Chicken Tenders - March Madness Recipes

Playoffs are dominating right now. Whether you’re cheering on your favorite team for March Madness, cheering on your home team for hockey or awaiting Opening Day for baseball, today’s game day app is a snack everyone will love from kids to adults. It’s even a good option for weeknight dinners when you don’t feel like fighting everyone on the kale salad you have pinned to the fridge. It’s also pretty cheap and feeds four comfortably. You can’t go wrong with that!

Something to know about me, I do not enjoy frying. Food tastes awesome when you fry it but it’s unpleasant while doing so. It’s also tedious. Frying a few batches of chicken tenders is much more labor intense than sticking them in the oven. The challenge then is getting them equally crispy all the way around...and what about the flavor? I have solutions for both. Bake the tenders on a cooling rack and it will allow heat to get around the entire tender. This solves the issue of one crispy side and another soggy side. Flavor is also an easy fix. I actually like baked tenders better than fried. The flavor is a little brighter and actually tastes lighter. The trick? Mix a little garlic powder into the flour and add plenty of herbs into the breadcrumbs. Make sure to season the raw chicken well with salt and pepper before dredging as well. This will all ensure a flavorful tender. You won’t miss frying them one bit.

Crunchy Chicken Tenders 1.0.jpg

Honey Dijon is one of my favorite condiments and pairs well with chicken. Instead of buying a bottle at the store, use ingredients you already have at home. It will also cut sugar content since a lot of bottle Honey Dijon products add unnecessary sugars. Honey is sweet enough on its own. It doesn’t need help. I like to have a little tang still in my mustard so I use ¼ cup Honey to ½ Dijon. That’s about a 1:2 ratio. However, add more honey if you’d like a sweeter dip. The beauty of making your own is that you’re in control of how sweet it is.

Chicken Tenders with Honey Dijon Mustard
1 lb. Chicken Tenderloins
½ cup Flour
2 Eggs
¾ cup Breadcrumbs
1 tsp. Garlic Powder
¼ tsp. Paprika
½ tsp. each Parsley, Basil and Oregano
½ cup Dijon Mustard
¼ cup Honey

1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking sheet with tin foil and lay a cooling rack sprayed with cooking spray on top of the foil.

2. Prepare three bowls for dredging. In one, add the flour, garlic powder and paprika mixing together. In the second bowl, mix the eggs with a few tablespoons of water. In the third bowl, mix together the breadcrumbs and herbs.

3. Season the chicken tenders generously with salt and pepper. Dredge the chicken in the flour followed by the egg and then the breadcrumbs. Dredge the chicken a second time in the egg and back into the breadcrumbs. Place on the cooling rack. Bake 15-20 minutes until golden brown. Let cool.

4. While the tenders cool, mix together the Dijon Mustard and Honey. Place in a small bowl and arrange the tenders around it for serving.

How’s your team doing during the playoffs this season?