Comfort food doesn't always have to be greasy, heavy and full of preservatives. These crispy chicken tenders are still juicy just oven baked with panko bread crumbs and parmesan.
Baking set up is important for these to turn out right without sticking to your baking rack. If you don't have a specifically made baking rack you can make an easy crispy baking set-up using a Sheet Pan and a couple little racks that come from a toaster oven or cooling racks (just make sure they're oven safe). If you want a perfect fitting set up you can use this sort of half sheet pan rack that fits a 13 X 18 sheet pan perfectly.
Make sure you spray the rack with oil before placing your tenders on them and they'll turn out great on all sides, so soggy or sticky bottoms.
Watch the Breadcrumbs
I've used bread crumbs for years not even thinking to look at the labels as much as other products, thinking, "They're just breadcrumbs, what could be so bad about them?" Too much of everything is the answer. Just check out the label of a standard container of breadcrumbs on the left. Why are there over 25 ingredients in them? It's supposed to be just breadcrumbs. Instead they're filled with all sorts of preservatives, all sorts of heavily processed oils and extra sodium. The best option in a perfect world would be homemade breadcrumbs, but not many people will take the time to make them so at least try the "better" and actually crispier option, panko for oven crispy dishes like this one.
Kid Friendly Tenders
I've found that my kids prefer these in smaller chunks instead of whole tenders, so for the kids I just cut a few tenders into 3 or 4 pieces that are more nugget sized. This way food doesn't get wasted as much and you can just give them a nugget or two at a time. They like them with BBQ sauce (try to find one with less sugar) or a homemade Buttermilk Ranch dip I make.
Crispy Tender Ingredients
Panko Bread Crumbs- I prefer panko bread crumbs to other store bought bread crumbs because of all the crazy unnamable ingredients in standard bread crumbs, even unflavored. Plus Panko gives you a great crispy coating.
Parmesan Cheese- Finely shredded parmesan will also help make these crispy and give you a nice texture and flavor.
Parsley- This is optional since I know some won't care for it, but I like the look and taste of it.
How do you Remove the Tendons from the Tenders?
I've made a quick tip video on what I believe to be the best, most efficient and easy way to remove tendons from chicken tenders! Check out my YouTube video on the "Best Way to Remove Tendons from the Chicken tenders" Here.
Side Recommendations for Tenders:
Give these a try and let me know how they turn out for you!Print