Jump to RecipeJump to VideoLeave a ReviewPin Recipe

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. I may earn a small commission for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial, and/or link to any products or services from this website.

Crispy and flavorful, these baked chicken tenders are an easy, family-friendly dinner! Just coat the strips in a combination of bread crumbs and Corn Flakes, and then pop them in the oven for about 15 minutes. Served with waffle fries, pickles, and your kids’ favorite dipping sauces, the baked breaded chicken tenders make a quick and delicious weeknight meal!

Close up shot of a plate of the best baked chicken tenders recipe served with a side of honey mustard for dipping

Odds are good that my kids will order chicken fingers whenever we go out to a restaurant. While I sometimes fry chicken tenders or chicken nuggets at home for a special treat, these oven baked chicken tenders are definitely much easier and healthier (and they’re actually kid-approved)! I’ll show you how to make the quick lunch or dinner at home with just a handful of very basic ingredients.

What’s the difference between chicken tenders and chicken strips?

Chicken strips are slices of the whole chicken breast. The chicken tender (pectoralis minor) is the tender muscle located underneath each of the chicken breasts. For this baked chicken tenders recipe, I always purchase a package of boneless, skinless “chicken tenderloins” in the meat section at the grocery store. Then just season the meat, dredge in flour and egg, and coat with a flavorful breading. Bake for about 15 minutes and dinner is ready!

My kids love these chicken tenders even more than regular fried chicken because they don’t have to navigate any bones. Plus, they can eat the chicken with their hands!

Ingredients

This is a quick overview of the ingredients that you’ll need for easy baked chicken tenders. As always, specific measurements and complete cooking instructions are included in the printable recipe box at the bottom of the post.

  • Italian-style breadcrumbs: to coat the chicken.
  • Corn Flakes cereal crumbs: for extra flavor and a crispy exterior.
  • Brown sugar: adds a subtle note of sweetness in the background, which is one of the secret ingredients in Chik-Fil-A’s fried chicken.
  • Kosher salt and pepper: to season the meat.
  • Olive oil: added to the breadcrumb mixture, the oil helps the outside of the chicken turn especially golden brown and crispy in the oven.
  • All-purpose flour: for dredging the chicken; helps the egg adhere to the meat.
  • Eggs: coats the chicken and helps the breading adhere.
  • Chicken tenderloins: the base of your chicken fingers!
Side view of a plate of baked chicken fingers on a table

How to Make Baked Chicken Tenders

Baked instead of fried, these homemade chicken tenders are crispy on the outside, tender and juicy on the inside, and so incredibly flavorful! They have all of the texture and taste that you crave from classic fried chicken tenders — but without an oily mess on the stovetop and without too much prep. The oven baked breaded chicken tenders are quick, easy, and incredibly family-friendly!

  1. Prepare breading mixture.
  2. Set up dredging station with flour, eggs and breading.
  3. Season chicken with salt and pepper.
  4. Dredge chicken in flour, dip in eggs, and coat with breading.
  5. Bake chicken tenders in a 375° F oven for about 14-15 minutes, flipping halfway through. The chicken should be crispy and golden brown on the outside, the juices should run clear, and the meat should reach an internal temperature of 165° F.
Bread crumb and Corn Flake breading mixture in a dish
Dredging station set up
Process shot showing how to make baked chicken tenders
Square side shot of homemade baked chicken tenders on a plate

What to Serve with Crispy Baked Chicken Tenders

These oven baked chicken fingers pair perfectly with just about any of your favorite classic Southern sides. Here are a few easy recipes to round out the meal:

Close overhead image of baked chicken tenders with flour on a serving tray

Storage

You can prepare the breading mixture in advance, but I do not recommend breading the chicken until just before baking.

Leftover oven baked chicken tenders will keep in the refrigerator in an airtight container for 3-4 days, or in the freezer for 2-3 months. This chicken is best when served immediately, however, since it does not stay as crispy once it’s chilled.

To reheat leftover chicken fingers, preheat the oven to 400° F. Meanwhile, place the chicken on a wire rack over a baking sheet and allow the chicken to come to room temperature for about 20 minutes (this ensures that it reheats evenly). Next, reheat the chicken until it feels hot and very crispy, about 5-10 minutes.

Recipe Variations

  • If you don’t have Italian-style breadcrumbs, you can use regular breadcrumbs. The Italian-style breadcrumbs include seasonings like oregano, basil and parsley, so you’ll want to add some extra seasoning to your plain breadcrumbs to replace that missing flavor. Good options include seasoned salt, cayenne, paprika, onion powder and garlic powder.
  • I love the combination of the breadcrumbs and Corn Flake crumbs, because the Corn Flakes add extra crunch and flavor that you can’t get from the breadcrumbs alone. I prefer the finer texture of regular breadcrumbs to coat the chicken when paired with the crushed Cornflakes, but you can substitute with Panko breadcrumbs if that’s all that you have.
  • For a special touch, add a couple of tablespoons of grated Parmesan cheese to the breading mixture.
  • Cooking just for two? Cut all of the ingredients in half and bake just 1 lb. of chicken tenders. The rest of the cooking instructions remain the same.
Side shot of crispy baked chicken tenders on a plate with a side of waffle fries and pickles

