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Crispy, cheesy and absolutely perfect for dinner tonight! These breaded chicken tenders are a weeknight wonder that appeals to the whole family!
Step by step photos and instructions below!
I don’t know anyone who doesn’t appreciate a good chicken tender recipe. They are a family friendly dinner that is ready fast and is super adaptable. You can make as many as you need!
We’re always in a bind during the week. Standing in front of the fridge, wondering what on earth to make for dinner, and rummaging in the pantry too. Making these is a no brainer and guarantees clean plates at the end of a meal.
Pan fried, air fried, deep fried, or baked in the oven? This is a great recipe because it works any way you want it to! It always results in crunchy, garlicky and cheesy chicken tenders.
Why you’ll love this recipe
- Fast. This can be on the table in less than 30 minutes.
- This is an easy recipe to make! It lends itself well to chicken tenders, chicken breasts (cut into chicken strips) or even thin sliced pork chops.
- You can make ahead. Just get them ready and let them chill until you are ready to cook.
- Adaptable. You can bake chicken tenders, pan fry, or use an air fryer (make sure your chicken is sprayed with cooking spray)
What to serve with Breaded Chicken Tenders
You could try various dipping sauces too, I suggest ranch, barbecue or honey mustard.
I have included step by step photos and instructions, as well as tips and tricks in the post. If you’d rather skip all that, scoot right on down to the full recipe card located at the bottom of the post.
The full list of ingredients and quantities is found in the printable recipe card below.
- Chicken Tenders. You can use thinly sliced boneless skinless chicken breasts, pork chops or cut chicken breasts into strips.
- Butter and Garlic. We use these to dip the chicken in before breading.
- Panko Breadcrumbs. Japanese breadcrumbs, known for their crispy crunchy texture when cooked!
- Cheese. I use both parmesan cheese and cheddar in this recipe.
- Seasonings. I use parsley, oregano, pepper and salt. Mix it up and choose your own! You may also like to just use Italian Seasoning.
How to Pan Fry Breaded Chicken Tenders
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The full list of ingredients, quantities and instructions can be found in the printable recipe card below.
Make the garlic butter.
Just melt the butter and add the garlic so you get that yummy flavor into your chicken.
Mix the bread crumbs, and coat
In separate shallow dishes, mix the panko breadcrumbs, cheeses, and spices/seasonings. Dip each chicken strip in the garlic butter to coat, then press into the bread crumb mixture.
Cook the chicken
Cook chicken in batches (don’t crowd the skillet!) on both sides until golden brown.
Transfer to a paper towel lined plate and devour.
Pan fry in batches
Preheat the oven to 200 degrees. Place cooked chicken tenders on a baking sheet and place in the oven to keep warm while you cook the rest.
Season the chicken fingers with salt and pepper after cooking for a boost in flavor.
You can use an egg mixture instead of garlic butter to dip your chicken in before breading. I would add garlic powder to the panko bread crumbs.
- Chicken Piccata Recipe. An old time classic, that is quick and easy to make and full of flavor. Butter, lemon juice and capers make the delicious sauce!
- Pesto Stuffed Chicken (with Cream Cheese). Super easy to make, finishes in the oven for some hands-off cooking! Creamy and delicious, everyone will love this dinner!
- Jalapeno Popper Chicken. Chicken stuffed with a delicious jalapeno cream cheese mixture and coated with breadcrumbs. Baked to perfection, and absolutely delicious!
Garlic Cheddar Chicken Tenders
- Melt the butter in a saucepan over low heat, and saute the garlic until tender.
- In a shallow bowl, mix the panko breadcrumbs, cheeses, and spices/seasonings.
- Dip each chicken strip in the garlic butter to coat, then press into the bread crumb mixture.
To pan fry
- Heat cooking oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat
- Cook chicken in batches (don’t crowd the skillet!) on both sides until golden brown, and internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F
- Transfer to a paper towel lined plate and sprinkle with a little salt and pepper if needed.
To oven bake
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Arrange the coated chicken breasts in a 9×13 inch baking dish.
- Drizzle with any remaining butter and top with any remaining bread crumb mixture.
- Bake 20-30 minutes in the preheated oven, or until chicken is no longer pink (center should be 165 degrees F)
Nutritional information is an estimate and provided to you as a courtesy. You should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe using your preferred nutrition calculator.
Update: This recipe was originally published in September of 2015. It was republished with updated photos in May of 2021.