Cooking delicious and healthy meals doesn’t have to be complicated. Chicken tenders are a popular favorite that can easily be made in the oven with minimal effort. Baking chicken tenders is a great way to make a tasty dinner that the whole family will love.
In this article, we’ll walk you through the steps of how to bake chicken tenders so that you can get them on the table quickly and easily. Let’s get started!
Table of Contents
What are Chicken Tenders?
Chicken tenders are thin strips of chicken breast meat that have been trimmed of fat and then coated with a light batter or crumb mixture. They can be deep-fried, pan-fried, or even baked in the oven. Baked chicken tenders are a great option because they are lower in fat than other methods of cooking but still remain incredibly flavorful and tasty.
- 1 lb chicken tenders
Craving a fast, delicious meal? Look no further than the classic chicken tender! This delectable dish is made with boneless chicken breasts that have been cut into strips or ‘fingers’, then coated in a scrumptious breading or batter and baked/fried to golden perfection. Enjoy them as-is or get creative by adding your favorite sauces and sides – they make for an amazing meal any time of day!
If you’re looking for a delicious and nutritious meal, look no further than chicken tenders! Not only are these treats tasty, but they also provide several essential vitamins and minerals. Eating chicken tenders can give your body an abundance of protein as well as selenium, niacin, vitamin B6 and phosphorus. Additionally, each tender is filled with zinc and copper – two vital elements to keep your health in optimal condition. With all the benefits packed into one delicacy- what more could you ask for?
Finding the perfect chicken tenders for your meal can be tricky. Always make sure that you’re selecting fresh, never frozen poultry with a tender and unblemished texture to guarantee deliciousness!
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
Olive oil is a renowned health booster, offering unparalleled protection against heart disease and cancer. Bursting with antioxidants, this miraculous fat has been scientifically proven to lower cholesterol levels while adding its own unique flavor to dishes. With such remarkable healing properties, it’s no wonder olive oil continues to be treasured the world over!
When it comes to baking chicken tenders, olive oil is your best bet. Not only is it a heart-healthy fat that helps keep the poultry succulent and tender, but its flavor profile also pairs nicely with the meat!
- Salt, pepper, and garlic powder to taste
Salt is an essential mineral composed of sodium and chlorine that can be discovered in both saltwater and the ground. It is vital to human wellbeing, as it helps regulate our bodies’ fluids, keeps muscles functioning correctly, and aids in digestion.
Salt is a powerhouse of health benefits and an essential part of any diet. Not only does it help to maintain normal blood pressure levels and electrolytes, but it also helps with regulating the body’s water balance throughout periods of exertion or dehydration. Additionally, salt aids in digestion by aiding absorption of nutrients from food consumed.
Salt not only enhances the flavor of food, but also offers several additional benefits. When baking chicken tenders for example, salt works to give it a more robust taste and succulent texture. What’s more is that this seasoning helps keep your fried poultry tender and juicy—a true culinary gem!
Spice up your culinary creations with Pepper! This seasoning is derived from the dried berries of pepper plants, and it comes in a variety of forms to tantalize your tastebuds. Whether you prefer classic black pepper, zesty white pepper or earthy green pepper – there’s a delightful flavor for everyone!
Pepper offers an abundance of advantages for your health; it helps with digestion, its anti-inflammatory properties make it great at targeting aches and pains, and even boosts circulation. Additionally, while baking chicken tenders pepper can not only add flavor to the dish but also keep the meat moist and succulent.
- Your favorite breadcrumb or coating mix of choice (optional)
- Parmesan cheese (optional)
- Fresh herbs such as rosemary and thyme (optional)
Preheat Oven and Line Baking Dish
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit (204 C). Grease a baking dish with the olive oil and line it with parchment paper. This will make it easy to remove the tenders from the pan when they’re done cooking.
Season Chicken Tenders
Place chicken tenders in a medium bowl and season them generously with salt, pepper, and garlic powder. You can also add other herbs or spices to give them more flavor if desired.
Add Coating (Optional)
If you want to use a coating mix for your chicken tenders, you can lightly toss them in the mixture until evenly coated. This is optional but recommended for extra flavor and crunch! If using Parmesan cheese, sprinkle some of the cheese over the tenders.
Breading the Tenders
Place the chicken tenders on the prepared baking dish and make sure they are spaced out evenly. Bake in pre-heated oven for 18 to 20 minutes, or until golden brown and cooked through. Let cool slightly before serving with your favorite dipping sauces.
Now that your chicken tenders are ready to go, it’s time to bake them in the oven. Place the tenders on a greased baking sheet and bake for 15-18 minutes or until golden brown and cooked through.
Optional Toppings and Sides
After baking, you can top your chicken tenders with fresh herbs, Parmesan cheese, or your favorite sauces. Serve with a side of roasted vegetables or a salad for a balanced meal. Enjoy!
- Sauce Pairings
Chicken tenders are great with a variety of sauces. A few favorites include: honey mustard, hot sauce, BBQ sauce, and ranch dressing. Serve the sauce as a dip or drizzle it over the top of the tenders for added flavor.
- Honey Mustard Sauce
Making a homemade honey mustard sauce is easy and takes just minutes. Simply mix equal parts of dijon mustard, honey, white wine vinegar, and olive oil in a bowl until fully combined. Pour the sauce into a jar or container and enjoy!
- Hot Sauce
Hot sauce is a classic pairing for chicken tenders, and you can make your own at home. In a bowl, mix together equal parts of melted butter and hot sauce. Add more hot sauce to taste if desired. Pour the mixture into a jar or container and enjoy!
- BBQ Sauce
Making your own BBQ sauce is easy and takes just minutes. In a pan over medium-high heat, add 1/2 cup of ketchup, 1 teaspoon each of Worcestershire sauce, apple cider vinegar, and honey. Bring to a simmer and stir for about 2 minutes until combined completely. Pour the mixture into a jar or container and enjoy!
