Rice and Veggie Nuggets

Transform leftover rice and whatever veggies you have on hand into these super kid-friendly, healthy, dunkable nuggets. Egg acts like glue, holding all the rice and veggie goodness together. That means no more rice covering the floor! Rice and Veggie nuggets are a great side-dish or quick meal for toddlers and kids of all ages (well, and grown-ups too, of course!).  My kids love a little melted cheesy crust on the top, but you can easily leave that off if you’d prefer.

Kids in the Kitchen: Rice and Veggie Nuggets

  • Mix! With only a few ingredients to throw into a bowl and mix together, this is a great recipe for kids of all ages to help make. Add the rice, veggies, egg, and cheese and give your kiddo a big spoon to stir it all up.
  • Scoop! If you have the time, your little chef can spoon the rice mixture into the mini muffin tin. This might get a little messy but you can easily clean around the edges of the muffin tin before placing it in the oven.
  • Sprinkle! Kids can take a small pinch of cheese and add it to the top of each nugget before baking. Easy, cheesy goodness!

Subs and Tips for making Rice and Veggie Nuggets

  • Shortcut! I often buy frozen rice and keep it on had for when I need cooked rice and don’t have the time to make my own. It’s such an easy shortcut for this recipe too. Just defrost or microwave the rice until warm (but not too hot) then  proceed with the recipe instructions.
  • Veggies? Use any fresh or frozen veggies you’d like for this recipe. We love the grated carrot and finely chopped broccoli but I’ve also used finely chopped baby spinach, grated zucchini, and corn. Make sure if you are using any grated veggies or defrosted frozen veggies that you get rid of any excess water by patting them dry in a paper/dish towel.
  • Dairy-free? Feel free to use a dairy-free shredded cheese or leave out the cheese entirely. Since the egg is there the nuggets will still hold together. If leaving out the cheese, season the rice mixture with a large pinch of salt and/or other seasonings to make up for the loss of cheese flavor.
  • Egg-free? There is a comment below that explains how someone used aquafaba (the liquid in a can of chickpeas) to make these completely vegan, so check that out if you want to make the recipe egg-free.
  • Silicone muffin tin. For easy nugget removal and pan clean up, I love using silicone pans like THESE (affiliate link). I place the muffin pan on a baking sheet so it is easy to transfer back and forth from the oven.
  • Pull-chopper: this is one of our favorite kids-in-the-kitchen tools and it’s great for making veggies super small to mix into this recipe The one we have can be found HERE.

Rice and Veggie Nuggets

Easy, healthy nuggets made from rice and whatever veggie you like.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine American


  • Mini muffin tin (silicone preferred)


  • 3 cups cooked rice not packed
  • 1/2 cup finely grated carrot
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped broccoli or 1 cup total any fresh or frozen veggies (see post for more info)
  • 1 whole egg
  • 1 egg white
  • 1/2 cup grated cheese cheddar or any kind
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder


  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees. If using a silicone mini muffin pan, lightly grease the holes with oil. If using a metal muffin pan, grease the holes liberally to prevent sticking.
  • Make sure to remove any excess moisture from the vegetables you are using by patting dry with a paper towel. Add rice, veggies, egg, egg white, approximately 3/4 of the cheese, and the garlic powder to a large bowl. Mix well.
  • Fill the muffin tin with the rice mixture, pressing gently on the top of each filled hole with the back of a spoon. Sprinkle a pinch of the remaining cheese on top each each nugget.
  • Bake until the edges of the nuggets are golden brown, about 15 to 20 minutes. Once cool enough to handle, remove nuggets from the pan. If they are sticking, run a butter knife between the nugget and the pan to loosen. Serve warm with ketchup or other dip if desired.
Keyword heathy toddler food, nuggets, toddler meals

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Other recipe you might enjoy:

Rainbow Veggie Pancakes

Homemade Fish Nuggets

Baked Spaghetti Cups (with Veggies)




  1. Mabby Howard on August 28, 2020 at 7:49 pm

    I made these vegan by swapping in ~5 Tablespoons of aquafaba for the egg/egg white and just used vegan cheese shreds (I used mozzarella style). They came out great!! They stuck to the pan even though I greased it, but I think I rushed taking them out because the crowd was hungry 😉

  2. Spatel on February 11, 2021 at 9:44 pm

    Do I need to use the extra egg white? About to make these! 🤞🏽🤞🏽🤞🏽

    • Heather on February 11, 2021 at 10:01 pm

      The extra egg white helps make sure they will stay together after baking but it might work without it. Let me know how it goes!

      • Heather on February 14, 2021 at 2:03 am

        Wonderful! I’m so glad your kiddos enjoyed them. Thank you so much for taking the time to leave a review. 🙂 Heather

      • Diane on August 12, 2023 at 8:01 pm

        Heather, why one whole egg and one egg white, when the protein is in the yolk? Also, if made with a healthier brown rice, do you think it would be just as tasty?

        • Heather on August 14, 2023 at 11:31 am

          Hi Diane, I just used the white because the whole egg made the batter too wet (But the protein is mostly in the white but there is a lot of wonderful healthy fat in the old). However, I bet it would work with the whole egg too. Yes, I think brown rice would be good.

  3. Spatel on February 12, 2021 at 1:46 am

    5 stars
    Made these tonight’s and my 4 year old, 2.5 year old and 1 year old devoured these! Thanks for sharing!!

  4. Natasha on May 11, 2021 at 3:44 am

    Can these be put in the fridge and reheated?

    • Heather on May 11, 2021 at 1:24 pm

      Hi Natasha, Yes, definitely. They are best reheated in an oven/toaster oven to keep them crispy, but you can use a microwave too. 🙂 Heather

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