Don’t toss Chick-fil-A restaurant leftovers simply because the coating on the nuggets has gotten soggy and the fries have grown limp. Return them to hot, crunchy goodness in a few minutes in your oven or fryer.
Methods to Reheat Chick-fil-A Nuggets
Oven: Place leftover nuggets on a wire rack set on a baking sheet and cook at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for about 10 minutes, or until the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 120 F.
Refrying: Heat peanut oil in a deep fryer to 350 F. If you don’t have peanut oil, use canola or vegetable oil. Drop the chicken into the hot oil for two minutes. Work in small batches so the oil doesn’t cool down when you add the chicken. On the stovetop, heat about an inch of oil in a skillet and fry the chicken for a couple of minutes on each side. Transfer the chicken to a wire rack to drain.
Toaster Oven: Use the broil setting on your toaster oven. Put the nuggets on a wire rack set on a baking sheet and heat the chicken for two minutes. Turn the nuggets over and heat them for an additional two minutes.
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Air Fryer: Set the fryer to 400 F, add the chicken and heat for about three minutes. The coating will crisp evenly if you don’t overcrowd the fryer.
Reheat French Fries
Chick-fil-A sells waffle fries, rather than the straight-cut or curly versions that other fast food outlets pair with their burgers. While you can use any of the same methods you would for reheating nuggets, the best way to reheat fries is to refry them or heat them in the oven.
To refry fries, heat oil in your deep-fat fryer or in a skillet on the stove to 350 F. Drop the fries into the hot oil and cook just long enough for them to crisp up and warm through. If you’re cooking in a skillet, turn the fries after about a minute. Drain the fries on a wire rack.
Or, heat your oven to 450 F. Spread the fries out in a single layer on a baking sheet and cook for three or four minutes, turning once.
Copycat Chick-fil-A Nuggets
Dill pickle juice is the secret ingredient in Chick-fil-A nuggets. You can buy dill pickle juice in some markets and online, but it’s just as easy to use the brine from a jar of dill pickles.
Cut boneless, skinless chicken breasts into nugget-sized cubes. Pour pickle juice over the chicken pieces and let marinate for 20 minutes. Drain the chicken and pat it dry. Combine flour, seasoned salt, table salt, pepper and paprika in one bowl. Whisk together two eggs and a cup of milk in another bowl. Dredge the chicken pieces in the flour, then the egg, and then again in the flour. Set them on a baking rack until ready to cook.
Heat peanut oil to 350 F. Fry the chicken nuggets in batches until they’re golden brown and let them drain on a clean wire rack. Serve with dipping sauce.
Chicken Reheating Tips
Always bring the chicken to room temperature before reheating. Avoid reheating nuggets in the microwave. The results will be a soft, mushy coating rather than crisp and crunchy. Don’t wrap nuggets or fries in foil before reheating them in the oven. Wrapping them causes the coating on the chicken to steam and get soggy – the fries will steam rather than crisp.
Drain the reheated chicken nuggets on a wire rack, rather than on paper towels. The nuggets will sit in their fat on a paper towel, reducing the crispiness.
Native New Yorker Meg Jernigan stayed in Washington, D.C. after attending the George Washington University, and worked in the tourism industry with the National Park Service for many years. She’s a dedicated foodie with an extensive cookbook collection and years of experience in the kitchen. Jernigan’s recipes have been published online and in magazines like Southern Living.