- Ranch Dressing
A light ranch dressing pairs perfectly with crispy chicken tenders. Simply mix together equal parts of mayonnaise, sour cream, milk, garlic powder, onion powder, dill weed, parsley flakes and black pepper in a bowl. Stir until fully combined and pour the mixture into a jar or container to enjoy! No matter how
Tips & Tricks for Perfect Tenders
- To ensure that the chicken tenders cook properly and evenly, be sure to make them all the same size.
- Before you begin baking, make sure to preheat your oven to the optimal temperature.
- Make sure your chicken tenders are cooked through properly by using a meat thermometer to assess the internal temperature.
- Ensure your chicken tenders are cooked to perfection by slicing into one and inspecting the interior prior to extracting them from the oven.
- Allow your chicken tenders to rest for a few moments so that their flavor and juiciness can be fully appreciated when served.
- Before you bake the chicken, make sure to lightly coat it with oil. This will ensure that the exterior is crisp and delicious!
- For a perfectly-crisped exterior, bake your chicken tenders on an elevated wire rack located atop a baking sheet. This innovative approach will permit the hot air to flow evenly around the poultry and result in mouthwatering deliciousness!
- To ensure the perfect crispiness for your chicken tenders, leave enough room between each one on the baking sheet. Crowding them together could lead to soggy and unappetizing results!
- Utilize a meat thermometer to ensure the chicken is fully cooked through. For juicy and tender tenders, bake for 20-25 minutes; if you prefer your tenders more well done, increase baking time to 30-35 minutes.
Bake Chicken Tenders For Different Levels Of Doneness
Baking chicken tends is a great way to get different levels of doneness. For crispy tenders, bake at 400°F (200°C) for 18-20 minutes or until golden brown and cooked through. For juicy tenders, bake at 350°F (175°C) for 15-18 minutes or until the internal temperature reaches 165 F (75 C).
No matter how you choose to serve them, these baked chicken tenders are sure to be a hit with everyone! Enjoy!
Per 2 tenders: Calories 199, Fat 11 g, Saturated fat 3 g, Protein 15.3 g, Carbohydrates 5.4 g
Chicken Tenders Are Good For Meal Prep
Chicken tenders are a great meal prep option as they can be served up hot and crispy or stored in the refrigerator for later use. To meal prep with chicken tenders, bake them according to your desired level of doneness, allow to cool slightly, then wrap them tightly in plastic wrap or store in an airtight container. They will last up to 4 days refrigerated or 1 month frozen. When ready to eat, simply reheat with your chosen method. Enjoy!
When coating your tenders prior to baking, be sure to press down gently on each one so that the crumbs stick properly.
If you’re looking for extra crunchiness, try adding some crushed cereal or cornflakes to the coating mix.
For a delicious twist, try using different types of breadcrumbs such as panko or Italian style.
If serving your tenders with dipping sauces, be sure to provide separate containers for each one so that flavors don’t get mixed together.
To save on time, consider purchasing pre-made seasoning mixes rather than mixing up individual spices from scratch.
Finally, if you’re looking for an even crispier exterior and juicy interior, try bringing your chicken tenders prior to baking! This simple technique involves soaking the poultry in a saltwater solution for several hours before cooking; it will help give you the best results possible! Enjoy!
Q: Is it better to bake chicken at 350 or 400?
A: For crispy tenders, bake at 400°F (200°C) for 18-20 minutes or until golden brown and cooked through. For juicy tenders, bake at 350°F (175°C) for 15-18 minutes or until the internal temperature reaches 165 F (75 C).
Q: How long can chicken tenders be stored in the refrigerator?
A: Chicken tenders can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
Q: What is the best way to ensure a crispy exterior?
A: The best way to ensure a crispy exterior is to bake your chicken tenders on an elevated wire rack located atop a baking sheet. This will allow hot air to flow evenly around the poultry and result in deliciousness! Additionally, lightly coating with oil and leaving enough room between each tender on the baking sheet will help create optimal crispiness.
Q: How long to cook raw chicken tenders?
A: For juicy and tender tenders, bake for 20-25 minutes; if you prefer your tenders more well done, increase baking time to 30-35 minutes. To ensure the chicken is fully cooked through, utilize a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature of the poultry.
Q: What are some additional tips for making delicious chicken tenders?
A: Some additional tips include pressing down gently on each tender when coating in breadcrumbs prior to baking, adding crushed cereal or cornflakes for extra crunchiness, experimenting with different types of breadcrumbs such as panko or Italian style, providing separate containers for dipping sauces, purchasing pre-made seasoning mixes and soaking the poultry in a saltwater solution prior
Q: Can I bake chicken at 200 degrees?
A: Yes, you can bake chicken at 200 degrees, however, it is recommended to bake at 350-400 degrees for crispier tenders. Baking chicken at lower temperatures may take longer and the exterior may not be as crispy. It is important to use a meat thermometer when baking any type of poultry to ensure that it has reached an internal temperature of 165 F (75 C).
Q: Is it better to bake chicken uncovered or covered?
A: It is best to bake chicken uncovered for optimal crispiness. This will allow the heat to circulate evenly and create a delicious, golden-brown exterior. If you prefer juicer tenders, you can cover with aluminum foil during the last 10 minutes of baking time.
Conclusion: Enjoy Your Chicken Tenders!
Making flavorful and juicy chicken tenders at home is easy with this simple guide on how to bake chicken tenders. With a few ingredients and minimal effort, you can have delicious and healthy chicken tenders on the table in no time! Enjoy your homemade meal with your favorite sides and toppings for an amazing dinner that’s sure to please. Bon appetit!