Tips for the Best Baked Chicken Tenders Recipe

  • The Corn Flakes make these tenders extra crispy and flavorful, so don’t try to substitute with additional breadcrumbs.
  • The oil in the breading is a key to this extra crispy oven fried chicken recipe since the fat helps the breading turn brown and crunchy in the oven. Don’t skip the oil, or the end result won’t be nearly as good.
  • I like to use chicken tenderloins because it cuts down on prep work. That said, you can certainly use regular boneless, skinless chicken breast and cut it into strips at home.
  • Serve the homemade chicken fingers with ketchup, honey mustard, or Chik-Fil-A sauce for dipping!
Overhead image of a platter of baked breaded chicken tenders with a side of fries

More Oven Fried Chicken Recipes to Try

Close up shot of a plate of the best baked chicken tenders recipe served with a side of honey mustard for dipping

Baked Chicken Tenders

Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 15 minutes
Total: 30 minutes
Servings 4 – 6 people (about 13 tenders total)
Calories 218 kcal
Crispy and flavorful, these baked chicken tenders are an easy, family-friendly dinner!

Ingredients
  

  • 1 cup Corn Flakes cereal crumbs (about 2 ½ cups measured before crushing)
  • 1 cup Italian style breadcrumbs
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt, plus additional for seasoning the chicken
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 2 lbs. chicken breast tenderloins
  • Black pepper to taste

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 375° F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or aluminum foil sprayed with cooking spray. Set aside.
  • Pour crushed Corn Flakes, breadcrumbs, brown sugar and salt in a shallow dish.
  • Drizzle the oil evenly over the crumb mixture and toss until oil is mixed throughout.
  • Pour flour into a separate shallow dish.
  • Place eggs in a third shallow dish.
  • Season the chicken on both sides with salt and pepper, to taste.
  • Working with one tenderloin at a time, dredge chicken in flour and turn to coat. Shake off any excess flour. Then dip the chicken in the eggs, shaking off any excess egg before finally coating the chicken in the breadcrumb mixture.
  • Arrange breaded chicken on prepared baking sheet and bake until crisp and golden brown, about 14-15 minutes, flipping halfway through. The chicken should be crispy and golden brown on the outside, the juices should run clear, and the meat should reach an internal temperature of 165° F.

Notes

  • The nutrition information provided is merely an estimate, assuming that all of the breading is used to coat the meat. If you have extra breading that you discard, the nutrition information will vary.
  • The Corn Flakes make these tenders extra crispy and flavorful, so don’t try to substitute with additional breadcrumbs.
  • The oil in the breading is a key to this extra crispy oven fried chicken recipe since the fat helps the breading turn brown and crunchy in the oven. Don’t skip the oil, or the end result won’t be nearly as good.
  • I like to use chicken tenderloins because it cuts down on prep work. That said, you can certainly use regular boneless, skinless chicken breast and cut it into strips at home.
  • Serve the homemade chicken fingers with ketchup, honey mustard, or Chik-Fil-A sauce for dipping!
  • If you don’t have Italian-style breadcrumbs, you can use regular breadcrumbs. The Italian-style breadcrumbs include seasonings like oregano, basil and parsley, so you’ll want to add some extra seasoning to your plain breadcrumbs to replace that missing flavor. Good options include seasoned salt, cayenne, paprika, onion powder and garlic powder.
  • I love the combination of the breadcrumbs and Corn Flake crumbs, because the Corn Flakes add extra crunch and flavor that you can’t get from the breadcrumbs alone. I prefer the finer texture of regular breadcrumbs to coat the chicken when paired with the crushed Cornflakes, but you can substitute with Panko breadcrumbs if that’s all that you have.
  • For a special touch, add a couple of tablespoons of grated Parmesan cheese to the breading mixture.
  • Cooking just for two? Cut all of the ingredients in half and bake just 1 lb. of chicken tenders. The rest of the cooking instructions remain the same.

Nutrition

Serving: 1chicken tenderCalories: 218kcalCarbohydrates: 25gProtein: 18gFat: 5gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 57mgSodium: 521mgPotassium: 319mgFiber: 1gSugar: 3gVitamin A: 382IUVitamin C: 5mgCalcium: 25mgIron: 6mg
Keyword: baked chicken fingers, baked chicken tenders, crispy, easy, oven baked chicken tenders
Course: Dinner, Lunch
Cuisine: American
Author: Blair Lonergan
blair

Hey, I’m Blair!

Welcome to my farmhouse kitchen in the foothills of Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains. Inspired by local traditions and seasonal fare, you’ll find plenty of easy, comforting recipes that bring your family together around the table. It’s down-home, country-style cooking!

Read More

Square overhead shot of hands serving a chicken pot pie recipe with biscuits
Overhead image of a bowl of chili mac on a dinner table with cornbread
Hands serving a platter of sheet pan sausage and potatoes

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

Recipe Rating




This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.