Reader Request: Homemade Baked Chicken Tenders

Why get take out when you can make a much better (and healthier!) version at home? These Homemade Baked Chicken Tenders make a fantastic easy weeknight dinner!

chicken tenders

Chicken Tenders

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Check out some of my other chicken recipes:

I was kind of excited when I got a request from a reader for a chicken fingers recipe. Because I live in a home with a super picky husband and two young kids who’s tastes in food change every hour (or so it seems!) I never know how a new recipe will go over. But I knew that a baked chicken tenders recipe was bound to be a hit, and I was right!

I did quite a few tests on this recipe, to get the flavor right where I wanted it to be. Ultimately it was the addition of the ranch seasoning that really took it to the place I wanted it to be. Panko bread crumbs make give these a nice crispiness, without the need for frying. You end up with homemade chicken tenders that are tender on the inside with a subtle crunch on the outside.

Tips for making Baked Chicken Tenders

  • Before breading I like to season the chicken with salt and pepper to taste for a little extra flavor.
  • When cutting the chicken, try to cut them into uniform pieces so that they cook evenly.
  • For optimal crispiness, place a baking rack onto the lined sheet pan. This allows them to crisp up on both sides without the need for turning them. If a baking rack isn’t available, you can turn the chicken tenders halfway through.
  • They are finished just before they hit an internal temperature of 165 degrees. Be sure to let them rest for a couple minutes before serving.

baked chicken tenders

Frequently asked questions about making chicken fingers

  • What cut of chicken do you use? I like to slice up boneless skinless chicken breasts, but you can also use chicken tenderloins to eliminate the cutting.
  • How long do you cook chicken tenders for? For around 15 minutes until just about cooked through and then give them a couple minutes under the broiler to crisp them up a little more.
  • What do you use to dip the chicken tenders? It’s totally up to you. I prefer BBQ sauce or honey mustard. My husband is all about ranch dressing and my daughters love tomato ketchup.
  • How do you make baked chicken fingers crispy? Before baking I spray them with some olive oil cooking spray. I also use a baking rack to crisp both sides and finish baking the last couple minutes under the broiler.
  • How long do chicken fingers last? 3-4 days covered in the refrigerator.
  • Can you reheat them? Yes, they’ll come out best in the oven but you can also use the microwave.

chicken fingers recipe

Make it a meal!

A few great recipes to round out and complete this meal would be:

Helpful tools:

  1. Sheet pan
  2. Silpat
  3. Chef’s knife
  4. Cutting board
  5. Baking rack
  6. Measuring cups
  7. Measuring spoons
Homemade Baked Chicken Tenders
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
20 mins
Total Time
30 mins
 

Why get take out when you can make a much better (and healthier!) version at home? These Homemade Baked Chicken Tenders make a fantastic easy weeknight dinner!

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: chicken tenders
Servings: 4 servings
Author: Jessy Freimann, The Life Jolie
Ingredients
  • Cooking spray
  • 2-3 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • Kosher salt to taste
  • Ground black pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 2-3 large eggs beaten (start with two and beat a third if needed)
  • 1 1/4 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1 teaspoon seasoning salt
  • 2 Tablespoons ranch seasoning
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and line a sheet pan. Top it with a baking rack if you have one and spray the baking rack (or pan) with cooking spray.

  2. Pat the chicken dry with a paper towel and cut into equal size slices. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste.

  3. In 3 shallow bowls, place the following: flour in the first, beaten eggs in the second and in the third stir together the panko bread crumbs, seasoned salt and ranch seasoning until fully combined.

  4. Dredge each chicken piece in flour and tap off the excess. 

  5. Then submerge each chicken piece in the egg making sure it's fully covered before gently tapping of the excess.

  6. Finally, cover each chicken piece in the panko mixture. Once fully covered carefully tap off the excess and place onto the baking rack or pan so they're not touching.

  7. Bake for 15 minutes and then turn the oven onto broil couple of minutes to brown (watch them carefully- you want them to brown, not burn). If not using a baking rack, flip the chicken tenders midway through the cooking time. Serve immediately with your dipping sauce of choice. 

baked chicken tenders recipe

If you tried this recipe please comment and rate it 🙂 I love hearing your feedback and answering your questions! And if you make this please tag me on Instagram with @thelifejolie so I can share it <3

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