throughout the week, this is easy and flavorful. And the kinds of chicken you can use are wide open!
12. Chicken Puree
I’d love to hear your feedback on this post, so please comment below to share!
This post was first published September 2021.