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Easy Baked Chicken Tenders

Easy Baked Chicken Tenders are oven baked to create healthier chicken tenders. The panko crust is crunchy, but you can sub in regular breadcrumbs, and has good flavor from the spices. These are a kid and adult favorite! 

Healthy Chicken Fingers up close

EASY BAKED CHICKEN TENDERS 

Today I am revamping one of the first recipes that I ever created on my site for Healthy Chicken Fingers.

This is such an easy chicken recipe and we all need some of those in our back pocket for those busy weeknights.

When my kids need a quick meal on the table these Baked Chicken Tenders are often what they ask for. 

You can’t go wrong with chicken nuggets on a busy night. And these are crispy chicken tenders which is an added bonus! 

One thing I love about making my own homemade chicken tenders is that I control the ingredients and they are baked.

This helps to make a healthier chicken tender for your family. 

I also like to make these Air Fryer Chicken Tenders, Pretzel Crusted Chicken Tenders and these Air Fryer Coconut Chicken Tenders sometimes. 

I will pair these chicken tenders with Mediterranean Roasted Vegetables, Oven Baked Carrot Fries or these Apple Chips

Healthy Chicken Fingers with blue napkin

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WHAT INGREDIENTS ARE IN THIS TENDER RECIPE

CHICKEN TENDERLOINS

PANKO BREADCRUMBS {OR REGULAR}

PARMESAN CHEESE

GARLIC POWDER

THYME

PARSLEY

PAPRIKA

OLIVE OIL {OR USE EGG}

Healthy Chicken Fingers on white plate

HOW TO MAKE THIS CHICKEN TENDERS RECIPE

You’ll  love how easy it is to make these healthy, delicious chicken fingers! Just follow these simple steps.

PREPARE THE BREADING FOR THE TENDERS: In a shallow bowl combine the ingredients for the breading which includes panko breadcrumbs, parmesan cheese, garlic powder, thyme, parsley, paprika, salt and pepper.

Stir it until it is well combined. Set this aside. You can feel free to adjust the spices to your liking. 

DREDGE THE CHICKEN FINGERS IN OIL AND BREADCRUMBS: Next you will pour the olive oil in a separate shallow bowl. Dredge each chicken tender in the olive oil {or egg}, making sure to coat both sides.

Then take the chicken tender and dredge it in the breadcrumb mixture making sure both sides are coated. Put the coated tenders on to a prepared baking sheet once coated. If you have a wire rack I suggest using it when baking chicken tenders on top of the baking sheet to help create an even crispier chicken. 

BAKE IN THE OVEN: The best part of these chicken tender is they are baked in the oven.

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F then bake chicken tenders for 25 minutes, flipping the tenders once until the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees F on a meat thermometer and they turn golden brown.

Sprinkle the crispy tenders with fresh parsley if you want and serve warm with your favorite dipping sauce like ketchup, bbq sauce or honey mustard sauce. Store the leftover chicken tenders in an airtight container for up to 5 days. 

Healthy Chicken Fingers with ketchup

MODIFICATIONS AND COOKING TIPS FOR HEALTHY BAKED CHICKEN TENDERS: 

  • SPICES: Try using a variety of spices like italian seasoning, onion powder, Greek seasoning, za’atar, paprika or chili powder. 
  • HEAT: You get to control what goes in this, which is the best part! If your family likes some spice add some cayenne pepper. If your family hates spice leave it out all together and stick with salt, pepper and maybe a little garlic powder.
  • BREADCRUMBS: Try both regular breadcrumbs or panko breadcrumbs on these chicken tenders. Panko breadcrumbs will create a crunchier texture.
  • OIL VS. EGG: You can use egg or olive oil for the liquid. This helps the breading stick to the chicken but you can pick what you want to use based on your dietary restrictions. 
  • DIPPING SAUCES: You can serve these oven-baked chicken tenders with all kinds of sauces like barbecue sauce, ketchup, ranch or even a dill sauce
  • GLAZES: Brush your cooked chicken tenders with honey, balsamic reductions or a spicy glaze to add flavor! 
Healthy Chicken Fingers on white plate

WAYS TO SERVE CHICKEN TENDERS:

WRAP OR SANDWICH: Use chicken tenders as the main protein in wraps, sandwiches, or sliders. Top with lettuce, tomatoes, onions, and your choice of condiments.

