Air Fried Panko Crusted Chicken Tenders

Air Fried Panko Crusted Chicken Tenders

I love my air fryer! I try to make just about everything in the air fryer. It is quick, convenient and a savior during the hot and long Texas summers. Being from the south, I love deep fried foods. But, we all know, food battered and fried is not the best for you. The air fryer helps to give me the crispiness I love without all of the added calories I do not need.

But, this isn’t a post about how much I love my air fryer (I will save that post for later). This post is about these awesome ‘fried’ chicken tenders I made in the air fryer!

First, I cleaned my tenders and removed the tendons. This is the most tedious part of this recipe and takes longer than actually making the tenders. I always clean my chicken with a little vinegar and lemon juice. And, I remove the tendons by holding the tip of the tendon firmly with a paper towel while pushing the chicken piece down with a fork. It usually works pretty well, but sometimes that tendon gets downright stubborn!

After cleaning the tendons, I seasoned them with a little salt and pepper and I dipped them in a couple of beaten eggs before covering them in the panko mixture. I found this panko/parmesan mix at Aldi when I went on a recent trip. After trying it on these tenders, I went back to get more and, of course, it was no where to be found. But, I am confident I can make a mixture myself the next time I decide to have some air fried tenders.

I air fried these on 400 for about 12 minutes flipping them halfway through the cooking process. You want to make sure your chicken is in a single layer because this will ensure the hot air can get all around the chicken so that the breading will get nice and crisp.

Once these were done, I served them up with a little ranch because ranch is king in this house. The crunch on these is AMAZING! So crispy you almost forget these are not deep fried in oil!

So, the next time you get a hankering for some fried chicken tenders, try this healthier version out. You will not be disappointed!


1-2 lbs of chicken tenders

2 eggs beaten

2 cups of panko/Parmesan crumbs (or 1 cup of each if you cannot find the mix)

Salt and Pepper to taste


Clean your tenders and remove the tendon. Season both sides of the tenders with salt and pepper to taste. Dip tendons in egg mixture then cover each tendon in the panko mixture. Place tenders in a single layer in your air fryer, being careful to ensure they are not touching. Set your air fryer to 400 degrees for 12 minutes. Check and flip these at the 6 minute mark. Be careful not to overcook. Some of the thinner tenders were done in about 10 minutes. Remove cooked tenders from air fryer and serve. Enjoy!

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