Crunchy Coconut Key Lime Oven Fried Chicken Strips (or nuggets) with Spicy Greek Yogurt Dip

These Crunchy Coconut Key Lime Oven Fried Chicken Strips aka Chicken Fingers aka Chicken Nuggets, are so perfectly crunchy/crispy, they taste deep-fried! The Spicy Greek Yogurt Dip served alongside really takes it over the top!

Crunchy Coconut Key Lime Oven Fried Chicken Strips with Spicy Yogurt Dipping Sauce

For this month’s Secret Recipe Club, I was assigned the blog, Edesia’s Notebook  (love the name) authored and photographed by Lesa.  For the first time since I joined, I didn’t have the urge to grab some gorgeous dessert, which Lesa has plenty of, and play with it.  Instead, the same thought kept going through my head.


Crunchy Coconut Key Lime Oven Fried Chicken Strips with Spicy Yogurt Dipping Sauce

You don’t often see posts where I just make dinner, nothing fancy, nothing outrageous, nothing you would only make for a special occasion.  It’s not that I don’t have a decent amount of simple recipes, but I just felt the need to cook dinner and blog it.  I chose her Crunchy Lemon Chicken.

Crunchy Coconut Key Lime Oven Fried Chicken Strips with Spicy Yogurt Dipping Sauce

Of course, I ended up futzing with it because I truly believe it’s nearly impossible for me not to futz with recipes, and I think I say this in almost every post (annoying).

So, I cut each breast into strips, used key limes instead of lemons, and added soy sauce and garlic to the marinade.  I also added desiccated coconut to the panko bread crumbs and beat the eggs with coconut water for the breading station.  Add to that a few other minor alterations, like the baking time and temperature, and there you have it.

Otherwise, it’s just dinner, and it was delicious.  I think these are the crunchiest, most delicious baked chicken strips (or fingers or nuggets) I’ve ever had, and kids will go absolutely berserk over these.  Just my completely biasedunbiased opinion.

Crunchy Coconut Key Lime Oven Fried Chicken Strips with Spicy Yogurt Dipping Sauce
Even though they were flavorful enough as is, I decided to make a dip to go with them; a Spicy Greek Yogurt dip, or what I call a garbage dip, where you rummage through your fridge and cabinets and just throw something together. It was interesting and tasty, (it looks like Thousand Island dressing that sat out too long, doesn’t it?), but, again, the chicken strips/fingers/nuggets had so much flavor, it really wasn’t needed.  But, I love dips with my chicken strips, fingers, or nuggets. I think it stems from my chicken mcnugget phase in High School. I always got two of each dipping sauce, and used up all of them.

Crunchy Coconut Key Lime Oven Fried Chicken Strips with Spicy Yogurt Dipping Sauce

That said, I hope you try these crunchy baked chicken strips/fingers/nuggets, and I hope you enjoy them!