SALAD TOPPING: These chicken tenders work great on top of a salad alongside vegetables, greens and seeds. 

TACO OR BURRITO FILLING: I like to use these in Mexican food like tacos or burritos. 

PASTA DISH: If you’re making pasta these chicken tenders would be nice cut up and added to your favorite pasta. 

STIR-FRY: When you make a stir-fry add the chicken tenders into the sautéed vegetables. 

OTHER CHICKEN RECIPES YOU MIGHT LIKE: 

COQ AU VIN

GREEK LEMON CHICKEN

MOROCCAN CHICKEN THIGHS

GREEK CHICKEN WITH TZATZIKI

GREEK MARINATED CHICKEN KABOBS

CHICKEN SLIDERS

Easy Baked Chicken Tenders with logo.
Healthy Chicken Fingers with blue napkin

Easy Baked Chicken Tenders

Yield: 4
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes

Easy Baked Chicken Tenders are oven baked to create a healthier tender. The panko crust is crunchy and has good flavor from the spices. These are a kid and adult favorite!

Ingredients

  • 1 1/3 cup panko breadcrumbs {or you can use regular breadcrumbs}
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon parsley
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 1/2 lb. chicken tenders
  • 1/4 cup olive oil

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray a baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In a shallow bowl mix the panko breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese, thyme, parsley, paprika, salt and pepper and stir until combined. Set aside. Pour the 1/4 cup olive oil into another shallow bowl.
  3. Dredge the chicken in the olive oil and then into the dry ingredients making sure both sides are coated. Place the tenders on the baking sheet. If you have a wire rack I suggest using it when baking chicken tenders on top of the baking sheet to help create an even crispier chicken. 
  4. Bake for 25 minutes, flipping the tenders once {chicken should reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees F}.
  5. Sprinkle with fresh parsley if you want and serve warm with ketchup or honey mustard dipping sauce.

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Kitty Fairfield

Monday 15th of April 2024

Hi! Can you clarify the portion size? When the recipe says it yields 4, is that 4 tenders or 4 servings? If it's 4 servings, what is the serving size? Also, is there a nutritional breakdown as well? I'm really looking forward to making these! I've made your Shrimp stir-fry and I really enjoy your page 😊

Julia

Monday 15th of April 2024

Usually there is about 8 per pound and this recipe calls for 1 1/2 pounds so about 12-14 chicken tenders. It is 4 servings which is about 3-4 chicken tenders per person. It depends on how many chicken tenders come in the package that you buy. I currently don't have nutritional information-sorry! I am working on that. And thank you for the kind words- I am glad you like the recipes!

Pat

Monday 25th of March 2024

These were definitely easy and so delicious …used the wire rack…but next time won’t…mine were not as brown as yours..

Julia

Tuesday 26th of March 2024

Glad you liked them!

Patricia

Tuesday 2nd of January 2024

Hello…Would you possibly know the nutritional values of this recipe? I just made it and it was delicious. Thank you so much. Patricia 😊

Julia

Thursday 4th of January 2024

I am working on adding that in this year. Glad you liked it!

marion

Friday 10th of November 2023

recipe says spray baking sheet with non stick cooking spray - do i bake the chicken tenders directly on the baking sheet or do i skip that and put them on a wire rack and bake them for the 25 minutes- i am guessing its one of the two choices how crispy i like my chicken tenders-thanks

Julia

Friday 10th of November 2023

If you like your tenders crispy then try the wire rack- that helps let the air circulate around them better. Otherwise just bake them on the baking sheet but make sure you spray it so they don't stick. Enjoy! I also have an air fryer version which helps make them crispy too! https://www.acedarspoon.com/air-fryer-chicken-tenders/

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