What Makes a Great Frozen Breaded Dark Meat Chicken Nugget?

Chicken nuggets are an amazing snack to pair with your favorite dip!

High quality frozen breaded chicken pieces have a moist piece of meat with a crisp and even golden brown coating. They taste of chicken, toasty breading, seasonings, and fry oil.

Specifically, the breading is uniformly golden brown, has even thickness, and adheres to the chicken. The chicken looks moist. The meat can look spongey but whole meat pieces of chicken indicate higher quality.

The pieces deliver the aroma and flavor of chicken, toasted breading, seasonings, and fry oil. The pieces are salty with some sweetness. A little bitterness or umami may be present.

The meat can be moderately spongey but a meaty chew indicates higher quality. The breading is crunchy to bite, the meat is moist. The pieces may stick to the teeth just a little and there might be a slightly oily mouthfeel. Defects include rubbery chicken and gray meat color.

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Tasting terms

  • aroma

    The smell that emanates from food. Along with appearance, texture, flavor and taste, aroma is one of the five dimensions used to evaluate a product. Example: Brownies should have an aroma that includes chocolate as well as egg, toasty and sweet notes.

  • flavor

    A combination of a food's basic taste and its accompanying aroma, flavor is the distinctive taste of a food or ingredient while it is in the mouth. Along with aroma, appearance, texture and taste, flavor is one of the five dimensions considered by ChefsBest Master Tasters. Example: Chocolate chip cookies should have a moderate chocolate flavor accompanied by a slightly lower level of complex dough flavor that includes egg, flour, vanilla and brown sugar notes.

  • umami

    One of the basic tastes; the savory flavor in meat and broths; sometimes an additive (MSG). Example: Natural Parmesan cheese, meats, seaweed, fish sauce and sesame exhibit an umami taste.

  • chew

    The texture of a food as it is being chewed, as opposed to the texture of the first bite. Example: High-quality beef jerky should be tender but have a long chew.

  • mouthfeel

    The texture experienced while food is being eaten. Examples include smooth, chalky, grainy or greasy. Example: Super premium ice cream is often described as having a rich and smooth mouthfeel.