Crunchy Coconut Key Lime Oven Fried  Chicken Strips with Spicy Yogurt Dip

Crunchy Coconut Key Lime Oven Fried Chicken Strips (or nuggets) with Spicy Greek Yogurt Dip
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Yield: About 4 servings
These seriously taste deep-fried! Chicken adapted from Lesa at Edesia's Notebook
  • 2 key limes, zested and juiced, or just use regular limes if you can't find key limes.
  • ¼ cup light olive oil
  • 4 tablespoons light soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
  • 2 large garlic cloves, smashed and chopped finely
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 4 chicken breasts (About 1 lb) cut into 1-inch wide strips. Cut each strip in half to make 'nuggets'.
  • 1½ cups Panko breadcrumbs
  • ⅔ cup desiccated coconut shreds
  • ¾ cup flour
  • salt and pepper to season flour
  • 2 eggs, beaten with 4 tablespoons of coconut water (you can use coconut milk if you can't find coconut water)
  • Oil spray, doesn't matter what kind
Spicy Greek Yogurt Dip
  • 1 cup Greek yogurt
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons Asian chile-garlic sauce (or less, depending on how much heat you like)
  • 1 small handful cilantro leaves, chopped
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. In a bowl, stir together lime juice, zest, light olive oil, ginger, light soy sauce, garlic and salt. Add the chicken strips and stir until they're completely coated with the marinade. You can also pour the marinade with the chicken strips, into a ziplock bag, which is what I did. Marinate for 4 to 5 hours at the most..stirring the strips in the bowl of marinade or squeezing around the bag every hour to an hour and a half to insure even marinating.
  2. Line a large baking sheet with foil sprayed lightly with oil. Mix the flour, salt and pepper in one bowl, the beaten eggs and coconut water or milk in a second bowl, and the panko and dessicated coconut in a third bowl. Remove the chicken strips from the refrigerator. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.* see notes
  3. Lift up each chicken strip and shake off some of the marinade so it isn't overly-saturated (I just ran two impeccably clean fingers down each strip, sliding off the extra marinade). Coat each chicken strip in flour, knocking off the excess, then dip and coat well in the egg mixture and then dredge it in the panko - dessicated coconut mixture, pressing it onto each strip. Place each chicken strip on the oiled baking sheet and continue until all chicken has been coated.
  4. Lightly spray some oil on the breaded chicken strips, then bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brown. IMPORTANT - Do not let them sit on the baking sheet once out of the oven. Transfer them to a rack if not eating within a few minutes, or the bottoms will get soggy.
  5. Make the Spicy Greek Yogurt Dip. Mix all the ingredients together, then cover and refrigerate for at least an hour to let the flavors mingle.
[b]*[/b ]If you prefer, you can also deep fry the chicken strips or nuggets. Heat about 1-inch of a neutral oil (like vegetable oil) in a shallow pan to 375F. Deep fry about 2 to 4 minutes on each side until golden brown and the chicken is cooked through. Place on a paper towel lined wire rack to absorb any extra oil while you finish frying the rest of the strips. To keep them warm while frying the remaining strips/nuggets, place on a baking sheet and put them in 200F oven until they're all ready to serve..

If you get a chance, please click on the blue frog below to see all the amazing dishes recreated by Group A of The Secret Recipe Club.  Also, click on over to Edesia’s Notebook for some fantastic sweet and savory recipes!

Crunchy, Baked Coconut Lime Chicken Strips with Spicy Yogurt Dip

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  1. Wow, that’s so flavorful, fresh and beautiful! Great pick for SRC :-). I am pinning it to try later and to share the yum! Happy Easter and have a great week!

  2. I love this….I get sucked in reading this delicious story, and then here comes a photo of some great looking chicken and garbage dip!!!! Hahaha you are amazing. I hope things settle down for you….

  3. Hope your dad is doing better. Even though you futzed with the recipe, I think you did it justice. I love the idea of lime and coconut chicken strips!

  4. Hey Lisa, I hope everything is going okay and your dad is getting well. I’m still very hooked on this story and am looking forward to the rest whenever you have a chance to write them.

  5. I am absolutely going to try those chicken strips. And that is SO something that would have happened to me, with the pin!! LOL. Still sending love and hugs your way.

  6. Beautiful recipe, Lisa! I love the flavors…

    Lisa, I am so sorry for your loss… And while the story is just thrilling, I don’t think you need to worry too much about leaving us hanging… just take your time and write the rest when your dad is better and you are feeling up to it!

  7. Hope things get better for you Lisa, sorry to hear of loosing someone and about your dad. I like this recipe and the flavors too, the pictures are really good. Of course the story is great and takes me out of reality for a few minutes which is nice.
    love to you xoxoxo

  8. I like the chicken fingers they look crunchalicious. If you can create a great dip out of “garbage” I want to taste the dips you create from fresh ingredients. This guy was a very calm person… don’t think I’d be getting something from the trunk in that situation. Crack me up about hoping he was “illiterate” funny stuff :).

  9. I am soooo making these! Maybe even for dinner tonight!! Plus, we should have a tutoring session on how to photography chicken because you did an awesome job!!

