Recipe Remix: Healthier Baked Chicken Tenders

Crispy, juicy, and tasty—chicken fingers are wonderfully delicious. And just because you’re craving these kid-friendly strips, doesn’t mean you have to dig into a basket of grease. You can get crunchy and delicious chicken fingers without a single drop of oil, straight out of the oven.

The key to crispy baked chicken strips: breakfast cereal! A breading of smashed cereal adds flavor and stays extra crunchy in the oven. The end result is a gotta-turn-up-the-TV kind of crunch with a wealth of added nutrition if you use flax flakes, bran flakes, or other whole grain cereals.

To keep things healthy and light, skip the heavy mayo-based dipping sauces and switch it with mustards and Greek-yogurt based dips. Hummus is also a great dipper!

Crispy Baked Chicken Fingers

Makes: 4 servings | Time: 30 minutes

Ingredients

  • Cooking spray
  • 2 cups corn, bran, or flax flakes (crushed into small crumbs)
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 egg (beaten)
  • 4 large chicken breasts (sliced into 1″ strips)

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 375°. Place a cooling rack on a baking sheet and coat lightly with cooking spray.
  2. In a shallow dish (I like using pie plates), mix the crushed cereal, garlic powder, salt and pepper. Set aside. Place the flour in another shallow dish and the beaten egg in a third shallow dish.
  3. To coat the strips, dredge one strip in the flour, knocking off the excess. And then dredge in the egg, dripping off the excess. Then press into the cereal mixture until the strip is coated. Place on the prepared rack and baking sheet and continue with remaining strips. Spritz tops of chicken strips with cooking spray.
  4. Bake in preheated oven for 15-20 minutes, or until the center of the thickest strips registers 165°. Serve with dipping sauce.

Serving Size: About 3-4 strips (one breast worth) | Servings Per Recipe: 4

Nutrition Per Serving: 339 calories, 10g fat (2.8g sat, 0g trans), 24.5g carbs (3.2g fiber, 3g sugar), 37.3g protein

What’s your favorite healthy dipping sauce for chicken strips?

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Cassie Johnston is an award-winning food writer and recipe developer living and working in Southern Indiana. Her work has been feature in national publications such as Gourmet Magazine and The Huffington Post. Cassie’s a big fan of strenuous hikes, cheese, watching sports, Brussels sprouts, and craft beer, and she’ll talk your ear off about her love of local food and seasonal eating. She’s obsessed with social media and loves connecting with new friends!