Easy oven baked chicken tenders are one of our favorite kid friendly dinner recipes. Crunchy, juicy, and perfect for dipping, you may never order fast food nuggets again. Ready in less than 30 minutes!
If you’re on the lookout for kid friendly dinner recipes, chicken tenders are always an easy choice. And this recipe for baked chicken tenders is a true family favorite. Our secret is that we dip the chicken in yogurt before coating it with spiced Panko. This method keeps the tenders crunchy and juicy, and creates a spread worthy of a fun dipping station!
Why You’ll Love This Baked Chicken Tenders Recipe
- Juicy and tender. Thanks to the yogurt coating, the chicken stays super juicy and tender.
- Quick. Dinner is ready in under 30 minutes!
- Kid-friendly. Sometimes kid-friendly dinner recipes are full of sugar or so processed you can hardly find a real ingredient. Not so with these tenders. This recipe is kid friendly and mom approved!
What You’ll Need
- For the chicken: 1 to 1.5 pounds of chicken tenderloin
- For the batter: Panko breadcrumbs, egg, plain yogurt, dijon mustard, garlic powder, salt, and pepper.
How to Make Chicken Tenders
- Prep. First, preheat the oven to 425˚F. Grab a large baking sheet, line it with parchment paper or foil, and set a wire rack over it.
- Set up a breading station. Place the Panko in a bowl. In another bowl, mix together the egg, yogurt, and seasonings.
- Bread the chicken. Dredge the chicken in the batter, one at a time. Next, pick up the chicken tender and place it in the Panko bowl. Sprinkle with breadcrumbs, and then press the breadcrumbs down to adhere.
- Repeat. Transfer the chicken tenders to the baking sheet and then repeat with the remaining chicken pieces.
- Bake. Spray the tenders with cooking oil. Pop them in the oven and bake for about 15 minutes. They are done when the internal temperature measures 165˚F.
- Fry the chicken tenders. If you’d like to try a fried chicken tenders recipe instead, it’s really easy. Just add half a cup of vegetable oil to a deep-sided skillet and fry the tenders on both sides until they’re completely cooked through.
- Remove the tough white tendon. It may be an extra step, but it makes the chicken tenders easier to chew. A pair of kitchen scissors can do the job; you can choose to trim just the upper part or remove the entire tendon.
- Make sure to use a wire rack. This will prevent the underside of the chicken from becoming soggy.
- Cook fully. To check if the tenders are cooked through, use an instant-read thermometer. Chicken is cooked through when its internal temperature registers at 165˚F.
What to Serve With Baked Chicken Tenders
We enjoy these chicken tenders with my creamy honey mustard sauce and a side of garlic fries. For more variety, consider serving them with parmesan asparagus fries or a side of instant pot Mexican rice.
While we absolutely love honey mustard sauce, there are a ton of options to create a fun dipping station. Serve one or several of these sauces to make everyone happy – the possibilities are endless.
- Ketchup. A classic choice, especially popular with kids.
- Honey mustard. Sweet and tangy, a flavorful favorite.
- BBQ sauce. Smoky and rich, perfect for a hearty dip.
- Ranch dressing. Creamy and herby, a crowd-pleaser.
- Teriyaki sauce. Sweet, savory, and perfect for an Asian twist.
- Blue cheese dressing. Tangy and robust, especially good with spicy tenders.
- Sriracha or hot sauce. For those who prefer their tenders with a bit of heat.
- Marinara sauce. Tomato-based and herby, kind of like a chicken parmesan dip.
Storing Leftovers and Reheating
- Store leftovers in the refrigerator in an airtight container for 3 to 4 days or in the freezer for up to 2 months. Thaw before reheating.
- To reheat, simply place the tenders on a baking sheet and reheat at 350˚F in the oven for 10 minutes or until warm.
More Chicken Recipes to Try
Oven Baked Chicken Tenders
- 1½ cups Panko breadcrumbs
- 1 large egg, lightly beaten
- ¼ cup plain yogurt
- ½ tablespoon dijon mustard
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon salt, or to taste
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 pound chicken tenderloins
- oil spray
- Preheat the oven to 425˚F
- Line a sheet pan with foil or parchment paper, set an oven-safe cooling rack over the baking sheet, and spray it with cooking oil. Set aside.
- Place panko crumbs in a bowl.
- In a separate bowl, combine lightly beaten egg, yogurt, dijon mustard, garlic powder, salt, and pepper; whisk with a fork until thoroughly combined.
- Add chicken tenders (working with one chicken tender at a time) into the egg batter and toss to coat.
- Pick up chicken and place it into the panko bowl. Dredge the chicken tenders with breadcrumbs, then press down to adhere.
- Transfer the tenders to the wire rack on the baking sheet, leaving some space between each piece. Repeat the process to coat all chicken tenders.
- Spray the chicken tenders with oil spray.
- Bake for 15 minutes; check for doneness with an instant-read thermometer – chicken is baked when the thermometer registers at 165˚F.
- Remove from oven and serve.
- If you prefer frying the chicken tenders, pour half a cup of vegetable oil into a pan and cook the chicken tenders on both sides until cooked through. DO NOT crowd the pan and fry them in batches.
- For an easier, tender chew, use kitchen scissors to remove the rigid white tendon located at the top of the chicken tenders.
- Use a wire rack- it keeps the bottom of the chicken crisp and prevents sogginess.
- Use an instant-read thermometer to check if the tenders are cooked to an internal temperature of 165˚F.