Michelina’s Pop’n Chicken Review

Michelina's Pop'n Chicken

The mighty T-Rex possibly evolved into the modern chicken. That’s quite the evolutionary leap — from king of the dinosaurs to king of the dinner plate. But many food manufacturers are turning back time by forming pieces of chicken into dinosaur shapes. We’ve come full-circle in a way.

Today, we’re checking out the Michelina’s Pop’n Chicken, which we thought was a dinosaur-shaped batch of chicken nuggets, but we we realized we were wrong about that once we started cooking these up (more on that later). If the official Michelina’s website is any indication, the dinosaur pieces used to be shaped like smiley faces, but at some point they were changed to dinosaurs. We do appreciate this change, as the faces were kind of… unsettling?

No really, check this out:

Michelina's Pop'n Chicken

See what we mean?

We never got to try the smiley-face version of this meal, but there’s a part of us that’s glad of it. We’ll be seeing those dead-eyed faces smiling up at us in our nightmares for weeks to come. We did, however, pick up a batch of the dinosaur-shaped Pop’n Chicken, and we’re going to give it the ol’ Freezer Meal Frenzy taste test.

First, though, we must cook these. There are microwave instructions on the box, but these really do seem like they’re intended to be baked in the oven. For our review, we went with the oven, but you can read both versions of the cooking instructions if you scroll to the bottom of this review and check out our package scan.

Michelina's Pop'n Chicken

One thing you might find weird about these nuggets is that this batch contains both dino-shaped nuggets and regular round nuggets. The image on the package shows a mixed batch, so this was definitely intentional rather than a mistake at the factory.

Now, there’s a reason for this: The dinosaur shapes are actually not chicken. That’s right, these are actually made from mashed potatoes. So the round pieces are chicken, while the dinosaurs are potatoes. As you can see in our photograph, this means there’s not a lot of chicken in this meal.

The potato bites are a little strange. They have the crispy outside of a French fry, while being very much mashed potatoes on the inside. To be honest, we actually really liked the consistency, and we found these satisfying to bite into. The flavor, however, is just kind of alright. These taste like powdered mashed potatoes that have had a little bit of butter added to them rather than a gourmet plate of mashed potatoes. But we suppose this is what we expected from a boxed meal that costs about a dollar.

As for the chicken, it’s kind of rubbery. We would have expected that had we cooked these in the microwave, but even when baked in the oven, these end up with a rubbery consistency. The white-meat chicken is kind of dry and doesn’t have a lot of flavor, but the breading tastes halfway decent as an attempt to cover up this fact.

One batch of these chicken nuggets contains 220 calories and 350 mg of sodium. While both of those numbers seem reasonable, keep in mind that this is an incredibly small serving of chicken. We don’t think you’ll be making a whole meal out of what’s in this box.

The Michelina’s Pop’n Chicken feels a little bit like a bait and switch for anyone who doesn’t read the package closely. Now, this is actually a pretty decent little snack for a buck, so long as you don’t expect the dinosaur pieces to be made of chicken. But if you’re expecting a tasty batch of dinosaur-shaped chicken nuggets, you might be disappointed to learn that’s not what this is.

To learn more about the nutrition content, ingredients, or cooking instructions for these frozen chicken nuggets, check out our package scan below.

Michelina's Pop'n Chicken
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4 months ago

The smiley face potatoes are actually better than the dinosaur

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