  10. So sorry to hear about your dad Lisa. I hope it’s going better now but I can imagine you had other things on your mind. Still I totally enjoyed part 9 of the series and can’t wait for the sequel. You should seriously write a novel!

  11. Hope your dad is doing well. And hope you are taking care of yourself so you can help him get better. xoxo

  12. Lisa, I hope your father is on the mend! I’m sorry to hear about the “sudden passing”. Life sure is difficult at times:( Hang in there, my friend. XO.
    Your chicken strips look amazing; I can almost hear the CRUNCH! They remind me of the coconut shrimp I had in Hawaii:)

  13. So sorry to hear all that has been happening in your life. My best wishes and prayers to your family! I loved this part of the story…action filled! Looking forward, as usual, to the next part. I’m making these chicken fingers this weekend, they do look super crunchy and I lkove the coconut lime flavor!

  14. Hope your dad is doing better Lisa and that you were able to enjoy passover. I was in Yellowstone National Park over the weekend and picked up some matzo ball soup (my favorite).

  15. It’s not just kids, but I would probably go nuts over this too!! And yeah, I’m the same way such that I can never leave a recipe untouched! Some way or another they’d get modified when they’re in my hands! haha.. Anyway, hope your dad is doing better!! Take care dear Lisa!

  16. What a great way to make dinner. Chicken strips are always a hit here. And these would be no exception.

  17. I am sitting on the edge of my seat waiting for the rest of the story. However also hoping that your family is doing okay, keeping you in my prayers and maybe the writing will help settle you. On a side not the chicken dish looks fabulous, but your writing rocks. Take care, BAM

  18. Teasing us again with another cliffhanger on this fun story. This chicken is what I need to make tonight. I love coconut and lime and that sauce…just for me b/c it’s spicy the way I like it:)Your photos are so pretty. I’m sending you tons of hugs and love. xx

  19. Coconut just went on my grocery list…this sounds fabulous. I would probably want a sauce too but I’m thinking honey mustard. But then I could probably eat honey mustard sauce with a spoon so it’s my go to for fried anything and this is fried Heaven!

  20. hi!,your love story is awesome! I love your writing so much! Romantic, but Many laughs! Please don’t end it in part 11!

  21. You’ve got a major gift in the way you write, so honest and real. The arena hopes for even more passionate writers such as you who are not afraid to let it all out, bumps and all. Always follow your heart. Love the chicken fingers!

  22. Just wanted to let you know I made these last night and they were crazy good! We had a few people over and they begged me to make another batch because the first batch was gone in about 5 minutes! Thank you so much for this recipe, I’ll be making it for life!

  23. You have a natural expertise in writing. Love your passion and details. Memories are eventually meant to be shared, and you’ve done a fantastic job of that.

  24. Great looking chicken! I love panko breadcrumbs, they have such a nice crisp.

    Woah, guess this guy was a REAL bad boy after all! You write him as being so sweet with you, I’d kind of forgotten that was his initial appeal.

  25. Those coated chicken strips look so tasty, appetizing & well flavoured too! I will make them today! thanks for this lovely post, Lisa! 😉 xxx

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    • Hi, Wanda. I’m sorry, but I don’t currently have a program that calculates the nutritional content of my recipes. However, I’m pretty sure there are carb counters online where you enter the ingredients for a recipe and it gives you the amount of carbs. I haven’t found one that isn’t a a bit too involved yet, but I’ll keep looking 🙂

  29. i just made this last night and a huge hit. making it again today for the Super Bowl. I was looking for a Panko replacement and found this recipe on PInterest. I had almost all the ingredients EXCEPT the Panko. so I improvised and will do another variation again. I had some leftover sweet potato chips (not made at home). So I crunched them up finely and had to add some other stuff. worked terrifically. will get more chips and crunch them up. thanks so much for the great recipe.

    • I’m so glad they were a hit, Denise! I like the idea of sweet potato chip crumbs!! I think I need to try that! Very clever! You made this recipe your own! 🙂

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